The Olympia Farmers Market is offering select sales of cut flowers, plants, soap and facemasks on-site, and monitoring State guidance with the goal of expanding the number of craft vendors and days of operation as soon as possible. In the meantime, the Market is exploring the feasibility of an online marketplace that would allow customers to pre-order goods safely and conveniently while we await a return to normal. If and when the marketplace goes live, we will post the link here.
The US Small Business Administration (SBA) reports more than $100 Billion in Payroll Protection Program (PPP) funds are still available for small businesses, sole proprietors, independent contractors, self-employed persons, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, 501(c)(19) veterans organization, and Tribal businesses. PPP loans may be converted to forgivable grants when meeting certain requirements.
To find a local lender, search here: https://www.sba.gov/paycheckprotection/find?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery&pageNumber=1
If you are a community and economic development partner with clients or constituents that would benefit from learning about SBA resources in other languages, most are available here:
The Washington State Department of Children, Youth & Families has a grant opportunity available to all licensed child care providers. If this is applicable to you (or your provider), you can learn more here: https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/WADEL/bulletins/28bd1d3
The Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) has been receiving and processing unemployment insurance claims at an unprecedented rate. Currently, the agency is focused on fast-tracking a backlog of claims but facing slow-downs cause by an increase in fraudulent claims.
Imposter fraud includes false claims filed with stolen information. There are reports of fake websites designed to steal personal information. ESD does not request sensitive information outside their official, secure website. Any site requesting confidential information should be treated with suspicion. Victims of unemployment fraud report to: https://www.esd.wa.gov/unemployment/unemployment-benefits-fraud
The Thurston Economic Development Council (EDC), through its Washington Center for Women in Business program, has received a US Small Business Administration (SBA) grant to help expand business counseling services in response to COVID-19. New services include free business coaching to help people develop recovery and adaptation strategies that make reopening easier and, potentially, more profitable. For more information: https://wcwb.org/services/coaching/
If you are a recipient of a PPP loan, you may apply for forgiveness 8 weeks after your lender sent PPP funds. All or part of your loan may be forgiven if you meet certain requirements. The use of the PPP loan proceeds listed below pertain to the forgivable amount of a loan and are not the only allowable uses of a loan. Regulations and guidance from the SBA and the U.S. Department of the Treasury on the PPP are evolving rapidly and the below information may be outdated. Here are some things you should consider:
What’s the best way to use PPP funds to maximize potential loan forgiveness?
- If you can, use loan funds within 8-week period after you receive funds. You don’t have to use all proceeds in the first 8 weeks. However, amounts spent after this 8-week period won’t be forgivable.
- Use 75% or more funds on eligible payroll costs. Eligible payroll costs include compensation for employees whose principal residence is the U.S., including:
- Salary, wages, commissions, or similar compensation
- Additional wages paid to tipped employees, if applicable
- Benefits, allowance for employee separation, insurance premiums, taxes, and retirement
- To the extent an employee earns in excess of $100,000, you may only include a maximum payroll amount of $15,385 per employee in your forgiveness amount determination.
- Use up to 25% of funds on other eligible business costs:
- Business mortgage interest payments on mortgages in effect before February 15, 2020
- Rent payments on leases dated before February 15, 2020
- Utility payments for electricity, gas, water, transportation, telephone, or internet access under service agreements dated before February 15, 2020
What else may impact your forgivable amount?
- Loan forgiveness may be reduced if the average # of FTE employees you employ during the 8-week period is less than the average number of FTE employees per pay period between:
- February 15, 2019 and June 30, 2019, or
- January 1, 2020 and February 29, 2020
- Most borrowers can choose which time period to use for comparison, but seasonal employers must use February 15, 2019 to June 30, 2019. If any FTE reductions made between February 15, 2020 and April 26, 2020 are reversed by June 30th, 2020, your loan forgiveness amount will not be reduced.
- Loan forgiveness may be reduced if you reduce total salary or wages for any employee during 8-week period more than 25% as compared to the most recent full quarter before the 8-week period.
- If reductions made between February 15, 2020 and April 26, 2020 are reversed by June 30, 2020, your loan forgiveness amount will not be reduced. This forgiveness reduction does not apply to reductions associated with employees who had a salary or wages higher than $100,000 in 2019.
- If you received an advance through the EIDL program, it will be deducted from your forgivable amount on a PPP loan.
How do I apply for forgiveness?
- Submit application to your lender. Once you submit, your lender will determine loan forgiveness eligibility within 60 days. Be prepared to provide the following information for 8-week period:
- Payroll tax filings
- State income, payroll, and unemployment insurance filings
- Canceled checks, receipts, transcripts of accounts, or other documents verifying payments on mortgage obligations, payments on covered lease obligations, and utility payments
- Documentation of any advance received under the EIDL Emergency Grant program
Thank you to Thurston Strong partners who helped assemble information related to the phased re-opening of businesses and venues in Washington and Thurston County. This smart-restart link contains general guidance and insights for specific industries and operations. http://thurstonchamber.com/smart-restart-toolkit/
The Department of Commerce has announced $9 million in rent and energy assistance to serve low-income households. Commerce is providing up to $1,000 in rental assistance and up to $500 in energy assistance. For more information, please contact:
Community Action Council of Lewis, Mason & Thurston Counties
3020 Willamette Drive NE Lacey, WA 98516
If you would like to help the Lacey MakerSpace and other partners speed-up production of personal protective equipment (PPE) for Thurston County’s frontline workers, you can now sign up to volunteer at https://laceymakerspace.org/covid-19-updates/thurston-ppe-response/.