Economic Development

COVID-19 Information

The City of Berea Economic Development Department has begun a series of regular emails updates to assist Berea businesses in the midst of the COVID-19 public health crisis.  Click below to view the each email update.

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If you like to be included on future email updates click here

Small Business Administration - Economic Injury Disaster Loans

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, small business owners in Ohio are eligible to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan advance of up to $10,000.  

This advance will provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. Funds will be made available within three days of a successful application. This $10,000 loan advance will not have to be repaid.

These funds will be provided to you through the SBA.

Loan applications can be completed online, or applicants can obtain a paper application by calling 1-800-659-2955. For more information about the loan program, visit the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan website

CLICK HERE to DOWNLOAD an Updated PDF About the 
SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program

Small Business Administration - Paycheck Protection Program

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.

SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.

The Paycheck Protection Program will be available through August 8, 2020.

Small businesses in the hospitality and food industry with more than one location could also be eligible at the store and location level if the store employs less than 500 workers. This means each store location could be eligible.

The loan will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll). Loan payments will also be deferred for six months. No collateral or personal guarantees are required. Neither the government nor lenders will charge small businesses any fees.

Forgiveness is based on the employer maintaining or quickly rehiring employees and maintaining salary levels.  Forgiveness will be reduced if full-time headcount declines, or if salaries and wages decrease.

You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution or federally insured credit union that is participating and the funds will be issued to you through that lender. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local SBA Certified lender as to whether it is participating in the program.

Contact an SBA Certified lender to apply.

SBA’s Final Interim Rules on the PPP

Small Business Administration - 7(a) Loan Debt Relief

The SBA Debt Relief program will provide a reprieve to small businesses as they overcome the challenges created by this health crisis.

Under this program:

  • The SBA will also pay the principal and interest of new 7(a) loans issued prior to September 27, 2020.
  • The SBA will pay the principal and interest of current 7(a) loans for a period of six months.

Contact your 7(a) lender for information about your current 7(a) loan or contact an SBA Certified lender for information about applying for a 7(a) loan.

Cuyahoga County Department of Development Hotline: (216) 452-9714

The Cuyahoga County Department of Development has created a hotline to "assist small businesses in navigating the Small Business Administration resources. These resources include assistance with applying for the Small Business Administration (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) for loans up to $2 million and Advance Grants of up to $10,000."  The Call Center is available Monday through Friday, 8 am-5 pm at 216-452-9741.

OverviewClock Tower Sunset

Whether it is a quaint store in the historic downtown or a high tech manufacturer on the industrial corridor, Berea is a great place to do business. Berea businesses are treated by the residents and local government as partners, all striving to make Berea a better, more dynamic community. 


Supporting Businesses

The City of Berea Economic Development provides existing businesses with support to retain and expand their workforce and operations. Likewise, the Economic Development Department shoSalon Front and Centerwcases Berea’s numerous strengths and advantages to local, regional and international businesses intent on expanding.

With a vast array of business resources at the local, county, state and national level, the Economic Development Department is devoted to connecting businesses with the resources that best fit their needs.


City of Berea Business Development Grants

The City of Berea has developed several innovative
grant programs to assist businesses with:Campus Grille

  • Building Improvements
  • Digital Marketing
  • Exterior Signage
  • Rent Reimbursement
  • Sustainability Consulting
  • Many other programs

All 2020 grant funds have been allocated. Please
check back in December, 2020 for the 2021 Grant Programs

Partnership with the Baldwin Wallace University Digital Marketing Clinic

The City of Berea Economic Development Department has partnered with the Baldwin Wallace University Digital Marketing Clinic ("DMC") to help Berea business with their digital marketing efforts.  Through this partnership, the DMC has created the Berea Biz Resource Portal website which contains digital marketing resources, tactics and best practices for Berea businesses.

Social Media 2In conjunction with the DMC and the Berea Chamber of Commerce, the Economic Development Department hosts four Small Business Development Seminar throughout the year. These free seminars are frequently referred to as #bereabiznight and at each seminar a student in the DMC will present information about a specific area of digital marketing. All seminars start at 6:30 p.m. and are held at the Baldwin Wallace University Center for Innovation and Growth, 340 Front Street, Berea, Ohio 44017



2020 #bereabiznight 
February 26, 2020Registration is now closedDMC Materials
May, 2020Cancelled due to Covid-19
September, 2020Date TBD
November, 2020Date TBD


DMC Materials from Past #bereabiznight Seminars
Monetize your Marketing
Digital Marketing Tune Up
Google My Business Tool
Get Noticed with Hashtags
Facebook’s Hidden Features
Thinking Inside the Inbox: Email Marketing Tips
Online Reviews: the Good, the Bad & the Ugly
Scheduling for Success: Making a Winning Content Calendar


Partnership with the Small Business Development Center at Lorain County Community College

Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) are sponsored by the United States Small Business Administration and provide free services to businesses, including:

  • Mentoring and Coaching;
  • Market research;
  • Business planning;
  • Access to funding;
  • Access to resources; and more

The SBDC at Lorain County Community College holds office hours once a month at the City of Berea Business Outreach Office at 173 Front Street, Berea, Ohio 44017.  

Interested businesses, should contact Beth Gantz at bgantz@lorainccc.edu to make an appointment.

Partnership with the Ohio University Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)

The purpose of the PTAC is to assist Ohio businesses to sell goods and services to local, state and federal government.  Through the partnership with the City of Berea, the PTAC will hold office hours once a month at the City of Berea Business Outreach Office, 173 Front Street, Berea, Ohio 44017 to assist businesses to identify, compete and submit for government contracts.  Assistance can come in the form of one-on-one training, direct counseling, marketing and more.

If you are interested in speaking with PTAC, please register here: https://www.center-gateway.com/#/application_form

Developing Relationships With Businesses

We have worked to develop relationships with several local and national agencies that are geared towards helping businesses thrive

If your business is interested in finding out more about any of these organizations, please contact us.Aerozone Alliance MapAerozone Alliance Map

More Information

Please contact us to find out how we can help.