Restaurants, hotels, museums, travel agencies, rideshare companies, limos, taxis, airlines and other services related to tourism in St. Paul may be eligible for new relief grants.

The city of St. Paul has $4.5 million on hand from the federal American Rescue Plan to boost tourism recovery, but the deadline for organizations to apply is right around the corner. Applications are due March 28.

In a written statement, officials with the department of Planning and Economic Development said the “Tourism Recovery Support” program is designed to provide grants to organizations “able to demonstrate that their normal, pre-pandemic operations have a significant impact on tourism in St. Paul” and draw upwards of 40,000 visitors annually to the city.

They must be able to show the pandemic caused them negative economic impacts which currently “threaten the solvency of the organization” or have had a “profound impact” on operations.

Eligible organizations were in operation for at least six months prior to March 1, 2020. The application asks for financial documents from 2019 to the present, including an operating plan indicating how the emergency funding will help them recover financially and will help the city’s tourism industry.

Organizations that previously received grant awards from one of three programs are not eligible to apply: the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Main Street Cultural Mall Operator COVID Relief Grant Program, the U.S. Small Business Administration Shuttered Venue Operators Program, and the U.S. Small Business Administration Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

Other awards or funding sources will be factored into the final determination of grant amounts, according to the city.

More information is online at


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