The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, signed into law earlier this month, will include more than $26 billion in restaurant relief dollars.
While details of how these funds will be distributed to business owners remain in question, National Restaurant News spoke with attorneys from the national restaurant industry practice group at Davis Wright Tremaine law firm in Portland and Fisher Phillips law firm in Pittsburgh. This article details what is currently known about the relief package as it relates to the restaurant industry, as well as what can be expected from the SBA moving forward.
“It is a real upside for restaurants as it is carved out to specifically help smaller independent and regional operators with specific eligibility as noted in this blog. While many restauranteurs and food service and hospitality industry operators may think that they cannot qualify or perhaps believe they should not qualify, this is not the case,” notes Richard Weil, CEO of National Restaurant Consultants (NRC).
Right now is the time to get prepared to organize documents that will be required for application, including 2019 and 2020 tax returns and documentation on any PPP dollars received in 2020 or the second round of PPP in 2021.
Weil details, “NRC has been following the documentation and information that has been published in many industry publications as well as from the SBA. We are well-versed and can help you prepare and navigate the application process and, in many cases, at no charge.”
It’s important for restaurant owners to note that the American Rescue Plan not only affects budgets and financial planning, and operations adjustments will be required. The package does not include the minimum wage increase, considerations may need to be made in terms of insurance, paid sick leave, or PTO for vaccinated employees, but will not be required.
The National Law Review also provides a detailed account of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) included in the American Rescue Plan, detailing the program benefits for individual restaurants and franchises.
“Under the bill, if an applicant (including a franchisee) is an ‘eligible entity’—which includes restaurants, food trucks, bars and brewpubs, among other establishments—the applicant will be eligible to receive a grant of up to $10 million,” the article states. “Applicants will qualify as an eligible entity, if, among certain other eligibility criteria: (1) they do not own or operate more than 20 units and (2) they are not publicly traded companies. For multi-brand operators, the 20-unit cap applies across brands.”
Read the review entirely here.
Take advantage of this additional support with the help of a restaurant consultant to ensure you’re getting all your qualified available funding. Weil further notes, “In our 20-year history, our consultants have demonstrated how we can be a helpful resource in the food and hospitality industry. While our blogs and Helpful Moments keep our audiences up-to-date, working directly with a restaurant consultant can make the difference in your operation’s success.”