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Small Business in Hāna and Molokaʻi Awarded Revitalization Grants

February 6, 2017, 1:55 PM HST · Updated February 6, 1:55 PM
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Molokai graphic artist Lyndon Dela Cruz of Lanakila Designs meets with a customer looking for customized artwork. Dela Cruz said he’s glad he came to Maui for the Made in Maui County Festival where he’s received a boost in confidence in himself and his business.

The Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and Lōkahi Pacific announced today that a total of $34,050 in Small Business Revitalization grants has been awarded to companies in East Maui and Molokaʻi.

Grant awards were made to the following companies and owners:

East Maui:

Patrick H. O’Connell and Eldege A. O’Connell of Kīpahulu Construction, $5,000 grant
Jodi Rings of East Maui Beekeeping, Limited dba Hāna Bees, $5,000 grant

Molokaʻi:

Lyndon R.L. Dela Cruz of Lanakila Designs, $4,871 grant
Adolph M. and Corene K. Helm of Anahaki LLC, $2,870 grant
Kalena Kaili-Thomas of Aliʻi Skin Care, $3,569 grant
Michael K. and Jamesie K.V. Kahinu of Naʻike’s Ltd., $2,853 grant
Tanya M. and Guy H. Naehu of MyLei, $4,887 grant
Jamie Lynn Ronzello of Barking Deer Farm, $5,000 grant

The small business revitalization grants are designed to assist businesses with fewer than 10 employees and that do business in Maui County’s rural communities such as Hāna and Molokaʻi, which have been identified as the areas hardest hit in their ability to recover from economic downturns.

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The grant funds may be used for new equipment, renovation, websites, marketing materials or other purposes that will help the businesses grow, prosper and create jobs. The grant program is a 40/60 match grant, which means that for applicants accepted, for every $40 they contribute they will receive a match of $60.

“This program is very innovative,” said Mayor Alan Arakawa, “because it allows each applicant to determine exactly what they need in their business and provides owners a great opportunity and low-cost way to grow their business.”

Molokaʻi Council member Stacy Crivello said that “positive programs like this are such a great opportunity for our rural businesses to leverage their own limited funds.”

Hāna Council member Robert Carroll noted that the Small Business Revitalization grants give Hāna residents who own their businesses a unique opportunity to get the funds they need to do those projects they could not afford before. “This will allow them to produce products more efficiently and thus become more profitable,” he said.

OED Director Teena Rasmussen noted that “these businesses strive so hard for profitability. Small micro grants are such a great way to preserve the jobs these companies offer in our rural communities.”

Lōkahi Pacific was selected by OED as the master grantee and manager of the Small Business Revitalization grants. Susie Thieman, Lōkahi Pacific Executive Director, said this has been an exciting project for the agency. “It’s not about the size of the grant; it is all about what the grant can do for the businesses,” Thieman said. “We can see the valuable opportunities these grants offers small businesses. We are helping eight such businesses with various needs and the benefits will be felt not only by them, but the customers they serve as well.”

The Mayor’s Office of Economic Development has a variety of grant programs targeted to different sectors in the economy. For more information on grant availability, visit the OED website at www.mauicounty.gov/OED.

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