As New Yorkers try to move on from the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, and businesses try to reboot their lost sales and look ahead to a brighter future, New York State has launched a new program aimed at getting small businesses back on their feet.

Dubbed the New York State COVID-19 Small Business Recovery Grant Program, New York’s program offers approximately $800 million in grant money to qualified small businesses that can demonstrate a loss in revenue and need for the funds.

Below, we outline the key points of the program, how to qualify, and where to apply. As always, contact your Perlson LLP professional at 516-541-0022 to determine whether you qualify and how you can benefit.

Who qualifies for the grant program?

In order to qualify for the grant program, companies must:

• Have had annual revenue of between $25,000 and $500,000 in 2019 or 2020
• Had a profit of at least $1 in 2019
• Demonstrated a 25% year-over-year loss in Annual Gross Receipts in 2020, compared to 2019
• Prove that total business expenses in 2020 exceed their total allowable grant amount
• Not have received grant assistance under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, including PPP. However, applicants can still qualify if their PPP loan amount was $100,000 or less, they received an EIDL grant of $10,000 or less, they received an EIDL Supplemented Targeted Advance Grant of $5,000 or less, or received an SBA Shuttered Venues Operators Grant
• Submit a formal certification with New York State.

Who is ineligible for the program?

Any business that doesn’t meet the aforementioned guidelines is banned from participating in the grant program. Additionally, the following businesses will not qualify, regardless of whether they meet the eligibility requirements outlined above:

• Landlords and passive real estate businesses
• Businesses that received awards from the SBA Restaurant Revitalization Grant Program
• Non-Profits, Churches and other religious institutions
• Government-owned entities or elected official offices
• Businesses primarily engaged in political or lobbying activities
• Illegal businesses or enterprises
• Other industry or business types as specified by Empire State Development

How much grant money will be given?

Once eligible companies apply for the grant and are approved for funding, they’ll receive an amount based on their annual gross receipts. Here’s the breakdown:

• $5,000 for a business with annual gross receipts of between $25,000 and $49,999.99;
• $10,000 for a business with annual gross receipts of between $50,000 and $99,999.99;
• 10% of gross receipts if annual gross receipts ranged between $100,000 and $500,000:

Under the program, the maximum grant amount per business is $50,000.

How can the grant money be used?

Once companies receive the grant money, they can only use it for the payment, or repayment, of expenses, losses, or obligations incurred between March 1, 2020 and April 1, 2021. Those include:

• Payroll
• Commercial rent or mortgage payments for New York-based property
• Payment of local property or school taxes
• Insurance
• Utility expenses
• Costs of personal protection equipment (PPE)
• Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) costs
• Other machinery or equipment costs
• Supplies and materials necessary for compliance with COVID-19 health and safety protocols
• Other documented COVID-19 costs as approved by Empire State Development

What are the ineligible uses of the grant money?

Although other uses of funds is prohibited, it’s worth noting that New York State has explicitly said that grant money cannot be used to repay or pay down loans obtained through a federal COVID-19 relief package.

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