Biz roundup: New job retention grants open to North Carolina businesses

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 9, 2020

North Carolina businesses and nonprofit organizations that missed out on other COVID-19 relief funds will have the opportunity to apply for a new state grant program. The North Carolina Department of Commerce is now accepting applications for job-retention grants, which offer up to $250,000 to help companies maintain their workforce. The window for applying for a grant closes on Sept. 1.

The funding for the grant comes from the $500 million coronavirus relief measure signed by Gov. Roy Cooper on July 1. State lawmakers provided $15 million for this grant fund specifically.

In order to be eligible for this grant, businesses must meet several qualifications. The business must not have participated in the federal Paycheck Protection Program, the federal Main Street Lending Program, or the North Carolina Rapid Recovery Loan Program. Also, the business must have employed at least 90% of the number of full-time workers from March 1 to May 31 as it did at the end of February. Eligible businesses must exhibit that they experienced an economic loss due to the pandemic as well. In order to do so, the business must prove that its sales from March 1 to May 31 are at least 10% below sales for that period the year prior. For a nonprofit, that requires its gross receipts for the COVID-19 period are at least 10% below its gross receipts for the same period last year.

Business owners can apply for this grant at

Trinity Oaks receives wellness award from Rowan County Chamber of Commerce

SALISBURY — Trinity Oaks was recently awarded the 2020 Novant Health Corporate Wellness Cup from the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce for their successful wellness programs.

“Trinity Oaks has gone above and beyond to keep their employees and their residents healthy and happy during the COVID-19 crisis,” President of Novant Health Rowan Medical Center and 2020 Chamber Chair of the Board Gary Blabon said in a news release.

Novant Health has presented this award for the past six years in an effort to encourage businesses to institute robust wellness programs. 

Bill Johnson, the executive director of Trinity Oaks, received the award on behalf of the staff and residents.

The award is typically given out during the Rowan County Chamber of Commerce’s Dragon Boat festival, but that event was postponed out of precaution for COVID-19.

Kannapolis awards grants to nonprofit organizations

KANNAPOLIS — The city of Kannapolis awarded $57,500 in federally funded grants to 14 nonprofits who offer programs that benefit low and moderate-income residents. The funds come from Kannapolis’ 2020 Community Development Block Grant fund allocation that is given by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The grants were awarded to:

  • Academic Learning Center — $5,000 for teacher stipends and instructional materials for the afterschool program.
  • AYA House, Inc. — $7,000 to support a therapeutic planning living and rehabilitative program for individuals with disorders in the abuse of drugs, alcohol and other substances.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters — $5,000 to grow the Bigs with Badges program which pairs police officers with students to develop one-on-one mentoring relationships. 
  • Cabarrus Meals on Wheels — $5,000 — funds to help with the costs of providing meals for seniors.
  • Classroom Central — $3,000 — funds will cover the costs for bringing this free school supply program to Kannapolis City Schools.
  • Conflict Resolution — Teen Court Program — $5,000 for this first-time youth offender program.
  • El Puente Hispano — $5,000 for programming to strengthen the relationships between the Kannapolis School System and Latino families.
  • Families First — $2,500 for the Celebrating Families Program which helps families impacted by addiction and alcohol abuse.
  • Jr. Charity League — $2,500 for the purchase of school uniforms, weather appropriate clothing and toiletries for needy families.
  • Operation Homeless, Inc. — $5,000 will be used for the Soup Kitchen and its operations.
  • Prevent Child Abuse — $5,000 for parenting programming in meeting needs of children with childhood issues.
  • Rowan Cabarrus YMCA — $5,000 for the afterschool program.
  • The Independence Funds — $1,500 for wounded veteran support.
  • Vision for Life of Kannapolis — $1,000 for students to receive assistance with homework, social skill and life/character instruction.

New Dollar General store opens in Salisbury

SALISBURY — Dollar General announced the opening of its newest Salisbury location at 1645 Heilig Road on Monday. 

The new store could employ up to 10 people, depending on need. This Dollar General store will be the sixth store in the Salisbury community. Normal hours of operation for the store can be found online at or by using the Dollar General app.

Christian craft shop to host classes, open house

Rufty’s Chrismon Shop is hosting its annual open house on Saturday, Aug. 15. Rufty’s, which has been in business for nearly 70 years, will be displaying 10 newly copyrighted booklet kits and 40 single pattern kits during the open house. These booklets provide information and instructions on how to create Christian symbol ornaments. All patterns in the booklets are non-denominational and the crafts made from them are used on mission trips.

Rufty’s will also be hosting classes on Aug. 12 through Aug. 14 leading up to the open house. Classes will begin at 10:30 a.m.

Rufty’s is located at 280 Furniture Drive in Salisbury. For more information on classes and the open house, call 704-636-7790. Masks are required to enter the building. Rufty’s designs can be seen at

Gene Ford named new vice president of research and development for Standard Process

KANNAPOLIS — Standard Process, a Wisconsin-based supplement company, has named Gene Ford as its new vice president of research and development.

In this position, Ford will serve as the leader of the Standard Process Nutrition Innovation Center, located in Kannapolis. The Nutrition Innovation Center is focused on developing advances in nutrition-based therapeutic care as well as conducting original clinical research demonstrating improved patient outcomes.

“Standard Process prides itself on innovation, and we were looking for someone who had the experience and expertise to fill this very important role,” Charlie DuBois, president and CEO of Standard Process, said in a news release. “We’re confident that Gene is a leader who will help take our company to a new level.”

Ford has spent several decades in the food industry, including more than 20 years with Campbell Soup Company and 10 years at Nestle. He holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in agricultural engineering from Michigan State University as well as a master’s degree in technology management from University of Pennsylvania.

Submitted Photo – Gene Ford

For more information on Standard Process, go to For more information on the Standard Process Innovation Center, go to

Lutheran Services Carolinas begins construction on senior living community in Wilmington

SALISBURY — Lutheran Services Carolinas, a Salisbury-based nonprofit health and human services organization, recently began construction on a waterfront senior living community in Wilmington.

The community, called Trinity Landing, will consist of 184 units built in the initial phase of construction, followed by an additional 24 units. Amenities will include a waterfront pavilion, a dock and boat slips, a saltwater pool and a spa, among other amenities. The project is slated to be complete in 2022. The community is nearly 80% reserved.

Submitted Photo – Construction on Trinity Landing

For more information about Trinity Landing, call 910-769-9600 or go to

About Ben Stansell

Ben Stansell covers business, county government and more for the Salisbury Post. He joined the staff in August 2020 after graduating from the University of Alabama. Email him at

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