Texas grant program aimed at tourism-related COVID losses

Jan. 24—Applications for a new grant program with awards of up to $20,000 for qualifying travel and tourism-related businesses and organizations will open Feb. 1.

The Texas Economic Development and Tourism Office will provide one-time grants to qualifying businesses. Some $180 million has been set aside for the program.

The grants were approved in the third called session of the 87th Texas Legislature as the Texas Travel Industry Recovery Grant program.

So, who's eligible?

Applicants can come from the travel, tourism and hospitality industries as determined by the North American Industry Classification System, known as NAICS.

Eligible applicants must show they were in operation before Jan. 20, 2020, that they operated in Texas, they are a private for-profit business or a non-profit, they are open to the public or provide services for in-person events and have documentation to show a negative economic impact due to COVID-19.

These eligible businesses and organizations range from auto rental businesses to scenic and sightseeing tour companies, charter air, bus and boat companies, breweries and wineries, campgrounds and convention and visitors bureaus.

Applicants must submit supporting documents along with their application to demonstrate grant eligibility requirements. This application round will remain open until remaining funds are dispersed.

Eligibility and grant application details, deadlines, an application instruction video and the TTIR application portal are available online at https://ttir-portal.gov.texas.gov.