COVID-19 RELATED SMALL BUSINESS RESOURCES AND REGULATIONS FOR WESTERN NEW YORK EMPLOYERS

Contents:

  • Small Business Loans
    • Paycheck Protection Program
    • Economic Injury Disaster Loan
    • Economic Injury Disaster Advance Loan
    • SBC Debt Relief
    • SBA Express Bridge Loans
  • New York Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
  • New York Insurance Premium Deferment
  • Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund
  • James Beard Foundation – Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund
  • Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA): Expanded FMLA Requirements
  • NY State Paid Leave
    • NY Paid Sick Leave
    • NY Paid Family Leave
  • Technology Tools for Small Businesses

SMALL BUSINESS LOANS

Paycheck Protection Program

Overview:
The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if 90% of employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll (75%), rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. The Paycheck Protection Program will be available through June 30, 2020.

Eligible:

Under the program:

  • Eligible recipients may qualify for a loan up to $10 million, as determined by 8 weeks of prior average payroll plus an additional 25% of that amount
  • Loan payments deferred six months
  • SBA will forgive loan proceeds used to cover the first 8 weeks of payroll and certain other expenses, if workforce is maintained

Businesses can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, or federally insured credit union that is participating.

Lenders may begin processing loan applications as soon as April 3, 2020.

More information: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/paycheck-protection-program-ppp

Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

Economic Injury Disaster Loans are now also available to small businesses affected by COVID-19. Businesses may obtain working capital loans of up to $2 million to help overcome revenue loss.

Apply here: https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

Economic Injury Disaster Advance Loan

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, small business owners in the U.S. are eligible to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan advance of up to $10,000. This advance will provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. Funds will be made available within three days of a successful application. This loan advance will not have to be repaid.

Apply for the Loan Advance: https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

SBA Debt Relief

The SBA Debt Relief program will provide a reprieve to small businesses with existing SBA backed loans as they work through the challenges created by this health crisis. Under this program:

  • SBA will pay the principal and interest of new 7(a) loans issued prior to September 27, 2020.
  • The SBA will pay the principal and interest of current 7(a) loans for a period of six months.

Debt relief is automatic, but business owners should check in with their lender.  Under the new law, the SBA is directed to make payments within 30 days of the date on which the first payment is due.

More Information: https://www.sbc.senate.gov/public/_cache/files/9/7/97ac840c-28b7-4e49-b872-d30a995d8dae/F2CF1DD78E6D6C8C8C3BF58C6D1DDB2B.small-business-owner-s-guide-to-the-cares-act-final-.pdf

SBA Express Bridge Loans

Eligible:

  • Small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender

Under this program:

  • Eligible applicants may access up to $25,000 with less paperwork.
  • Can be a term loan or a means to bridge the gap while applying for an SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (see above)
  • Will be repaid in full or in part by proceeds from the EIDL loan

Find a local Express Bridge Loan Lender by connecting with your local SBA District Office. https://www.sba.gov/local-assistance/find/?type=SBA%20District%20Office&pageNumber=1

Buffalo’s office may be accessed here: https://www.sba.gov/offices/district/ny/buffalo

NEW YORK PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE (PUA)

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides payment to workers not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits (self-employed, independent contractors, workers with limited work history, and others) who are unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus public health emergency. Click here for a complete list of individuals covered under PUA: https://www.labor.ny.gov/ui/pdfs/pandemic-unemployment-assistance.pdf

Instructions for filing and additional information: https://www.labor.ny.gov/ui/cares-act.shtm

NEW YORK STATE INSURANCE
PREMIUM DEFERMENT

The NY State Department of Financial Services (DFS) adopted an emergency regulation requiring NY State regulated issuers of life insurance and annuity contracts, property and casualty insurers and premium finance agencies to provide relief to New York consumers and businesses experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19. Consumers experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19 may defer paying life insurance premiums for ninety (90) days. Consumers and small businesses experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19 may defer paying premiums for property and casualty insurance for sixty (60) days. Premium finance agencies are required to provide the same relief as insurers. Certain producers must notify insureds of this emergency measure pursuant to the regulation. See Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 202.13.

FOOD AND BEVERAGE INDUSTRY RELIEF FUND

Southern Smoke Emergency Relief Program (for restaurants and restaurant workers)

Apply here: https://form.southernsmoke.org/smoke/application/

This is a grant program offering emergency funding for restaurants and restaurant worksers for unforeseen expenses that cannot or will not be covered by insurance.

This applies to those:

  • employed by restaurants, bars or bar suppliers
  • who own restaurants, bars or bar suppliers

JAMES BEARD FOUNDATION –
JBF Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund

Program has been suspended due to overwhelming response. Sign up for the newsletter here to be notified if the application will be reopened. https://www.jamesbeard.org/relief

FAMILY FIRST CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE ACT (FFCRA):
EXPANDED FMLA REQUIREMENTS

FFCRA requires certain employers to provide their employees with up to 80 hours of family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. Provisions are effective 4/1/20 and apply through 12/31/20.

Every dollar of required paid leave (plus the cost of the employer’s health insurance premiums during leave) will be 100% covered by a dollar-for-dollar refundable tax credit available to the employer.

Provisions of the FFCRA apply to certain public employers and private employers with fewer than 500 employees. Small businesses with fewer than 50 employees may qualify for exemption from the requirement to provide leave due to school closings or child care unavailability if the leave requirements would jeopardize the viability of the business as a going concern. DOL FFCRA regulations pertaining to this are expected to be released in April of 2020.

Additional information:

https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employer-paid-leave

https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/sm952

NY STATE PAID LEAVE

NY Paid Sick Leave

Some employers in NY State are required to provide at least five days of job protected, paid sick leave to employees who need to take leave because they or their minor dependent child are under a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. The amount of paid sick leave an employer is required to provide depends on the number of employees they have and the employer’s net annual income.

# of Employees (as of 1/1/20)Net Income in 2019Required Paid Sick Days
1-10$1 million or less0
1-10Over $1 millionAt least 5
11-99N/AAt least 5
100+N/AAt least 14
Public employers – any size At least 14

Additional information: https://paidfamilyleave.ny.gov/covid19

NY State Paid Family Leave

Overview:

If employees are under a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19, the leave available depends on the size of the employer as of January 1, 2020, and the employer’s net annual income. This benefit is not available if employees are able to work through remote access or other means.

Employers with 10 or fewer employees as of January 1, 2020, and a business net annual income less than $1 million:

Employees can use a combination of NYS Paid Family Leave and disability benefits.

  • Eligible employees can use NY Paid Family Leave (PFL). This is insurance coverage that provides up to 60% of pay, up to a maximum weekly benefit of $840.70.
  • After receiving full PFL benefit, employees receive disability benefits to match full wages up to a maximum weekly disability benefit of $2,043.92, for a total of $2,884.62 per week.
  • No waiting period for either benefit.
  • Job protection for the duration of the quarantine.

Employers with between 11-99 employees as of January 1, 2020, and smaller employers (1-10 employees) with a business net annual income greater than $1 million.

  • Employees start by using paid sick leave. Employers are required to provide at least five days of paid sick leave.
  • After that, employees may use a combination of NYS Paid Family Leave and disability benefits. Same as above for small employers.

TECHNOLOGY TOOLS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

Open for Business provides a list of technology companies that are helping small businesses by enabling remote work during the COVID-19 outbreak. Each company listed is providing its own deal. For a full list, click here: https://openforbusiness.org/

Additional Resources:

https://www.sbc.senate.gov/public/_cache/files/9/7/97ac840c-28b7-4e49-b872-d30a995d8dae/F2CF1DD78E6D6C8C8C3BF58C6D1DDB2B.small-business-owner-s-guide-to-the-cares-act-final-.pdf

http://www.nyssbdc.org/EIDL.html

http://www.nyssbdc.org/CoronaSBupdates.html

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