In 2021, scores of restaurants around the nation missed out on $28.6 billion in much needed aid from the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF). The tables have turned and restaurants have another shot at assistance from the program after the House of Representatives passed a bill last Thursday. While this is groundbreaking news, the bill faces great resistance as it heads to the Senate.
If passed by the Senate, the bill would immediately inject $42 billion to the fund that currently sits empty. It would be enough to cover all of those grants (177,000 restaurants) that were put on hold due to the program running out of money in less than a month last spring.
For those restaurant owners that did not apply for the RRF during the first initial wave, should the bill pass, an additional $13 billion would be set aside for said ailing small businesses. Rep. Earl Blumenauer made it clear that those who did not apply would also be taken care of and not left out to dry. Restaurants just now applying would be going up against other applicants such as concert halls, gyms, and other hard-pressed enterprises.
As it stands, things remain uncertain. The bill will not be taken up by the Senate until it returns from a recess in two weeks. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) personally assured that the act would most definitively be put to a floor vote.
Have you taken advantage of the Employee Retention Credit (ERC)? Additional relief.
This is a lesser known payroll tax credit that is worth up to $26,000 per employee that was kept on payroll in 2020 and/or 2021. The tax credit is an effective cash refund on payroll taxes you already paid, plus any computed surplus. There are scores of employers around the country that have yet to tap into the covid-19 relief. Some employers simply do not know that the incentive exists. Whereas others have prematurely determined that they do not qualify for the credit based on outdated guidelines that no longer apply to their enterprise. Whatever the case, there is a good chance that your business qualifies for the ERC if it was impacted in a negative way due to the pandemic.
Employers, including organizations that are tax-exempt, are eligible for the credit if they were in operation during the calendar year 2020 and experienced either:
- partial/full shutdown due to government mandates and restrictions
- supply chain interruptions and delays
- inability to work with vendors either domestically or internationally
- capacity limitations due to social distancing (i.e., restaurants operating at 50%)
- a drop in product or service output due to the pandemic (i.e., manufacturers' throughput diminished)
- reduced hours of operation due to government mandate
- required sanitation/cleaning protocol due to government mandate
If you own a restaurant or bar, you automatically qualify for the Employee Retention Credit. Do not leave tens of thousands of dollars and in some cases, hundreds of thousands of dollars on the table.
ERT Credit has calculated the ERC credit for hundreds of employers across the country and continues to actively process both computations and amended returns for employers. Click here to reach out to us for more information.