Small business boost applications extended to Feb. 3 for East County

Greater Grays Harbor CEO cites low turnout as cause for extending the window to apply

When the Olympic Peninsula Small Business Boost program launched on Dec. 19, 2022, the initiative was intended to spur small business recovery, startup and growth due to the hits taken during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program, which saw a $1.3 million grant collectively given to Grays Harbor, Jefferson and Clallam counties by the Washington State Department of Commerce, helped prioritize assistance to BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) entrepreneurs, women-owned small businesses, as well as small businesses located in underserved, low-income, and rural areas.

Although the application period closed on Jan. 13, a closer look at who was taking advantage of the state-given funds showed a low turnout of applications in arguably the one place that could benefit from the help the most — East County

“We didn’t think we had strong representation from businesses on the east side of the county, so we wanted to call out, make sure we got everybody’s attention, and let know we’re extending the application period for those businesses,” said Lynnette Buffington, the CEO of Greater Grays Harbor Inc. “We had strong representation elsewhere throughout Grays Harbor.”

Buffington said the new deadline will extend until Feb. 3 and is eligible for all types of small businesses, excluding nonprofit businesses, located in McCleary, Elma, Montesano, Oakville, Wishkah Valley and Central Park. Applying for the application will help small businesses receive free professional business services for legal, marketing, and bookkeeping assistance.

Business owners looking for more information or to apply for the services provided are encouraged to do so at

Contact Reporter Allen Leister at 360-463-3572 or