The bailout for small businesses also includes Hemp Businesses and Farms, and we expect companies affected by the work stoppage are looking over paperwork now so they can access these bailout funds. The SBA will allocate the following funds for Hemp Growers and Producers.
- $10 billion for Small Business Administration emergency grants, with up to $10 million of emergency relief per business
- Up to $50 billion in borrowing authority for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Commodity Credit Corp.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture assured farmers that they would not be forgotten in coronavirus assistance. “We will deliver relief assistance to farmers and ranchers as quickly as possible,” Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement.
“Americans across the nation are stepping up to the challenges facing them during these uncertain times. At USDA we are doing our part to ensure those who need help will get it, whether it’s through nutrition assistance, ensuring the food supply chain is safe and secure, or through new flexibilities with our Rural Development loan programs.”
The legislation also establishes a $454 billion program for guaranteed, subsidized loans to larger industries in hopes of leveraging up to $4.5 trillion in lending to distressed businesses according to the recent $2.2 Trillion dollar bailout package.
“This is a time to remember that we are citizens of the greatest nation on Earth, that we have overcome every challenge we have faced, and we will overcome this one,” GOP Whip Liz Cheney of Wyoming said.
Hemp entrepreneurs cheered the package. But some say Congress left some additions undone that could have boosted the industry. A petition calling for Congress to use the coronavirus bill to expand hemp opportunities also is in progress. The following proposals are in play.
- Adding the SAFE Banking Act to make it easier for hemp and CBD businesses to borrow from banks.
- Changing the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax code to allow people to use money in tax-shielded health savings accounts or flexible spending accounts to buy hemp and CBD products.
- Changing dietary supplement rules to allow over-the-counter CBD sales for two years.
Those measures did not make the final cut, leading hemp entrepreneurs like David Metzler, CEO of CBDCapitalGroup, feeling like Congress left its job only partially done.
“It’s a great start, but the industry needs a lot more to incentivize them to plant again after all that happened last year,” meaning low commodity prices for hemp extracts like CBD.