Hoeven: CARES Act Provides Support to Small Businesses, Entrepreneurs to Weather Challenges of COVID-19

Senator Updates 1MC, Entrepreneurial Community on Coronavirus Response Legislation

BISMARCK, N.D. – At the weekly 1 Million Cups (1MC) virtual meeting today, Senator John Hoeven updated small business owners and entrepreneurs on the assistance provided under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to help them weather the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hoeven encouraged the participants to closely monitor federal and state resources online in order to apply for assistance. These resources, as well as detailed information on the CARES Act and first two phases of federal assistance, can be found on the senator’s website here.

Specifically, the senator highlighted:

  • Direct Assistance to Individuals – provides up to $1,200 for individuals, $2,400 for married couples and an additional $500 per child. The payments begin phasing out for individuals and couples with incomes of $75,000 and $150,000, respectively.
  • The Paycheck Protection Program – enables small businesses and self-employed individuals to maintain payroll through forgivable, federally-guaranteed loans.
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Pandemic Unemployment Compensation – expands unemployment benefits to those who would otherwise be ineligible, including self-employed individuals and independent contractors.
    • The Phase II legislation also provided self-employed individuals with refundable tax credits for family and sick leave, covering those who are required to quarantine or are caring for a child who is sick or whose school or child care facility has closed.
  • The Employee Retention Tax Credit – provides employers with a 50 percent refundable payroll tax credit for wages paid to employees, including those who are furloughed or facing reduced hours.

“Operating a small business or startup is already a tremendous challenge, and the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak represent a real threat to this essential part of our economy,” Hoeven said. “This assistance is about keeping small business employees on payroll and helping independent contractors, sole proprietors and entrepreneurs to get by while we combat this disease. Doing so will ensure they can get their operations back up and running again to quickly restart our economy.”