Traffic volume and road closures resulting from the Dec. 14 school shooting impacted many Newtown businesses at the peak of the pre-Christmas shopping season, so the state is stepping in to help with a $500,000 grant.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said Tuesday that the state will give Newtown a Small Town Economic Assistance Program grant for $500,000, which will be administered by the town.

“Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with everyone that was affected by the horrible events at Sandy Hook Elementary School,” Malloy said. “Even as we work toward broader reforms to better protect our communities, these STEAP funds will have an immediate impact on the regional economy and protect area jobs.”

The money will help the businesses “weather the economic toll this tragedy has taken on their community,” Sen. John McKinney, R-Fairfield, said.

Newtown First Selectwoman E. Patricia Llorda thanked the state for its support.

“In the aftermath of the shootings, our businesses were essentially shut down by the volume of traffic and media preventing customers from getting to stores, services, and restaurants during the busiest shopping days of the year. On behalf of the town, we are appreciative of this extraordinary kindness and appreciation for our difficulties,” Llorda said.

The grant is funded through an October 2012 allocation by state Bond Commission.