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Cumberland County COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP) Guidelines

Administered by Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC)

GRANT SUBMISSION START DATE: March 15, 2021 at 9:00am.

GRANT SUBMISSION DEADLINE: June 15, 2021 at 5:00pm or earlier, if funds have been exhausted.

Please view and use this sample version for the preparation of your application.
Only online submissions will be accepted starting March 15, 2021.

If you have questions, view our Frequently Asked Questions for help.

CCCHIRP Application Form


The Cumberland County COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP) was established by the Commonwealth on February 5, 2021 (through enabling legislation known as Act 1) to aid hospitality industry businesses adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The County has contracted with Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC) as the authorized Certified Economic Development Organization (CEDO) to administer this program. The County has been allocated approximately $2.9M which is based on the County’s pro-rata share (based on the 2019 census). Hospitality industry is defined as those businesses that are classified with NAICS codes of 721(Accommodations) or 722 (Food Services and Drinking Places).

This is a rolling application process until funds are exhausted. Applications will be processed sequentially based on timestamp of Application, subject to availability of funds and completeness and accuracy of information provided at time of Application. The applicant will be notified of any deficiencies in information supplied and a request by email will be made to the Applicant. When all deficiencies have been satisfied; the application will be reviewed based on the timestamp of receipt of a complete application and associated materials, subject to availability of funds.

Purpose of Program

The grant may be awarded for the purpose of alleviating revenue losses and paying eligible operating expenses. A grant may not be awarded to pay for the same eligible operating expenses for which an eligible applicant receives or received payment, reimbursement or loan forgiveness from the following sources:

  • The Cares Act or Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021 money that is not required to be repaid to the Federal Government.
  •  The act of May 29, 2020 known as the COVID-19 Emergency Supplement to the General Appropriation Act of 2019.

The receipt of a loan or grant issued under the authority of the Federal Government or the Commonwealth will not disqualify an applicant from eligibility for a grant.

It is the Applicant’s responsibility to certify that the funds being applied for through CHIRP will not be utilized for the same expenditures for which Cares Act or Covid related programs were utilized.

Funding Uses

For the purpose of alleviating revenue losses and paying eligible operating expenses; Applicant may not pay for the same operating expenses as those already covered by a Cares Grant. Operating expenses incurred from March 1, 2020 to June 15, 2021 (or the date of Application) can include working capital/operating expenses including payroll and nonpayroll expenses, mortgage, rent, utilities, supplies, inventory and other costs associated with a public health related retrofit.

For rent, lease, and mortgage payments, the obligation must have been in force before February 15, 2020. For utility costs, service must have begun before February 15, 2020.

Grant Award Amounts

The lesser of the dollar cap based on employee size outlined below or three months of average monthly operating costs of the total eligible business operating expenses reported on the most recently filed federal tax return, rounded to the nearest $5,000 increment;

Company Size Max Award
1-10 Employees (FTE) $20,000

11-25 Employees (FTE) $30,000

26-60 Employees (FTE) $40,000

61-300 Employees (FTE) $50,000

FTE is based on 2019 total hours compensated for all employees divided by 2080.
Grants will be awarded in increments of $5,000 up to a maximum of $50,000 per eligible business based on FTE thresholds listed above.

The CAEDC review team will deduct non-operating expenses including amortization, bad debt write offs, charitable donations, depreciation, gifts, interest, extraordinary one-time leasehold expenses, extraordinary one-time legal settlements, miscellaneous uncategorized business expenses, penalties, fines and taxes (including real estate, income or sales tax) to determine your average monthly operating expense.

Ineligible rent, lease, mortgage or utility costs will also be removed from eligible operating expenses based on the Applicant’s response to questions pertaining to eligibility and support documents required to be included with the Application.


In order to be eligible to participate, the applicant must meet and be able to certify the following conditions:

  • Fewer than 300 total employees by FTE (per EIN/SSN) during calendar year 2019 notwithstanding multiple locations.
  • The business entity must operate meeting the NAICS designation of 721 (Accommodations) or 722 (Food Services or drinking places).
  • Must be a for-profit business that is not publicly traded with a maximum tangible net worth less than $15M per EIN/SSN.
  • Place of business must be physically located in Cumberland County.
  • Business had an adverse economic impact created by Covid-19 pandemic that requires this award in order to continue operations.
  • Will utilize the grant to pay for Covid-19 related economic impacts not already covered by another Cares Act or Pandemic related funding program.
  • Has paid and is current on Federal, State and Local hotel occupancy tax (if applicable).
  • Must be able to certify that business was in operation as of February 15, 2020, and, if required, paid income taxes to the Federal and State Government, as reported on individual or business tax return.
  • Must be able to demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts for the period beginning March 31, 2020 and ending before December 31, 2020 in comparison to the prior year period.
  • Based on business start and operational status, monthly or quarterly gross sales/receipts and expenses will need to be supplied through the on-line application. Refer to Appendix A to determine what financial information will be required to consider and support the minimum gross receipts reduction required and your historical operating needs.
  • Must have a filed 2019 federal tax return unless the business initially opened between January 1 – February 15, 2020.
  • Has and will remain in operation and does not intend to cease operations within one year of application date.
  • Must be able to certify that the business has not and will not receive another CHIRP grant between January 1, 2021 to June 30, 2021.
  • Applicant must be able to make certifications as listed in Appendix B and a part of the on-line application form.

Funding Priority

Priority in the awarding of grants will be given to eligible applicants that:

  • Have not received a loan or grant issued under the authority of the Commonwealth or the Commonwealth’s political subdivisions or by the Federal Government under the CARES Act or Consolidated Appropriation Act 2021
  • Where the business was subject to closure by the proclamation of disaster emergency issued by the Governor on March 6, 2020 and any renewal of the state of disaster emergency; or
  • Can demonstrate a reduction in revenue which meets one of the following criteria;
    • A reduction in gross receipts of 50% or more for the period beginning after March 31, 2020 and ending before December 31, 2020 in comparison to the period beginning after March 31, 2019 and ending before December 31, 2019.
    • If the eligible applicant was not in operation during the entire comparison period under section C.a., but was in operation on February 15, 2020, a monthly average reduction in gross receipts of 50% or more for the period beginning after March 31, 2020 and ending before December 31, 2020 in comparison to the period beginning after January 1, 2020 and ending before April 1, 2020.

Grant Request – Required Documentation

Relief Program Eligible Businesses Amount available per Business What is Needed to Apply
CHIRP Hospitality Industry (NAICS of 721 or 722)
Less than 300 FTE employees
In 2019
Three (3) months of working capital up to a maximum of $50,000 based on FTE thresholds
  • Complete Application
  • Comparative quarterly or monthly year 2019 vs 2020 vs 2021 Profit and Loss Statements
  • Completed and signed IRS Form W-9 (Download Form)
Sole Proprietorship
  • 2019 Federal Schedule C or 2020 Federal Schedule C, if you were not in business in 2019
All Other Entities
  • 2019 Federal Tax Return or 2020 Federal Tax Return, if you were not in business in 2019

Application Process

  • All applications must be received through the on-line portal. Applications will be accepted between March 15, 2021 and June 15, 2021 or earlier until funds have been exhausted.
  • You will need to gather appropriate financial documents in advance of making an application. Consult your/an accountant if needed. Depending on your operating status, you will need to either provide monthly or quarterly receipts and expenses as a part of your on-line application. Be sure to generate these financial statements in advance and review Appendix A to be sure you are ready to complete the on-line application.
  • Complete applications will be reviewed in the order received based on timestamp.
  • If the Application and supporting materials received is not complete and the evaluation process cannot be completed due to incomplete information/documentation; you will be notified of the deficiency by Email. It is the Applicant’s responsibility to completely resolve the deficiencies. When all the deficiencies noted have been resolved and received by the Grant Review team, your complete Application will receive a new timestamp and will be processed in that order subject to availability of funds. Please submit all noted corrective actions to deficiencies noted at one time.
  • Attachments (Quarterly or Monthly Profit & Loss Statements, Tax Return or Schedule C, and Form W-9) must be digital files and must be uploaded through the portal with the Application. You can access W-9 form by searching for IRS form W-9. Please follow the instructions for the W-9.
  • If your mortgage agreement or lease agreement for the locations in which your business operates in Cumberland County changed; you will need to upload your agreements that were in effect as of 2/15/2020 and a copy of any changed agreements that took place after 2/15/2020.
  • Signed Certification as defined in Appendix B and part of the on-line Application.
  • CAEDC will not be held responsible for any missing or incomplete applications.
  • After you electronically submit your application, you will receive an electronic acknowledgment that it was successfully transmitted and was received for review. If you do not receive an electronic acknowledgment, please check your spam/junk mail folder(s).


March 8, 2021 – Announcement of grant opportunity

March 15, 2021 – Applications open via on-line portal

June 15, 2021 – Application deadline (or earlier, if funds have been exhausted)

July 15, 2021 – All funds must be disbursed. In order to disburse; signed Agreements must be executed well in advance of this date.

Award Guidelines and Distribution of Funds

Once approved, an award letter and grant agreement will be emailed to the Grantee for execution. Upon execution, checks will be mailed to the Mailing address listed on the Application within two weeks of receipt of executed Agreement.

For more information about the program: Contact Valerie Copenhaver, Director of Community Development by email at [email protected] or (717) 240-7193.

Applicants in need of assistance in ensuring an accurate and complete submission should consult a local accountant or advice of other area professionals that can be of assistance. CAEDC will not be able to support review of your application and supporting materials in advance of your submission.

APPENDIX A: Financial Information required to be input by Applicant through on-line portal

As part of the on-line Application form, you will initially be asked to confirm that your business was in place prior to February 15, 2020. If you answer No to this question, you are not eligible to apply.

Later in the Application you will be presented with two different questions that will determine what financial information and for what period is required based on your business start date. This information will be utilized to confirm that you meet the minimum 25% loss in gross sales/receipts. Depending on how you answer the questions, you will either be presented with a Quarterly entry form or a Monthly entry form. All fields are mandatory and should come from your quarterly or monthly financial statements prepared in advance of Application data entry.

We highly recommend that you contact your Accountant to help with report generation that will support your data entry activity. These same reports will need to be uploaded with your Application through the portal. For the months or quarters where the information is not part of the determination, you may omit it by keying a zero (0).

The form will also provide a calculation of the totals that you keyed so that you can verify that what you keyed is what is intended as represented on your financials.

If your business started prior to July 1, 2019 and you have been in continuous operation during the entirety between April 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 – please supply all four (4) quarters for 2019 and 2020, including 2021 to date.

If your business started prior to July 1, 2019 and you have not been in continuous operation during the period of April 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 – please supply monthly information for 2019 and those 2020 and 2021 months in which you were in operation. Put zero in the months that do not apply.

If your business started between July 1 – December 31, 2019 – please supply quarterly information for Q3 and Q4 for 2019 and 2020 Q1 – Q4 reports and all 2021 quarters to the date of your application. Put zeros in the quarters that do not apply.

If your business started prior to February 15, 2020 but did not exist between July 1 – December 31, 2019 – please supply quarterly information for all quarters in 2020 and to date 2021. Put zero in the quarters that do not apply.

APPENDIX B: Certification by Cumberland County Covid-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program Applicant

The Applicant certifies that:

  • All information and statements contained in this Application, and all documents and exhibits submitted with this Application, are to the best of Applicant’s knowledge, true, accurate, complete and not misleading, as of the date of this Application. Any further information or documentation submitted by Applicant in connection with this Application shall also be subject to this certification, which shall be deemed to be remade as of the date submitted.
  • Applicant has fully complied with, and will fully comply with, all federal, state and local laws and regulations applicable to this grant and applicable to Applicant’s business, assets and/or operations, and the Applicant is not currently under investigation with respect to any violation of, or other failure to comply with, any such applicable law or regulation. No funds will be used for any purpose or in any manner that violates federal, state or local laws or regulations. All funds will be utilized for purposes consistent with the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program.
  • COVID-19 has had an adverse economic impact on the eligible applicant which makes the grant request necessary to support the ongoing operations of the eligible applicant. The Application is based on the Applicant’s reasonable estimate of financial need for, and all funds will be utilized by the Applicant solely for, COVID-19 related impacts.
  • Applicant will submit additional information and documentation in support of this application and/or the grant requested or awarded with respect to this Application, in each case, upon request, and will permit the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, County of Cumberland or its representatives, designees or affiliates to inspect and/or audit the books, records, premises and operations of the Applicant to assure compliance with the requirements of this program. Applicant hereby acknowledges and agrees that all information may be shared by and with Cumberland County and the Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC), their respective partners, designees, affiliates, employees, agents, volunteers and committees to the extent such disclosure is made in connection with the application and this grant program.
  • AVAILABLE FUNDS ARE LIMITED AND SIGNIFICANT INTEREST IS ANTICIPATED. Applicant recognizes that there is no assurance that Applicant will be awarded any grant of any size, regardless of how well the Applicant may meet the criteria used for awarding these grants and regardless of what the Applicant may have been told or read with respect to this grant program. As a condition and in exchange for the consideration of receiving and reviewing this application, the Applicant hereby releases and will hold harmless Cumberland County and the Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC), their respective partners, designees, and affiliates in facilitating, and administering this grant program and their respective Board of Commissioners, Boards of Directors, officers, employees, representatives, volunteers and committees of and from any and all claims and/or causes of action of any kind or type arising from or out of (a) their receipt and review of this application and any information or documentation of or concerning the Applicant, (b) any decisions or recommendations with respect to this application, (c) the administration of this program and/or the award or denial of funds and/or the sufficiency thereof, and (d) any other matter or thing related to this program.
  • All decisions and recommendations with respect to this application and this grant are final when made and are non-appealable. The Applicant acknowledges that grant award determinations will be made based on both objective and subjective analysis of information available and that award determinations need not follow strictly or consistently the scoring methods utilized. The Applicant also acknowledges that the identity of funding applicants and recipients, award amounts and application scores and recommendations will become public information.
  • The eligible applicant was in operation on February 15, 2020, and, if required, paid income taxes to the Federal and State Government, as reported on individual or business tax returns. The eligible applicant remains in operation and does not intend to permanently cease operations within one year of the date of application.
  • The grant will be used to pay for COVID-19- related economic impacts. During the period beginning on January 1, 2021, and ending on June 30, 2021, the applicant has not and will not receive another grant under this program.
  • The individual signing below is legally authorized by the Applicant to submit this application, to sign this certification and to legally bind the Applicant. An eligible applicant or authorized representative of the eligible applicant must certify that the information provided in an application to the program and the information provided in all supporting documents and forms is true and accurate in all material respects. An eligible applicant or an authorized representative of the eligible applicant that knowingly makes a false statement to obtain a grant under the program is punishable under penalty of perjury and fines pursuant to 18 Pa.C.S. § 4904 (relating to unsworn falsification to authorities).

CCCHIRP Application Form

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