COVID-19 Business News
Franchot Extends State Income Tax Filing Deadline

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot recently announced that the state income tax filing deadline for Marylanders has been extended by three months to July 15, 2021.

This extension is due to state and federal legislation related to 2020 tax filings and economic relief for taxpayers impacted by COVID-19. The extension applies to individual, pass-through fiduciary and corporate income tax returns and no interest or penalties will be assessed if returns are filed and taxes owed are paid by the new deadline.

Those who claim the Earned Income Tax Credit, which is designed to benefit low-to-moderate income working taxpayers, will have the adjustments automatically made to their filings. For taxpayers who already have submitted their returns, those refunds will begin to be processed on April 15 with no further action required by the taxpayer.

The Comptroller’s Office says it will notify the public when new tax forms are available on its website and social media accounts. Taxpayers with questions about RELIEF Act provisions can contact reliefact@marylandtaxes.gov and people with general tax questions can email taxhelp@marylandtaxes.gov.

Read the announcement here.
IRS Extends Federal Individual Tax Return Deadline

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has extended the filing deadline for the 2020 tax year for federal individual income tax returns from April 15 to May 17, 2021. The federal extension does not apply to estimated tax payments due on April 15, 2021.

Individual taxpayers do not need to file any forms or contact the IRS to qualify for the federal extension; it will apply automatically for all taxpayers. As always, individual taxpayers who need additional time to file beyond the May 17 deadline can request a further extension until October 15 by filing Form 4868 through their tax professional, tax software or using the Free File link on IRS.gov. Filing Form 4868 does not grant an extension of time to pay taxes due. Taxpayers should pay their federal income tax due by May 17, 2021, to avoid interest and penalties.

Read the announcement here.
Updates to the RELIEF Act of 2021

The bipartisan Relief Act of 2021 was signed into law on February 15, 2021, and includes more than $1 billion in tax relief and economic stimulus for struggling families and small businesses who are suffering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Maryland Department of Commerce will provide funding through six new programs targeting specific groups of businesses, three of which will be administered by Commerce, which expects to accept applications from March 30, 2021, to April 6, 2021.

Programs Administered through Commerce:
  • Small Business COVID RELIEF Grant Program: $10 million in state RELIEF Act funding towards supporting Maryland’s small businesses facing financial impact from the coronavirus. 

  • Small, Minority and Women Owned Business Administration COVID RELIEF Program: $10 million in state RELIEF Act funding towards supporting Maryland’s small, minority, and women owned businesses facing financial impact from the coronavirus.

  • Commuter and Shuttle Bus COVID RELIEF Grant Program: $8 million in state RELIEF Act funding to support Maryland commuter and shuttle bus companies facing continued financial impacts from the coronavirus.

Programs Administered through Counties and Baltimore City:
  • Online Sales and Telework Assistance COVID RELIEF Grant Program: $500,000 million in state Relief Act funding to support Maryland small businesses seeking to expand online sales and teleworking capabilities for their employees due to the continued financial impacts from the coronavirus.

  • Restaurant and Caterers COVID RELIEF Grant Program: $22 million to the local jurisdictions to provide relief for economically disadvantaged restaurants in their areas.

  • Lodging and Accommodations COVID RELIEF Grant Program: $10 million to the local jurisdictions to provide relief for economically disadvantaged lodging and accommodation businesses in their areas. 

As available, links to county websites with details for applying for these programs will be posted to the Maryland COVID-19 Information for Business website (under “local programs”).

Funding is extremely limited and may ultimately result in approval on a first-come, first-served basis. The application process will be open for a limited period, and Commerce anticipates substantial interest in these programs. We encourage you to apply as soon as applications become available. 

Additional information found here.
IRS Extends Employee Retention Credit

The IRS has extended the Employee Retention Credit (ERC) for an additional six months through June 30, 2021, making it easier for businesses to keep employees on their payroll during the health crisis. The legislation was also updated to allow employers who received PPP loans to claim the ERC for wages that are not treated as payroll costs in obtaining forgiveness of the PPP loan.

Read more about the wage qualifications and details here: COVID Tax Credit Law Extension.
Maryland Coronavirus Information for Businesses

For a comprehensive list of various federal, state, and local financial assistance, read here.
April Events
Link In to LinkedIn: A Guide to Grow Your Business

As worldwide social media use climbed during the pandemic, LinkedIn saw new records of growth and engagements.

Join the Chamber for Link In to LinkedIn Panel Discussion to learn how to tap into that growth and use it to build your online brand, effectively engage your target audience, and utilize tools like ProFinder to grow your business.

Panelists include:
- Adam Lowe, Peak Performance Digital
- Brian Loebig, Loebig Ink, LLC
- Mark DeVito, Beyond Definition

Tuesday, April 13
11 a.m. to 12 noon
Join the Chamber for a virtual joint networking event with the Rockville Chamber of Commerce.

Thursday, April 22
5 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Latest News
Laughs, Connections at Chamber After Hours
Hailed as "one of the best Zooms" members have attended all year, a big thank you goes to Improbable Comedy for bringing the laughter and high energy to make last Wednesday's After Hours memorable! Members enjoyed the comedic stylings of Anthony Oaks, Simone, Blaire Postman, and Yasmin Elhady in between networking with peers in breakout rooms.

Thank you to Print Exhibit PARTNERS for sponsoring. GSSCC hopes to see everyone at the next networking event.
* A Wider Circle has received 3,000 XL Twin mattresses from various colleges and is collecting sheets to go with them. Gently used XL Twin sheets can be dropped off at the Center (9159 Brookville Road) or new ones can be purchased through Amazon here and be delivered directly to the center. Questions can be sent to Pam at pam@awidercircle.org.

* Students aged 15 and above are invited to join Montgomery Community Media for “Live Video Streaming 101 with Stan ‘Substantial’ Robinson,” a four-week course on how to find and use Open Broadcasting Software (OBS), how to optimize video and audio presentation, and what platforms are best when choosing to launch a live stream broadcast. Course begins Tuesday, April 6, and ends Tuesday, April 27. Read here for registration details.

* Join Improbable Comedy for Stand Up Silver Spring: Stay at Home Edition Comedy on Thursday, March 25, at 8:30 p.m. This show is presented on Zoom and features comedians: Reem Seliem, Abby Mello, Jani Tillery, and Robert Mac. For tickets and more information, read here.

* On Saturday, April 24th, SEEC will host “A Night of Stars Gala 2021,” a virtual event to celebrate the people it supports with intellectual and developmental disabilities, staff, community partners, and employer partners. Read here for event details and sponsorship opportunities.

See your company's news here! Send us your news releases and news items by noon on Friday for publication in the following Monday's edition. Click here for guidelines on submitting Member News.
Upcoming Committee/Network Meetings

* Membership Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Tuesday, March 23.

* Economic Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Wednesday, March 24.

* Small Business Owners Network Virtual Meeting - 12 noon on Thursday, April 1. Topic: When and How to Explore New Markets. (Advance registration required here.)

* Non-Profit Team Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Tuesday, April 13.
OUR MISSION:
Working to enhance the economic prosperity of greater Silver Spring through robust promotion of 
our member businesses and unrelenting advocacy 
on their behalf.
Thank you to our 2019-2020 GSSCC Partners

Corporate Partners - Downtown Silver Spring; Lee Development Group; Montgomery College; Joseph W. McCartin Insurance;
Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center

 Business Partners - Andalman & Flynn, AFI Silver Theatre; Apex Home 
Loans; Atlantech Online; Digital Industry; EagleBank; Holy Cross Hospital; The Fillmore Silver Spring; Lerch, Early & Brewer Chtd.; United Therapeutics Corporation; Washington Property Company.

 Partners - Peak Performance Digital; Bell Flowers; EBA Ernest Bland Associates; Image360.
Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce
8601 Georgia Avenue Suite 203
301-565-3777
info@gsscc.org