Well, it's that that time of year again. Time for some business planning for 2023. I am guessing there are not too many business owners who planned the 2020 pandemic in their business plan. But at least they had a business plan.
Next week, I'll give you an outline to follow for business planning.
This week I want to talk more about Business Resiliency and Disaster Preparedness.
More people are looking at incorporating business resiliency and disaster preparedness. I would love to introduce you to Erika Andresen who can talk with you about doing as much or as little as you need.
She loves working with business owners on securing their assets with a plan so they can survive disruptions and thrive in the aftermath. The business will develop a business continuity plan via learning how to do tailored risk assessment and business impact analysis. Erika and her company, EaaS will then work that plan through trainings and exercise creation and facilitation to determine the plan's viability. EaaS leaves businesses better able to resume operations quickly when risk management fails.
Cleaning and Restoration
Federal and state agencies, as well as private companies, offer small-business grants. Here's a list of resources. From Nerd Wallet: https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/small-business/small-business-grants?trk_location=ssrp&trk_query=business%20grants&trk_page=1&trk_position=2
The Paycheck Protection Program officially ended May 31, 2021.
Small-business grants provide free money for startups and existing businesses, including those impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
It can take time and effort to research and apply for funding. To help you start, here’s a list of federal, state and private small-business grants and resources.
Coronavirus small-business grants
The U.S. Small Business Administration introduced new coronavirus small-business grant programs as part of the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act:
Federal small-business grants
Government agencies are among the biggest distributors of business grants, supporting a range of enterprises from environmental conservation to child care services. Applying may seem intimidating, but federal grants are great opportunities for small-business owners looking to grow.
State and regional small-business grants
Economic Development Administration: This U.S. Department of Commerce agency provides grants, resources and technical assistance to communities to support economic growth and encourage entrepreneurship and innovation.
Each state’s agency helps businesses find financing (including state or regional grants), secure locations and recruit employees. You can search the economic development directory for regional offices and local resources.
Small Business Development Centers: Your local SBDC provides support for small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs. They’re often associated with local universities or the state’s economic development agency, and many can help connect business owners with financing opportunities, as well as counseling, training and technical assistance.
Corporate small-business grants
Many corporations and large companies have a philanthropic component that includes small-business grants. While some provide grants only to nonprofits servicing specific industries, some give to for-profit companies.
Specialty small-business grants
To help spread entrepreneurial success across demographics, many organizations focus their funding efforts on specific communities.
Visit www.Nerdwallet.com for more lists of:
FEDERAL RELIEF PACKAGE SUMMARY
Congress agreed on a $908 billion second stimulus package. The package includes:
Unemployment insurance ($120 billion). Revives supplemental federal pandemic unemployment benefits but at $300 per week — through March 14 — instead of the $600 per week benefit that expired in July. Extends special pandemic benefits for “gig” workers and extends the maximum period for state-paid jobless benefits to 50 weeks.
Direct payments ($166 billion). Provides $600 direct payments to individuals making up to $75,000 per year and couples making up to $150,000 per year — with payments phased out for higher incomes —- with $600 additional payments per dependent child. In March under the CARES Act, it was $1,200 and $2,400, respectively, and $500 per dependent child.
Paycheck Protection Program ($284 billion). Revives the Paycheck Protection Program, which provides forgivable loans to qualified businesses. Especially hard-hit businesses that received PPP grants would be eligible for a second round. Ensures that PPP subsidies are not taxed.
Vaccines, testing, health providers ($69 billion). Delivers more than $30 billion for procurement of vaccines and treatments, distribution funds for states, and a strategic stockpile. Adds $22 billion for testing, tracing and mitigation, $9 billion for health care providers, and $4.5 billion for mental health.
Schools and universities ($82 billion). Delivers $54 billion to public K-12 schools affected by the pandemic and $23 billion for colleges and universities; $4 billion would be awarded to a Governors Emergency Education Relief Fund; nearly $1 billion for Native American schools.
Rental assistance ($25 billion). Provides money for a first-ever federal rental assistance program; funds to be distributed by state and local governments to help people who have fallen behind on their rent and may be facing eviction.
SNAP Food/farm aid ($26 billion). Increases SNAP benefits by 15% for six months and provides funding to food banks, Meals on Wheels and other food aid. Provides an equal amount ($13 billion) to farmers and ranchers.
Child Care ($10 billion). Provides $10 billion to the Child Care Development Block Grant to help families with child care costs and help providers cover increased operating costs.
Postal Service ($10 billion). Forgives a $10 billion loan to the Postal Service provided in earlier relief legislation.
Transportation ($45 billion). Includes $4 billion for the MTA, $15 billion for airline payroll support, $10 billion for state highways, another $2 billion for airports and related businesses, and $1 billion for Amtrak.
Arts & Entertainment ($15 billion). Provides $15 billion Live venues and theaters, which have been completely shut down or limited to a fraction of their regular capacity since March. The bill lists eligible businesses as live venue operators or promoters, theatrical producers, live performing arts organization operators, museum operators, and movie theater operators.
Employee Retention Tax Credit. Extends the payroll tax credit for paid sick leave and paid family leave through and until March 31, 2021. However, the stimulus bill is silent with respect to extending the FFCRA leave framework itself. Based on this, although employers will not be required to provide employees with paid sick or family leave after December 31, 2020, if they choose to allow employees to take leave for a COVID-19 related reason under the FFCRA framework between January 1 and March 31, 2021, they may still claim the payroll tax credit.
*Please note, all this is subject to Change...
A little longer then the regular "Ten Minutes with Tom" but GREAT information for Business Owners on the upcoming unemployment rates.
Circle Jan 2nd, 2020 on your calendar. That is the last day the CARES Act is in Force.
Listen to learn more!
More info from the State Of Illinois:
Typical Situation: Our client has seen an increase in their Contribution Rate Determination (unemployment tax rate) that is mailed to all Illinois employers on or about December 1st every year. They also have protested their own unemployment claims but have not been successful at getting benefits denied.
When you hear a business owner say:
• “I do not understand why someone was allowed to collect benefits”
• “I hate dealing with the unemployment office as it is a no win situation”
• “General: complaints about their unemployment claims “
The Consultant educates them on the unemployment laws in Illinois and to help them reduce their state unemployment taxes.
How they Work: They protest the claims filed against the employer and represent the employer at all unemployment hearings and go to their locations to do training sessions to educate the employer on how to handle different types of situations. They will verify all the charges to the employer’s account to make sure they are not being charged more than they should be charged.
You can introduce them:
“It sounds like you may need some help with your unemployment claims against you. I can introduce you to someone that can help. They would be happy to have a telephone consultation to discuss your situation.
Covid 19 Help Updates
SBA loans and COVID
The SBA will pay 6 months of principal, interest, and any associated fees that borrowers owe for all current 7(a), 504, and Microloans in regular servicing status as well as new 7(a), 504, and Microloans disbursed prior to September 27, 2020. This relief is not available for Paycheck Protection Program loans or Economic Injury Disaster loans. See link below.
Message to Employers Regarding Unemployment Fraud
Nationwide, bad actors are using the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to file fraudulent claims for unemployment insurance benefits. Many of these claims involve the theft of employees’ identities. Personal information has been stolen from many different sources in the past years, including computer hacks into the databases of some of the largest companies in the nation. This information can be used to file fraudulent unemployment claims.
It is likely that as an employer, you have recently seen an increase in fraudulent unemployment claims. You are not alone – this has been happening across the country. IDES is partnering with federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies in response. IDES is also partnering with employers to stop fraudulent claims in their tracks. If you receive a Notice of Claim informing you that an individual with a given name and social security number has filed a claim for benefits, please confirm if that individual is still working for you. If so, please ask whether that individual did, in fact, file a claim. We ask that you report to IDES as soon as possible what information you have obtained.
The best way to report fraudulent claims to IDES is by filing a timely protest to a Notice of Claim, giving IDES as much useful information as you can.
Additionally, IDES has an established unit that works specifically on allegations of fraudulent claims. On each day that you are made aware of the possibility of a fraudulent claim, we ask that in addition to filing a timely protest, you send one email with a spreadsheet including the following information for each instance of suspected fraud from that day: The claimant’s first name and last name, the employer name, and the claim ID (all this information is shown on the Notice of Claim). Please send your email to both email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. Again, please ensure this information is included in a spreadsheet attachment – not the body of the email.
We greatly appreciate our partnership with Illinois’ employers to help combat fraud.
CDBG COVID-19 Small Business Loan - COMING SOON!
The CARES Act made available $5 billion in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to be used to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19). The Village of Schaumburg’s allocation is $217,873. On July 28, 2020, the village approved the designation of 40%, or $87,149.20, to be used to assist small businesses with retaining their pre-COVID-19 level of employment for low-to-moderate income individuals, where at least 51% of the jobs, computed on a full time equivalent basis, involve the employment of low- and moderate- income persons.
The Village of Schaumburg will provide 50% match, need-based forgivable loans of up to $7,500 for two months of eligible operating expenses and/or workplace protective equipment to small businesses (those with 1-25 full time equivalent employees) that are located within the corporate limits of Schaumburg. The village will begin accepting applications on November 15, 2020. The deadline to submit an application and supporting documents is 4 p.m. December 1, 2020. Every effort will be made to make award decisions by December 15, 2020.
The application will be released on November 2, 2020. For more information on the program, contact Debbie Van Sickle at (847) 923-3852.
In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its effect on small businesses, the Village of Schaumburg has created a small business grant program. The objective of this grant is to help businesses retain employees at pre-COVID-19 levels. The village is offering small business owners in Schaumburg a 50% match of operating expenses for two months (up to $10,000 total for each business) to help retain employees. The village has allocated $100,000 to this program, with funds available on a first come, first served basis.
Additional COVID-19 Resources
The village is maintaining a webpage with links to several resources available through federal, state and trade organizations. New resources are being added regularly as they become available. Click on the link below to access the Village of Schaumburg Business Resource Page.
Phase 4 of Restore Illinois
To ensure businesses can reopen safely, the state released a common set of standards expected of all employers, while also outlining industry-specific guidelines using a risk-based approach to support unique operational needs of businesses across the state. Industry guidance will help businesses and residents feel safe in returning to many of these new activities that have been closed for the past several months.
Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan creates safety guidelines for the following permitted activities and businesses to resume, with capacity rules in place:
Industries with revised guidelines in Phase 4:
Additionally, retail, service counters, offices, personal care (including salons, barber, nail salons), manufacturing and other industries allowed to reopen in Phase 3 will continue to operate at a reduced capacity.
To help businesses prepare to reopen and remain in compliance with new guidelines over the next two weeks, DCEO has released a new set of downloadable materials. Business toolkits are complete with signage, training checklists and other resources to help business owners and workers implement safety procedures and adhere to the latest capacity restrictions. Materials for businesses and operators pertaining to Phases 3 and 4 of the Restore Plan, can be found at Illinois.gov/businessguidelines.
Illinois Equity-Driven Community & Business Grant Programs
The package includes more than $900 million across more than ten programs and four state agencies to help working families and small businesses who have been hit the hardest by COVID-19’s economic impact, which was compounded by recent property damage and civil unrest. Programs include:
SBA Recovery Programs
The SBA is once again offering the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program and the Paycheck Protection program.
Other COVID-19 Resources
The IRS has published this flowchart to help determine if employee retention credits can be used by a company.
It also includes a table with some differences between the current credits available for COVID related leave.
Governor JB Pritzker released industry-specific guidelines that allow for the safe re-opening of businesses as the state progresses into the next phase of the Restore Illinois plan.
All four regions of the state are on track to advance to Phase 3 of the plan in the coming days, allowing thousands of residents to return to work, and the reopening of businesses in the following industries: retail, offices, manufacturing, barbershops and salons, summer programs, various outdoor recreation activities and bars and restaurants for outdoor dining.
Guidelines as well as toolkits for businesses can be found on the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) website, HERE.
In true blog fashion, the last parts are at the top of the page. Scroll all the way down and work your way back up to read them in order.
Tom is the Business Development Manager for GLM. If you are interested in learning more about GLM's services, contact him: