Update: California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program

The California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) are happy to announce there were over 300,000 applications successfully completed during Round 1 of the California Small Business Covid-19 Relief Grant Program.

Starting Tuesday, February 2, 2021, at 8:00 am PST Lendistry will open Round 2 for all small businesses and nonprofits to apply.

Round 1 applicants who did not receive funds DO NOT need to reapply. Your application was waitlisted and automatically rolled over for consideration in Round 2.

For new applicants in Round 2, please mark these dates and times on your calendar:

Round 2 opens Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at 8:00 am PST
Round 2 closes on Monday, February 8, 2021 at 6:00 pm PST
Notification about selection: February 11 – 18, 2021
Notification about Not selected: February 24, 2021

Before you apply: WATCH VIDEOS ON THE APPLICATION PROCESS To help you with the application process, Lendistry has prepared short videos that walk you through each step. To watch these videos, click here. We will continuously update this page with more videos in multiple languages.

REVIEW THE PROGRAM AND APPLICATION GUIDE The Program and Application Guide details the entire application process, step-by-step, and provides tips on how to improve your application experience. It also includes screenshots of the application and Portal to help you familiarize yourself with the process. To view the Program and Application Guide, click here.

DAILY WEBINARS Partners are conducting daily webinars that go over the program, application, and step-by-step instruction to complete the application. To view the calendar of daily webinars and access links, click here

PREPARE REQUIRED DOCUMENTS Review Section 8: Required Documents under “Program Overview” in the application guide for a list of required documents for the grant. The guide also provides tips and resources to help you properly scan your documents for upload. See Tip #3: Scan Your Documents Properly under “Tips for Applying”.

FIND AND APPLY THROUGH A PARTNER To apply for a grant, you will need to do so through a partner. You can find a partner by language or by county at www.CAReliefGrant.com. Please apply once and through one partner only.

Additional Application Tips: A partner to the program or the Lendistry team can help you navigate the process. Lendistry’s call center is available at 888.612.4370. Call Center times starting February 2nd are as follows:

7am – 11pm weekdays
8am – 12pm Saturdays
Last day until 8pm

For partner assistance, please contact the partner in which you started or submitted your application with.

You can find an application certification here for for-profits and here for non-profits.  

The application process is NOT first-come, first-serve. You have within the time frame listed above to apply.     

Small Business Administration (SBA) Re-Opening Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to Small Lenders Jan 15, 2021 and All Lenders Jan 19, 2021

The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, will re-open the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan portal to PPP-eligible lenders with $1 billion or less in assets for First and Second Draw applications on Friday, January 15, 2021 at 9 a.m. EST. The portal will fully open on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 to all participating PPP lenders to submit First and Second Draw loan applications to SBA.

Earlier in the week, SBA granted dedicated PPP access to Community Financial Institutions (CFIs) which include Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs), Certified Development Companies (CDCs), and Microloan Intermediaries as part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to reach underserved and minority small businesses.

On Friday, SBA will continue its emphasis on reaching smaller lenders and businesses by opening to approximately 5,000 more lenders, including community banks, credit unions, and farm credit institutions.  Moreover, the agency also plans to have dedicated service hours for these smaller lenders after the portal fully re-opens next week.

First Draw PPP Loans are for those borrowers who have not received a PPP loan before August 8, 2020.

Second Draw PPP Loans are for eligible small businesses with 300 employees or less, that previously received a First Draw PPP Loan and will use or have used the full amount only for authorized uses, and that can demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2019 and 2020. The maximum amount of a Second Draw PPP loan is $2 million. 

Updated PPP Lender forms, guidance, and resources are available at www.sba.gov/ppp and www.treasury.gov/cares.

SBA Extends Crucial Lifeline to Borrowers Impacted by COVID-19 with Debt Relief

As the U.S. Small Business Administration continues implementation of the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act, signed into law by President Trump on Dec. 27, 2020, SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza made the following statement in regards to Section 325:

“Small business is big business in America, and this Administration will continue to extend a lifeline to small business owners during this critical time. Congress charged the SBA with making debt relief payments (principal, interest and fee payments) under Section 1112 of the CARES Act to help borrowers in SBA’s 7(a), 504 and Microloan programs; and now SBA is working expeditiously to implement the newly enacted assistance.

The new law extends SBA debt relief authority, allowing the Administration to continue alleviating adverse economic effects of COVID-19 for small businesses with SBA loans. Since April last year, the SBA has made over $7.1 billion in payments across 1,819,130 loans on behalf of these borrowers. It’s important to note that these firms were also initially able to access capital because of the SBA federal guarantee.”

The SBA is determining how much additional debt relief assistance can be provided to SBA borrowers with the newly issued Congressional appropriation. Debt Relief guidance will soon be posted on the SBA website.

California Small Business Covid-19 Relief Grant Program Applications

California Small Business Covid-19 Relief Grant program applications opened December 30, 2020. Thousands of small businesses have already applied, and The California Department of Small Business Advocates are aware that with this large application volume, many small businesses are experiencing delays or challenges with the application portal.

If you are experiencing technical difficulties with the high volume demand today, please circle back to the application portal.

The CA Relief Grant program is not setup as first come, first serve and will not close early, so if you face technical issues during the process, the application can be submitted for first round consideration any time between now and January 8, 2021 at 11:59PM. Webinars are offered daily by SBDCs at 11 A.M. to introduce you to the application process – click here to register.

Lendistry is working quickly to improve access issues. Please take the opportunity to go to the website, review eligibility requirements and the application process to ready your documents and connect with a local partner.

Know that the program is not the end of the State’s assistance for small businesses and nonprofits. The Governor, Legislature, GO-Biz and CalOSBA continue to work towards more support to help your small business recover during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 for Aquaculture Producers

Aquaculture species raised by commercial operators in water in a controlled environment may be eligible for CFAP 2. This includes molluscan shellfish and seaweed. Learn more at farmers.gov/cfap/aquaculture.

Apply for CFAP 2 by December 11, 2020, through your local USDA Farm Service Agency.

Learn more at farmers.gov/cfap or call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance. 

Watch the Video

Three Categories of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 Payments

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) provides producers with financial assistance that gives them the ability to absorb some of the increased marketing costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. USDA will accept CFAP 2 applications through December 11, 2020.

There are a wide variety of commodities eligible for CFAP 2 – from alpacas to zucchini. CFAP 2 payments will be made for three categories of commodities – Price Trigger Commodities, Flat-Rate Crops, and Sales Commodities. 

Learn more at farmers.gov/cfap or call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance. 

CFPA video

Notice of Federal Funding Opportunity

The National Sea Grant Office (NSGO) and the Ocean Acidification Program (OAP) are funding a joint competition to fund proposals that seek to establish, continue, and/or expand collaborations between researchers and the shellfish aquaculture industry. Specifically, applications to this competition should utilize new or existing research/industry partnerships to study how ocean and coastal acidification in combination with other stressors impacts shellfish aquaculture. Applications must include at least one researcher and one shellfish grower acting as co-Principal Investigators, and the proposed work must utilize a co-production of knowledge framework. Total funding for this competition includes up to $2,000,000 in federal funds to support 2-6 projects.

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National Aquaculture Association (NAA) – Simpler Application for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, created a simpler loan forgiveness application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $50,000 or less. This action streamlines the PPP forgiveness process to provide financial and administrative relief to America’s smallest businesses while also ensuring sound stewardship of taxpayer dollars.

SBA and Treasury have also eased the burden on PPP lenders, allowing lenders to process forgiveness applications more swiftly.  They began approving PPP forgiveness applications and remitting forgiveness payments to PPP lenders for PPP borrowers on October 2, 2020.  SBA will continue to process all PPP forgiveness applications in an expeditious manner.

Click here to view the simpler loan forgiveness application.

Click here to view the instructions for completing the simpler loan forgiveness application.

Click here to view the Interim Final Rule on the simpler forgiveness process for loans of $50,000 or less.

USDA – What is the Corona Virus Food Assistance Program 2?

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced the Corona Virus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2), designed to provide financial assistance to the agriculture Industry, including both freshwater and marine aquaculture.

Aquaculture eligibility for CFAP 2 includes but not limited to: any species of aquatic organisms grown as food for human consumption, species must be raised by a commercial operator and in water in a controlled environment, eligible sales only include sales of raw commodities grown by the producer.

CFAP 2 is accepting applications from September 21, 2020 to December 11, 2020. To learn more general information please select: farmers.gov/cfap.

For Aquaculture specific information and to locate your USDA Local Service Center select: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap/aquaculture.

California Fisheries Relief Funding Soon to be Available for Select Sectors Affected by COVID-19

Marine Region Webpage Link

Coastal and marine fishery participants – including licensed commercial fishermen, fish buyers, aquaculture businesses, charter boat owners and guides – who have experienced a loss of income due to the effects of COVID-19 may be eligible for federal relief funding disbursed through the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW).

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