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Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP) for Agriculture Operations

9/20/23 UPDATE - Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program to Increase Award Amounts to Flood Impacted Businesses, Nonprofits, and Landlords

Changes to the Program Will Include Raising the Percent of Net Uncovered Damage to 30% and Removing the $20,000 Award Cap

September 20, 2023 | Berlin, Vt. - Governor Phil Scott and the Vermont Department of Economic Development Commissioner Joan Goldstein today announced forthcoming changes to the $20 million Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP) formula, which will increase grant awards to flood impacted businesses, nonprofits, and landlords.

Since August, when BEGAP launched, organizations that suffered less than $1 million dollars in physical damage were eligible for grants equaling 20% of net uncovered damages (damages less insurance proceeds, donations, or other grants), with a maximum payout of $20,000. The new formula eliminates the $20,000 cap and increases payouts to 30% of net uncovered damages. The change applies to all BEGAP grantees - past, present, and future.

A breakdown of the new formula for previous awardees, current and future applicants is:

  • 0-$999,999 in net uncovered damages = 30% award
  • $1,000,000 or more in net uncovered damages = 20% with a maximum award of $500,000.

For organizations already paid 20%, no action is needed to get the increased award amount. They will automatically receive an additional payment to bring their award up to 30%. For organizations in the queue, they are eligible for the 30% award.

The $20 million BEGAP grant program was launched August 3.  So far, the program has seen 

  • 469 successfully submitted applications
  • 280 approved for a BEGAP grant
  • 189 applications currently under review
  • $21,679 in average awards
  • $6,070,014 committed so far
  • $145 million total damage reported in applications
  • $116 million net damage (uncovered by insurance, grants, fundraising) reported in applications. 

The numbers above for the average award and amount of BEGAP funds committed so far will change with this new formula that is taking effect Thursday, because it affects previously approved projects.

It is worth noting, about 20% of all BEGAP applications received are deemed incomplete and sent back to the applicant for revision, which can delaying processing. Organizations seeking assistance should be sure to submit a thorough BEGAP application. There are Technical Assistance resources on the BEGAP web page.


Vermont’s Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) announced $20 million for the Business Emergency Gap Assistance Program (BEGAP) for businesses and nonprofits that suffered physical damages from flooding dating back to July 7, 2023. The BEGAP program has money available through the Agency of Agriculture to support agricultural operations losses or physical damage related to this flooding event.

Money is available through the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets for food and farm businesses, organizations, or individuals who raise animals and/or grow food or crops for sale, or who operate on-farm processing operations that have experienced physical damage due to the flooding event. These applicants will apply as “agriculture” sector applicants via the Agency of Agriculture website.

Agricultural or food businesses engaged in off-farm processing or food manufacturing should apply directly to ACCD BEGAP as a “manufacturing” or “retail” sector applicant.


If you represent a farm or agricultural operation and have questions, please email or contact Agency of Agriculture staff Abbey Willard at 802-272-2885 or Mary Montour at 802-461-6087.

BEGAP for Agriculture FAQ's

Apply to BEGAP Now  

BEGAP Portal at ACCD

Agricultural Business Eligibility Criteria

  • Established agricultural business prior to July 2023 flooding
  • Physical property damages must be located in Vermont, which includes damage to real estate (infrastructure and land damage); inventory (crop damage or loss, livestock loss); machinery; and equipment associated with the agricultural business
  • All losses or damage under the same agricultural business are considered one damaged property.
  • If a farm is operated separately from an additional processing facility, the farm would apply with the Agency of Agriculture under “agriculture,” and the processing facility would most likely apply under “manufacturing” with ACCD. These would be two separate applications.
  • Agricultural business must intend to reopen or to remain open and will use grant funds for the agricultural business.

Applicant Information Required

  • Contact information
  • Damaged property location and ownership documentation such as property tax bill or lease arrangement
  • Federal Employer Tax Identification Number (FEIN) 
  • Insurance policy information: type of coverage, policy number, agent contact 
  • Dollar amount of damages anticipated to be recouped through insurance
  • Other grants or donations received and used to defray the costs of repairing or replacing damaged assets  
  • Description of the impact of the flooding on the applicant
  • Damage type and estimated costs for repair/replacement
  • An economic injury estimate and description (anticipated or actual revenue loss). (This estimate will not be used to calculate the award but is for informational purposes only.)

Documentation Required, When Applicable  

  • Most recently filed Federal Tax Return (or 990) 
  • Profit and Loss Statement if business started in 2023  
  • An updated IRS Form W-9
  • Declaration or Certificate of Insurance for all policies held 
  • Supporting documentation for claimed damages (insurance adjusters report, vendor estimates)
  • Repair estimates for physical structures, equipment, inventory, supply purchases or actual paid expenses
  • Photographs of damaged property (maximum of 5)
  • Proof of property ownership (e.g. property tax bill, deed, lease agreement)


Applications will be processed, reviewed, and awarded on a first come, first serve basis. Awards help applicants recoup a portion of their total net uncovered damages. This is the damage amount remaining after subtracting any insurance proceeds (estimated or received) and other grants issued to defray the costs of repairing or replacing those damaged assets. Loans received should also be deducted from the amount of damages you report. Any funds received through BEGAP may impact future federal relief assistance program payments, including FEMA, SBA, or USDA.

Award Calculation

Agriculture sector applicants are eligible for the category of funding to businesses that have less than $1 million in net uncovered damages. Therefore, Agriculture sector applicants may be eligible for awards of up to 30% of net uncovered damage.


BEGAP for Agriculture FAQ's

Apply to BEGAP Now