Frequently Asked Questions

What businesses qualify for this program?
The program is designed to assist local Framingham businesses most negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, such as retailers (clothing/apparel stores, gift/book shops, home furnishing, coffee/pastry shops, deli/sandwich shops, jewelry stores, etc.), restaurants and full-service bars, or service-based providers (barbers, salons, nail service, tour companies, pet stores, tailors, health/fitness businesses, etc.). This opportunity is open to all locally-owned, for-profit retail, restaurant and service-based businesses, including local franchisees and local licensees, physically located in Framingham, with annual sales less than $2,000,000.

As a business, how do I apply to participate?
The required online application can be found HERE. If you have questions, please email EDIC@framinghamma.gov. Businesses must apply to participate in the program by Friday, April 9, 2021 at 5PM EST. Applications will be approved on a first-come, first-serve basis.

What’s the total amount the Framingham Economic Development and Industrial Corporation (EDIC) is committing to this program?
The EDIC has committed to spending up to $10,000 in matching gift card funds to assist local Framingham businesses remain viable, during and after the current COVID-19 pandemic.

How much money can a business receive from this program?
Eligible Framingham businesses can receive up to $250 per business in matching funds from the Framingham EDIC. Businesses must complete the online application by Friday, April 9, 2021 at 5PM, track gift cards sold in-store, online, or via the telephone during the program dates of Saturday, May 1 through Sunday, May 16, 2021, and provide proof of purchase for gift card sales. Once the business has submitted $250 in matching requests, the business is no longer eligible to receive funds under this program.

As a participating business, will I be responsible for taxes on matching funds from the City?
As each business is different, we recommend you contact your accountant for guidance on tax implications.

As a participating business, how do I get my matching funds of up to $250 from the City of Framingham?
Each participating business must provide a statement of purchases that includes identifying information for each customer and proof of purchase by Monday, May 24, 2021 at 5PM EST in order to qualify for its matching gift card funds from the EDIC. The statement of purchases and proof of purchases must be emailed to EDIC@framinghamma.gov. If approved, the matching gift card payment will be mailed 2-3 weeks after the purchase information is submitted to the EDIC staff. The statement of purchases can be downloaded HERE.

As a member of the community, how can I purchase a gift card without going in to a business?
Click HERE for a list of participating businesses and how you can purchase a gift card.

When can the gift cards be used?
The gift cards may be redeemed up to 7 years after the purchase date. Per Massachusetts state law, a gift card, as defined in section 1 of chapter 255D, sold or offered to be sold shall be valid for not less than 7 years after its date of issuance.

How long will this program last?
The matching part of the program will last until the fund is depleted. Each purchase is subject to verification of matching funds being available.

As a member of the community, when should I purchase a gift card from one of the participating businesses?
In order to buy a gift card so the participating business can receive up to $250 in matching funds, the gift card must be purchased between Saturday, May 1 and Sunday, May 16, 2021.

What if the business permanently closes before I can redeem my gift card?
In order to participate, a business must agree to a set of terms and conditions. In these terms, if the business is unable to honor a gift card for ANY reason, this includes a closure – they are obligated to refund the full amount of the gift card.

Is there a limit to the number of gift cards a business can sell?
No. Each participating business will be limited to receive $250 from the Framingham EDIC. Once that limit is reached, gift card sales qualifying for the gift card matching program will close. The business may still sell gift cards to customers; however, they will not be considered for the gift card matching program.

What if I buy a gift card and the business has already reached their $250 limit?
Each business will be responsible for how they handle communicating their limit to customers. The EDIC will only match up to $250, but if the business chooses not to disclose the fact that they have already sold $250 in gift cards when you purchase your gift card, we hope that people participating in the program will continue to support the businesses and understand that every gift card purchase is an excellent way of supporting the business.

Can I buy a gift card at my own business?
No. Business owners and immediate family members (husband, wife, mom, dad, children) are not allowed to buy gift cards to their own business. If this act is committed, the business will be immediately withdrawn from the program.