ACEC's SVP for Advocacy, Steve Hall, and Katharine Mottley, VP for Tax and Regulatory Affairs, joined Engineering Influence to discuss the new guidance for small businesses stemming from the enactment of the CARES Act.
Resources discussed on the show:
The new law establishes a Paycheck Protection Program to assist qualifying small businesses, nonprofits, and individuals through the Small Business Administration’s 7(a) loan program. $349 billion is authorized for 7(a) lending from Feb. 15 through June 30, and SBA would fully guarantee the loans. Loans would be available during the covered period for:
Any business, nonprofit, veterans group, or tribal business with 500 or fewer employees, or a number set by the SBA for the relevant industry. ACEC is seeking clarification on this point – whether SBA will implement the loan program using the traditional size standard for engineering, or something broader.
Sole proprietors, independent contractors, and eligible self-employed workers would be eligible.
Eligible recipients could receive loans up to $10 million or 250% of their average monthly payroll costs, instead of $5 million, with interest rates capped during the covered period at 4%. Loans can be used to cover eligible payroll costs -- salaries, commissions, regular paid leave, and health-care benefits -- as well as mortgage interest and utility payments. Firms would be required to make a “good faith certification” that funds will be used to retain workers, maintain payroll, and pay for rent and similar expenses. Funds cannot be used to compensate individual employees at an annual rate above $100,000, or to pay for emergency sick or family leave under the second coronavirus response package.