Few would suggest that the adage that holds that gratification delayed is all the sweeter when realized applies to the Paycheck Protection Program Second Draw Loan (PPP2). In fact, some small businesses have been forced to shutter – temporarily or permanently – while awaiting additional relief first discussed in Congress in July. Congress succumbed to many distractions and political motivations, resulting in a nine-month delay between the CARES Act and the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses Act signed into law by President Trump on December 27, 2020.
The implementing rules were published by the SBA and Treasury Department on January 7, 2021 and now businesses and their lenders are scrambling to quickly analyze and make application for the new relief funds.
The Economic Aid Act contains several categories of relief beyond the “general” PPP2, including reversal of the IRS position that made COVID 19 relief-paid expenses non-deductible, and a carve out for the smallest businesses and lenders and a significantly expanded Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC).
Regarding the core PPP2 program, a quick summary includes:
The ERTC is another relief measure that was expanded and extended in the Economic Aid Act. The ERTC provides up to $7,000 per qualified employee paid by a significantly impacted employer. The new law both amends past rules, which had made PPP beneficiaries ineligible, and continues this benefit through June 30, 2021. Careful planning is needed to maximize company benefits from both programs because payroll dollars cannot be used to both obtain PPP loan forgiveness and the ERTC funds (i.e., there can be no “double dipping”).
The amount of funding under the Economic Aid Act of $284 billion is less than the $523 billion lent to 5.2 million small businesses under the PPP first draw. Along with the 25% revenue decline test, the lesser loan sizes and smaller company maximum size for applicants will reduce demand for PPP2. However, a repeat of the first draw scenario – when funding ran out before most applications were processed – cannot be ruled out. Still, more funding and extensions are also possible.
Applicants for PPP2 should strongly consider working with the same lender that obtained their first draw loan, as much of the documentation can be re-used for PPP2, which will accelerate the approval process.
Any companies needing help with the application process are welcome to contact the Florida CFO Group.