Resources for Businesses
We are working with many businesses on Cape Cod to prepare applications for all the assistance programs available. Information on these programs is becoming available each day, and we will continuously update this site with the latest information.
UPDATE: June 26, 2020
PPP Loan Forgiveness Updates as of June 26, 2020
The following information is for PPP Loan Borrowers. You should have also received this via email this week. If, for some reason, you did not receive the email, please contact your relationship manager as soon as possible.
SBA Application for Loan Forgiveness
The SBA has not released the final version of the PPP Application for Forgiveness. On a daily basis we’re seeing rule changes, clarifications on processing applications and how lenders are to upload applications to the SBA. As of today, the SBA has not finalized how they will accept forgiveness applications from lenders.
Until these details are finalized by the SBA, we cannot in good faith accept applications that may need to be altered.
Online Applications Only
We have invested in technology to make it as easy as possible for you to complete the SBA Loan Forgiveness Application online, submit the proper documentation, and for the Bank to review and submit to the SBA. We will accept applications only through our online application portal, which will be made available once the SBA finalizes the application and process.
Apply Only When Documentation is Complete
With PPP Forgiveness, you have time to gather documentation. We will send you a checklist and worksheet in the coming weeks listing exactly what documentation will be needed as required by the SBA.
We will update you when we know more about the forgiveness process from the SBA. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your Commercial Relationship Manager or Branch Manager – Small Business Specialist.
UPDATE: June 25, 2020
We have been notified by the Federal Reserve Bank that there is currently a shortage of rolled coin. Although we are continuing to order rolled coin for our business clients, those orders are expected to be delayed and will arrive based on availability. We are monitoring updates issued by the Federal Reserve Bank, and will provide updates here.
UPDATE: June 22, 2020
A Note to PPP Borrowers:
We will be taking applications for forgiveness online only once it is available. We will be communicating directly via email to those who have applied for an SBA PPP loan through The Coop. Check back here for the latest updates or reach out to your Commercial Relationship Manager or Branch Manager – Small Business Specialist with questions.
You may apply for PPP loan forgiveness once 56 days has elapsed after your loan was funded and you have been provided the forgiveness application link. Our online process for applying for PPP Loan Forgiveness will be deployed soon, and you will receive an email directly from The Coop with the link and instructions to apply. We will send more information, including documentation you should have ready, a template to help you fill out the application, and other helpful information to make the process as smooth as possible. We strongly encourage that you only apply for forgiveness once you have all the necessary documentation gathered. Allowing enough time to pass for necessary tax filings to take place, or statements to be generated, that include the covered period and evidence the qualified expenditures, is important to ensure a smooth and timely forgiveness application process for you, the Bank, and the SBA. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your Commercial Relationship Manager or Branch Manager – Small Business Specialist. We’re here to help.
On Friday, June 5th, the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act was enacted, allowing several modifications to the PPP Loan Forgiveness rules and greater flexibility for borrowers to achieve forgiveness.
- The forgiveness application process for PPP Loan Borrowers at The Coop will be handled exclusively online through a link the Bank will provide to borrowers via email. PPP Borrowers seeking to apply for loan forgiveness should not submit a paper or imaged application.
- The 8-week Covered Period has been extended to 24 weeks, but not beyond December 31, 2020, although borrowers may choose to keep the original 8-week period.
- Previously, it was required that PPP funds be spent on eligible payroll expenses equal to at least 75% of the loan amount for full loan forgiveness. This requirement has been dropped to 60%. If the borrower uses less than 60% of the loan amount for payroll costs during the forgiveness period, the PPP borrower will continue to be eligible for partial loan forgiveness.
- Borrowers can use the 24-week period to restore their workforce and wages back to pre-pandemic levels. The deadline to complete restoration has been extended from June 30th to December 31st, 2020.
- Those who haven’t applied for the PPP now have up to 5 years to repay their PPP loan (previously 2 years). Current PPP borrowers can extend their repayment period (for any remaining loan portion that is not forgiven) to 5 years by contacting their Relationship Manager. The interest rate remains at 1%. A modification document will be required.
- The total amount of the loan has not changed. While businesses will have more time to spend the money, the amount of money businesses can apply for is still calculated as 2.5 times its average monthly payroll.
- The program now has a firm date under which small businesses need to apply for PPP loan forgiveness — it must be within 10 months of the end of their covered spending period, whether that is 8 weeks or 24 weeks. Any unforgiven amounts after that convert to a loan.
- PPP Loan holders are now eligible to delay payment of their payroll taxes.
- June 30th remains the deadline for applying for a PPP Loan.
The earliest possible date applicants can apply for PPP loan forgiveness is 56 days after your loan was funded. In the meantime, the best thing you can do to prepare for, and maximize forgiveness, is:
- Keep careful records of all eligible payroll expenses as well as eligible non-payroll expenses (mortgage interest, rent, and utilities);
- Do not spend PPP funds on anything other than payroll and other eligible expenses (the latter cannot be more than 40% of loan amount);
- Know that unspent PPP loan funds that cannot be justified for forgiveness, can be repaid without penalty.
- Review these tips to make applying for the SBA PPP Loan Forgiveness Application smooth and efficient:
- Business Name – Make sure your business name on the forgiveness application matches your original PPP 2483 application form exactly. Differences like “LLC, “Inc,” and “&” instead of “and” can cause issues in forgiveness processing.
- Disbursement Date – Be sure to fill in the correct disbursement date on the forgiveness application. The disbursement date is the date your loan was funded. This date is different from the date your loan application was submitted or approved.
- Covered Period vs. Alternative Payroll Covered Period – You can choose between a “Covered Period” which is a 24 week period immediately following the disbursement of PPP funds or an “Alternative Payroll Covered Period” also a 24 week period which may be a more convenient choice to align with your business’s payroll schedule, starting on the first pay period. Whichever period is selected, must be consistently used throughout the forgiveness application.
- Payroll Costs – You’ll need to calculate vacation pay, parental/family leave, sick leave, and other health benefits (excluding any employee contributions) for the same period. Payroll costs are considered incurred on the day the an employee’s pay is earned, and paid on the day the paychecks are distributed.
- Mortgage Interest, Rent, Utilities, and Transportation – These expenses that were incurred prior to Feb. 15th, are to be calculated during the Covered Period.
- EIDL Advance Amounts – You must include Emergency Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance Amounts as well as the EIDL application number on the form.
To make it easier for businesses to apply, we’ve streamlined the process and now you can apply online!
Applicants can now apply directly to The Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod, through our online application. Please review the PPP documents below before submitting your application:
- Small Business PPP Overview – Click Here to Download
- PPP Interim Final Rules – as of April 3, 2020 – Click Here to Download
- PPP FAQ – https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/cares/assistance-for-small-businesses
- Employer’s Federal Tax Return (Quarterly or Annual) – IRS 941 or IRS W3
- Sole Proprietorships please have your Schedule C available
Please note: If you have already submitted an application, please do not re-enter an online application. Only online applications will be accepted.
Governor Baker announced the state of Massachusetts will begin reopening the economy in a four-phase approach. Phase one started Monday, May 18th with the reopening of limited industries. Phase two started Monday, June 8th with the reopening of retail stores, outdoor dining, libraries, and other sectors.
- For more information on sector specific protocols, visit: https://www.mass.gov/resource/reopening-sector-specific-protocols-and-best-practices
- For more information on the safety standards that have been released to aid workplaces in planning and preparing for reopening, visit: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/reopening-mandatory-safety-standards-for-workplaces
Additional Reopening Resources:
- Industry-Specific Reopening Guidelines – https://www.backtoworksafely.org/
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Ready to Reopen Playbook – Click Here to Download
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Standardized Employee Screening Questionnaire – Click Here to Download
- Cape Cod Reopening Task Force – https://www.reopeningcapecod.org/
- Cape Cod Reopening Task Force print ready signage – https://www.reopeningcapecod.org/print-ready-posters
For more information, check the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce website, https://www.capecodchamber.org/members/public-policy-and-advocacy/covid-19/
While there has been much in the news regarding the SBA’s loan programs, there are other provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) and Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (FFCRA) to assist businesses and their employees. These two acts provide businesses access to an employee retention tax credit and a tax credit for required paid leave. It is important to note the same wages cannot be counted for both credits but many business on Cape Cod are eligible for one of the programs. Please discuss these tax credit options with your accountant before deciding which option is right for you, if applicable.
The CARES Act is designed to encourage Eligible Employers to keep employees on their payroll, despite experiencing economic hardship related to COVID-19, with an employee retention tax credit. There are specific guidelines and requirements, please visit the IRS Basic FAQs that covers which employers are eligible, limits, and documentation to keep for your 2020 tax filing. Visit https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/employee-retention-credit for more information.
The FFCRA requires certain employers to pay sick or family leave wages to employees who are unable to work or telework due to certain circumstances related to COVID-19. Employers are entitled to a refundable tax credit for the required leave paid, up to specified limits. For example, if an employee works 24 hours due to school or daycare closures, or taking care of a family member or have Coronavirus themselves, employers can pay 2/3 of their employees’ pay under the new FFCRA and receive a tax credit for those wages. Visit https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employee-paid-leave for more information.
For businesses and nonprofit organizations that have been impacted financially by the Coronavirus, there are currently 2 programs available with the passage of the CARES Act, both of which are processed through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).
1. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) up to $10 million
2. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) up to $2 million
The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program is accepting applications from Massachusetts businesses and nonprofit organizations. The application is available online with Eligibility Verification being the first step.
EIDL Application Process:
The application process is completed online directly through the SBA. Visit https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
Your Banker is Available
As your business partner, we are here to help. Please reach out to your Commercial Relationship Manager, your Branch Manager – Small Business Specialist, or any of us here at The Coop if you need to speak to someone directly about your business banking or help you navigate the information below. If you would like to submit an inquiry online, you may Contact a Small Business Specialist and a banker will get back to you as soon as we are able.
Additionally, for any transaction related questions, our Customer Assistance Center is available to help our customers. Reach us during normal business hours at 508.568.3400 or toll free at 800.641.1100.
- CARES Act: With the passage of the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act) on Friday, March 27, we will now have more tools in our toolbox to help business customers navigate the various options available to them for payment relief and disaster recovery loans. The Coop has been designated as a Preferred Lender by the U.S. SBA, which means we will be able to move quickly for applicants once guidelines are defined and provided for the CARES Act. Please contact our Commercial Team or your Commercial Relationship Manager to get started.
- Disaster Loan Assistance: If you’re experiencing financial hardship, the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program is accepting applications from Massachusetts businesses and nonprofit organizations. For more information and to apply online, visit https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
- SBA Guide for Businesses: The U.S. Small Business Administration has developed a resource page for businesses in order to “maintain the safety, security, and health of the American people.” This resource page contains information on recommendations and guidance for businesses and employers to plan and respond to Coronavirus. Topics include: how to respond, preventing stigma related to COVID-19, prevention, workforce capacity, inventory and supply chain shortfalls, and more. Visit the SBA Guidance on Coronavirus for additional information.
Massachusetts Small Business Tax Relief
The Baker-Polito Administration announced administrative tax relief measures for small local businesses which have been impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, especially in the restaurant and hospitality sectors. This tax relief includes postponing the collection of regular sales tax, meals tax, and room occupancy taxes that would be due in March, April and May so that they will instead be due on June 20. Additionally, all penalties and interest that would otherwise apply will be waived. For more information, visit https://www.mass.gov/news/baker-polito-administration-makes-new-announcements-on-childcare-small-business-tax-relief-and
Locally, the Cape Cod & the Islands chapter of SCORE has a resource page that includes a Communications Planning Checklist and other preparedness resources. Visit SCORE Cape Cod & Islands Coronavirus preparation tips.
Chambers of Commerce
The local Chambers of Commerce have shared information to their memberships. They will continue to be a great resource for local information and we encourage you to reach out to them with any specific questions about local preparation.