Skip to main content

COVID-19 Funding – Loans and grants

COVID-19 business relief payments information

From the Minnesota Department of Revenue

The Minnesota Department of Revenue will send COVID-19 Business Relief Payments to eligible businesses under an economic relief package signed into law December 16.

Eligible business owners do not need to take any action to receive this aid. We'll determine eligibility and payment amounts based on program requirements in the law and outlined below.

Eligible Businesses 

This program provides direct payments to eligible businesses required to temporarily close or reduce services in November under Executive Order 20-99. Businesses in the following categories — as reported by the Minnesota Unemployment Insurance program — may be eligible if they meet the other program requirements: 

  • Full- and limited-service restaurants
  • Cafeterias and buffets
  • Caterers
  • Bars
  • Breweries with taprooms
  • Family wineries with tasting rooms
  • Distilleries with tasting rooms
  • Bowling centers
  • Gyms and fitness centers

Program Requirements

The Department of Revenue will send payments to eligible businesses that meet the rest of the program requirements:

  • Located in Minnesota
  • Had at least $10,000 in taxable sales in 2019
  • Filed monthly or quarterly Sales Tax returns in 2019 and 2020
  • As of November 1, 2020, had filed all sales tax returns due through September 2020
  • Experienced a 30% drop in year-over-year taxable sales (April-September)
  • Required to temporarily close or reduce services by  Executive Order 20-99

Relief Payment Amounts

Eligible businesses will receive a payment based on their Unemployment Insurance data. The amount depends on their average number of employees for the period of November 1, 2019 – January 31, 2020. The payments are considered taxable income.

 

EMPLOYEES (FULL- AND PART-TIME) PAYMENT AMOUNT
1 to 20  $15,000
21 to 100 $25,000
101 to 300 $35,000
301 or more $45,000

Qualifying small businesses not in the state’s Unemployment Insurance system will receive $10,000.

Payment Process

  • The Minnesota Department of Revenue will determine what businesses are eligible and their aid amount based on their sales tax and unemployment records as of November 1, 2020. 
  • The Minnesota Department of Revenue will notify eligible businesses though their e-Services account by December 31, 2020. You do not need to apply. (We're working on a process for businesses to dispute their payment amount and will post information here when it's available.) 
  • The Minnesota Department of Revenue will mail payments to eligible businesses in early-January 2021, to the mailing address on their Sales Tax account. Electronic payments are not available for this program.

More Information
The latest payment and program information can be found here.

On January 5,  Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development released applications for Movie Theater and Convention Center Grants established in the recent state COVID-19 relief package.

The links to applications and information on the three new programs included in Minnesota’s small business relief package, signed into law December 16, are:

  • Minnesota Convention Center Relief Grant Program – This temporary program was established to provide economic relief for convention centers adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This program will make grants of up to $500,000 to eligible convention centers located in Minnesota. DEED will administer this program. All convention centers interested in receiving a relief grant must submit a completed application by Jan. 29. Applications are available here.
  • Minnesota Movie Theater Relief Grant Program – This temporary program was established to provide economic relief for movie theaters adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This program will make grants of up to $150,000 to eligible movie theaters located in Minnesota. DEED will administer this program. All movie theaters interested in receiving a relief grant must submit a completed application by Jan. 29. Applications are available here.
  • County Relief Program – We are working closely with Minnesota counties to disburse money. All counties must apply. More information is available here.

Funding – Loans and grants

 

Summary of 501(c)(6) Eligibility in Pandemic Relief Package Expansion of PPP from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce
The final pandemic relief package restarts the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and expands PPP eligibility to include 501(c)(6)s. The language begins on page 2102 (in the PDF) and can be found here. The authority to make new PPP loans will terminate on March 31, 2021. We expect the pandemic relief bill to become law this week.
501(c)(6) organizations are eligible to receive a PPP loan provided:

  • They are not a professional sports league or organized for the purpose of promoting or participating in a political campaign (Note: this will not impact chambers of commerce or trade associations);
  • They do not employ more than 300 employees;
  • They do not receive more than 15% of their receipts from lobbying activities;
  • Lobbying activities do not compromise more than 15% of the organization’s total activities; and
  • The cost of the lobbying activities of the organization did not exceed $1,000,000 during the most recent tax year that ended prior to February 15, 2020.

If an organization fails any of these tests they are NOT eligible to receive a PPP loan.

Similar rules apply to Destination Marketing Organizations.

Lobbying activities are not defined in the section. The Small Business Administration may provide a definition or guidance. Congressional staff have used information available in the 990 tax form when discussing the impact of the 15% lobbying activities limitation.  Specifically, staff have compared the lobbying expenses reported on schedule C, Part III-B, Line 2 with the total expenses reported for the year (Page 1, line 18).  (Note that these lines may be different if you are using a 990 form vs. 990EZ.)

Absent further guidance, organizations may wish to analyze their most recent 990 to determine whether they may be eligible to apply for a PPP loan and may wish to proceed with their lender if they believe they do qualify.

The bill also expands allowable uses for PPP funds and simplifies the loan process.  We will be providing separate information on the other PPP changes.

Looking for COVID-19 resources in your area?

Businesses around Minnesota need assistance to withstand the challenges of COVID-19. Many cities and counties throughout the state have grant or loan programs available to businesses, so their local economies can compete and thrive. The Minnesota Chamber’s Grow Minnesota! Partnership has compiled a list of available funding at the city and county level.