The federal Paycheck Protection Program may be on pause, but there are other places small businesses can turn for loans and grants to help them through the coronavirus pandemic and economic crisis.
We’ve compiled options below for small businesses that need cash flow right now to get through this.
Syracuse.com is committed to informing and bringing together small businesses during this crisis. We’ve started a Facebook page and LinkedIn, where small business owners, employees and supporters can go for lists, stories and support. We invite you to join us.
We know there is more help out there for small businesses, too. Hear about a grant or loan? Send them to us by emailing reporter Julie McMahon. We’ll be sure to update our list.
While much of the attention nationally has been on the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, there are other loans and help currently available through the same agency.
Existing borrowers can get quick funding or debt relief, and the agency offers counseling and other services for small businesses.
The SBA has an Express Disaster Bridge Loan of up to $25,000 available to its existing borrowers with the commitment of a quick turnaround.
And the SBA is still processing its traditional “7a” loans for small businesses.
“All our programs in our toolkit are still up and running,” said Bernard Paprocki, the district director for the SBA in the Syracuse region. He encouraged businesses to call the SBA for help or with questions about the programs that are available: 315-471-9393.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is offering short-term relief for small employers in the U.S. struggling during the coronavirus pandemic.
The $5,000 Save Small Business Fund grants are for businesses with between three and 20 employees that have been harmed by the pandemic and are located in an economically vulnerable community. City of Syracuse ZIP codes qualify, but if you live outside the city, you can search online to see if you’re eligible.
Applications for the grants open today.
The Save Small Business Fund was suggested to us by local attorney Anthony Marrone II, who shared the information to our Facebook group, CNY Back in Business.
Marrone notes it’s easy to apply: “Just have your W-9 handy,” he said.
The website says applications take less than 10 minutes.
The Save Small Business Fund grant awards will be announced weekly until all the funds are used.
Another federal program set to open to applicants in the coming weeks is the Main Street Lending Program.
These loans for small and mid-sized businesses will be offered through the Federal Reserve. Businesses with fewer than 10,000 employees, or less than $2.5 billion annual revenues, qualify. Borrowers are eligible if their business is suffering because of coronavirus pandemic. The loans will include some restrictions, including that they can’t be used to repay other debts.
The Fed is still working out requirements and details for these loans. Loan amounts and interest rates have not yet been announced, but officials have said principal and interest payments will be deferred for one year. No penalties will be levied for early repayment.
Federal officials have set aside up to $600 billion for the program, which is due to launch soon. No date has yet been announced.
Banks and lenders will administer the loans, so local businesses are encouraged to contact their lender to see if they are participating and what information they might need to prepare to quickly process an application.
The CARES Act also created another avenue for employers that need cash flow, in the form of tax credits.
This provision allows employers to retain payroll taxes that they would normally have to remit to the IRS. The taxes that can be retained include federal income tax, and Social Security and Medicare taxes.
Syracuse-based law firm Bond Schoeneck & King has a rundown of the payroll tax credits and other tax credits available to small businesses under the CARES Act.
The city of Syracuse’s Economic Development Corp. awarded $500,000 to 29 local businesses struggling with the coronavirus pandemic and shutdown.
While these emergency loan applications are closed, SEDCO and other agencies like it within other municipalities are still offering loans, including through traditional programs that are always available to small businesses.
City of Syracuse businesses can find out more information on what’s available here.
Other municipalities such as Oswego have also offered low-cost loans. Onondaga County’s Economic Development Office was taking applications for emergency loans, but the first deadline has closed.
Check with your local economic development offices to see what the options might be for your business.
We’ll continue posting about loans and grants as we hear about them. Don’t forget to send us your suggestions by emailing email@example.com.
The financing might not be as low-cost, but if you are low on cash, it’s a good idea to contact your bank or credit union to see what options they might be able to offer.
Getting access to capital might be as simple as asking for a line of credit or increasing your credit line with your existing bank. Your bank may also be offering deferment on existing debt, special programs for customers and other options.
Pathfinder Bank regional president Calvin Corriders said local professionals want to help businesses mitigate their losses and control expenses during this financial crisis. He suggested asking about payment deferral and increased credit lines.
“We realize the responsibility, the lenders do, of how important this is to provide as much assistance as we can so once we get past this, they are able to open their doors,” Corriders said. “We are all inextricably tied.”
Some private companies are holding giveaways and doling out grants.
Facebook is offering $100 million in cash grants and advertising credits to small businesses. The tech giant expects to distribute grants to 30,000 businesses, that employ between 2 and 50 people. Companies must have been in business for more than one year and suffered as a result of the coronavirus to qualify.
Facebook’s applications are open in only select cities at the moment but expect to roll out more widely to others on April 22.
You never know where you might find help.
Central New York diner Finally Ours won a $5,000 grant from the dating app Bumble last week. The diner was one of 10 initial grants announced by Bumble, which plans to award 200 businesses.
Did we miss one? Got a question? Have a story about applying for a grant or loan to share? Contact Reporter Julie McMahon: Email | Twitter | 315-412-1992
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