Local Businesses Are Urged to Apply for CARES Paycheck Protection Program

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.

Upper King Street in Old Town Alexandria. (Photo by K. Summerer/Visit Alexandria)

Alexandria, VA – We know everyone is scrambling making things work in this unprecedented environment, but one thing businesses must do right away is make time to apply for the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act’s 100% forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan.

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.  The Small Business Administration (SBA) will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities (at least 75% of the loan amount must be used for payroll for the loan to be forgiven).

All businesses with 500 or fewer employees – including nonprofits, veterans organizations, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors – can apply.   Applications open FRIDAY.  Here’s your checklist:

TO DO:

FRIDAY:

  • Submit your application with your bank; you will also need to provide your lender with payroll documentation. Get your application in early — there is a funding cap, and lenders need time to process your loan.  While the program is open until June 30, it’s expected that allocated funds will be distributed well before then.

     Additional background on the CARES Act from the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership:

  • The Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) Program Now Includes An Immediate $10,000 Grant: The Small Business Administration’s EIDL Program now provides an emergency $10,000 grant for small businesses within three days of applying for a disaster loan. To access the grant, businesses must  first apply for an EIDL, then request the advance; the online application is estimated to take approx. 2 hours and 10 minutes to complete. The advance does not need to be repaid under any circumstance. Business owners who need assistance with applying to the EIDL Program are encouraged to contact the Alexandria SBDC.
  • New Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loans To Assist with Cash-Flow (mentioned above): 100% guaranteed by the Federal government and modeled on the SBA 7(a) program, these loans will help small businesses meet operating needs, especially payroll, for 8 weeks. If employers maintain their payroll, the loans will be forgiven. Summary information can be found here. Loans must be made through SBA 7(a) lenders.
    — Click here for the PPP Information Sheet for borrowers.
    — Click here for the PPP loan application; applications open FRIDAY.
  • Small Business Debt Relief Program: This program will provide immediate relief to small businesses with non-disaster SBA loans, in particular 7(a), 504, and microloans. SBA will cover all loan payments on these SBA loans, including principal, interest, and fees, for six months. This relief will also be available to new borrowers who take out loans within six months of the President signing the bill into law.
  • Employee Retention Payroll Tax Credit: Provides a fully refundable 50% credit on the employer’s share of payroll taxes on wages of up to $10,000 per employee. AEDP is still working to understand this tax credit and identify resources for businesses.
  • Delayed Payment of Employer Tax Credit: Defers payment of employer payroll taxes through the end of this year until December 31, 2021 (50% due) and December 31, 2022 (remaining 50% due). AEDP is still working to understand this tax credit and identify resources for businesses.
  • Employer Paid Leave Requirements: The second Federal stimulus bill provided up to two weeks of paid sick leave. The Department of Labor has released guidance and FAQs to explain who is covered and for how long.

    The Alexandria Small Business Development Center provides free tools, resources, and confidential services to small businesses in the City of Alexandria, including help with applying for these loans. Click here for information on contacting Alexandria SBDC.

For more information on the CARES Act:

 Click here for the U.S. House Committee on Small Business’ flowchart explaining the Paycheck Protection Program and EIDL Grants

— Click here for the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship’s Guide to the CARES ACT

— Click here for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Guide & Checklist

Other updates:

Ways to Promote Your Business 

    Visit Del RayVisit Alexandria, and the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce are all compiling and sharing updates from businesses. If you have any social distancing modifications, delivery specials, at-home offerings, and other news to share with the community, please email drbanews@gmail.comtmeisner@visitalexva.com, and lpatish@thechamberalx.com to be included. Thank you!

Please note: the City is not enforcing the A-frame sign regulations at this time — restaurants and retailers are welcome to put up an A-frame sign promoting their social distancing modifications.  Affordable Signs & Banners is still open with curb-side pickup or delivery if you need new signs!

Neighborhood Assistance For Affected Workers

— Cheesetique is providing FREE family meals to workers in the hospitality industry who have been affected by cut-backs and closures. Distribution takes place outside Cheesetique’s Del Ray location every day from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

—  Del Ray Pizzeria is distributing non-perishable food and household items to affected restaurant workers every Monday from 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

— For ACT for Alexandria‘s list of emergency resources for those in need click here.

Alexandria Business Impact Survey

All Alexandria businesses are asked to complete the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership’s Business Impact Survey. The data will be used by the City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership to better respond to the business community’s needs during the COVID-19 Pandemic.  Company and individual information will not be shared. To complete the survey, click here.

ICYMI: Coping Resources During the Coronavirus Outbreak