A third – and likely final – round of the Kendall Whittier Rent Relief Program is extending some rent relief for local businesses into July.

Kendall Whittier Main Street announced its Rent Relief Program in late April that paid partial or full rent for businesses in the Kendall Whittier commercial district. In all, the three rounds have led to 31 total grants totaling $36,200 issued.

The third round was made possible through a Williams Energy Foundation grant.

“This program was designed to be a temporary support for local businesses to make sure they’re able to pay basic needs to keep their businesses afloat during the economic and health crisis,” said Jessica Jackson, director of Kendall Whittier Main Street. “We have been blown away by the support for the program locally and nationally.”

The program has been funded by The Grills Fund for Main Street Revitalization by Main Street America, George Kaiser Family FoundationLobeck Taylor Family Foundation, Willams Energy Foundation, Kendall Whittier Main Street, Peoples BankFlash Flood Print Studios and individual donations.

Funding – and allocation – dropped about 50 percent each month of the program, which coincided with needs as businesses began re-opening. After three months, 22 unique businesses received the grant, which represented 12 different property owners/landlords.

In the first two months – May and June rent – each applicant received either full or partial rent payment. With limited funds in the third month, four brand new applicants received funding.

Most businesses in Kendall Whittier closed to the public in March with the rising concerns and restrictions as COVID-19 hit Tulsa. Many have remained closed to the public or have opened and chosen to re-close in the interest of public and employee safety.

“We’re seeing businesses sacrificing their bottom dollar to make sure the public stays safe, to make sure their employees are safe, as numbers begin to rise again,” Jackson said. “The love for their fellow Tulsan is unmatched.”

Local landlords have worked with businesses on discounted rates, but also are finding a financial hit during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Rent Relief Program was designed to support both businesses and local landlords.

The Rent Relief Program offered grants of up to $1,500 for Kendall Whittier businesses. If granted, payments are made directly to the landlord. It was open for businesses that own their own property to help cover mortgage costs.

Kendall Whittier Main Street is a nonprofit organization that inspires the ongoing revitalization and growth of a historic and cultural neighborhood in Tulsa, striving to transform it back to a thriving, walkable commercial district. Kendall Whittier is a Certified Cultural District.

For more information about the Kendall Whittier Main Street, please call or text 918-633-1934 or email info@visitkendallwhittier.com.

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