1.     GENERAL. 

●The Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (“BGE”) Energizing Small Business Grants Program (the “Program”) is sponsored and administered by the Global Entrepreneurship Network, Inc. (“GEN”) and Circular Board, Inc. dba Hello Alice (“Sponsors”).
●BGE serves as the Program host.
●By entering this Program, you agree to be bound by these Official Rules and Sponsors’ determinations regarding the Program, which are final and binding.
●The Program is subject to all applicable federal, state, and local laws and is void where prohibited.
●There is no purchase necessary or other cost to enter the Program or win a Grant. 


●To be eligible to enter a business in the Program, you (“Officer”) must be all of the following as of the first day of the Program Period (defined below): (a) a legal resident of the United States (including the District of Columbia but excluding U.S. territories); (b) at least 18 years of age; and, (c) minimum of one (1) employee and a maximum of twenty-five (i.e., Founder, President, CEO, CFO, COO, or any other similar title or role) of the business who is authorized to legally bind the business with respect to the Program.
● To be eligible to participate in the Program, the business (“Entrant”) must meet all of the following criteria as of the first day of the Program Period: (a) for-profit business; (b) existing BGE electric and/or gas customer;  (c) minimum of one (1)employee and a maximum of twenty-five (25) employees; (d) annual gross revenues in 2020 of less than $7 million USD; (e) demonstrated need for funding to support business and serve customers; (f) in (or on the way to) good standing with the State of Maryland; (g) not engaged in illegal, potentially illegal, or illegitimate activities as adjudged in Sponsors’ determination; and, (h) business entity legally permissible in the United States.
●The potential recipients are subject to eligibility verification by Sponsors, which may include a background check and the completion of associated documentation. 


●The Program starts on January 20, 2021, at 9:00 AM Eastern Time and ends on October 13, 2021, at 6:00 PM Eastern Time (the “Program Period”).
●Sponsors’ computer is the official timekeeper for all matters related to the Program.
●Sponsors reserve the right to shorten or lengthen the Program Period based on need and availability of funds.

4.    HOW TO ENTER. 

●To enter the Program, each Officer must clearly and concisely complete all sections of the online application, which consists of a series of questions about the Entrant and the Officer, by taking these steps: during the Program Period, (1) go to bge.helloalice.com; (2) create an account or log in if you already have an account; and, (3) complete and submit application (“Entry”). The full list of Entry questions can be found in the application form at bge.helloalice.com.
●All entries must be received by 6:00 PM Eastern Time on October 13, 2021 to be eligible.
●Limit: One Entry per Entrant and per Officer. Multiple entries received for any Entrant or Officer after the first Entry received from that Entrant or Officer is void.

●Sponsors may disqualify any Entry that, as adjudged in Sponsors’ determination:
        o contains any material that is indecent, obscene, hateful, discriminatory, defamatory, slanderous, libelous, unlawful, or otherwise inappropriate;
        o ois submitted in bad faith, is inappropriate, or otherwise violates these Official Rules;
        o ois submitted by an Entrant or Officer who is ineligible or noncompliant with these Official Rules; and/or,
        o ois submitted by any person who tampers with or abuses any aspect of the Program or the Hello Alice website, who acts in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, who violates these Official Rules, or about whom a background check provides unsatisfactory results.
●If there is a dispute about who submitted an Entry, the authorized account holder of the email address used to register will be deemed to be the Officer and the business identified in the Entry will be deemed the Entrant for the Program. The “authorized account holder” is the natural person assigned an email address by an Internet access provider, online service provider, or other organization responsible for assigning email addresses for the domain associated with the submitted address. The Officer may be required to show proof of being the authorized account holder.


●After an Entry has been submitted, it cannot be modified in any way and Sponsors are not responsible for any delayed Entry, incomplete Entry, or Entry not received, recognized, or accepted for any reason.
●Entrant retains all rights in and to its product or service, including all intellectual property rights, but no Entry may disclose any information confidential to or any trade secret of the Entrant or any third party. Sponsors will treat all information disclosed by Entrant as nonconfidential.
●By submitting an Entry to the Program, each Entrant hereby grants Sponsors and BGE (defined below) on behalf of Entrant and Officer a royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual, global, nonexclusive license to use, reproduce, modify, publish, create derivative works from, and display the information in the Entry, in whole or in part, and to incorporate it into other works, in any form, media, or technology, now known or later developed, for any purpose including for promotional and marketing purposes, including on www.helloalice.com or other Hello Alice-branded websites or social platforms, or www.genglobal.org or BGE branded websites or social platforms.
●The Released Parties (defined below) do not guarantee that any Entry will be used as described in the preceding license.
●The Released Parties (defined below) are not responsible for any unauthorized use by third parties of any Entry.


Entries will be judged by representatives from Sponsors and BGE (the “Panel”), based on the following judging criteria with the respective weighting:
●Demonstrated need for funds to recover from the impacts of COVID-19 and support business (35%)
●Clarity and feasibility of plan for proposed use of funds to grow business and serve customers (45%)
●Demonstrated commitment of Entrant to its community (20%)
Preference will be given to minority-owned and women-owned businesses.

Sponsors will award Grants (defined below) to Entrants whose Entries receive the highest cumulative score (the “Grant Recipients”) according to the following schedule. An Entrant that does not receive a grant in the round it enters can reapply by submitting a new application in any subsequent round(s).
●Round 1 opens January 20, 2021 at 9:00 AM Eastern Time and closes March 3, 2021 at 06:00 PM Eastern Time. Entries received in Round 1 will be considered together for a Round 1 Grant.
●Round 2 opens May 5, 2021 at 9:00 AM Eastern Time and closes June 16, 2021 at 06:00 PM Eastern Time. Entries received in Round 2 will be considered together for a Round 2 Grant.
●Round 3 opens September 1, 2021 at 9:00 AM Eastern Time and closes October 13, 2021 at 06:00 PM Eastern Time: Entries received in Round 3 will be considered together for a Round 3 Grant.

The number of Grant Recipients will be based on need and available funds. Grant Recipients will be notified by email or phone within thirty (30) days after the round for which they applied.

Additional Rules:

●Sponsors may, in Sponsors’ determination, review BGE account holders’ payment history, balances, or other factors to determine whether an applicant is in good standing with BGE - recognizing the impact of COVID-19 on Maryland’s economy.
●Sponsors may, in Sponsors’ determination, conduct a brief interview with any Entrant and request an Entrant to submit additional materials relating to their Entry if Sponsors’ determination is that this step is necessary to fairly judge the Entry.
●If during any judging there is a tie, the tie will be broken based on the highest score in the first judging criterion, continuing thereafter to each judging criterion in order as needed to break the tie.
●Sponsors’ or the Panel's decision, as the case may be, is final and not open to dispute of any kind.
●Each Grant Recipient may be required to execute and return to Sponsors an affidavit of eligibility, liability release, and, where lawful, a publicity release (collectively, the “Release”), within forty-eight hours after the Sponsors’ notification.
●If a potential Grant Recipient cannot be located or does not respond within forty-eight hours after the Sponsors’ notification, or the potential Grant Recipient rejects the grant or fails to complete the Release within the allotted time period, the grant will be forfeited and awarded to an alternate recipient, who is the Entrant with the next highest ranked Entry from among all remaining eligible Entries.
●Sponsors will award all grants. If a grant cannot be awarded to a potential Grant Recipient, property of equal or greater value will be provided to an alternate recipient.


●Each Grant Recipient will receive $20,000 (a “Grant”).
●Each Grant Recipient may receive recognition on the Hello Alice, GEN, and BGE platforms.
●Each Grant is awarded “as is” with no warranty or guarantee, either express or implied by Sponsors.
●Sponsors reserve the right, at its sole discretion, to substitute property of equal or greater value for any grant (or portion of a grant) that cannot be awarded.
●Each recipient is responsible for all applicable federal, state, and local taxes, if any, as well as any other costs and expenses associated with grant acceptance and use not specified in these Official Rules.
●The Released Parties  make no warranties of any kind, either express or implied, including any implied warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose, with respect to any grant awarded in the Program. 

The odds of being awarded a grant will depend on the number of eligible Entries received during the Program Period.


●Releases. Each Entrant and Officer will release, discharge and hold harmless Sponsors, BGE, and its parents, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, and funding partners, and the shareholders, directors, officers, employees, agents, and representatives of each of the foregoing (collectively, the “Released Parties”), from any and all injuries, liability, losses, and damages of any kind to persons, including death or property damage resulting, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from the Entrant’s or the Officer’s participation in the Program or any Program-related activity or the acceptance, possession, use, or misuse of any grant.
●Liability Limitation. The Released Parties are not responsible for:
        o lost, late, incomplete, damaged, inaccurate, stolen, delayed, misdirected, undelivered, or garbled Entries;
        o lost, interrupted or unavailable network, server, Internet Service Provider, website, or other connections, availability or accessibility or miscommunications or failed computer, satellite, telephone or cable transmissions, lines, or technical failure or jumbled, scrambled, delayed, or misdirected transmissions or computer hardware or software malfunctions, failures or difficulties, or other errors or difficulties of any kind whether human, mechanical, electronic, computer, network, typographical, printing or otherwise relating to or in connection with the Program, including errors or difficulties that may occur in connection with the administration of the Program, the processing or judging of Entries, or the announcement of the Recipients;
        o any incorrect or inaccurate information, whether caused by site users, tampering, hacking, or by any equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Program; and/or,
oinjury or damage to any person’s computer related to or resulting from participating in this Program or downloading materials from or use of Sponsors’ website or other platforms.
●Program Compromised. If any portion of the Program is compromised by virus, worms, bugs, nonauthorized human intervention, or other causes that, in Sponsors’ determination, corrupt or impair the Program’ administration, security, fairness, or proper play, or submission of Entries, Sponsors may suspend, modify, or terminate the Program and, if terminated, at its discretion, select the Grant Recipient from all eligible, non-suspect Entries received prior to the Program' compromise using the judging procedure outlined above.
●Interpretation. In these Official rules: “Including” means including but not limited to. “Sponsors’ determination” or “Sponsors’ consent” means Sponsors’ determination or Sponsors’ consent, in either case, in its sole discretion.
●Program Changes. Sponsors reserve the right to modify these Official Rules in order to better achieve the Program’s purpose as adjudged in Sponsors’ determination, without liability or obligation to Sponsors. Sponsors will give notice of Official Rule modifications on the Program’ official site and in these Official Rules.

11.    PUBLICITY. 

●By entering and participating in the Program, each Entrant and Officer permits the use of Entrant’s and Officer’s names and submitted content for programming, advertising, publicity, and promotional purposes in all media, now known or later created, worldwide and on the Internet, and in perpetuity by Sponsors, BGE, and their designees, without compensation (unless prohibited by law) or additional consents from Entrant or Officer or any third party and without prior notice, approval, or inspection.
●Each Entrant and Officer will execute specific consent to the uses described in the previous sentence at Sponsors’ request.
●No Entrant or Officer may release on their own or through a third party any publicity or other materials regarding their participation in the Program, without Sponsors’ consent.

Delaware law governs all issues and questions concerning these Official Rules and Entrant’s or Sponsors’ rights and obligations in connection with the Program, and that law applies regardless of any choice-of-law principles otherwise applicable.

●Except where prohibited by law, the parties must resolve any dispute arising out of or relating to the Program or these Official Rules individually and exclusively by final and binding arbitration administered by the American Arbitration Association (“AAA”) and conducted before a single arbitrator under AAA’s applicable arbitration rules.
●The arbitration must be held at a location in the state in which the Entrant’s principal place of business is located.
●There shall be no authority for any claims to be arbitrated (or otherwise disputed) on a class or representative basis; arbitration can decide only Sponsors’ or Entrant’s individual claims and the arbitrator may not consolidate or join the claims of other persons or parties who may be similarly situated.
●Entrant, Officer, and Sponsors each specifically waives any right to a jury trial related to the resolution of any dispute arising out of or relating to the Program or these Official Rules.
●Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in these Official Rules, if the amount in dispute arising out of or relating to the Program or these Official Rules is less than the jurisdictional maximum of a small claims court applicable in the state in the Entrant’s principal place of business is located, an Entrant may bring an action in the small claims court for the dispute, which will be in lieu of arbitration or an action in any other court.

14.    USE OF DATA. 

●By participating in the Program, each Entrant and Officer acknowledges that Sponsors will collect private or personal data about the Entrant and the Officer that is submitted in the Entry (the “Private Information”).
●Sponsors may collect and use the Private Information for purposes of these Program and as authorized under these Official Rules. Sponsors also may share with BGE this Private Information with BGE, which may collect and use such Private Information in accordance with its Private Policy.


BGE Energizing Small Business Grants Program Official Rules