The city of Pflugerville will distribute $920,000 from a second round of American Rescue Plan Act funds to small businesses affected by COVID-19 via its PfCares small business program grant.
The City Council selected Business & Community Leaders of Texas to administer the program and approved an $80,000 contract for the service.
The second round of the program will be more flexible to allow businesses that did not have access to the first round to apply, said Business & Community Leaders representative Raquel Valdez Sanchez. Applicants will not be required to have employees and applications will be open to all businesses within city limits. Previously applications where only open to those in the city within Travis County.
Business that apply must have been affected by COVID-19 from March 3, 2021, to Dec, 31, 2024, and have operated within city limits since March 1, 2019. Business also have to show a loss of at least 25%. This is an increase from the previous round, where a loss of 15% had to be proven.
Business & Community Leaders of Texas of Texas expects to begin accepting applications on May 15.
Application materials and details on the program are available at bcloftexas.org/pcares.
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The city has to allocate the rescue plan funds by Dec. 31, 2024, and spend them by Dec. 31, 2026, according to city staff.
In 2020, the city launched the Pflugerville Cares Small Business Grant Program to award $920,000 in federal grants to eligible businesses that were financially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID relief funding from the CARES Act was allocated by Travis County
According to city records, 31 Pflugerville businesses received grants ranging from $20,000 to $75,000 in the first round.
Aspire 2040 approved
The City Council also gave final approval to adopt the Aspire Pflugerville 2040 comprehensive plan.
The plan sets policies and directions for the use, development and protection of land and sets goals for the social, economic and natural environment of the city.
“Pflugerville thrives as a modern and charming community,” the plan’s vision statement reads. “Its diverse culture and heritage, atmosphere of inclusion, first-rate parks, vital infrastructure, employment opportunities, and entertainment options make Pflugerville a desirable place. These elements create a vibrant city with a high quality of life that fosters an environment appealing to people from all backgrounds.”
The 2040 plan includes recommendations and projects for the city to focus upon to reach its goals. The updated plan includes a wellness wheel that focuses on health and safety, environmental sustainability, fiscal responsibility, economic opportunities for all, diversity and equity, and community-orientated goals.
“The Pflugerville Aspire 2040 Plan provides direction, vision and an outline to continue to improve our city,” Mayor Victor Gonzales said in a news release. “We came together to build this plan and now will implement the steps built on the plan’s recommendations. Thank you to our residents, staff, consultants and City Council for dedicating the time, holding the public meetings, responding to the surveys, participating in the process and for the visioning that combined to create this plan. I’m eager to see the impacts of this plan as these pages represent who we are and who we aspire to be.”
City promotes three senior leadership staff
The City Council on Tuesday night approved the promotion of James Hartshorn, Emily Barron and Terri Toledo.
Hartshorn was promoted from assistant city manager to deputy city manager. He has been with the city since 2019, is a member of the Texas City Management Association and has served in local government for eight years, according to a news release.
Barron was promoted from planning and development services director to assistant city manager. Barron has worked for the city for over nine years. As a planner, she has over 24 years of professional services to the cities of Austin, Cedar Park and Pflugerville, according to a news release.
Toledo was promoted from communications director to director of management services. Toledo has led the communications department in Pflugerville for 12 years and has worked in local government for 20 years, according to a news release.