On March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA or the Act) became law.
As discussed in our article on March 24, (American Rescue Plan and the Restaurant Revitalization Fund), its numerous programs included the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), which directed federal government support towards the food service industry. Since that time, the industry has been awaiting detailed guidelines from the SBA (Small Business Administration) on the process for applying for the support. On Tuesday, April 27, the SBA finally released additional program details.
The SBA will open its application process on Friday, April 30th by allowing applicants to register, but not taking actual applications until Monday, May 3rd. Detailed information is available on the SBA landing page.
Per the SBA website, eligible businesses can apply through SBA-recognized Point of Sale (POS) vendors or directly via SBA in a forthcoming online application portal. Participating POS providers include Square, Toast, Clover, NCR Corporation (Aloha). If an applicant is working with a POS vendor, they do not need to register beforehand. If not working with an approved vendor, but rather with the SBA directly, applicants will need to create an account. For applicants working directly with the SBA, it has published a 22-page RRF Program Guide (most recent version 4 is dated April 28, 2021) that provides the following detailed instructions:
Gather documentation outlined in this document.
Visit restaurants.sba.gov to access the application platform if you have access to the internet and will not apply through one of SBA’s Restaurant Partners.
Create an account.
Complete the application questionnaire and attestations.
Upload necessary documentation.
Upon application completion, a DocuSign package will be sent to the email entered in the application portal.
Execute DocuSign package immediately in order to trigger the SBA review process.
SBA will begin the review of your application. Review will take approximately 14 days to complete when complete and validated documentation is provided. Applicants may check the status of their application on the application portal.
Application decision information or request for further documentation will be sent to the email associated with the Applicant account.
If approved, funds will automatically be deposited to the bank account entered into the application.
Eligible entities that include bakeries, brewpubs, tasting rooms & taprooms, Breweries & Microbreweries, wineries & distilleries, and Inns must provide documentation that 33% of their gross receipts are from on-site sales consumed on the Applicant’s premise.
Applicants must make a good faith certification that the current economic uncertainty makes this funding request necessary to support the ongoing or anticipated operations, and that it does not have a pending application for and has not received a Shuttered Venue Operator grant from SBA.
There has been a lot of information released in a short period of time. The important first step is to be in a position to apply on Monday May 3; contact your POS Restaurant partner to help you or register with the SBA directly and be prepared to apply yourself. Also, gather any necessary information. If you have any questions while you are preparing for this program, please don’t hesitate to contact your Schneider Downs professional.
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Material discussed is meant for informational purposes only, and it is not to be construed as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please note that individual situations can vary. Therefore, this information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.
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