The Small Business Administration has released its rules for the small business Paycheck Protection Program. Agricultural enterprises that meet the size requirements are eligible to apply for this program.
The Paycheck Protection Program is a new guaranteed loan program which includes $349 billion for small businesses to keep their employees on the payroll. Eligible businesses include nonprofits, veterans organizations, Tribal business concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals and independent contractors – with 500 or fewer employees.
Loans are capped at $10 million but can include up to eight weeks of the business’ average monthly payroll costs from the last year plus an additional 25% for nonpayroll costs. Seasonal and new businesses will use different calculations. The PPP will be available through June 30, 2020.
The loan will be forgiven if:
All employees are kept or quickly rehired and compensation levels are maintained for eight weeks (payroll costs are capped at $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee).
The funds are used for:
- Payroll and benefits.
- Mortgage interest incurred before Feb. 15, 2020.
- Rent, under lease agreements in force before Feb. 15, 2020.
- Utilities, for which service began before Feb. 15, 2020.
Borrowers will still owe money if:
- The loan amount is used for anything other than payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent and utilities payments over the eight weeks after getting the loan.
- Staff and payroll are not maintained.
Due to likely high subscription, it is anticipated that not more than 25% of the forgiven amount may be for nonpayroll costs.
Farmers can apply for the PPP through any existing SBA 7(a) lenders or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union and Farm Credit System institution that is participating.
Applications can begin on:
- April 3, 2020, for small businesses and sole proprietorships through existing SBA 7(a) lenders.
- April 10, 2020, for independent contractors and self-employed individuals through existing SBA 7(a) lenders.