Restauranteurs Should Act Now for Restaurant Revitalization Fund Relief
In the past year, more than 110,000 restaurants closed long-term or permanently as a result of the pandemic (Bloomberg). But, there’s good news for restaurant owners who have held on this long (food trucks, bars, caterers and stands, too). More than $26B in funding is available through the Restaurant Revitalization Fund as a part of the American Rescue Plan Act (passed on March 11, 2021). The RRF provides funding for pandemic-related revenue loss. As long as the funds are used by March 11, 2023, recipients are not required to repay the funding.
Who is eligible for the RRF?
All businesses serving food and drink are eligible for the RRF. This includes:
• Food stands, food trucks, food carts
• Bars, saloons, lounges, taverns
• Licensed facilities or premises of a beverage alcohol producer where the public may taste, sample or purchase products
• Other similar places of business in which the public or patrons assemble for the primary purpose of being served food or drink
• Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars
• Brewpubs, tasting rooms, taprooms
• Breweries and/or microbreweries
• Wineries and distilleries
For a complete list of eligible entities, see the RRF guide, here. Some conditions apply. Restaurant owners can request up to $10 million but no more than $5 million per physical location. Amounts under $1,000 will not be considered. In addition, businesses must have fewer than 20 locations to be eligible. The RRF does not exempt owners who have already applied for and/or received PPP loans.
How can the RRF be used?
The purpose of this funding is to provide support to eligible businesses that suffered revenue losses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fund is administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA). The money can be used on operating expenses, including rent, payroll, food and beverage supplies and debt service. Note: Past-due expenses are eligible if they were incurred after February 15, 2020 through March 11, 2023.
For the first 21 days of the application window, the SBA will prioritize applications from small businesses owned by women and veterans, as well as socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. Applications received after the first 21 days will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis.
What documentation is required to apply?
In order to apply, business owners should be prepared with documentation of operating expenses, 2019 tax returns and 2020 tax returns. A sample application is available at SBA.gov and the organization is also providing application assistance for eligible businesses.
Where can restaurant owners apply for the RRF?
There are three ways to apply for the Restaurant Revitalization fund.
- Visit an SBA Restaurant Partner
- Go to restaurants.sba.gov
- Apply over-the-phone at (844) 279-8898
Applicants should allow up to 14 days for processing, review, approval and fund distribution. At the time of this article, approximately $2B had been granted with an average request of $125,000.
Paycor Can Help
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