News

The latest happenings at the Chamber and the broader business community.

The Chamber is issuing regular updates on emergency financial aid available to businesses in New York City during coronavirus crisis

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Emergency Financial Aid for Businesses in New York City

 

Last update: Friday, March 20, 2020 at 6:00 PM

(Will be updated regularly)

 

 

City Government

 

On March 8, 2020, Mayor de Blasio announced two programs to provide relief for small businesses across the city seeing a reduction in revenue because of COVID-19.

1.     Businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decrease 25% or more will be eligible for zero interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate losses in profit.

2.     The City is also offering small businesses with fewer than 5 employees a grant to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees.

 

Since the announcement the City’s Small Business Services Department (SBS) has been asking interested businesses to fill out a preliminary form which can be found here: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-financial-assistance.page.

 

On Friday, March 20, 2020, Mayor de Blasio said that the City has received 466 applications for the small business grant program.Those applications will be processed on Monday, March 23, 2020 and money should hit their bank accounts immediately. 

 

He also said that there has been a huge demand for the loan program. The City will NOT be able to meet the full demand right away. For now they can only help about 400 businesses. The City will process those 400 applications on Saturday, March 21, 2020 and funds should be in the hands of those small business owners by the end of next week.

 

Program

Eligibility

NYC Employee Retention Grant Program

 

The City is offering small businesses with fewer than 5 employees a grant (not a loan) to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees.

 

Businesses, including non-profits, must:

·       Be located within the five boroughs of New York City

·       Demonstrate that the COVID-19 outbreak caused at least a 25% decrease in revenue

·       Employ 1-4 employees in total across all locations

·       Have been in operation for at least 6 months

·       Have no outstanding tax liens or legal judgments

 

NYC Small Business Continuity Fund

 

Businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decreases of 25% or more will be eligible for zero interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate losses in profit.

 

Businesses must:

·       Be located within the five boroughs of New York City

·       Demonstrate that the COVID-19 outbreak caused at least a 25% decrease in revenue

·       Employ 99 employees or fewer in total across all locations

·       Demonstrate ability to repay the loan

·       Have no outstanding tax liens or legal judgments

 

 

 

U.S. Small Business Administration

 

On March 12, 2020, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program which will make loans available to small businesses and nonprofit organizations disrupted by the coronavirus (COVID-19). This will provide vital economic support to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. 

 

New York State has recently been designated as an area eligible for this assistance. Now the program will begin providing up to $2 million in loan assistance to each business that can be used “to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact.” The interest rate on these loans is 3.75% for small businesses and 2.75% for nonprofits. The term of these loans will not exceed 30 years. The repayment terms will be determined by ability to repay the loan.

 

Apply here: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance

 

 

Federal Stimulus

 

The massive federal stimulus bill that would direct substantial relief toward small businesses is currently being negotiated in Washington DC.

 

On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the Treasury Department released a $1 trillion relief proposal Wednesday that would include industry-specific bailouts and payments to individual taxpayers. The proposal would provide: 

  • Two rounds of direct payments to taxpayers, on April 6 and May 18, costing $250 billion each. The amounts would be based on income level and family size
  • $300 billion in small business loans. (Employers with 500 employees or fewer would be eligible.
  • A $50 billion bailout for the airline industry.
  • $150 billion to other industries affected, including hotels, casinos, cruise line operators and shopping mall operators.
  • Guaranteed money market mutual funds.

 

On Thursday, March 19, 2020, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released a separate proposal, even as opposition emerged from some key Republicans to one of the central elements of the plan — direct cash payments to many Americans.

 

The legislation McConnell released Thursday was based on what he called four “pillars” – payments to small businesses, direct cash payments to individuals, loans to industries decimated by the virus, and a surge in funding to the health-care industry.

 

The small-business section, which Senator Marco Rubio led, offers loans to small businesses with under 500 employees. The $300 billion for the loans would be made available through lenders certified by the Small Business Administration, such as banks and credit unions, with the maximum loan capped at $10 million. The portion of the loan used by the small businesses to cover their payrolls could be forgiven if firms retain their employees through the end of June 30, 2020. Loans given to firms with tipped employees, such as bars and restaurants, could be forgiven if they are used to provide additional wages to their employees.

 

Our Chamber strongly supports quick action at the federal level to provide immediate cash grants for businesses to help them survive until normal operations resume after this crisis. See our full statement here: https://bit.ly/2U3PLxM

   

 

Other Financing Options

 

Help Main Street – To keep restaurants afloat while the coronavirus limits business to takeoout ad delivery only, a newly launched website has a suggestion: buy gift cards right now (to infuse much-needed cash) and then use them once things get back to normal. The website (www.helpmainstreet.com), which went live this week, has compiled info on where to buy gift cards online for 10,000 restaurants in New York and San Francisco.

 

Facebook Small Business Grants Program – Facebook is offering $100 million in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 businesses in over 30 countries affected by coronavirus. They will start taking applications in the coming weeks, but in the meantime to sign up to receive more info here: www.facebook.com/business/grants

 

Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) – Together with Rennaissance Economic Development Corporation, AAFE is launching a Small Business Reflief Fund for targeted neighborhoods throughout New York City. Learn more here: https://renaissance-ny.org/renaissance-establishes-emergency-loan-fund-for-small-businesses-impacted-by-coronavirus/

 

Things are moving fast. Check back for regular updates and contact our Help Desk with questions or to tip us off to additional sources of aid: helpdesk@manhattancc.org