This program is only available to SBA members within the
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Signage Upgrade Program

PROGRAM GOALS

The purpose of this program is to encourage business and commercial property owners to install new signage or upgrade existing signage to create a positive commercial environment in the Sackville Business District. Grants may be used to pay for the cost of design, fabrication, and installation of the signage.

ELIGIBLE PROPERTIES

  • Buildings must be located within the Sackville Business Improvement District.
  • Applications must be signed by all legal property and business owners.
  • There must be no active or pending Code Enforcement actions against the property.
  • Applicant business owner(s) must have an existing lease with a term of two or more years remaining on such lease. A copy of the lease must be submitted with the application.

GRANT AMOUNTS

The program can provide a reimbursement of 50% of eligible costs of up to $4,000.00* per eligible business/commercial property. This amount is based on the applicant matching the amount in approved expenses for the proposed project.

*dependent on funding.

PROJECT COMPLETION

All projects receiving funding under the Signage Upgrade Program shall be completed and paid in full by March 31. Failure to complete the approved project on time will result in cancellation of the grant under the terms and conditions of the Reimbursement Agreement.

ELIGIBLE IMPROVEMENTS

Where possible, materials should be sourced at businesses within the Sackville Business District. Types of improvements eligible for grants are: design, fabrication and installation. Types of eligible signage are: building signage (projection signs and facial signs), canopy or awning signage, ground signs (pylon signage and planter box signage), window decals (when it is the primary business signage).

GRANT REIMBURSEMENT PROCESS

The applicant must provide the following for reimbursement from the Sackville Business Association:

  • A letter of completion signed by the applicant and the contractor indicating that the work described within the agreement has been fully completed;
  • Proof all contractors have been paid in full by the applicant for the portions or parts of the project for which the applicant is seeking reimbursement. This shall be a final invoice marked paid in full and a copy of the cheque made payable to the contractors;

GRANT APPLICATION PROCESS

* Applying for a Reimbursement Grant is no substitution for the permit process. A Reimbursement Agreement is not a sign permit.

Generally, the application process is as follows:

  1. Contact the SBA Project Manager for application.
  2. Submit a complete application (including two quotes and sign design) to the Sackville Business Association.
  3. Project Review Committee reviews the application. Additional information may be requested.
  4. An agreement is entered into between the applicant and the SBA clearly stating project details, what costs will be reimbursed by the SBA and any conditions.
  5. Have proposed signage reviewed by HRM Planning staff to ensure it would meet signage by-laws (obtain permit).
  6. Signage construction begins.
  7. Applicant presents the SBA with a letter of completion and a package of receipts and proof of payment of all suppliers and other providers no later than March 31.
  8. Project is inspected by the Project Manager or a representative relative to the agreement.
  9. SBA writes a cheque consistent with the terms of the agreement.

GRANT ALLOCATION

  • Funding will be allocated on a case-by-case basis subject to the approval of the Project Review Committee until the budget has been spent or the program year has ended.
  • Submitting an application does not guarantee a grant or a specific grant amount. The decision of the Project Review Committee is final and not subject to appeal.
  • All project proposals are subject to a comprehensive review of the existing building signage, must meet high quality standards and must reflect the spirit and intent of the program goals.

GRANT APPROVAL PROCESS

The applicant will be contacted in writing stating whether the application has been approved, refused or additional information is required.

Once approved, a site inspection is carried out to ensure that the proposed project has not begun prior to approval. There is no retroactive clause in this Signage Upgrade Program.

A Reimbursement Agreement is then entered into with the Sackville Business Association. The agreement includes all of the relevant attachments included with the application including drawings, the itemized list of eligible project expenses and any conditions of the grant such as ongoing maintenance imposed by the SBA.

TIMELINE FOR PROJECT APPROVAL/COMPLETION PROCESS

  • Complete Applications Reviewed within 45 days
  • Construction must be complete within the time specified in the Agreement or no later than March 31, whichever is the earliest.
  • Reimbursement is typically 30 days from the time the final claim is received.

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