March 30, 2021: The Paycheck Protection Program has been extended through May 31, 2021
President Joe Biden signed the PPP Extension Act of 2021 into law today, extending the Paycheck Protection Program an additional two months to May 31, 2021, and then providing an additional 30-day period for the SBA to process applications that are still pending. Read more here.
American Rescue Plan Act
On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act into law, which provides additional relief for the nation’s small businesses and hard-hit industries for programs the SBA is currently administering and adds new efforts. Specifically, the new law includes:
- $7.25 billion additional for the Paycheck Protection Program, including to expand eligibility to additional nonprofits and digital news services
- Additional funds are allocated for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program, and now allows businesses to apply for both a PPP loan after Dec. 27, 2020, and the SVOG
- $15 billion additional for Targeted Economic Injury Disaster Loan Advance (EIDL) payments, including NEW $5 billion for Supplemental Targeted EIDL Advance payments for those hardest hit
- NEW: $28.6 billion for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund for industry-focused grants
- NEW: $100 million to establish a Community Navigator pilot program; grants will go to eligible organizations supporting efforts to improve access to COVID–19 pandemic assistance programs and resources.
On February 22, 2021, President Biden announced the following changes to SBA’s COVID-19 relief programs to ensure equity:
Specifically, on February 24, 2021, at 9:00 a.m. ET, SBA established a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees. This gave lenders and community partners more time to work with the smallest businesses to submit their applications, while also ensuring that larger PPP-eligible businesses still had plenty of time to apply for and receive support before the program expires on May 31, 2021.
While these changes are being implemented, SBA is working with community partners to improve the emergency relief “digital front door” and conducting extensive stakeholder outreach. And, SBA is strengthening its relationships with lender partners to advance equity goals, deliver funding efficiently, and prevent fraud, waste, and abuse. SBA has:
- Allowed sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants
- Eliminated an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal
- Eliminated PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make student loan payments by eliminating student loan debt delinquency as a disqualifier to participating in the PPP
- Ensured access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawful U.S. residents by clarifying that they may use Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP
A critical goal from Congress for the 2021 round of PPP was to reach small and low- and moderate-income (LMI) businesses who have not received the needed relief a forgivable PPP loan provides. Congress set a $15 billion set-aside for small and LMI First Draw borrowers. With existing policies, the current round has only deployed $2.4 billion to small LMI borrowers, in part because a disproportionate amount of funding in both wealthy and LMI areas is going to firms with more than 20 employees. The less than 20 exclusivity period combined with the changes to expand access for sole proprietors, ITINs, returning citizens, and student loan debt is helping us achieve congressional goals.
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
The U.S. Small Business Administration launched a splash page for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) application portal in anticipation of opening applications for the much-anticipated critical economic relief program on Thursday, April 8, 2021.
Before the official SVOG application opens, the SBA will host a national informational webinar to highlight the application process for potential eligible entities on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. CST. Those interested in participating can register here.
To ensure eligible venues do not miss a window to receive assistance through the Paycheck Protection Program, the American Rescue Plan Act also amended the SVOG program so entities that apply for a PPP loan after Dec. 27, 2020, can also apply for an SVOG, with the eligible entity’s SVOG to be reduced by the PPP loan amount. The PPP loan applications have been updated to reflect this.
|As the SBA builds and prepares to open the program, the dedicated SBA website, www.sba.gov/svogrant, which includes frequently asked questions, video tutorials, and other SVOG details, is the best source for information for those looking to apply for a grant. To prepare in advance of the SVOG application portal opening on April 8, potential applicants should get registered in the federal government’s System for Award Management (SAM.gov). This is required for an entity to receive an SVOG and reference the preliminary application checklist and eligibility requirements.|
Newest ComEd Program Provides Bill Assistance to Struggling Small Businesses During Pandemic
Small-Business Assistance Programs offers one-time grants and flexible payment options
ComEd announced a new bill-assistance program to help eligible small businesses facing financial difficulties.
Small-business customers can visit ComEd.com/SmallBizAssistance or call 1-877-4-COMED-1 (1-877-426-6331) to learn more or apply for the Small Business Assistance Program.
ComEd’s Small Business Assistance Program provides eligible small-business customers that are past due on their energy bills with a one-time grant equal to 30 percent of their total ComEd balance (up to $1,000) for a limited time. Customers whose electric service has not been disconnected can then set up their remaining balance due on a payment plan of up to six months.
Earlier this week, ComEd announced its new Helping Hand program to provide more immediate
aid to eligible residential customers most in need during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. For a
limited time, this financial-assistance program provides an additional one-time grant of up to
$300 to help reduce past-due balances of income-eligible customers.
Assistance through the Helping Hand program is administered directly through ComEd, which expedites the verification process so that customers can receive grants more quickly. Residential
customers can apply for Helping Hand grants at ComEd.com/PaymentAssistance.
Comcast announced the Comcast RISE Investment Fund, providing $5 million dollars in grants to hundreds of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)-owned small businesses in five cities nationwide, including $1 million in Chicago and Cook County. From March 1 through March 14, eligible Chicago and Cook County businesses, can apply for $10,000 grants atwww.ComcastRISE.com. A total of 100 grants in Chicago and Cook County will be awarded in May 2021.
To be eligible for this fund you must:
- Be established business operations for 3 or more years
- Have 1 – 25 employees
- Be in the following geographic locations:
- Atlanta, GA (Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton, and Gwinnett Counties)
- Chicago, IL (City of Chicago and Cook County)
- Detroit, MI (City of Detroit, also including Hamtramck, MI, and Highland Park, MI)
- Houston, TX (Harris and Fort Bend Counties)
- Philadelphia, PA (City of Philadelphia and the City of Chester, PA)
Review the FAQ to answer any additional questions concerning eligibility and grant processing.
All Terms & Conditions Apply.
October 8, 2020 – WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, today released a simpler loan forgiveness application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $50,000 or less. This action streamlines the PPP forgiveness process to provide financial and administrative relief to America’s smallest businesses while also ensuring sound stewardship of taxpayer dollars.
SBA and Treasury have also eased the burden on PPP lenders, allowing lenders to process forgiveness applications more swiftly.
SBA began approving PPP forgiveness applications and remitting forgiveness payments to PPP lenders for PPP borrowers on October 2, 2020. SBA will continue to process all PPP forgiveness applications in an expeditious manner.
EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) is launching a $150 million program with $5,000 grants to provide emergency rental assistance to Illinois tenants who are unable to pay their rent. The Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERA) is expected to reach approximately 30,000 renters who are disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. The program will launch in August 2020 and run through the end of the year. Governor Pritzker will extend the ongoing residential eviction ban through July 31 to provide a smooth transition into the assistance program.
To address housing instability due to COVID-19, renters who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic will be prioritized in the grants process. Eligible tenants must already carry an unpaid rent balance from March through present day and certify that the reason they were unable to pay rent was due to a COVID-19 related loss of income on or after March 1, 2020. The assistance will be paid directly to a property owner or landlord on behalf of the tenant and as a condition of accepting the assistance, landlords must agree not to evict the tenant for the duration of the ERA. Assistance will be available on a first-come, first-approved basis until the funds are exhausted.
EMERGENCY MORTGAGE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
IHDA is also launching a separate $150 million program for eligible Illinois homeowners with grants of up to $15,000 to provide support with mortgage payments. The Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program (EMA) is expected to assist approximately 10,000 eligible homeowners who are unable to pay their mortgage. The program is also expected to launch in August 2020 and provide assistance through the end of the year.
Building upon efforts to mitigate housing instability, homeowners who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic will also be prioritized in the grants process. Homeowners’ income prior to the pandemic cannot exceed 120% of the area median income (AMI). Therefore, only homeowners with mortgage arrearages, or in forbearance, on or after March 2020 through present day may be eligible to apply. Eligible homeowners must be able to certify that the reason they could not pay their mortgage in full was due to a COVID-19-related loss of income on or after March 1, 2020. The assistance will be paid directly to the mortgagor’s loan servicer on behalf of the homeowner. Assistance will be available on a first-come, first-approved basis until the funds are exhausted.
SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans
Start Date: March 19th
End Date: December 21st
Application URL: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/Account/Register1
- The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere
- Businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible
- The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%
- Credit History – Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to SBA.
- Repayment – Applicants must show the ability to repay the loan.
- Collateral – Collateral is required for all EIDL loans over $25,000. SBA takes real estate as collateral when it is available. SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but SBA will require the borrower to pledge collateral that is available.
- Loan terms up to a maximum of 30 years
- To protect each borrower and the Agency, SBA may require you to obtain and maintain appropriate insurance.
Here are the documents you’ll need to provide to complete the application:
- SBA Form 5 or SBA Form 5C for sole proprietorships – SBA loan application
- IRS Form 4506T – Tax Information Authorization for the applicant, principals and affiliates
- Complete copies of the most recent Federal Income Tax Return.
- SBA Form 2202 – Schedule of Liabilities
- SBA Form 413 – Personal Financial Statement
- SBA Form 1368 – Monthly sales figures
Arts for Illinois Relief Fund
The new Arts for Illinois Relief Fund will provide financial assistance to artists, artisans, and cultural organizations impacted by COVID-19. The fund is a partnership between the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois and the broader philanthropic community. To date, more than $4M has been committed from public and private sources to seed an upcoming statewide campaign that will provide additional funding to meet the growing and critical needs of the state’s creative sector. Individuals looking to apply or corporations and charitable foundations looking to donate can learn more here.
Accion Small Business Loans
Application URL: https://us.accion.org/small-business-loans/see-if-i-qualify/
- Existing business owners with at least six months of verifiable sales
- Titled collateral or SBA guarantee required for loans above $25,000 for existing businesses
- Any monthly net income from the business plus income outside the business for existing businesses
- No minimum credit score
- Must be current on all active accounts on credit report
Women’s Business Development Center Direct Lending Program
8 S. Michigan Avenue, 4th Floor
Chicago, IL 60603
- Loans are available to small businesses located in Northwest Illinois
- Targeted towards businesses with less than $1 Million in annual revenue
- Businesses, including start-ups, may be eligible regardless of time in business, or size of business
- Loans available for: equipment purchases, inventory, leasehold improvements, machinery, supplies, or working capital
- Interest rates from 7% – 12%
- Repayment terms from 1- 5 years
IDES Unemployment Insurance
Application URL: https://bit.ly/2UD2KFM
- Accurately report your reason for separation from your job when you initially file your claim for benefits
- You must report your gross wages for each week you work. Report all earnings, including part-time or temporary work
- In order to collect benefits, you must continually certify that you are able, available and willing to accept suitable work
- You must search for work each week or benefits may be denied
- An organized and documented job search improves your chances of employment. All claimants are required by law to document work search activities
- The use of paid third-parties to file your claim and/or communicate with IDES is very risky and discouraged. Do not share your personal information with anyone
- Follow the rules to prevent yourself from committing fraud. Failure to follow legal requirements has serious consequences
Kiva 0% Interest Loans
Application URL: https://www.kiva.org/borrow
Unlike traditional bank loans, Kiva loans don’t require a minimum credit score, years of cash flow documents or collateral. But you do need to meet the following minimum criteria in order to be considered:
- You and your business must be based in the United States.
- You must be over 18 years old.
- You must be using the loan for business purposes.
- Your business must not be engaged in any of the following activities: multi-level marketing / direct sales; illegal activities (e.g. gambling, scams); or pure financial investing (e.g. stocks)
- You cannot currently be in foreclosure, bankruptcy, or under any liens.
- You must be willing to demonstrate your social capital by having a small number of your friends and family make a loan to you.
Honeycomb Crowdfunded Small Business Relief Loans
Application URL: https://www.honeycombcredit.com/relief
- Borrow $10,000-$50,000 in working capital
- 45 day payment-free period
- 3.75% interest rate over an initial 6-month interest-only payment period
- 5% interest rate over a 3-year fully amortizing loan after the interest-only period
- No pre-payment penalties
3+ years of operating history
Profitable in 2019
Good credit score for 20% owners
Debt service coverage ratio of 1.2 or higher
Owners have positive net worth
No delinquencies (personal or business)
Lease agreement in good standing
Registered and legally organized business
Blanket lien on the business (lien position negotiable)
Demonstrated community support
Borrow $10,000-$25,000 in working capital
45 day payment-free period
3.75% interest rate over an initial 6-month interest-only payment period
7.5% interest rate over a 3-year fully amortizing loan after the interest only period
No pre-payment penalties
1+ years of operating history
Breakeven or profitable in 2019
Above average credit score for 20% owners
Debt service coverage ratio of 1.0 or higher
Owners have non-negative net worth
No delinquencies (personal or business), unless explicitly related to the economic slowdown
Lease agreement in good standing
Registered and legally organized business
Blanket lien on the business (lien position negotiable)
Demonstrated community support