SMALL BUSINESS HELP

Event Date: Friday, May 22, 2020 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Senator Williams is pleased to host Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin for a Zoom Town Hall on May 22 at 1 PM. They will be taking questions from small business owners and community leaders about the impact of Coronavirus and what the state can do to help. You can register in advance here: https://www.senatorlindseywilliams.com/DCEDTownHall/


Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Guidance      

This week, the SBA provided information regarding how to apply for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness. To assist borrowers with loan forgiveness applications and to provide direction to lenders regarding their roles and responsibilities, additional regulations and guidance are expected to be issued soon by the agency. To access the application or to learn more about the program, designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll during the COVID-19 crisis, please use the following links.

PLCB Issues Guidance to Licensees Regarding New Drinks-to-Go Law

Harrisburg – The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board today issued guidance to licensees regarding Act 21 of 2020, signed into law today by Governor Tom Wolf, which allows certain hotel and restaurant licensees to temporarily sell prepared beverages and mixed drinks to go, effective today.

Hotel and restaurant licensees that have lost at least 25% of average monthly sales due to COVID-19 business restrictions, and that offer meals to go, may now sell prepared beverages and mixed drinks – liquor and one or more mixer combined on the licensed premises in quantities from four to 64 ounces – in sealed containers.

The guidance issued today by the PLCB regarding drinks to go, which will inform enforcement efforts by the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement, is summarized below.

  • Only hotel and restaurant licensees selling meals to go and meeting the 25% sales impact threshold are authorized to sell drinks to go.
  • Each prepared beverage and mixed drink sold to consumers must be between four and 64 ounces and include liquor and at least one mixer combined on the licensed premises. 
  • Licensees may not sell to go:
    • Mixed drinks containing wine or beer
    • Unopened bottles of liquor
    • Gallon jugs of cocktails
    • Unopened ready-to-drink prepackaged cocktails
    • Straight liquor
  • Drinks to go may not be consumed on the licensed premises and must be sold in sealed containers with secure lids or caps designed to prevent consumption without removal of the lid or cap. A lid with sipping or straw holes must be covered or affixed with an additional seal before sale.
  • Licensees can sell drinks to go from 7:00 AM to 11:00 PM, Monday through Saturday, and from 9:00 AM to 11:00 PM on Sundays if the licensee has a Sunday sales permit.
  • There is no limit to the number of drinks-to-go a person can purchase at a time, and purchase of a meal is not required in order to buy drinks to go.
  • Drinks-to-go may not be delivered.
  • Within the next 60 days, any licensee selling drinks to go must begin to use a transaction scan device to verify the age of anyone appearing under 35 years of age before making a sale.
  • Retail licensees not permitted to sell drinks to go include clubs and catering clubs; any licensee whose license was objected to through the Nuisance Bar program; any licensee whose license is suspended or in safekeeping; and any licensee previously suspended under the Licensee Compliance program.

The new law also permits qualifying hotel and restaurant licensees to temporarily sell liquor (not wine or beer) to each other. Licensees selling liquor to other qualifying licensees must report those sales to the PLCB within seven days of each sale.

Pennsylvanians are reminded it is illegal to have an open container of alcohol while in a vehicle, and open containers may only be transported in a vehicle’s trunk or some other area of the vehicle not occupied by the driver or passengers.

The PLCB regulates the distribution of beverage alcohol in Pennsylvania, operates nearly 600 wine and spirits stores statewide, and licenses 20,000 alcohol producers, retailers, and handlers. The PLCB also works to reduce and prevent dangerous and underage drinking through partnerships with schools, community groups, and licensees. Taxes and store profits – totaling nearly $18.5 billion since the agency’s inception – are returned to Pennsylvania’s General Fund, which finances Pennsylvania’s schools, health and human services programs, law enforcement, and public safety initiatives, among other important public services. The PLCB also provides financial support for the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement, the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs, other state agencies, and local municipalities across the state. For more information about the PLCB, visit lcb.pa.gov.

MEDIA CONTACT: Elizabeth Brassell, 717-919-1905


DISTRICT 21 WEB DISCUSSION

Today, Monday, May 18th, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. Rep. Innamorato’s office will be hosting a community discussion for small businesses and non-profits. We will give a brief overview of the Yellow Phase guidance and then we’ll discuss some of the challenges and questions you may run be running into as you begin conducting business during PA’s Yellow Phase of reopening. If you already know what you’d like to ask, you can send a question or two as a reply to this email to KAquiline@pahouse.net
REGISTER FOR MONDAY'S ZOOM MEETING HERE!

 
Need a One-On-One Consultation?
Duquesne University Small Business Development Center has graciously offered one-on-one consultations with small businesses seeking to navigate their financing options and plan for the future.  Fill out this form with your information to sign up for a 45-minute time slot. Details will be available upon submission. 

The SBA is again accepting Paycheck Protection Program applications starting at 10:30 AM today. PPP loans will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll).

Businesses interested in participating, should apply as soon as possible for PPP by contacting their lender.

The first round of federal CARES Act funding ($349 billion) lasted about a week. The new round of $310 billion in funding is expected to last four to six days.

PLEASE SHARE this information if you know a small business owner.

To learn more about the relief options available for businesses through U.S. SBA, please visit: https://www.sba.gov/…/coronavir…/paycheck-protection-program.
Q. Will local banks offer SBA loans?
The Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering several different types of loans, some through approved lending partners and some directly through SBA:
  1. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): These loans will only be delivered through SBA’s approved lending partners. All current SBA 7(a) lenders are eligible lenders for PPP.  SBA has a free referral service tool called Lender Match to help find a lender near you.  The Department of Treasury will also be in charge of authorizing new lenders, including non-bank lenders, to help meet the needs of small business owners.  If your bank is not an approved lending partner, you can apply to another bank in town that is.  The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will provide small businesses with zero-fee loans of up to $10 million.  Principal and interest will be deferred for up to a year and all borrower fees will be waived.
  2. Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL): Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) are a direct loan through SBA’s office of disaster assistance.  This means that you will apply directly through SBA.  An application can be started here.  The stimulus included $10 billion in funding to provide an advance of $10,000 to small businesses and nonprofits that apply for an SBA economic injury disaster loan (EIDL), within three days of applying for the loan.  The loans may be used to pay for expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occurred, including payroll and other operating expenses.  The $10,000 EIDL grant does not need to be repaid, even if the grantee is subsequently denied an EIDL, and may be used to provide paid sick leave to employees, maintain payroll, meet increased production costs due to supply chain disruptions or pay business obligations, including debts, rent and mortgage payments.
  3. SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans: Borrowers will submit applications for these loans to private lenders.  SBA offers Lender Match, a free online referral tool that connects small businesses with participating SBA-approved lenders.  Access Lender Match here.  The stimulus includes $17 billion in funding for a provision to provide immediate relief to small businesses with standard SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans.  Under this provision, SBA will cover all loan payments for existing SBA borrowers, including principal, interest and fees, for six months.  This relief will also be available to new borrowers who take out an SBA loan by September 27, 2020 - six months after President Trump signed the bill into law.  While SBA borrowers are receiving the six months of debt relief, they may apply for a PPP loan that provides capital to keep their employees on the job.  The six months of SBA payment relief may not be applied to payments on PPP loans.
Q. Can I apply for more than one SBA loan?
Yes, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) can be used in coordination with other COVID-financing assistance established in the bill or any other existing SBA loan program.  Borrowers who already have existing, or apply for new SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans, will also be able to apply for a PPP loan.  A business that receives an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) between January 31, 2020 and June 30, 2020 as a result of a COVID-19 disaster declaration is eligible to apply for a PPP loan, or the business may refinance their EIDL into a PPP loan.  In either case, the emergency EIDL grant award of up to $10,000 would be subtracted from the amount forgiven in the payroll protection plan.
Q. How much can I receive in SBA loans?
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) provides zero-fee loans of up to $10 million.  Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) provide loans of up to $2 million. SBA 7(a) loans are up to $5 million, 504 loans are generally capped at $5.5 million and microloans at up to $50,000.
Q. If my business already laid off employees, can I rehire them with an SBA loan?
Yes, if your business was forced to lay off employees due to impacts from the coronavirus, you can use funds from an SBA-provided loan to rehire employees.
Q. What is the interest rate on SBA loans?
  1. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) interest rates: The maximum interest rate is 4% for this program.
  2. Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) interest rates: EIDLs carry interest rates up to 3.75% for companies and up to 2.75% for nonprofits, as well as principal and interest deferment for up to 4 years.
  3. Existing and new SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans interest rates: COVID-19 legislation requires the SBA to pay the principal, interest and any associated fees that are owed on the covered loans for a six-month period starting on the next payment due.  Loans that are already on deferment will receive six months of payment by the SBA beginning with the first payment after the deferral period.  Loans made up until six months after enactment will also receive a full 6 months of loan payments by the SBA.
Q. Do SBA Loans have to be paid back?
The Paycheck Protection Program will forgive up to eight weeks' worth of payroll obligations (including wages and benefits), plus rent or mortgage payments and utilities, and the amount forgiven would not be treated as taxable income to the small business owner.
Small businesses and nonprofits that are eligible for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and have been in operation since January 31, 2020, can receive a $10,000 grant from SBA after applying for an EIDL loan.  These grants will act as an emergency advance for small businesses and private non-profits harmed by COVID-19.  To access the advance, you must first apply for an EIDL and then request the advance.  The advance does not need to be repaid under any circumstance—even if the grantee is subsequently denied an EIDL.  Grants may be used to provide paid sick leave to employees, maintain payroll, meet increased production costs due to supply chain disruptions or pay business obligations, including debts, rent and mortgage payments.
Q. What collateral is required for an SBA loan?
All collateral requirements have been waived for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLS).  In addition, all personal guarantee requirements have been waived for PPP loans.
Q. Is there any SBA relief for my church or community non-profit?
Private, 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations with not more than 500 employees are eligible for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), as well as Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs).  Additional SBA guidance will be necessary to clarify if religious non-profits will be able to access PPP loans in the coming days, and this document will be updated as soon as there is clarification from SBA.
Religious or charitable organizations are not eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs).  If you are uncertain whether you qualify, please consult with legal counsel to determine whether your organization meets program criteria.
NEIGHBORHOOD ALLIES
Neighborhood Allies is proud to partner with the Urban Redevelopment Authority to continue to meet the needs of residents and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. We recognize that this pandemic will deeply challenge the future of our communities and economy and as such, felt that this immediate response to aid businesses in creating additional and creative ways to reach their customers was necessary. During this time of crisis, it is more important than ever for small businesses to pivot their business model to include online sales. 
We are requesting individuals or consulting firms to provide assistance to retail and food-based small businesses to build their e-commerce capacity. Read more.
 
*Applications due in PDF format to demi@neighborhoodallies.org with Small Business Program in the subject line by Monday, April 20th, 2020 at 5pm EST.