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Posted on: November 18, 2020

County Launches Grant Program to Support Local Restaurants Providing Outdoor Dining

Orange County Restaurant Outdoor Dining Grant Program - ENews

In response to the State’s action to place additional restrictions on Orange County related to COVID-19, the Orange County Board of Supervisors took immediate action and is launching the Orange County (OC) Restaurant Outdoor Dining Grant Program to support local restaurants providing outdoor dining as required by the State’s Purple tier guidelines.

The OC Restaurant Outdoor Dining Grant Program will make funds immediately available to award $1,000 grants to 1,000 eligible restaurants through CARES Act federal funding. These urgently needed dollars are intended to help alleviate financial hardships local restaurants are facing following the State’s announcement of Orange County moving back to the purple tier. Awardees must use the funding solely to purchase outdoor heaters/warmers, lighting, or canopies/tents to provide for outdoor dining.


Restaurants are required to submit an application on the County’s website to be considered for the grant funding. Eligible applications will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis, and incomplete applications will be automatically disqualified. Applications will be accepted beginning Friday, November 20, 2020, at 9 a.m. PST.


Due to the overwhelming response of previous County business grant programs, restaurants are strongly encouraged to review the program criteria and gather required documentation in advance, which can be found at This is just another in a series of grant programs and initiatives spearheaded by the Orange County Board of Supervisors to bring economic relief to businesses suffering impacts due to COVID-19.


  • Must be located in Orange County and been impacted by COVID-19;
  • Must have been operational on or before March 9, 2020;
  • Must be in good standing with the Orange County Health Care Agency;
  • Must be currently open for business; and
  • Must submit receipts for purchase(s) through the County’s online portal by December 30, 2020.

Please note: Bars, breweries, food trucks, distilleries or wineries, and restaurants engaged in illegal activities or in adult entertainment, gambling, or cannabis are ineligible.

Use of Funding

Restaurants must use the $1,000 grant solely to purchase outdoor heaters/warmers, lighting, and canopies/tents to provide for outdoor dining. Purchases must be made between November 16, 2020, and December 23, 2020.


Applicants need to download, complete and upload these documents with their application submittal:

  • Business owner’s valid government photo ID (i.e. Driver’s License);
  • Restaurant’s valid health permit issued by Orange County Environmental Health;
  • W9 Form; and
  • Grant Agreement.


For more information and to apply, visit

An Important Message Regarding Use of Portable Heaters Within Outdoor Dining Areas

As we enter the cooler late-fall and winter months, portable heaters within outdoor dining spaces, including covered patios, canopies, and tents composed of combustible fabric or other materials, are a necessity. In order to reduce potential fire hazards and ensure public safety, Orange County Fire Marshalls recently ruled that infrared (electric) outdoor heaters only may be used beneath or within covered outdoor or tented dining areas. Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) type outdoor heaters are not permitted under covered outdoor dining areas based on California State Fire Marshall (SFM) Guidelines and California Fire Code (CFC) requirements. The City of Yorba Linda’s fire agency, Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) has prepared this Guidance Sheet for the safe use of portable heaters. Please review and follow this guidance information before placing portable heaters within any covered outdoor space.

The foregoing requirements should be incorporated into and reflected on the provided documentation for Temporary Use Permit (TUP) applications for temporary outdoor dining.

Temporary Outdoor Business Expansion

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