Small Business Resources

We’ve compiled a list of resources and links to assistance programs available during the current COVID-19 health crisis.



A second phase of the Maine Economic Recovery Grant Program opened on September 23, 2020. Phase 2 will make  approximately $95 million in remaining funds from Phase 1 available and expand access to the program by increasing the number of eligible businesses and non-profits. Under Phase 2, businesses and non-profits that employ up to 250 people will be eligible for grant rewards. Additionally, licensed childcare and behavioral health organizations are eligible. Applications for Phase 2 will be accepted Wednesday, September 23, 2020 through Friday, October 23, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. with grants expected to be awarded in late November. Visit the grant program webpage for eligibility, FAQs, and to apply.


The Paycheck Protection Program established by the CARES Act, is implemented by the Small Business Administration with support from the Department of the Treasury. This program provides small businesses with funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. Note: The SBA Paycheck Protection Program closed August 8, 2020 and is no longer accepting applications.

CEI Resources for Businesses

CEI’s COVID Resource Center offers a variety of resources for businesses. Their business advisors are working and available via phone and email. If you are new to CEI, you can request a consultation at CEI recently launched a “Wicked Reboot” loan for small businesses. Click here to read more.

GPCOG (Greater Portland Council of Governments) Rapid Response Micro Loan Program

Provides financial assistance to regional businesses most impacted by COVID-19, which are in danger of closing, have laid off workers, or have had to close temporarily. Funds available are not intended to substitute for available COVID-19 federal and/or state commercial financing if a business is able to access one or both.

GPCOG also announced a microloan program of up to $10,000, with 0% interest for two years. Click here for more information on GPCOG’s microloan program. NOTE: GPCOG is asking for businesses located in Portland to start by connecting with the City of Portland and their programs first.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance May 11, 2020

PUA is a new federal program that covers the self-employed and many others not typically eligible for traditional unemployment, including: farmers, fishermen, independent contractors, gig economy workers, non-profit employees not previously covered, workers without enough work history or earnings to be eligible for traditional unemployment and certain others who have been determined ineligible for traditional unemployment benefits. It expires December 31, 2020.

SBA Coronavirus Relief Options

The SBA offers multiple funding options for those seeking relief such as the Paycheck Protection Program, EIDL Loan Advance, SBA Express Bridge Loans, SBA Debt Relief, and more. Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions regarding the Paycheck Protection Program. Please note that these FAQs are continuously updated. For the most up-to-date information, visit the SBA website.


The Maine Small Business Development Center is committed to doing everything they can to help you navigate the challenges your business faces as a result of COVID-19. Their website addresses topics such as preparing to re-open, managing cash flow, accessing current disaster loans, and many more.

SCORE Portland Maine 

The Coronavirus has hit small businesses hard, but SCORE’s business mentors can help you during this difficult time. They offer services such as Free Mentoring, Webinars & Workshops, and other Free Resources.


To learn more about these and other available programs, contact your lender.