CEDAR PARK – Fenice Community Media Group has launched a local business stimulus program for locally owned and operated businesses impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The program will offer local businesses the opportunity to receive up to $7,500 in matching funds for advertising programs during May, June and July, 2020.
Fenice president Scott Coleman said the program will be available to locally-owned and operated businesses in each of the six newspaper markets it operates in Texas. The grant program will offer $400,000 in total matching funds to businesses served by the Hill Country News, Katy Times, Fort Stockton Pioneer, Gonzales Inquirer, Madisonville Meteor, and the Sealy News.
“We’re a small business, too, and we know how difficult the last several weeks have been for businesses in our communities,” Coleman said. “With (Texas) Governor Abbott’s announcement that ‘stay-at-home’ orders will expire on April 30 and a phased re-opening of the state economy, many local companies will be trying to figure out if, when and how they can resume business as usual.”
Abbott said the state will allow some businesses, such as retail stores, movie theaters and restaurants, to reopen – with limited capacity – on May 1. Other types of businesses will follow, with a possible “phase two” on tap for as early as May 18.
“This is where we can help. Many people still aren’t sure where to find information on which local businesses - from restaurants to hairstylists - are open, and under what conditions,” Coleman said. “For businesses attempting to reopen, getting the word out will be an important step. During this time, more people than ever have turned to our newspapers and their websites for news and information. So while our business has been damaged like so many others, this is the perfect time to try and lend a hand as our communities work to reopen.”
Headquartered in Cedar Park, Texas, Fenice Community Media publishes four community weekly newspapers, two suburban weekly newspapers, six news web sites and a host of other print and digital publications across Texas.