Across the country small businesses – including in Naperville – may soon get some financial relief, under the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security – or “CARES” – Act the Small Business Administration (SBA) passed on Friday, March 27. Of the $2 trillion act, $350 billion will be allocated to businesses with fewer than 500 employees as a loan. This SBA loan can be for expenses such as:
-Rent or Mortgage
“There’s a 1% interest on it. There’s no personal guarantees,” says Tom Miers Market President for Naperville Bank & Trust on Fort Hill Drive. “They would apply through their bank. Most banks requiring they be existing customers.”
Applying for the Loan
Today was supposed to be the day small business owners would be applying for this loan. However, as Miers puts it, the loan is a moving target. Before banks can make their application available online to customers, they still need additional pieces from the federal government to fall into place.
“None of this is a guarantee. None of this may work exactly the way we describe it – it may change for tomorrow. We are still getting ongoing revisions and clarifications on this payroll protection program (PPP).”
However, he suggests to all small business owners, if you haven’t already, call your bank now and get your documents ready.
“You’re going to need to have your IRS form 941 which is your 4 quarters of your 2019 payroll, your health insurance premium that you paid for 2019, your state & local payroll taxes, retirement plan contributions, articles of incorporation for organization.”
And if you’re a non-profit company, your board must pass a referendum to apply for these loans.
Not So Fast
While it’s important to submit the application and documents soon, Miers says, “I think urgency’s important, [but] I don’t think panic necessarily needs to be the case.”
It’s also important to be thorough.
“The worse that can happen is to get a partial application that doesn’t have all the information that’s needed because then we have to go back and get the information and you can only imagine the thousands of thousands of applications that will start flowing through.
One big uncertainty many are left wondering: “Is there going to be enough money? We don’t know the answer to that?”
The SBA lent $30-billion nationwide for the entirety of 2019. This estimated $350-billion SBA loan is more than ten times that, and for only two and a half-month’s time. The government could add more money if necessary and approved by Congress.
Miers is hopeful this will provide some much-needed relief to our local business owners but ask that they remain patient as the banks work round the clock to see this through.
“I think the overall purpose and intent is really good. I think it’s great the government is giving money to keep people on payroll instead of on unemployment. I think it’s a great program.”
Naperville News 17’s Kevin Machak reports.
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