COVID-19 Update 2/23/2021

 

Biden Administration Takes Steps to Promote Equitable Access to SBA Relief

On Monday, February 22, President Biden announced the following changes to SBA’s coronavirus relief programs to ensure equity:

Starting on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at 9 am EST, the Small Business Administration will establish a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees. This will give lenders and community partners more time to work with the smallest businesses to submit their applications, while also ensuring that larger PPP-eligible businesses will still have plenty of time to apply for and receive support before the program expires on March 31, 2021.

SBA also announced four additional changes to open the PPP to more underserved small businesses than ever before:

  • Allow 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;
  • Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal;
  • Eliminate 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; and
  • Ensure 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 latest 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. The less than 20 exclusivity period combined with the changes to expand access for sole proprietors, ITINs, returning citizens, and student loan debt will help achieve Congressional goals.

Contact your bank or go here to find a qualified lender near you.

 

MN PPP Tax Relief Making Progress

The following report is excerpted from the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce:

The House Taxes Committee held a hearing on February 16 on federal conformity including full conformity with PPP loans. The Senate has expressed interest in moving an early bill to adopt federal conformity on PPP loans, but Minnesota’s state constitution requires tax bills to originate in the House.

More than 100,000 Minnesota businesses participated in the PPP loan program. Without this change, many small and mid-sized businesses – already struggling due to revenue losses – will face further tax burdens. It is critical to conform to federal tax law as soon as possible in the 2021 session as the final tax payment is due March 15.

Please continue to contact your representatives to urge them to conform to federal PPP tax loan forgiveness and allow deductibility of expenses on Minnesota income tax returns.  Go here for contact information for your legislators.

 

COVID-19 Vaccine Connector

If you haven’t been vaccinated yet, you might want to sign up for the new COVID-19 Vaccine Connector. This tool helps Minnesotans find out when, where, and how to get vaccinated. It will let you know when you’re eligible to receive a vaccine, connect you to resources to schedule a vaccine appointment, and notify you if there are vaccine opportunities in your area. Signing up is free and easy, and you don’t need insurance or identification. 

Visit https://mn.gov/covid19/vaccine/connector or call 833-431-2053 to sign up.

 

Note: This content and analysis is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Please consult your legal and financial advisors for detailed information before taking any action.

Written by aasp@aaspmn.org

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