The Good News: In early April, the US House of Representatives passed HR 3807, a bill that calls for $55 billion to replenish a small business grant program. It is now in the hands of the Senate. When will we see this become a law? We don’t know. Hopefully, this year.
The Details: The bill aims to supply the small businesses in America which were most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant program was part of the American Rescue Plan. Of the $55 billion, $42 billion is earmarked for restaurants, food trucks, wineries, breweries, and bakeries. The remaining $13 billion would go to small businesses, including gyms, event venues, theaters, transportation contractors, and sports teams. A portion of the $13 billion would be set aside for grant program oversight.
The Relief for Restaurants and Other Hard Hit Small Business Act of 2022 will also:
- Provide $13 billion to establish the Hard Hit Industries Award Program, which will assist small businesses with 200 or fewer employees that have experienced 40 percent or more in lost revenue.
- Update the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program to provide entertainment venues with more time and flexibility to use federal relief funds.
- Offset program funding by utilizing recovered money from fraud cases in pandemic relief programs
- Deliver $30 million total to the SBA Inspector General, DOJ’s COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force, and the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee to further investigate and recover fraudulent funds
The bad news: If you are not part of the group mentioned above (e.g., restaurants, food trucks, wineries, breweries, bakeries, gyms, event venues, theaters, transportation contractors, and sports teams), unfortunately, that means this grant is not meant for your small business. Sorry.
Your takeaway: We do have StartupFundHub.com. Even though Small Business Administration typically does not provide grants directly to small businesses, we do have a 1) A free COVID-19 Grants Database through StartupFundHub.com that we are adding to regularly, AND 2) If you want to access other grants for small businesses, there is a subscription option.
Forgot how a bill becomes law? Watch this video on How a Bill Becomes a Law: Crash Course Government and Politics.
Summary of HR3807
This bill addresses support for restaurants, arts and entertainment venues, and small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The bill provides an additional $42 billion in FY2021 for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund and gives priority to previous applicants who have not received a grant. The Small Business Administration (SBA) must provide to applicants an explanation for denied applications, establish a reconsideration process for denied applications, and institute an audit and oversight plan with respect to grant recipients.
Additionally, the bill establishes the Hard Hit Industries Award Program for small businesses that suffered a pandemic-related revenue loss of 40% or more. Aggregate grant amounts are capped at $1 million. Funds may be used for expenses including mortgage, rent, and utility payments and payroll. SBA must prioritize entities that have experienced significant pandemic-related revenue loss, with first priority going to those that experienced a loss of at least 80%, and second priority going to those that experienced a loss of at least 60%.
Finally, the bill extends to March 11, 2023 (or a later date as determined by the SBA), the time frame during which Shuttered Venue Operators Grant recipients may use grant funds to cover their expenses.See the full details of HR3807 here