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On Thursday, June 17, President Joe Biden enacted a bill establishing June 19, also known as Juneteenth, as a national holiday. Juneteenth commemorates the date in 1865 when the last balms were released in Galveston, Texas, by Union Major General Gordon Granger. To honor the creation of the new holiday, cities across the country, including Albuquerque, held celebrations that included talks, food and music. âI’ve been in Albuquerque my entire life, and I’ve never seen an all-black show of this caliber once, where you bring out all the beautiful performers of all genres,â said Kahali Soul, owner of ‘a small business and artist, in an interview with KOAT-7.
In an effort to keep promises made in June 2020 and to coincide with the June 15 celebrations, Mayor Tim Keller announced investments in local black-owned businesses. âSometimes we mistakenly perpetuate a historical tricultural myth and forget that Albuquerque, in particular, has a vibrant black community. Similarly, for too long we have overlooked a large gap in access to opportunities for this community. We must intervene so that they create better access to finance, investment and capital. Now is the time, âMayor Keller said at the time. Additional details for this program were recently announced during the June 15 celebrations through the One Albuquerque Fund. The fund, which was created to fund essential programs and address key Albuquerque challenges such as housing, workforce support, youth opportunities and more, received $ 1 million for black-owned businesses and organizations that work in the black community.
The funds will be distributed in two phases: Phase one disbursements will focus on black-owned businesses and organizations that work within the black community, while phase two will seek to invest in black communities in Albuquerque. . Requests and inquiries to be considered for disbursements are available on the One Albuquerque web page (onealbuquerque.org) and will run from June 19 to July 19. The business grant will cover necessary expenses such as rent, mortgage payments, utilities, equipment rental payments. and payroll. Funds can be up to $ 50,000 and must be used within one year of award and will be evaluated during that time.
Due to the expected volume of submissions, applications will be ranked according to predetermined priorities, including impact, need and sustainability. The questions that will be considered are: is the business predominantly black-owned? Does the company offer employment? Has the business experienced a shutdown or changed requirements due to COVID-19? Does the business have access to other federal, state and / or local financial assistance? Has the business remained open, reopened or is it planning to reopen?
Interested applicants are encouraged to contact Nicole Bedford at [email protected] with questions or complete the online application form no later than July 19 at 5:00 p.m. for review.