Small Business Administration

SBA and Treasury Announce Simpler PPP Forgiveness for Loans of $50,000 or Less

WASHINGTONThe U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, today released 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.

“The PPP has provided 5.2 million loans worth $525 billion to American small businesses, providing critical economic relief and supporting more than 51 million jobs,” said Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.  “Today’s action streamlines the forgiveness process for PPP borrowers with loans of $50,000 or less and thousands of PPP lenders who worked around the clock to process loans quickly,” he continued.  “We are committed to making the PPP forgiveness process as simple as possible while also protecting against fraud and misuse of funds.  We continue to favor additional legislation to further simplify the forgiveness process.”

“Nothing will stop the Trump Administration from supporting great American businesses and our great American workers. The Paycheck Protection Program has been an overwhelming success and served as a historic lifeline to America’s hurting small businesses and tens of millions of workers. The new form introduced today demonstrates our relentless commitment to using every tool in our toolbelt to help small businesses and the banks that have participated in this program,” said Administrator Jovita Carranza. “We are continuing to ensure that small businesses are supported as they recover.”

SBA and Treasury have also eased the burden on PPP lenders, allowing lenders to process forgiveness applications more swiftly.  

SBA 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.

National Small Business Week to Kick-off September 22-24

SBA Hosts Virtual Event to Honor America’s Small Businesses

WASHINGTON – Today, Jovita Carranza, Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, announced the kick-off for National Small Business Week. The virtual event, rescheduled from May due to the coronavirus pandemic, will be held September 22-24. National Small Business Week honors the nation’s small businesses, many of which are veteran, women and minority-owned, for their achievements and dedication to their communities. This year’s National Small Business Week activities will include numerous educational panels providing retooling and innovative practices for entrepreneurs as our nation’s small businesses look to pivot and recover toward a stronger economy. The event will recognize the national award winners, including the naming of this year’s National Small Business Person of the Year.

“I am thrilled to host SBA’s virtual National Small Business Week ceremony and provide this opportunity to recognize inspiring entrepreneurs from across the country for their innovation, and in many cases this year, resilience,” said SBA Administrator Carranza. “This year, we will spotlight America’s outstanding small businesses and their stories of perseverance and their ability to pivot and overcome adversity.  This event will also feature many educational forums that will inspire entrepreneurs around the country as they recover and sustain their operations.”

National Small Business Week will also recognize small business advocates for their involvement in disaster recovery, government contracting, and their support for small businesses and entrepreneurship.  Awards will be presented to SBA partners in financial and entrepreneurial development, including top SCORE Chapter, Small Business Development Center, Women’s Business Center, and Veterans Business Outreach Center.

For registration and additional information on National Small Business Week, please visit sba.gov/NSBW

SBA Announces Registration for National Small Business Week Virtual Conference September 22-24

WASHINGTON –As part of National Small Business Week, the U.S. Small Business Administration and cosponsors will host all events virtually. This year’s National Small Business Week, September 22-24, 2020, includes numerous educational panels providing retooling and innovative practices for entrepreneurs as our nation’s small businesses look to pivot and recover, contributing to a stronger economy.

The National Small Business Week event schedule includes three days recognizing America’s outstanding entrepreneurs, shining a spotlight on the nation’s 30 million small businesses across the country, including national award winners, and naming of the 2020 National Small Business Person of the Year.

Details and registration information are posted on https://www.sba.gov/NSBW. 

The SBA Virginia-Richmond District Office is happy and proud to announce George Nyfeler, owner of Nyfeler Associates, as the 2020 Small Business Person of the Year for the state. 

“We will recognize Mr. Nyfeler on September 23rd. He is an owner who cares about his employees supporting their success and his community,” said VA-Richmond District Director Carl Knoblock.

“Also, a thanks to Mike King, host of “On The Mic with MikeRVA,” for having the SBA appear on the show every Wednesday and hosting our NSBW event.,” said Knoblock.

Radio Show: “SBA Wednesday-NSBW” Event with “On The Mic with MikeRVA”

Date: 9/23/2020 Time: 1:00pm-2:00pm Tune-In/Viewing: WJFN-"On The MIC With MIKE RVA" 100.5/92.7 FM/820 AM

Listen Live: Click Here

Facebook Live: Click Here

SBA Veterans Small Business Advisory Committees to Host Virtual Public Meetings Sept. 2 and 3

 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Interagency Task Force on Veterans Small Business Development (IATF) and Advisory Committee on Veterans Business Affairs (ACVBA) will hold virtual public meetings on Sept. 2 and 3 respectively via Microsoft Teams.

“Now more than ever, it is critical for our veteran small business advisory committees to discuss challenges faced by the veteran small business community and how we can expand the resources available to them,” said Larry Stubblefield, Associate Administrator for the Office of Veterans Business Development. “We look forward to hosting our committee meetings virtually, supporting and advocating for this important and underserved population.”

The IATF will meet on Wednesday, Sept. 2, from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (EDT) via this Microsoft Teams meeting link.

The ACVBA will meet on Thursday, Sept. 3, from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (EDT). The meeting will be two separate sessions with a lunch break in between.

  • Part 1 (morning session) – 9 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. EDT – Meeting link
  • Part 2 (afternoon session) – 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EDT– Meeting link.

Public comments and questions are strongly encouraged to be submitted in advance by Aug. 28 to veteransbusiness@sba.gov or (202) 205-6773. During the live event, attendees will be in listen-only mode and may submit additional written questions via the Q&A chat feature in Microsoft Teams. For technical support, please visit the Microsoft Teams support page. Transcripts will be available after both meetings at www.sba.gov/ovbd, under the “Federal Advisory Committees” section.

The IATF meeting will include committee member updates from the Departments of Defense, Labor, Treasury and Veterans Affairs, General Services Administration, Office of Management and Budget, North Carolina Military Business Center, and Student Veterans of America.

Committee members will also receive updates from the Vocational Readiness and Employment program and the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance programs.

The ACVBA meeting will include remarks from ACVBA chairwoman Fran Perez-Wilhite as well as updates on the Veteran Business Project.  Topics discussed during the meeting will include SBA’s veterans’ programs, women-owned small business federal contracting program, the 8(a) Business Development program, VA’s Center for Verification and Evaluation’s verification process, the VR&E program and GSA’s sam.beta.gov changes.

Committee members will also hear about lessons learned from the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program.

SBA Announces New Reduced 504 Loan Debenture Rates

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration announced the updated interest rates for the 504 Loan Program offered by Certified Development Companies (CDC). Small businesses can now apply for the lowest interest rates since July 2018 as the program is now allowing 20 and 25-year interest rates at 2.214% and 2.269%, respectively.

“These are very encouraging terms and very supportive of our nation’s goal to bounce-back from COVID-19,” said William Manger, SBA Chief of Staff and Associate Administrator for the Office of Capital Access.  “CDCs” are the driving force behind the 504 Loan Program. The longer terms and low interest rates support and encourage entrepreneurs to step outside of the box and look at real investments. We are pleased that the 504 Loan Program continues to show double-digit year-over-year growth, especially in these extraordinary times.”

Small businesses looking for information on how to expand their business’s real estate or improve their working capital should visit: https://www.sba.gov/brand/assets/sba/sba-lenders/504-Loan-Fact-Sheet-Borrower-Version.pdf

The 504 Loan Program is an SBA business loan program authorized under Title V of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, 15 U.S.C. 695 et seq.  The core mission of the 504 Loan Program is to provide long-term financing to small businesses for the purchase or improvement of land, buildings, and major equipment, to facilitate the creation or retention of jobs and to support local economic development.  Under the 504 Loan Program, loans are made in conjunction with private sector lenders to small businesses by CDCs, which are certified and regulated by the SBA to promote economic development within their community.

For questions about the 504 Loan Program, please contact:

Linda Reilly
Chief, 504 Loan Program
202-205-9949
Linda.reilly@sba.gov(link sends e-mail)       

Paycheck Protection Program Lending Window Closing

SBA Asks Lenders to Prioritize Underserved Communities

BY: SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator (acting) Steve Bulger

The last two weeks of the Paycheck Protection Program are upon us. The U.S. Small Business Administration continues to work with lenders to prioritize access to capital and loan forgiveness for those who qualify. Key to the success of this program is ensuring the cash infusion reaches all areas of our economy, including underserved borrowers such as socially and economically disadvantaged individuals, military veterans and their spouses, women, and rural communities.

SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza recently reached out to our lender network to ask them to redouble their efforts to assist underserved and disadvantaged businesses and nonprofits with PPP financing, thus allowing us to expand economic opportunity before the upcoming deadline of June 30, 2020. We’ve seen success in these areas thanks to the dedicated $10 billion of Round Two funding provided exclusively by Community Development Financial Institutions.

We recognize that SBA-approved PPP institutions like CDFIs, Minority Depository Institutions, Certified Development Companies, and Farm Credit System lenders are leading the way to serve individual entrepreneurs and small businesses in underserved communities. As it stands, SBA has already served more than 4.5M businesses and nonprofits through PPP, infusing more than $500B into the economy. Last week’s surprise drop in unemployment is a direct result of PPP keeping Americans on the payroll.

SBA is dedicated to sustaining our nation’s small businesses and retaining tens of millions of employees – a key priority for President Trump. With more than $100B still available, now is the perfect time for underrepresented small business owners to work with their preferred lender, or find a new lender at https://www.sba.gov/paycheckprotection/find  to apply for their own PPP loan to help their business and their employees survive and thrive.

SBA and Treasury Announce New PPP EZ Forgiveness Application

Revised Full Forgiveness Applications Also Available

WASHINGTON—Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, posted a revised, user-friendly Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness application implementing the PPP Flexibility Act of 2020. In addition to revising the full forgiveness application, the SBA also published a new “EZ” version of the forgiveness application applying to borrowers who:

  • Are self-employed and have no employees; OR
  • Did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%, and did not reduce the number or hours of their employees; OR
  • Experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19 and did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%

“This is great news for small businesses,” said SBA Regional Administrator Steve Bulger, who oversees agency operations in the Atlantic and Mid-Atlantic regions. “The EZ application requires fewer calculations and less documentation, which makes the process much less intimidating. I’m sure this will go a long way toward improving access and helping us distribute the remaining PPP appropriations to support small business owners and their employees.” 

Details regarding the applicability of these provisions are available in the instructions to the new EZ application form. Both applications give borrowers the option of using the original 8-week covered period (if their loan was made before June 5, 2020) or an extended 24-week covered period. These changes will result in a more efficient process and make it easier for businesses to realize full forgiveness of their PPP loan.

Click here to view the EZ Forgiveness Application.

Click here to view the Full Forgiveness Application.

New PPP Rules Changes Give Small Businesses More Options

Bipartisan PPP Flexibility Act Helps Small Businesses Recover from COVID-19

WASHINGTON –The recently enacted Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Flexibility Act provides additional clarity and flexibility for small business owners to meet the requirements of the PPP loan program created by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. When the President signed the bipartisan legislation into law, it gave more time and discretion for when and how the loans can be spent to keep employees on payroll and keep up with accounts payable to further assist the nation’s economy’s recovery from COVID-19.

To date the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program has provided more than 4.5 million small business well over $510 billion in potentially forgivable loans, directly ensuring 50 million American workers stay connected to their jobs.

“Small businesses and their advocates at all levels of government have spoken consistently about the PPP; it works and it’s a success,” said U.S. Small Business Administration Regional Administrator Steve Bulger, who oversees the agency’s operations in the Atlantic and Mid-Atlantic Regions. “As we continue to combat the Coronavirus, our small businesses needed more give when it comes to when, where and how to apply. The Flexibility Act puts the decision-making power in the hands of the business owners who know best how to keep their businesses afloat while serving their employees and their customers.”

The SBA will issue rules and guidance, a modified application form, and a modified loan forgiveness application implementing the following amendments:

  1. Extend the loan forgiveness period from eight to 24 weeks after loan disbursement. Borrowers who have already received PPP loans retain the option to use the eight-week covered period.
  2. Lower the forgiveness requirement for borrowers to use 75% of loan proceeds and loan forgiveness amount be used for payroll costs to 60 percent. If a borrower uses less than 60 percent for payroll, the borrower remains eligible for partial loan forgiveness.
  3. Provide loan forgiveness safe harbor based on reductions in full-time equivalent (FTE) employees for borrowers who are unable to return to the same level of business at which they were operating before February 15, 2020 due to compliance with COVID-19 requirements or guidance issued between March 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
  4. Provide loan forgiveness safe harbor based on reductions in FTE for borrowers unable to rehire employees or hire similarly qualified employees for unfilled positions by December 31, 2020.
  5. Increase to five years the maturity of PPP loans approved by SBA (based on the date SBA assigns a loan number) on or after June 5, 2020.
  6. Extend the deferral period for payments of principal, interest, and fees on PPP loans to the date that SBA remits the borrower’s loan forgiveness amount to the lender (or, if the borrower does not apply for loan forgiveness, 10 months after the end of the borrower’s loan forgiveness covered period).

Additionally, the new rules confirm that June 30, 2020 remains as the last date upon which a PPP loan application can be approved. More than $130B remains in available PPP funding as of June 4.

 

 

 

Top Regional SBA Official Discusses New NFIB PPP Survey

Steve Bulger Lauds Findings that SBA Assistance Helped Most Applicants

PHILADELPHIA – The small business advocacy association, National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB), recently released the results of a small business survey showing a positive impact by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Payroll Protection Program (PPP) in helping small businesses and non-profits during the challenges stemming from the Coronavirus pandemic.

The independent group’s survey finds that more than three-quarters of eligible businesses have applied for a PPP loan, and 93% of those received a loan. It also indicates the “vast majority of small business owners (67%) who have a PPP loan have found the loan ‘very helpful’ in financially supporting their business,” with another 14% reporting the PPP loan is “moderately helpful” and 11%, “somewhat helpful.” Only 2% say that the PPP loan was not at all helpful, and 7% said that it is too early to tell.

“The Paycheck Protection Program was created by the CARES Act to provide forgivable loans to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic to help pay the bills and keep employees on the payroll,” said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger, who oversees the agency’s operations in the Atlantic and Mid-Atlantic Regions. “The most recent SBA data show that 826,696 small businesses received $103,936,930,794 in the SBA’s Atlantic and Mid-Atlantic regions combined. This goes to show the PPP is going a long way to meet the demand of small businesses and their employees during this critical time.”

“The agency worked quickly with Treasury, SBA staff and SBA partner organizations helping lenders and small businesses understand the process of applying for a PPP loan and getting the money to pay their employees and creditors quickly, allowing them to stay in business while we ride out this pandemic,” he added. “There is still plenty of money in the PPP appropriation, and now is the time for any small business owner, who feels the program could help them, to contact a participating lender and apply.”

For information about SBA resources and services, visit: SBA.gov/coronavirus.

SBA and Treasury Department Announce $10 Billion for CDFIs to Participate in the Paycheck Protection Program

WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, announced $10 billion of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Round 2 funding will be lent exclusively by Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). CDFIs expand economic opportunity in low-income communities by providing financial products and services for residents and local businesses. These dedicated funds ensure PPP funds reach all communities in need of relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The forgivable loan program, PPP, is dedicated to providing emergency capital to sustain our nation’s small businesses, the drivers of our economy, and retain their employees– a key priority for President Trump,” said SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza. “CDFIs provide critically important capital and technical assistance to small businesses from rural, minority and other underserved communities, especially during this economically challenging time.”

“The PPP has helped over 50 million American workers stay connected to their jobs and over 4 million small businesses get much-needed relief,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.  “We have received bipartisan support for dedicating these funds for CDFIs to ensure that traditionally underserved communities have every opportunity to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before.”

The additional $10 billion in Round 2, combined with CDFI approvals of $3.8 billion in Round 1, ensures entrepreneurs and small business owners in all communities have easy access to the financial system, and receive much-needed capital to maintain their workforces.

“Providing American businesses with access to federally-guaranteed capital ensures underserved communities are not left out of our COVID-19 recovery, said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger. No longer will small business owners in underserved communities just hear about the money. With today’s action, more minority-owned small businesses will be able to access it to survive, thrive and support our economy.”

The PPP was created by the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) and provides forgivable loans to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic to keep their employees on the payroll. To date, more than 4.4 million loans have been approved for over $510 billion for small businesses across America. The SBA and the Treasury Department remain committed to ensuring eligible small businesses have the resources they need to get through this time.

SBA Launches National 2020 SBIR Road Tour to Connect Tech Entrepreneurs with Federal R&D Funding

WASHINGTON, D.C. –The U.S. Small Business Administration announced today the launch of its 17-state SBIR Road Tour. The Road Tour will stop at cities in the Southeast, Midwest, Rockies and the Central South.  It will connect entrepreneurs working on advanced technology to one of the country’s largest source of early stage funding – the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs.

  “SBA is focused on helping small businesses grow and expand. The $4 billion in federal early stage funding is often a critical piece to maturing an entrepreneur’s research idea into a product or service. The Road Tours bring the federal managers to the entrepreneur and target areas and individuals that are underrepresented when it comes to receiving federal R&D funding,” said SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza. “This tour reflects our continued commitment to ensure those innovators are aware of SBIR/STTR program resources.” 

This will be the sixth year of the SBIR Road Tour, led by the SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation together with 11 participating federal agencies.

NATIONAL SBIR ROAD TOUR SCHEDULE 2020:

The Southeast Tour will run from April 13-17, with stops in Richmond, Virginia; Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina; Columbia, South Carolina; and Atlanta/Athens, Georgia.

The Midwest Tour will run from June 1-5, with stops in Omaha, Nebraska; St. Louis, Missouri; Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, and Bloomington, Indiana.

The Rockies Tour will run from August 10-14, with stops in Bozeman, Montana; Idaho Falls, Idaho; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Laramie, Wyoming.

Finally, the Central Southern Tour will run from November 2-6, with stops in Jackson, Mississippi; Shreveport, Louisiana; Dallas, Texas; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; and Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Small technology firms, innovators, scientists or researchers seeking more information on the SBIR Road Tour, including a schedule of stops and participating agencies should visit: https://www.sbirroadtour.com/.

For more information about SBIR/STTR programs, please visit https://www.sbir.gov/ or follow us on Twitter.

Nearly $20B spent by Americans this Small Business Saturday®

American consumers spent $19.6 billion at independent retailers and restaurants on Small Business Saturday®, according to data released yesterday by American Express and the National Federation of Independent Businesses. Data show shoppers from coast to coast made a significant impact at small businesses during the 10th annual Small Business Saturday®, held November 30, 2019.  

Started by American Express in 2010 and co-sponsored by the U.S. Small Business Administration since 2015, Small Business Saturday® continues to provide small businesses and communities across the country with an economic boost to start the holiday shopping season. This year, consumer participation increased by six million (110 million in 2019 vs. 104 million in 2018) and brought an almost $2B increase in total amount spent ($19.6B estimated in 2019 compared to $17.8B in 2018).

“Small Business Saturday’s® success is proof of the economic benefits of shopping small. Seven in ten adults are conscious of the positive impact local small businesses have in their communities,” said the SBA’s acting Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger who oversees the federal agency’s operations in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, D.C., Maryland and Delaware.  Bulger also points to findings that 96% of survey respondents who shopped on Small Business Saturday® agree that shopping at small, independently-owned businesses supports their commitment to making purchases that have a positive social, economic and environmental impact.

In the Virginia-Richmond District Office, there are 745,886 small businesses employing 1.5 million people. The Virginia-Richmond District Office team members visited and shared valuable small business resource information with small business owners in the Richmond, Chesapeake and Fredericksburg areas.

“Small businesses are an integral part of Virginia’s economy and positive impact aggregately,” said Carl Knoblock, SBA Virginia-Richmond District Director.

Meanwhile, many shoppers using smartphones, spent $3.6 billion buying online from small businesses on Small Business Saturday®.  Adobe Analytics, which tracks online sales, says that’s up 18% from a year earlier.  Adobe reported holiday season sales are on track to grow 14.9% from 2018.  Small businesses have already garnered $68.2 billion in online sales from November 1 to November 30.

According to the survey, 97% of consumers who shopped on Small Business Saturday® agree that small businesses are essential to their community and 95% reported the day makes them want to shop or eat at small, independently-owned businesses all year long, not just during the holiday season. The SBA continues to inspire neighbors to make a conscious decision to Shop Small® year-round by recognizing their spending at local merchants and community businesses.

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SBA Celebrates Small Business Saturday in Communities across America

#ShopSmall on Saturday, November 30

WASHINGTON –U.S. Small Business Administration Acting Administrator Chris Pilkerton is encouraging Americans to support local communities by shopping at small businesses on Saturday, November 30. Celebrated each year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Small Business Saturday allows consumers to make a tremendous impact in their neighborhoods by supporting local small businesses. Last year, an estimated 104 million consumers nationwide “shopped small” on Small Business Saturday. 

“Supporting the local economy is the driving force behind Small Business Saturday, and every year the SBA has been proud to rally the community during this vibrant holiday shopping season event,” said Acting Administrator Chris Pilkerton. “The SBA helps empower America’s 30 million small businesses by providing them with tools they need to start, grow and expand during the holiday season and throughout the year.”

This year marks the tenth Small Business Saturday, an annual celebration of America’s small business community. Last year on Small Business Saturday, Americans spent a combined $17.8 billion at independent neighborhood retailers and restaurants.

Today, there are over 30 million small businesses in the United States. About half of all American workers are either employed by a small business or own a small business. And two out of three net new jobs are created by small businesses.  For more Small Business Saturday details, visit www.sba.gov/saturday.

Cosponsorship Authorization # 19-2050-93. SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.

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Shop Small® this Holiday Season with the Small Business Administration

Supporting Small Businesses Supports Our Communities

BY: SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator (acting) Steve Bulger

As the voice of our nation’s entrepreneurs, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) celebrates the 30 million small businesses igniting our economy and enriching our communities throughout the year. We are once again partnering with organizations across the country this holiday shopping season to celebrate Small Business Saturday® (the Saturday after Thanksgiving); a day to honor and support small businesses for all they contribute to our communities. 

Supporting America’s entrepreneurs can be as simple as “Shopping Small” at Main Street merchants, which create two out of three net new jobs in our communities. Your dollars make an impact. Last year, total reported spending among U.S. consumers who said they shopped at independent retailers and restaurants on the day reached a record high of $17.8 billion. Shoppers also turned out for online small businesses in 2018 – among consumers who said they participated on the day, 41% reported that they shopped small online on Small Business Saturday. This is positive news for all of us, especially during the holiday season, as Americans boost their local economies.

In so many ways, small businesses are the glue that holds our communities together. In addition to providing jobs and contributing to the local tax base, small businesses donate 250% more than larger businesses to local non-profits and community causes. Seventy five percent donate an average of 6% of their profits to charitable organizations annually. 81% of small businesses plan on giving back to their community in 2019.

Each small business typically has a list of different organizations and causes it donates to: 66% give to local charities, 48% support local youth organizations, 42% donate to local first responders… the list goes on. I encourage you to join me and more than 100 million Americans in shopping and dining small on Small Business Saturday® as you check off items on your holiday shopping list.

This year, to help bring attention to our locally owned retailers and restauranteurs, SBA is visiting neighborhoods near you. In Virginia, we’re visiting small businesses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Fredericksburg and the greater Richmond area providing tips and tricks for Small Business Saturday® through Nov 26th. Join us and meet with local business owners to highlight the impact their presence and your dollars have on making our Virginia communities a great place to live and shop.

Thank you for shopping small this holiday season. Let us know how you’re supporting your local entrepreneurs on Small Business Saturday by using #ShopSmall on social media as you go about your shopping. For more information, visit  www.sba.gov/saturday.

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SBA Announces Funding Competition to Organizations Providing Training to Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurs

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration today announced non-profit organizations, state and local agencies, and institutions of higher learning are eligible to compete for funding of up to $150,000 to deliver entrepreneurship training to service-disabled veterans.

Up to six awardees will use $300,000 in total funding to participate in the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program with grants from SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development. These funds will be used to cover the costs of educating service-disabled veterans planning to start a new business or expand and diversify existing small businesses.

“Despite challenges they may face, service-disabled veterans have pursued entrepreneurship and established successful companies nationwide,” said Larry Stubblefield, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development. “We look forward to working with the awardees to provide more service-disabled veterans and their families with the training and resources they need to start or grow a small business.”

Eligible organizations should submit applications for the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program funding opportunity only through Grants.gov . Applications not submitted via Grants.gov will not be evaluated. The submission deadline is Wednesday, July 24 at 11:59 p.m. EDT.

SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development hosts a conference call Thursday, July 11 at 2 p.m. EDT to answer questions related to the Service-Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program grant announcement. Please submit questions in advance to Jerry Godwin at jerry.godwin@sba.gov no later than Tuesday, July 9 at 4 pm. EDT.

The call-in number and access code are:

  • Call in number: (202) 765-1264
  • Conference ID: 13482739#

Information, including a transcript of the webinar once it is available, will be posted on grants.gov and www.sba.gov/ovbd.

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SBA Announces FY 2018 State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Awards

SBA Awards $18 Million to Expand Small Business Exporting

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that $18 million in funding has been awarded to 47 State international trade agencies through SBA’s competitive State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), to support export growth among U.S. small businesses.

STEP is designed to meet three distinctive goals: to increase the number of small businesses that export, to increase the value of exports for small businesses, and to increase the number of small businesses that explore significant new trade opportunities. Expanding the base of small business exporters and making the process as easy as possible is a key component of the Administration’s small business strategy.

“The SBA is committed to ensuring equal access for small businesses to international markets and expanding export opportunities, and ensuring small businesses have the resources they need to drive their businesses and local communities forward,” said SBA Administrator Linda McMahon. “The STEP awards are an important resource that provide small businesses with the confidence and funding they need to thrive in this competitive international market.”

Since the beginning of the STEP program seven years ago, approximately $138 million in grants have been awarded to fund export opportunities and increase the footprint of small businesses in countries all over the world.

“The 2018 STEP awards is a great opportunity for states to help small businesses with the information and tools they need to succeed in exporting,” said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian who oversees SBA programs in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, D.C. and Pennsylvania. “Assistance includes participation in foreign trade missions, foreign-market sales trips, and services provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce, as well as design of international marketing campaigns, export trade show exhibits, training workshops and more.”

STEP awards are managed and provided at the local level by state government organizations. The program is managed at the national level by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of International Trade.

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SBA Announces Decrease in Surety Bond Guarantee Fees

WASHINGTON –The U.S. Small Business Administration announces the first fee decrease in Surety Bond Guarantees in 12 years. The fee decrease will be in effect for guaranteed bonds approved during fiscal year 2019, taking effect October 1, 2018 and ending September 30, 2019.

The Surety Bond Guarantee (SBG) program is reducing the Surety fee from 26 percent to 20 percent of the bond premium charged to the small businesses and reducing its contractor fee from $7.29 per thousand dollars of the contract amount to $6.00 per thousand dollars of the contract amount.

“Reducing the SBG program fees will not only directly help small businesses, but also will incentivize surety companies and their agents to increase support for small businesses in the marketplace,” said Peter C. Gibbs, Acting Director of the Office of Surety Guarantees.

Under its SBG program, the SBA guarantees bid, payment and performance bonds for small and emerging contractors who cannot obtain surety bonds through regular commercial channels.  SBA guarantees contracts up to $10 million, including the streamlined QuickApp application for those up to $400,000.

“This is great news for America’s entrepreneurs,” said SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian. “Incentivizing sureties to provide bonding for small contractors improves access to contracts, which are often make-or-break opportunities in the life of a business.”

Currently, there are 34 participating sureties and over 350 active agents in the SBG program.  On average, completed surety bond applications are reviewed and processed in less than two days.
The program is currently outperforming its previous year results yielding 27,000 jobs supported, 3,000 final bonds, and $1.7 billion in final bond contract amounts in fiscal year 2018.

For more information about this decrease or further assistance, contact Jermanne Perry, Senior Management Analyst, Office of Surety Guarantees, (202) 401-8275; jermanne.perry@sba.gov, or your local SBA District Office.

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Small Businesses and Workers Benefiting from Tax Cuts

BY: SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Michelle Christian

President Donald J. Trump had taxpayers and small business owners in mind when he signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law December 22, 2017. The new law cut corporate tax rates from 35% to 21% for 2018 and lowered income tax at nearly all levels. Tax cuts for working families allow them to keep more of their hard-earned money and provide more opportunity for everyone to achieve the American dream.

Cutting back taxes for American business owners allows our nation of entrepreneurs to grow the economy from within while competing globally with international businesses interests. A lower tax rate opens the door to new and better opportunities. It also enables employers to reward their employees with higher wages, bonuses and better benefits, which frees up hard-earned capital for growth-minded businesspeople to reinvest in their companies by hiring more workers, buying better equipment, and building new facilities.

The new tax cuts are applied nearly across the board, but with emphasis on businesses that are key to stimulating economic growth as a benefit to the whole country. Lower taxes mean more of our own money is free for us to grow and create jobs ourselves. When we pocket more of our salaries and more of our business profits, we are more likely to spend that “newfound” money, which continues to bolster the economy so we all benefit from this increase in our “bottom line.” As I travel across SBA’s Mid-Atlantic Region to speak with business owners, they tell me they are using these tax savings to reinvest in themselves, and their communities.

As a direct result of the new tax law, Dollar Bank in Pittsburgh earlier this year announced $2,000 permanent raises for their employees making $60,000 or less per year – about 60% of their 1,300-person workforce. NexTier Bank in Butler, Pennsylvania paid out $1,000 bonuses for all employees and is using their tax cuts to fund tuition reimbursement, on-the-job training and wage raises for hourly employees.

Please be sure to think ahead about how this tax relief law affects you and your community. Look over the new tax rules with your accountant if you use one, or speak to one of the thousands of SBA-sponsored SCORE mentors or with your local Small Business Development Center for advice on the next steps for your small business. Take advantage of the extra money in your pocket and reinvest in yourselves, your business, and your country. We have a great opportunity to once again prove what small businesses can do for the economy when we remove barriers to their success.

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