State COVID-19 grant program supported 5,860 hospitality businesses

Pennsylvania’s COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Relief Program (CHIRP) provided funding for 5,860 restaurants and hospitality businesses in 2021.

Gov. Tom Wolf announced on Monday that $145 million in state funding has been distributed to businesses across the state through CHIRP.

The $145 million grant program aimed at helping an industry hard hit by closures and reduced capacity over the course of the pandemic. The state secured the funds in March and has since delivered funds to businesses in $5,000 increments with a maximum of $50,000.

Funding was made available in all 67 Pennsylvania counties through designated community economic development organizations starting March 15.

“We developed the CHIRP program to provide immediate relief to the commonwealth’s restaurants and hospitality businesses recovering from the pandemic,” said Wolf. “These businesses and their employees made sacrifices for their communities during one of the most unprecedented times we have ever lived through. It was a major priority for my administration to offer quick assistance through trusted, local partners that truly understood the needs of their area’s businesses.”

Lehigh Valley hospitality businesses allotted over $12.4 million through 2021 Act 1

Hospitality industry businesses in the Lehigh Valley can begin applying next month for part of $12.4 million in grant funding allotted to the county through 2021 Act 1.

2021 Act 1, formerly Senate Bill 109, was signed into law by Gov. Tom Wolf on Feb 5 and distributes $145 million in grant funds through the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program.

The funds are currently being issued to Certified Economic Development Organizations and Community Development Financial Institutions in each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties and are expected to be allocated by Feb. 28.

Lehigh Valley counties will receive the following funds to distribute to their businesses:

  • Berks County- $4,770,257
  • Lehigh County- $4,183,030
  • Northampton County- $3,457,769
  • Carbon County- $726,949

The application process varies depending on the county.


Grant awards will be based on company size or three months of average monthly operating costs based on 25% of the total business operating expenses reported on that business’s federal tax return at a maximum allotment of $50,000.

A business can apply for the funds if it:
• Has 300 total employees by full-time equivalent or less and a net worth of $15 million or less.
• Sustained a minimum annual revenue decline of 25% or quarterly revenue loss of 25% or greater in any quarter when comparing quarterly revenue between 2019 and 2020.
• Has a NAICS designation within the accommodation sector or food services and drinking places subsector.
• Is not permanently closed.
• Submits a W-9, 2019 tax return and other financial/payroll information at the time of application.