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Kick Start Middlebury is open to legal residents of the United States who are 18 years of age or older who are interested in starting, relocating, or significantly expanding a business in Middlebury. The new, relocated, or expanded business must be operational before January 1, 2023. Any business is eligible to submit an application. Businesses may earn additional points based on current town needs and proposed location.  


  • Each Applicant (and each applicant team member) must agree to the rules, regulations, terms and conditions, without limitation, by signing a certification that: All decisions regarding Kick Start Middlebury, including the selection of program winner(s), are in the sole discretion and judgment of the review committee and decisions in each case are final and unappealable.

  • Each applicant shall release and hold harmless the Town of Middlebury, Better Middlebury Partnership, Addison County Chamber of Commerce, Addison County Economic Development Corporation, Middlebury Rotary, Table 21, Middlebury College, Vermont Small Business Development Center, any sponsors, review committee members, business participants, property owners, and all others associated with or assisting with Kick Start Middlebury from any and all matters regarding Kick Start Middlebury.

  • Any cash grant awarded must only be used for costs associated with starting or operating the new business in Middlebury that is the subject of the application to Kick Start Middlebury (for example inventory, rent, equipment, fit-up expenses, start-up activities) as outlined by the application and plan (excluding payment of federal, state, or local taxes). Kick Start Middlebury will pay or reimburse the selected business for eligible business expenses, up to the maximum cash award ($35,000).  Winners will be required to submit invoices detailing a business-related expense to receive program funds. Kick Start Middlebury will endeavor to distribute funds in a timely manner following the announcement of winners, but reasonable delays may occur.

  • The winning business must secure a lease or purchase agreement for one of the available properties in Middlebury, Vermont within three months of receiving notification of award, and the business should open for operation within six months of notification, or by January 1, 2023, whichever occurs first. In case of reasonable delays, the winner may make an appeal to the review committee for an extension. Kick Start Middlebury reserves the right to withdraw an award from any winner who fails to comply with this timeline or request an extension in a timely manner.

  • Applications and plans will be judged based on the quality of the application, business proposal, attachments, and the business’ market viability.  Businesses may earn additional points based on current community needs. 

  • Employees and board members of the Town of Middlebury, Better Middlebury Partnership, Addison County Chamber of Commerce, Addison County Economic Development Corporation, Middlebury College, Table 21, the Middlebury Rotary, and the Vermont Small Business Development Center and their family or members of the same household are not eligible to compete in Kick Start Middlebury. Similarly excluded are any members of the review committee and their family or members of the same household.

  • The application, business plans, and financials must be received in the format requested and be complete to be considered by the review committee.

  • Before Kick Start Middlebury distributes any awards, the business applicants (including all business team members) must agree to the terms and conditions as specified in the Agreement Form to be provided by Kick Start Middlebury.

  • All documents must be the original work of the individual(s) representing the applicant's business.

  • Kick Start Middlebury reserves the right to not release the names or contact information of the review committee members. Lobbying of any review committee member is strictly prohibited. 

  • Applicants will be notified via the contact information provided if they are awarded a grant. 

  • Awards are not transferable. 

  • Applicants retain rights to their business proposal at all times. 

  • All submissions will remain confidential until awardees are announced. A public announcement will be made naming the finalists, their business names, and a brief description of their project. 

  • Grant recipients must agree to make attribution to the Kick Start Middlebury program in any media releases or statements, participate in any Kick Start Middlebury media events or announcements, and include Kick Start Middlebury funders and review committee members in any ribbon-cuttings, media announcements, or other celebrations. 

  • Winners are responsible for paying all applicable taxes.

  • If there are no acceptable business proposals submitted, Kick Start Middlebury reserves the right to not award the prize package.

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