The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This initiative, called the Paycheck Protection Program, provides loans to eligible small businesses that maintain their payroll during this crisis.
These loans can be forgiven based on a calculation that encourages businesses to keep employees on the payroll for at least eight weeks. To be forgiven, funds must be used for expenses such as payroll, rent, utilities or mortgage interest.
Businesses can begin applying for the loans on April 3 and the program will be available through June 30.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is expected to release more details soon, including a list of lenders offering the loans.
Generally, eligibility requirements for businesses include having fewer than 500 employees, though businesses in certain industries may have more than 500 employees if they meet the SBA’s size standards for those industries. Small businesses in the hospitality and food industry with more than one location could also be individually eligible if a location employs fewer than 500 workers.
“We were pleased to see that the CARES Act included this important provision to incentivize small businesses to keep their workers employed during this time and offer some relief to those that are doing so. We strongly encourage eligible businesses to apply for these forgivable loans to help offset the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Daniel P. Mehan, Missouri Chamber president & CEO.
For more COVID-19 guidance and free resources, Missouri employers can visit mochamber.com/coronavirus.