House Of Representatives Passes Relief Funding Bill For Small Businesses
Mask mandates may be a thing of the past, and getting ready to shift your work environment from in-person to virtual and back on short notice may be the new normal, but for small businesses, the pandemic ennui drags on, and rising prices and stagnant wages are not helping. This problem is especially burdensome for restaurants and entertainment venues in Washington, DC, which has always been an “all work and no play” type of city for residents; if you need proof of this, look at the sheer number of DC restaurants that, before the pandemic, were only open for lunch. Besides this, many DC businesses depend on tourists and business travelers as their client base, and these businesses have had to adapt to an unpredictable “feast or famine” mindset. The businesses that are still holding on, more than two years after the COVID-19 pandemic turned Washington DC into a ghost town, are doing so thanks in part to the resourcefulness of their stakeholders and thanks in part to pandemic relief funds. A bipartisan bill expanding relief funding in the form of small business grants has just passed the House of Representatives. A Washington DC small business lawyer can help you make the most of the new round of relief funding for small businesses.
Key Provisions of the Relief for Restaurants and Other Hard Hit Small Business Act
On April 7, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass HR 3807, the Relief for Restaurants and Other Hard Hit Small Business Act. It includes $55 billion for COVID-relief programs for small businesses in industries that continue to be negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. These are some of the key provisions of the bill:
- HR3807 provides a new round of funding for the Restaurant Relief Fund.
- It establishes the Hard Hit Industries Award program, which will provide grants to small businesses that suffered a sharp drop in revenues due to the pandemic. The bill allots $13 billion for this program. Businesses can apply for a grant if they have fewer than 200 employees, and their annual revenue must have decreased by 40 percent, compared to its pre-pandemic levels.
- It continues the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program, giving applicants more flexibility in how they can use the grant money.
- It directs the federal government to use money recovered from pandemic relief fraud cases (whether the funds were confiscated or paid as restitution) toward pandemic relief through the aforementioned programs.
Before the bill can become law, it must pass a vote in the Senate and President Biden must sign it into law. If a president vetoes a bill that the House and Senate have passed, the Senate can override the veto with another vote.
Contact Us About Helping Your Business Thrive During the Pandemic
A small business lawyer can help you apply for small business grants and access other strategies for weathering tough economic times like the ongoing pandemic. Contact Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing for help today.