- Associated Press - Thursday, July 30, 2020

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island’s lieutenant governor is urging owners of small businesses struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic to apply for a grant to help them recover.

Applications for the Restore RI program will be available starting Monday, Lt. Gov. Dan McKee said in a statement Thursday.

The $50 million program will provide grants of up to $15,000 based on whether the business is in a severely impacted industry, the number of full-time employees, and the degree of revenue loss.

Businesses will need to demonstrate at least 30% revenue loss if they are in a severely impacted industry or at least 50% revenue loss for other eligible industries.

Businesses with between one and 20 employees are eligible to apply, with the exception of restaurants and caterers, which are not subject to an employee cap. Sole proprietors are eligible for the program as long as they have at least one employee in addition to the owner.



Applicants must have a physical presence in Rhode Island and must be open or plan to be open within 60 days.

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NEW CASES ON THE RISE

The seven-day average of new confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Rhode Island rose to more than 100 on Thursday, the highest it’s been since early June, according to state Department of Health statistics.

The department on Thursday reported 110 new confirmed cases and a positive rate of 2.5%.

No new deaths were reported.

The number of people in the hospital climbed to 77 as of Tuesday, the latest day for which the information was available, up from 74 the previous day. Of those, 13 were in intensive care.

Gov. Gina Raimondo on Wednesday blamed the uptick in cases on social gatherings and warned people not to party so much.

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