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Posted on: January 20, 2022

Press Release: With City Council Approval, State Grants Can Go to Businesses Impacted by Tornado

Press Release

Mayor Gavin Buckley


160 Duke of Gloucester Street

Annapolis, Maryland 21401



Media contact: Mitchelle Stephenson, 410-972-7724 or 


With City Council Approval, State Grants Can Proceed to Businesses Impacted by September 2021 Tornado


Annapolis, MD (January 20, 2021) – On Wednesday, the City of Annapolis submitted three recently-passed City Council Resolutions to the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), supporting grant requests to three Annapolis businesses impacted by the Annapolis tornado that hit Parole in the early autumn. 


The businesses are all located on West Street and include Chris’s Charcoal Pit House, Annapolis International Market and Kiddie Academy of Annapolis. In order to receive funding, the City of Annapolis had to show support for the distribution of DHCD grant funds by passing a resolution. 


In late December 2021, Ward Three Alderwoman Rhonda Pindell Charles, who represents the Parole community, submitted the legislation. At the January 10, 2022 meeting of the Annapolis City Council, the Resolutions to support the businesses were unanimously approved.


“The tornado was a frightening experience and we were so very blessed, and it was indeed a miracle, there was no loss of life,” said Pindell Charles. “But for some, the aftermath has also proved challenging. Strained access to capital, delays in financing and limited insurance payouts have left some of these businesses struggling to get back on their feet. I am grateful these DHCD funds are heading their way.” 


The state initially offered DHCD funding in the form of loans. Pindell Charles and Office of Emergency Management Director Kevin Simmons worked tirelessly with state officials to migrate the loans to grants. 


“One of the fulfilling aspects of this job is to be able to help residents in times of crisis,” said Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley. “Businesses have been challenged. First with COVID and then a tornado. From that first evening, we heard the resolve of residents and businesses to rebuild. I am thankful to the state for agreeing to convert the loan programs to grants and also thankful for the work of elected officials and City staff.”


In all, the businesses are eligible for grants up to $50,000 per business and homeowners are eligible for grants based on the total cost to rebuild or rehabilitate their home, less any insurance proceeds. Businesses and residents can apply for these disaster recovery grants by visiting the DHCD website at

“Those needing assistance in completing these applications should contact the Office of Emergency Management,” said Simmons.


On September 1, 2021, an EF-2 tornado, spawned by the remnants of Hurricane Ida, ripped through Annapolis and parts of Southern Anne Arundel County. Peak wind speeds reached 125 MPH, damaging homes and businesses in its path. 


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