Hooray! The much anticipated moment has come: the US Small Business Administration has posted formal guidance, and a sample application form, on its website for Restaurant Revitalization Fund grants: Restaurant Revitalization Fund (sba.gov).

This is a federal grant – not loan! – program especially tailored for small and independent restaurants, bars, brewpubs, breweries, etc., to compensate them for COVID-19 pandemic-related revenue losses. Grants are available of up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location.

Importantly, establishments are not excluded from obtaining these grants just because they received PPP loans (although any PPP funds received by an establishment will be deducted from the amount of the grant). First priority on these grants is being given to women-, minority-, and veteran-owned establishments. The basic calculation for determining the size of the grant is: an establishment’s 2019 (i.e., pre-pandemic) gross receipts minus its 2020 gross receipts minus PPP loan amounts. The grants can be used for a wide array of business purposes: payroll, mortgages, rent, debt service, utilities, supplies, and other operating expenses.

The SBA’s RRF webpage includes a sample application form, Restaurant Revitalization Funding Application Sample (sba.gov), and a guidance document, Restaurant Revitalization Fund Program Guide (sba.gov). The SBA offers a national support center to assist applicants: 1-844-279-8898 (Hours: Monday-Friday 8am-8pm ET). Or, Vermonters can reach out to their local SBA office, Vermont SBA District Office.

Because we expect there to be a rush of applications as soon as the SBA starts accepting them, potential applicants should prepare now by familiarizing themselves with the program requirements, and determining their eligibility. We also recommend that potential applicants consult with their accountant now, so that they will be ready to apply as soon as applications start being accepted.

Restaurant Revitalization Fund Webinar 9am April 22

This just in–the SBA Vermont District Office is hosting a free webinar at 9 a.m. April 22 about the Restaurant Revitalization Fund. As noted above, RRF is a federal grant program that will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million. Topics will include an overview of the program, eligibility and the application process.

To access the webinar via Teams, click here.
To access the webinar by phone, call 202-765-1264 and enter code 981035922#.

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