Congress Passes a $900 Billion Stimulus Package to Help Struggling Businesses and Individuals
The Federal Government has passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, in an effort to provide further assist struggling businesses and individuals hardest hit by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Highlights of the Bill

  • $284 billion in new funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). This funding will be available for first time applicants, and also businesses that have previously received PPP funds, that continue to experience severe revenue reductions. The Bill also ensures tax deductibility for business expenses paid with forgiven Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, provides fresh PPP funding, makes Sec. 501(c)(6) not-for-profit organizations eligible for loans for the first time, and codifies federal rules to ensure that churches and faith-based organizations are eligible for PPP loans.

  • $15 billion in funding for entertainment venues, movie theaters, and museums that are experiencing significant revenue loss

  • $13 billion to support our farmers and agriculture sector


Other Provisions in the Bill

  • $20 billion for purchase of vaccines that will make the vaccine available at no charge for anyone who needs it

  • $8 billion for vaccine distribution

  • $20 billion to assist states with testing

  • $20 billion distribution from existing provider relief fund

  • Ends CARES Act emergency powers for the Federal Reserve

  • Stimulus checks -- $600 for both adults and dependents

  • Temporarily extends a number of unemployment programs created by CARES Act that expire Dec. 31, 2020

  • Provide unemployed individuals an additional $300 per week for 10 weeks from December 26, 2020-March 14, 2021

  • Extends and phases-out Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which is a temporary federal program covering self-employed and gig workers, to March 14(after which no new applicants) through April 5, 2021

  • $4 billion for substance abuse – significant progress made over past several years on opioid addiction has been reversed because of impact of COVID lockdowns

  • $82 billion in funding for schools and universities to assist with reopening for in-person learning that also includes $2.75 billion in designated funds for private K through 12 education

  • $10 billion for grants to childcare centers to help providers safely reopen

  • $25 billion in temporary and targeted rental assistance for individuals who lost their source of income during the pandemic

  • Extends the eviction moratorium until January 31, 2021

  • $7 billion in broadband funding

  • Increases SNAP benefits by 15% for six months, but does not expand eligibility, and requires the Secretary to issue a report on redemption rate and unexpended balances

  • Provides funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, a program that serves over 700,000 older Americans monthly

  • Enhances assistance under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) to support specialty crop, non-specialty crop, livestock, dairy, and poultry producers

  • Gives discretionary authority to the Secretary to support producers of biofuels, producers of organics or value-added products, and timber harvesting and hauling businesses

  • Additional funding is directed to programs that support local producers and new and beginning farmers, dairy producers, dairy processors via reimbursement for donated dairy products, fisheries, textile mills, agricultural research, small and medium size meat processors, and to state departments of agriculture for farm stress programs

Further details of the Bill are still being unveiled. We will continue to update you and provide you with links to important information and applications as they become available.

As always, the NCCC Small Business Development Center is a great resource. Their business specialists are very knowledgeable and are ready to assist. You can reach the NCCC SBDC at sbdc@niagaracc.suny.edu or by calling (716) 210-2515
Stay engaged to Keep Up to Date on the Latest Developments

Continue to look for emails from our office in the coming days and weeks updating you on the latest reopening news and what assistance is available to help you through this difficult time. Our staff is working hard to compile a complete list of guidelines, safety protocols and programs that are available. We will also share upcoming webinars and training that you can participate in to assist with your reopening. To learn more, be sure to visit our website and bookmark it. Once there, look for the COVID-19 tab.

Sincerely,

Niagara County Center for Economic Development
(716) 278-8750