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Ohio Development Services Agency Update

September 29, 2020

I want to start with thank you. Thank you to each of you for all the work you’re doing to stop the spread of COVID-19. And, thank you for all you’re doing to support your communities during this challenging time. Ohio is rising to the challenge because communities and businesses are coming together to fight the virus and protect each other and our most vulnerable Ohioans.

Here at Development, we’re working hard to create new programs and adjust established programs to help our communities and businesses navigate this pandemic. Working with Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted, we created the Office of Small Business Relief, which provides guidance on reopening, resources to find PPE, and financial resources. And, our small business and minority business centers continue to work with clients, providing counseling and trainings to navigate today’s challenges and prepare for future growth.

I know that when Ohioans support local business, Ohio is stronger. That is why we launched the Support Local Ohio campaign to remind Ohioans to support local shops, restaurants, and attractions. I hope you’ll encourage your local retailers to create a listing on the site. Our state was one of the first to promote safe practices, like wearing a mask, washing our hands, and maintaining our distance, while visiting our favorite local spots as part of a marketing campaign.

The Community Services Division identified ways to modify our programs to address the needs of Ohioans and our communities during this crisis. We are providing additional grants to emergency shelters across the state, modifying the Community Housing Impact and Preservation (CHIP) program to provide rental and mortgage assistance, and we are working with the Ohio Community Development Finance Fund to help local organizations impacted by COVID-19.

We also updated the Economic Development and Revolving Loan Fund. For the duration of the state of emergency, loans can be provide with no interest, working capital loans will not be capped at 30% of program income and do not require a fixed-asset investment, and principal and interest payments may be deferred for up to 6 months, if approved by the local Revolving Loan Fund board.

Since we started working from home, we have been looking for ways to improve our efficiency. Now, the Office of Community Development (OCD) is executing grant agreements electronically, reducing average processing time for execution to roughly 10 days. The office will send all correspondence to grantees, including grant monitoring documents and correspondence, via email. Don’t forget the OCD staff is also available to provide technical assistance. Please contact your OCD Program Representative via email or to setup an online appointment.

Finally, don’t forget about Census 2020. The deadline to respond is fast approaching! It is so important that we count every Ohioan. Our response to the census impacts the amount of funding Ohio receives from the federal government, which is funding for education, transportation, and our communities. If you haven’t already, please go to or call 1-844-330-2020 to complete the census. I also hope you will share reminders on social media. You can find graphics and text for posts on our website.  

Thank you for your continued partnership. I know that together we are making a difference in communities across Ohio.

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Urbana, Ohio 43078
Phone:  (937) 652-3523
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