Disaster Relief is available right now from many sources, however the quickest means for restaurants and caterers through a familiar lender to many independent restaurateurs, with the The Small Business Administration.
While other reliefs are surely coming from the federal government and some from state and local governments, the SBA is offering immediate assistance to restaurateurs, caterers and other small businesses. However, the advantage most restaurateurs already have financials in order, especially if they are utilizing 3rd party accounting services such as restaurant365 and other restaurant accounting platforms or CFO services.
In a recent article published hours ago by the Washington Post titled: Paid sick leave: Who gets it during the coronavirus outbreak, The Post stated ” Many small-business owners are worried about how to pay for these benefits, especially at a time when business across numerous industries has basically come to a halt. The bill provides a tax credit to cover the costs. The credit is applied to the tax the company normally pays for each employee’s Social Security. (This is the 6.2 percent tax employers pay on each employee’s salary.) If sick leave or family and medical leave ends up costing more than the Social Security bill, the U.S. government will send the employer a check to cover the remaining costs. How this will be determined is up to the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service”.
What this means for small business owners is that there is a waiting period for knowing what to do. One business owner stated in an interview by Market News First, “Is this that serious?”, when asked how he was going to survive mandated limits on visitors and strong recommendations by leaders and media to stay home.
What this means specifically for restaurants as the first to notice the evaporation of business is start now, because relief lines are going to be longer than grocery store lines. Also, survival of restaurants and caterers provides relief for citizens and memes of the community. Announcing easy delivery with stated procedures to keep meals clean from staff will allow the community to know of each restaurant’s availability and in terms of survival, many restaurants may become the primary kitchen for many families.
As for the Government picking up the tab, and providing relief through the Bill, HR-6201, the senate still has not passed it, and although it is being fast-tracked it still remains how the execution of such relief is to be distributed. It is possible that restaurants will be conscripted to help communities across America.
Here are the current particulars of House Bill 6201, as they define areas of relief and how they affect small businesses and restaurants:
Introduced in House (03/11/2020)
Families First Coronavirus Response Act
This bill responds to the coronavirus outbreak by providing paid sick leave and free coronavirus testing, expanding food assistance and unemployment benefits, and requiring employers to provide additional protections for health care workers.
Specifically, the bill provides FY2020 supplemental appropriations to the Department of Agriculture (USDA) for nutrition and food assistance programs, including
- the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC);
- the Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP); and
- nutrition assistance grants for U.S. territories.
The bill also provides FY2020 appropriations to the Department of Health and Human Services for nutrition programs that assist the elderly.
The supplemental appropriations provided by the bill are designated as emergency spending, which is exempt from discretionary spending limits.
The bill modifies USDA food assistance and nutrition programs to
- allow certain waivers to requirements for the school meal programs,
- suspend the work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the food stamp program), and
- allow states to request waivers to provide certain emergency SNAP benefits.
In addition, the bill requires the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to issue an emergency temporary standard that requires certain employers to develop and implement a comprehensive infectious disease exposure control plan to protect health care workers.
The bill also includes provisions that:
- establish a federal emergency paid leave benefits program to provide payments to employees taking unpaid leave due to the coronavirus outbreak,
- expand unemployment benefits and provide grants to states for processing and paying claims,
- require employers to provide paid sick leave to employees,
- establish requirements for providing coronavirus diagnostic testing at no cost to consumers,
- treat personal respiratory protective devices as covered countermeasures that are eligible for certain liability protections, and
- temporarily increase the Medicaid federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP).
Again, immediate relief for SBA is available for businesses that need the ability to keep going.