Hyperlocal Fund Providing Rapid COVID19 Relief

Posted By: Katie Greene (deleted) Chamber News,

The ReEnergize Watauga Fund

Application Process Opens May 27th!

Mountain BizWorks, in collaboration with the Watauga County Economic Development Commission, the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce, and other community partners have launched the ReEnergize Watauga Fund to provide a rapid source of assistance for Watauga County small businesses that are under financial constrait due to COVID19. 

The ReEnergize Watauga fund provides a low interest option for our businesses to access capital during this crucial time of reopening, unlike the EIDL and PPP loans, ReEnergize Watauga Funds offer no stipulations on allocations.  The ReEnergize Watauga Fund is especially helpful as businesses reopen, assessing cash flow, and working towards compliance of local and state health and safety standards. 

Local contributors included the Watauga County EDC, The Boone Area Chamber of Commerce, The High Country Impact Fund, Wells Fargo, First Horizon Bank, and Blue Ridge Energy.  Potential donors are encouraged to
contact Chris Grasinger before June 10th for contribution information.

Mountain Bizworks provided the following loan details:

Loan details

Loans are available for up to $10,000, based on the business’s pre-COVID-19 revenue. Loan agreements are structured as follows:

  • Six months of no payments required at 4% (interest accruing), followed by 36 months of principal and interest payments at 5.5% interest.
  • There are no prepayment penalties.
  • Defaulted loans are subject to collections.

Who is eligible?

  • For-profit businesses
  • Have a physical location and be principally based in Watauga County (see our COVID loans page for options for those not in the county)
  • Have between 1 (who could be the self­-employed owner) and 25 employees
  • Have been in business for at least 12 months
  • Demonstrated loss of revenue of 25% or more due to COVID-19


  • Any individual with greater than 20% ownership in the applying business must personally guarantee the loan.
  • Proceeds from the loan may only be used for maintaining or restarting a business. Eligible uses include payroll, accounts payable, fixed debts, or other bills the business is unable to pay due to the effects of the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Agree to provide impact data
  • Borrowers are required to assign the proceeds of future SBA EIDL loans or other federal assistance programs to the repayment of their Re-energize Watauga Fund Loan. (PPP funds and the EIDL advance portion are excluded from this)

Businesses interested in applying for the ReEnergize Watauga Fund should check eligibility requirements and loan details here.  Chris Grasinger, the High Country Regional Manager for Mountain BizWorks breaks down these details further in this interview on the Keep Boone Healthy Facebook Page and in this episode in the Mind Your Business Podcast.  

Click here to apply.