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COVID-19 Business Updates for North Dakota and Minnesota Businesses

April 27, 2020 | Bylgnelson| News

As our regional community continues to navigate the changing business landscape during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, we are making sure we are up-to-date on all the resources available to your business. We are also communicating with our local, state and federal leaders to be aware of programming coming online and to help inform them of any gaps.

Below, we have highlighted some of the most recent programs available in North Dakota, Minnesota and at the national level. Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns and as always when trying to access these programs, it’s important to go to your lender.

Looking for info on the most recent ND programs?

Governor Burgum’s administration has been working hard to listen to communities and businesses throughout North Dakota to identify gaps in financing and resources. The Bank of North Dakota released two new business financing programs:

The COVID-19 PACE Recovery Program (CPRP) will provide a loan of up to $5 million for businesses of less than 500 employees and a loan of up to $10 million for businesses with more than 500 employees. Loan payments may be deferred for up to six months, at which time the loan will term out with up to a 10-year amortization. The interest rate on the loan will be bought down by BND to 1% for a period of time, with a maximum buydown of $500,000. Business owners will access the program through their local lender. Unlike other PACE program offerings from BND, there is no community match required.

The Small Employer Loan Fund (SELF) will provide a loan of up to $50,000 to small businesses with a full-time employee equivalent (FTE) of 10 employees or less. These loans may be used for working capital, recurring expenses and replenishing inventory. Business owners will work with their local lender to access the program. The loan has a maximum term of 10 years and a fixed interest rate of 1%, with deferral of loan payments for up to six months.

More information on North Dakota Financial Assistance Programs.

https://ndresponse.gov/covid-19-resources/covid-19-business-and-employer-resources/financial-resources

Looking for info on the most recent MN programs?

Governor Walz recently issued Executive Order 20-40, which provides a limited first step in the process of safely returning to work, beginning only with workers at non-Critical Sector industrial, manufacturing and office-based businesses that are non-customer facing.

EO 20-40, developed in consultation with thousands of business leaders, labor leaders, and public health experts, will allow around 20,000 businesses and roughly 80,000 – 100,000 workers to go back to work beginning on Monday, April 27.

In order to reopen, EO 20-40 requires these business to do three things:

  1. Create and share with their employees a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that explains the actions they are taking to ensure social distancing and keep workers safe. The Department of Labor and Industry has created a template plan, which is optional for businesses to use as a starting point.
  2. Engage in health screening of employees each day at arrival
  3. Continue to use telework whenever possible

For more information about EO 20-40, including what it means for businesses and workers and a number of FAQs and additional information, please visit https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/covid/safework/.

For more information on Minnesota Financial Assistance programs, go the link below:

https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/covid/employers/small-business-help/

Looking for info on the Payroll Protection Program?

Recently, President Trump signed legislation providing $484 billion to replenish a popular small business lending program and support hospitals and COVID-19 testing amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The measure includes an additional $310 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), $60 billion of which is reserved for community banks and small lenders; $75 billion for hospitals; $25 billion to support testing efforts; and $60 billion for emergency disaster loans and grants.

At this time additional funding has been authorized for the program. We recommend you contact your local lender immediately to begin processing your application.

Looking for info on Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program (EIDL)?

The new bill has also added $50 billion in additional funding to SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), plus an additional $10 Billion for $10,000 advance grants.

Businesses located in all counties in North Dakota and Minnesota can apply at  https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

Here’s key information you need to know about EIDL:

Who can apply?
In order to be eligible, you must be a small business (500 employees or less).  As a small business, small agricultural cooperative, small business engaged in aquaculture, or private non-profit organization you may borrow up to $2 million for Economic Injury.

How to Apply?
While paper applications are accepted, filing electronically is easier, faster and more accurate. https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela

How can the loan be used?
The loans are for working capital which includes fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that can’t be paid due to the disaster’s impact. It does not cover lost sales.

To help support the small business community, SBA has created a small business resource page dedicated to COVID-19 at SBA.gov/Coronavirus. Here you will find CDC requirements for small businesses, how to access SBA loan products outside of EIDL and much, much more. 

Local SBA Resource Partners include: 
ND Small Business Development Centers (Fargo service center)
West Central MN Small Business Development Center (Moorhead)
ND Women’s Business Center (WBC)
SCORE Fargo Chapter.

Also, please see an explanation of the program here: Three_Step_Process_SBA_Disaster_Loans.pdf