The City of Helena and the County Governments of Lewis and Clark are expected to receive $ 8 million and $ 13.4 million in projected funding through ARPA.
Additionally, the law is allocating around $ 60 million for new and existing COVID relief programs to help a wider range of small businesses, especially in the hospitality industry.
Tester also announced a new $ 25 billion federal grant program tailored to local restaurants.
Paul Mabie is the co-owner of Oddfellow Farm and Inn, a French farm-to-table restaurant on this property called Maison, and the Smokejumper Cafe inside the Helena Regional Airport.
Mabie said without federal help over the past year, he and her husband’s business would not have survived.
“We put everything on the line to open this project in July 2019, and when COVID hit we thought we were going to lose everything,” Mabie said of Oddfellow Farm and Inn and Maison. “We are here today in full swing, vaccinated and ready to open our businesses to receive the roar of hospitality that Montana is enjoying because of the funding that has come through these programs.”
Mabie said Wage Protection Program loans as well as aid through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act kept his business afloat.
With the money provided by the $ 25 billion Restaurant Revitalization Grant program, Mabie said he was able to hire new employees, replenish inventory and, in the weeks to come, to reopen the Smokejumper Cafe with its long shutters.