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The Elaine F. Stepanek Foundation Restaurant Fund, a Committee Advised Fund at the Santa Barbara Foundation, provides financial assistance grants to small, independently owned, dine-in restaurants in the City of Santa Barbara and the Santa Ynez Valley (including Los Alamos) to support the basic needs of these businesses to continue operations in the short term while they are suffering from the effects of COVID-19, particularly addressing where there are gaps in federal, state, and foundation funding related to pandemic relief. Providing support to these businesses, their owners, and their hundreds of employees will benefit the entire Santa Barbara County community. The Elaine F. Stepanek Restaurant Fund Committee is made up of Santa Barbara Foundation representatives and local experts. All distributions of funds are voted on by the committee members.
Elaine F. Stepanek Foundation Restaurant Fund Grant Limits
- Up to $10,000 per grant based on the number of qualifying applicants.
In order to qualify for the Elaine F. Stepanek Restaurant Fund Grant Program, restaurants must meet the following requirements:
- Located in either the City of Santa Barbara or the Santa Ynez Valley (including Los Alamos).
- Be a small, independently owned, dine-in restaurant that has been adversely affected by COVID-19.
- Operational prior to March 1, 2020. (Businesses that opened in 2020 can contact Jessica Sanchez at jsanchez@SBFoundation.org to discuss application exceptions.)
- Gross total sales declined by at least 25% as a result of COVID-19 during any quarter of 2020 compared to the same period of 2019.
- No more than $3 million in gross total sales between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019 (Businesses that opened in 2020 can contact Jessica Sanchez at jsanchez@SBFoundation.org to discuss alternative metrics.)
- Ability to provide documentation to verify the economic hardship suffered as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, including tax returns, financial statements, and other financial data.
- Businesses are required to submit a report on grant expenditures 60 days after receiving a grant.
Eligible Grant Uses
- Rent, Utilities, and Payroll.
- Items necessary to operate safely under current public health guidelines, including but not limited to signage, personal protective equipment, and other items to accommodate currently allowed service.
- Food Supplies (specifically from independently owned food & beverage providers).