We understand that there is a lot of uncertainty and many questions at this time. There are still some resources and information coming out. In order to best serve the small businesses of Alexandria, we will be compiling information and resources for small businesses on this page.
Updated as of 5/17/2022
EIDL – Economic Injury Disaster Loan
The program has ended, if you received COVID EIDL funds there is an upcoming webinar that may be of interest: You Received COVID EIDL funds, so Now What? – Thursday May 26th from 12pm-1pm.
This closure ends all existing federal government COVID relief efforts that commenced in March 2020.
Signage for Alexandria Small Businesses
The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department have produced information products in multiple languages in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. All items are available for distribution or printing by residents, businesses and organizations. The guidance in each item was current as of the date indicated, but newer guidance may now be available. (Includes signage regarding masks, vaccinations, handwashing and other guidance). Click here to view the free signage.
Merchant Maverick Opportunity Grant
- Opened 1/3/22
- 10 awardees
- $10,000 per award
- Open to Asian and Pacific Islanders that are US Citizens
- Must own restaurant or foodservice business
- Only 5,000 applications will be accepted
SoGal Foundation Grants
- $5,000 and $10,000 grant awards
- Awarded on a rolling basis
- Awardees are black women or black nonbinary entrepreneurs
- Businesses must offer a scalable solution or idea and plan to seek investor financing in the future
American Seed Funding
- Funding source is the National Science Foundation
- Early-stage funding to companies that need to prove their technology and find their market potential
- 3,400 recipients since 2012
- 153 have exited program and have received $9.1 billion in private investment
- Total of $200 million per year eligible recipients
- Supports minority-owned small businesses
- No funds are given to awardees
- Program provides support services, including marketing, media, ads and computer equipment and Internet services for 12 months
- The next wave of applications for Comcast RISE Marketing & Technology Services opened on January 16, 2022, and will close on June 17, 2022
GoFundMe Small Business Relief Fund
- Awardees will receive up to $500 in matching funds
- Awardees must set up a GoFundMe fundraiser
The Barstool Fund
- To date more than $41 million has been raised
- 231,000 individual contributors
- 443 recipient businesses to date
- Must be in restaurant/bar industry
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) SBA Direct Forgiveness For Loans of $150,000 or Less
If you have spent your PPP funds, this is an appropriate time to consider applying for Forgiveness (you must apply within 10 months of spending the funds during your Covered Period). Your lender may have more time available now to deal with any issues you may have than when the rush periods occur. Approximately 12% of lenders opted to use the SBA portal for forgiveness. Therefore, it is suggested that you first check with your lender of record to find out if they opted to use the SBA’s portal. If so, these borrowers may find the session(s) listed below to be helpful to them. In general, most large-bank lenders did not opt to join the portal and have instead, set up their own forgiveness portals, whereas small-banks opted in.
PPP Direct Forgiveness Borrower Portal Training: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdJU4eJtqgM
PPP Forgiveness Factsheet can be found here.
Virginia’s “Return to Earn” Grant Program – This program ended 12/31/2021
Virginia ABC Laws
July 1st, the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority (ABC) began enforcing new laws passed by the Virginia General Assembly during its 2021 session. This includes:
- Allowing localities to create special large outdoor entertainment districts where consumption of alcohol would be allowed.
- Allowing restaurants to continue selling cocktails to go, a holdover from the pandemic.
- Cocktails to-go will be allowed until July 1, 2022. Mixed drinks to-go must cease at 11pm, wine and beer to-go must cease at midnight
- Nonprofit groups will be allowed to conduct virtual fundraising events, including the sale and shipment of wine in closed containers.
Miscellaneous Tax Policy
Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) Update: The recently signed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act ended the ERTC retroactively to October 1st, 2021 which would reduce the maximum credit available from $28,000 to $21,000 per employee. This also means that employers that had already taken this credit for the 4th quarter will need to pay back the payroll taxes retained.
The one exception to the adjusted expiry date is for “Recovery Start Up Businesses” (a/k/a RSBs), which is defined as a business that meets the following criteria:
- Started in operation after February 15, 2020
- Generated average annual gross receipts of $1 million or less
- Employs 1 or more non-owner
- Does not qualify for the ERTC
If you have any questions concerning the ERTC it is highly recommended that you seek input from a qualified tax consultant.
COVID-19 Relief Legislation details are worth following closely, and we’re encouraging business owners to:
- Sign up for webinars – we have links for upcoming programs and for recordings of past programs here
- Contact your banker
- Consult with your accountant
- Keep checking this Alexandria SBDC webpage for updated information
REBUILD! VA Grant Program – CLOSED 12/9/2020
The Rebuild VA Grant Fund is a program to help small businesses and non-profits whose normal operations were disrupted by COVID-19. It is currently not accepting new applications.
Legislature allocated $250 million in new funds to this program in August 2021 but the priority is to provide awards to applicants in the approval queue. These applicants will be notified by the end of October 2021 that they are eligible for funding and that process could take 6-9 months to complete. Currently there is no plan to issue any public announcements concerning additional funds. If there are surplus funds available after the approval queue is funded, or if additional funds are allocated from the Commonwealth, the portal will be re-opened to new applications.
Any business who believes they are in the approval queue should access their portal account to confirm that they are in fact, in the queue. If not, it is suggested that businesses seek other funding sources given the protracted approval/funding horizon for new applications. Beyond Rebuild! VA, Virginia Small Business Financing Authority (VSBFA) has several direct loan programs, including:
- Economic Development
RECOVERY RESOURCES FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
As Virginia businesses and communities look forward to safely reopen, the Virginia SBDC network and Alexandria SBDC have developed the Business Recovery webpage to help owners carefully plan for and execute their businesses’ new strategy.
These detailed guidelines cover a broad range of critical considerations. While business owners can use them by themselves, they were designed to ideally be used in collaboration with Alexandria SBDC’s Business Analysts. The guidelines are set forth in three sections: REVIEW, RESET, AND REVIVE. As a first step, we encourage you to carefully examine the questions and resources under each section. At that point, contact Alexandria SBDC at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a virtual meeting with an Alexandria SBDC expert consultant for objective feedback on your questions and ideas. As a reminder, all services of Alexandria SBDC are without cost.
The Alexandria SBDC’s confidential one-2-one consultations have a solid track record of helping business owners through such deliberations. We also have contacts in the community that can help you make opportune connections.