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President Signs COVID-19 Stimulus Package

President Signs Stimulus Package with Aid for Businesses and Workers 
President Trump signed into law the largest U.S. stimulus package ever to help provide economic relief to businesses and workers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The following items are among the aid included in the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) Act:

For small businesses (those with less than 500 employees), 501(c)3s, independent contractors and sole proprietors 

  • Payroll Protection Program offering loans equal to two and half months of payroll, up to $10 million. The loans would convert to grants if businesses use them to maintain employees, and they may also be used to rehire staff. Businesses, even without a personal guarantee or collateral, can receive loans as long as they were operational on Feb. 15, 2020, and will be able to apply through local and national lenders.

For individuals 

  • Extension of unemployment insurance by 13 weeks.
  • Unemployment benefit increase of $600 per week for four months.
  • Stimulus checks of about $1,200 to each taxpayer, plus $500 per child under age 16.

Other aid 

  • A refundable payroll tax credit for 50% of wages paid by employers to employees during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Temporary increases to the amount of interest expense businesses are allowed to deduct on their tax returns to 50% of taxable income for 2019 and 2020.
  • Allowances to employers and self-employed individuals to defer payments of the employer share of the Social Security tax.

Read the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s summary of the CARES Act.

Read the full text of the bill.

See the U.S. Chamber’s Small Business Guide to the CARES Act.

The offices of U.S. Sens. Michael Bennet (D-Denver) and Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) provided updates to the Denver Metro Chamber’s Public Affairs Council shortly after voting to approve the stimulus package Thursday. View a recording of the meeting. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce also presented on the legislation. View the presentation.

Information on How to Apply for Federal Aid to Come 
The Denver Metro Small Business Development Center is closely following the federal stimulus package and pulling together resources to be able to help businesses apply for aid immediately. As soon as the process for applying for these loans is released by the federal government, we will share that information.  

Small Business Hotlines Available for Information 
Low-interest small business loans are available through the Small Business Administration (SBA). Call the SBA Economic Injury Relief Hotline at (800) 659-2955 or the Small Business COVID-19 Disaster Relief Hotline at (303) 860-5881. Or apply directly at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

State and Local Updates 

  • Gov. Jared Polis issued an executive order extending the expiration date for licenses issued to individuals and businesses, including child care facilities, real estate brokers, health care facilities and providers, commercial drivers, restaurants, hotels and holders of liquor and marijuana licenses. Read the full order.
  • The City and County of Denver will waive late interest on property tax installment payments. Read the announcement.
  • Gov. Polis updated the state’s stay-at-home order to classify real estate services as critical business, which makes them exempt from the order. Read more about the order on the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment website.
  • Businesses can self-certify as critical. Learn how to receive certification as a critical business.

Kelly Brough is the president and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber.