Business Recovery Resources
Governor Abbott Takes Executive Action To Contain Spread Of COVID-19
Limits Certain Businesses And Services With Direct Link To Infections
Governor Greg Abbott today issued an executive order limiting certain businesses and services as part of the state’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision comes as the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 and the number of hospitalizations have increased and the positivity rate in Texas increased above 10%, which the Governor previously stated would lead to further preventative action. The targeted, measured directives in the executive order are based on links between certain types of businesses and services and the recent rise in positive cases throughout the state.
The order includes the following:
- All bars and similar establishments that receive more than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages are required to close at 12:00 PM today. These businesses may remain open for delivery and take-out, including for alcoholic beverages, as authorized by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
- Restaurants may remain open for dine-in service, but at a capacity not to exceed 50% of total listed indoor occupancy, beginning Monday, June 29, 2020.
- Rafting and tubing businesses must close.
- Outdoor gatherings of 100 or more people must be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions.
“As I said from the start, if the positivity rate rose above 10%, the State of Texas would take further action to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Abbott. “At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars. The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and enhance public health. We want this to be as limited in duration as possible. However, we can only slow the spread if everyone in Texas does their part. Every Texan has a responsibility to themselves and their loved ones to wear a mask, wash their hands, stay six feet apart from others in public, and stay home if they can. I know that our collective action can lead to a reduction in the spread of COVID-19 because we have done it before, and we will do it again.”
PPP Flexibility Act Passes Congress
The Texas Hotel & Lodging Association (THLA) extends efforts to prepare Visitor Industry Partners for potential changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
The U.S. Senate passed The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Flexibility Act of 2020. The Act provides significant changes to key provisions of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) utilized by many hoteliers and other business operators across the nation. The Act now heads to the President’s desk for signature to become law.
Some of the key changes in the Act include the following:
1. Covered Period: The Act now allows borrowers to use the earlier of twenty-four (24) weeks from the loan origination date or December 31, 2020 to spend PPP proceeds. This is a significant expansion from the original requirement of having to spend PPP proceeds within eight (8) weeks.
2. Loan Expenditures: The Act now requires borrowers to spend at least 60% of PPP proceeds on payroll expenses as opposed to the original 75% requirement. With this change, the remaining 40% can be used to pay eligible expenses (rent/lease, utilities, and mortgage interest).
3. Restoring Workforce: The Act now allows borrowers to restore their workforce and wages to “pre-pandemic” levels by the end of the newly expanded Covered Period (see above) as opposed to the original deadline of June 30, 2020. Additionally, the Act provides a safe harbor provision which protects a borrower’s eligible amount of loan forgiveness if restoration of the borrower’s workforce and wages cannot be adequately attained.
4. Loan term for any unforgiven proceeds: The Act now allows borrowers to pay off any unforgiven loan amount over a five-year term as opposed to the original two-year maximum. The interest rate remains at 1%.
5. Payroll tax deferment.
Read more on the PPP and the PPP Flexibility Act here, along with the Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Application earlier released.
Update for Texas restaurants and bars
June 3, Texas restaurants and bars took another major step forward on their path to recovery with updated protocols provided by Governor Abbot's office.
Read more from the Texas Restaurant Association here.
CARES Act Provisions
The U.S. Travel Association has fought hard to include several major provisions contained in the final package to help travel companies and workforce in the form of:
- Loans and loan forgiveness for small travel businesses
- Federally backed financial assistance for impacted businesses
- Tax relief to mitigate losses and spur recovery
- Grants for impacted tourism businesses and airports
They have created detailed documents that outline important and relevant pieces of information that will soon be available for the industry within the CARES Act. You can view the details of the bill and your eligibility for aid here, or use their guide to navigate which part of the CARES Act applies to your organization. The U.S Travel Association's website also contains an overview for small business owners that may be helpful. While it may take several days for the federal government and key agencies to work through the fine details of the package, these documents can serve as a foundation to better understand the types of relief that will be available and help answer several of the questions you may have:
- Who is eligible to receive assistance?
- What kind of assistance will be provided?
- How much can my organization receive?
- How can my organization access the assistance provided under this program?
These documents will be updated and added to their website at ustravel.org/ReliefResources.
A Message from the Office of Representative Kyle Biedermann
If you are struggling with the effects of COVID-19, the office of Representative Kyle Biedermann can be a resource to help in dealing with or communicating with government agencies.
For example, the Texas Workforce Commission is getting flooded with requests for unemployment benefits, and people are finding it very difficult to get through. Their office can pass along constituent information to TWC and ensure they reach out to the affected individual to get their application submitted, usually within 24 hours of the initial request to their office. If anyone needs answers from the Comptroller on tax extensions, the office of Representative Kyle Biedermann can help get answers.
For any assistance, please email them at: firstname.lastname@example.org
SBA - Economic Injury Disaster Loan Declaration
We know that the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has not only had a major impact on our personal lives, but also on the economy and especially on small businesses. There is news daily of possible legislation to help those impacted by COVID-19. Some of this legislation is aimed at alleviating the economic hardship that is inevitable at this time.
Last week, the President signed into law the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act. As provided by this Act, the Small Business Association (SBA,) issued an Economic Injury Disaster Loan Declaration. This Declaration makes low interest loans available to small businesses and private, non-profit organizations, of up to $2 million, to help alleviate against economic injury caused by COVID-19. Potential uses for the loans include paying fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills.
The loans are available to states that have made emergency declarations. Governor Greg Abbott requested this designation and, as of March 20th, the SBA recognized the designation and made applications for these loans available to Texas businesses. Please follow this link for more information: SBA Disaster Assistance in Response to the Coronavirus.
Here are a few things to have ready when filling out an application:
- Business tax returns for the two most recent years filed
- 2019 year-end financial statements
- Personal financial statements for any owner with over 20% interest in the entity
- Current Note Schedule (Lender, Balance, Payment, Terms, Collateral)
We hope these loans help get many of our small businesses through this trying time. As always, we will be monitoring the situation and will keep you informed of any developments.
Visit the SBA Webinar to see how to apply for these loans: SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program for Businesses Impacted by COVID-19 - Learn About It and How to Apply
Additional Small Business Resources
The Small Business Administration has designated COVID-19 as a qualifying event for the provision of Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) for businesses and non-profits in affected communities.
The Texas Department of Emergency Management has an Economic Injury Worksheet. Please send a copy of your Economic Injury Worksheets to TDEMPARecovery@tdem.texas.org, email@example.com, and firstname.lastname@example.org. This will enable the New Braunfels Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Texas Hotel and Lodging Association to keep a running total of economic injury numbers.
Sending in this form will not financially obligate your business in any way. When the declaration is granted for the SBA emergency loan program, applicants will receive information on how to apply for their loan.
A hotline has been created for residents and businesses to call for information,
Monday – Friday, 8am – 5pm.