The Southwest region is home to Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, several State Parks, and multiple National Forests. With such an abundance of natural amenities, it is no surprise that tourism and service industries dominate the economy in Southwest Utah. As a result of the initial shutdown, spending at local restaurants, hotels and many other businesses was disrupted throughout the region. During that time, many companies struggled to keep their doors open and were unsure about their future.
The Five County Association of Governments utilized CARES Act funding funneled through the Community Development Block Grant program to award 42 small businesses across the region in the initial critical months of the pandemic. By the completion of the program, Five County awarded over $200,000 to companies in the manufacturing, food services, hospitality, and tourism industries.
The Small Business Assistance Grant is now closed, but Five County staff continue to work with local and state partners to speed economic relief and support recovery initiatives.