Small businesses still waiting for state assistance may have a better chance at relief after Gov. Phil Murphy said his administration will offer another $15 million in grants. Murphy announced the third round of small business grants Tuesday, July 28th.

But there has been such high demand by small businesses for financial assistance that the second round of grants were “oversubscribed,” said Tim Sullivan, chief executive officer of the Economic Development Authority, which established the Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program. Pending applicants will now be considered in the third round of grants.

Even the latest round of grants may not meet the demand from the more than 861,000 “enterprises,” according to the state Office of Small Business Advocacy. The first and second round of grants quickly ran out, and there are about 30,000 pending applications from the second round that will be considered for the third, Sullivan said.

So far the authority has approved grants of $44 million for 10,600 small businesses, Murphy’s office said. The latest round of funding brings the total committed by the state for the small-business program to $70 million, Murphy said. The state is using federal CARES Act funding for the grants, he said. That’s in addition to $100 million the authority is administering to businesses affected by COVID-19.

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