“Hero Pay” Program Takes Effect

Earlier this month, the state of Connecticut launched the application process for its new Hero Pay program for essential workers. The program, funded with a $30 million appropriation in the state budget, may provide up to $1,000 in a pandemic pay premium for eligible, private-sector essential workers. To qualify, employees must be deemed essential workers…

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Senate Wants EIDL Money Spent

Last week, as the Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that it would be releasing the remaining $180 Million in the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), the Small Business Committee in the US Senate was reiterating a call for the SBA to also release the remaining $800 Million still available in the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program.…

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SBA to Release Remaining RRF Funds

The U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) confirmed this week that there remains approximately $180 Million in the closed Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) and it will soon begin distributing those funds to qualified restaurants. The RRF, launched in 2021 to counter the devastation that the pandemic heaped upon the restaurant industry, was initially funded to…

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Minnesota Enacts Frontline Worker Pay

Just at the end of last month, on April 29, 2022, Governor Tim Watz signed into law SB 2677, which replenished the unemployment trust fund, and among other things, created the Frontline Workers Payment Program. The program, which became effective immediately upon the governor’s signature, provides for payments to eligible employees in a very broadly…

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EIDL Portal Closing Next Week

As we’ve advised in the past, the Small Business Administration ceased accepting applications to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program as of January 1 of this year. Today, May 6, 2022 is the deadline for those who want to request a loan increase or perhaps reconsideration of a loan rejection! The COVID-19 EIDL Portal, also…

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Illinois Offers Aid to Restaurants

While the Relief for Restaurants and Other Hard Hit Small Businesses Act of 2022 (H.R. 3807) languishes amid the partisan rancor in Washington DC, the Illinois legislature stepped in to fill the void, at least to an extent. The FY23 Illinois state budget, signed by Governor JB Pritzker back in mid-April, included the appropriation of…

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House Passes $42B RRF

In the ‘never say never category’, the US House of Representatives yesterday passed legislation replenishing the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) with an additional appropriation of $42 billion. But, before we get too excited about the extra round of funding to help restaurants recover from the coronavirus pandemic, realize that it still must pass the Senate,…

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Jobless Claims Hit Pandemic Low

Notwithstanding the expanding spread of the COVID Delta variant and the ongoing difficulties with getting the economy completely opened up again – let alone the continuing labor shortage – first-time unemployment claims dropped last week to 340,000, the lowest level since the pandemic hit in March of 2020. This Department of Labor (DOL) report comes…

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Governor Expands New York Recovery Grant Program

Newly installed New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced this week that she was expanding the eligibility to the state $800 million small business recovery grant program to allow businesses with 2019 revenues up to $2.5 million to qualify for the grant program. The Pandemic Business Recovery Initiative, which was initiated under former Governor Andrew Cuomo,…

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Mass. Governor Proposes $1B in UI Relief

Last week, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker proposed a supplemental budget that would utilize $1 Billion in federal pandemic relief funds to replenish the state Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. During the height of the coronavirus pandemic with its accompanying layoffs, shutdowns and business closures, the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund, funded by a payroll tax on employers,…

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