Onalaska, Wis. – Today, Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) Secretary-designee Kathy Blumenfeld and Deputy Secretary Chris Patton toured Main Street businesses with Department of Tourism Secretary-designee Anne Sayers, Onalaska Mayor Kim Smith, Interim City Manager Amanda Jackson, and State Senator Brad Pfaff, as part of a visit to highlight state investments. Governor Tony Evers made a $3.4 million investment in Onalaska businesses, with $12.6 million invested in La Crosse County businesses, and an overall investment of more than $74 million to help families, businesses, and organizations in La Crosse County bounce back.

The officials visited local recipients of the Main Street Bounceback grant, including Express Printing. Leaders from the La Crosse County business community joined the visits to hear about the impact of the $10,000 grants and meet with business owners.

“Supporting our local communities starts on our Main Streets, which is why Governor Evers has made significant investments across the state to support local businesses, including right here in Onalaska,” said DOA Secretary-designee Kathy Blumenfeld. “When our main streets thrive, the impact is felt by families and communities across Wisconsin.”

“I am so grateful to Governor Evers for his thoughtful investment of recovery funds, which have helped many local businesses bounce back from the pandemic and in turn, support local tourism,” said Tourism Secretary-designee Anne Sayers.

Governor Evers made more than $1 billion in investments statewide in support of small businesses. The Main Street Bounceback Grant program was announced in the spring of 2021 with the first grants made in August 2021, using $75 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funds, to help small businesses and communities grow by populating vacant storefronts with new businesses and nonprofits. The Governor recently announced an additional $25 million investment into the program, for a total investment of $100 million to help over 6,600 entrepreneurs open new businesses or expand their existing operations. Twenty-four Onalaska businesses received the Main Street Bounceback grant.   

“The City of Onalaska is extremely appreciative of the grant opportunities that have been made available by WEDC, Wisconsin Department of Revenue, and Wisconsin Department of Administration to Onalaska businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mayor Smith. “These grants enabled existing businesses to remain open and assisted in filling over 20 vacant commercial spaces in our community, helping keep Onalaska’s economic viability intact during a difficult time for our commercial sector.”

Visit BadgerBounceback.wi.gov to view pandemic-related assistance information as well as the latest data and success stories about how COVID-relief investments are making a difference across the state. For updates on other recovery-related grant opportunities, sign up for the Badger Bounceback update list.

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