The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is now accepting grant applications for the MassGaming Small Business Capacity Building Program

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission is pleased to announce that it is accepting grant applications for the MassGaming Small Business Capacity Building Program. The goal of the grant program is to ensure that small businesses located in the host or surrounding communities of the Massachusetts Category 2 (Slots Parlor) Licensee have the support they need to be suppliers to the Category 2 Casino, Plainridge Park Casino.

The purpose of the MassGaming Small Business Capacity Building Program is to provide small businesses in the host and surrounding communities of the Slots Parlor Licensee with the technical assistance and resources needed to meet the expected growth and supplier requirements of a Category 2 Licensee.  An additional goal includes ensuring that our Category 2 Licensee can find the qualified businesses which have the  capacity to support their operations.  The program is designed to complement and enhance traditional public and private small business assistance networks by providing technical assistance or training programs for underserved and disadvantaged businesses with 50 employees or less. The program seeks to facilitate small business economic viability and to improve their ability to secure and maintain business with a slot parlor licensee. Grantee agencies should endeavor to select candidates for assistance who are already operating existing businesses or businesses who have entered into a collaboration to meet the needs of the Category 2 Licensee. Counseling and training programs should be designed to aid small business owners in stabilizing and growing their businesses in measurable ways through intensive individual counseling/coaching, selective group training, loan packaging and direct lending.

MassGaming will only review proposals from municipal and/or not-for-profit, community based organizations located in the host or surrounding community of the Casino (including but not limited to chambers of commerce, municipalities, economic development organizations and community development finance institutions) that will provide capacity building, technical assistance or training programs primarily to small businesses who intend to or have been awarded a contract with the Slots Parlor Licensee. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will award one grant of up to $20,000 intended to fund a program that 1) clearly identifies the target audience, 2) involves key local organizations, and 3) plans a comprehensive program that demonstrates how they will assist local entrepreneurs and small businesses to obtain and or maintain a contract with the Class 2 licensee.  The Class 2 licensee is a required partner in the program application and 4) Partners with MassGaming’s Vendor Advisory Team to assist local businesses who are potential slot parlor vendors.

The Commission is seeking an application that is able to demonstrate they can engage and provide direct assistance to small business with a strong emphasis on minority, women and veteran owned businesses.  These three groups of businesses were given high priority throughout the legislation and the commission considers their involvement a priority.  Working with the licensee – Penn National – and the commission’s Vendor Advisory Team, there are key resources to help the applicant focus on the goal of working with these targeted businesses.

Proposed grant programs shall identify individual and/or group counseling, training programs, loan packaging services or direct lending that may assist these small businesses to:

  • Achieve business stability and viability;
  • Business plan development
  • Assess and secure new or increased financing for growth
  • Business expansion planning
  • Other measurable economic growth

Grant Amounts and Distribution

Funds available for this grant program are $20,000. Additional funds may be made available depending on the final approved budget of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission for FY 2015.

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