Significance of $2T federal stimulus package for small businesses explained during Richardson chamber webinar

The $2 trillion stimulus bill, known as the CARES Act, includes billions of dollars in assistance for small businesses and certain nonprofits. (Courtesy Fotolia)
The $2 trillion stimulus bill, known as the CARES Act, includes billions of dollars in assistance for small businesses and certain nonprofits. (Courtesy Fotolia)

The $2 trillion stimulus bill, known as the CARES Act, includes billions of dollars in assistance for small businesses and certain nonprofits. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Last week, the largest federal relief package in U.S. history was approved by Congress and signed by the president. The funds are intended to pump trillions of dollars back into an economy crippled by the novel coronavirus.

To discuss the implications of the bill for business owners, Richardson Chamber of Commerce President Bill Sproull was joined via a March 30 webinar by U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, D-Dallas and Susheel Kumar, public information officer for the Small Business Administration’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

The $2 trillion stimulus bill, known as the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, includes the Paycheck Protection Program, a $350 billion relief package for small businesses and certain nonprofits. The program allows eligible organizations with 500 or fewer employees to apply for forgivable loans of up to $10 million, Allred explained. Small businesses are also able to apply for emergency grants of up to $10,000.

“The idea is to get small businesses back on their feet and workers back on payroll,” Allred said.

The amount each business gets is based on average monthly payroll costs a year prior to the date of the loan. The money is intended to cover eight weeks worth of payroll, rent and utilities, or interest payments on mortgages. The principal of the loan will be forgiven so long as the business uses it to pay for approved operational costs.

An application for the loan is not yet available, according to the SBA. A list of approved lenders should be released soon.

Also covered in the presentation were the economic injury disaster loans available through the SBA. Qualifying small businesses and nonprofits can borrow up to $2 million. The free-to-apply loan is backed by the U.S. Treasury, meaning applicants do not have to apply through a bank.

Some of the basic criteria for applicants include an acceptable credit history, a demonstrated ability to eventually repay the loan and a requirement that the business is located in a disaster-declared county, according to the SBA. Kumar encouraged all businesses to apply for the loan, even if they are not sure they qualify.

“We do not want to be the person doing field eligibility, so please go ahead and apply ... seek the assistance that you need and move forward with the recovery process,” he said.

One webinar participant asked if federal small-business loans are available to gig workers. Allred said the stimulus bill was “intentionally targeted” to include those groups as well.

“I would say it’s likely that we have a program that does apply to you,” he said.

Others wondered whether they should wait to apply for the SBA loan until funds are depleted. Kumar urged business owners to submit their applications as soon as possible.

“Please don’t wait till the very last minute; please apply now,” he said. “Working capital is the lifeblood of every organization.”

Once a loan application is received, it takes about two to three weeks for processing, Kumar said. The business should receive the loan within five days after approval, he said.

"We are looking forward to assisting as many businesses as we can," Kumar said.

Allred said his biggest concern is making sure businesses have enough information to access the funding. He said businesses can contact his office for assistance navigating the application process.

“My office is here to help, and we will make sure we do anything we can to get you through this,” he said,

For more information on small-businesses resources, visit To apply for an SBA economic injury disaster loan, visit
By Olivia Lueckemeyer
Olivia Lueckemeyer graduated in 2013 from Loyola University New Orleans with a degree in journalism. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in October 2016 as reporter for the Southwest Austin edition before her promotion to editor in March 2017. In July 2018 she returned home to the Dallas area and became editor of the Richardson edition.


Here are the latest coronavirus updates for Collin County. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Over the weekend: Collin County reports 34 additional coronavirus cases

Collin County health officials reported 34 additional cases of coronavirus from May 30 to May 31.

Businesses shuttering their doors due to coronavirus restrictions lowered the sales tax revenue collected by cities in May compared to May 2019. (Andy Li/Community Impact Newspaper)
Texas comptroller reports 13.2% year-over-year state sales tax revenue drop in May

Tax collection revenue fell significantly in several sectors from May 2019 to May 2020, according to the comptroller's office.

Participants must register for their testing appointment in advance. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Mobile COVID-19 testing for Collin County residents coming to Frisco, Wylie

Mobile testing for COVID-19 will open June 4 in Frisco.

Texas Health Trace started handling all new cases of COVID-19 in the state June 1. (Courtesy Pexels)
As of June 1, the state is now handling all new COVID-19 cases in Collin County

Collin County’s dashboard that tracks COVID-19 cases is frozen as of 11:59 p.m. May 31.

Demonstrators gathered at the Texas Capitol on May 31 to protest police brutality. (Christopher Neely/Community Impact Newspaper)
Texas officials respond to demonstrations, unrest in wake of George Floyd killing

Gov. Greg Abbott issued a state of disaster in Texas on May 31, while various city officials and law enforcment responded to protests and violence over the weekend.

The Darling Co. has seven different wedding vendors in one location. (Courtesy the Darling Co.)
Wedding cooperative now open in Richardson

The Darling Co. has seven different vendors from the wedding industry in one place.

Mumtaz has begun offering combo dishes, such as this tandoori chicken combo, in lieu of its buffet. (Olivia Lueckemeyer/Community Impact Newspaper)
Richardson restaurant Mumtaz specializes in Punjabi cuisine

Cuisine in the northern state of Punjab is characterized by poultry, lamb, dairy and grains. Common dishes include biryanis, curries and kebabs.

Crews are working to repair concrete along Yale Boulevard in Richardson. (Courtesy city of Richardson)
Concrete street repairs continue on Yale Boulevard in Richardson

The $1.1 million project will repair concrete on Yale Boulevard between Buckingham and Campbell roads.

(Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Collin County to transition coronavirus case management to state health department

The Texas Department of State Health Services will perform all COVID-19 case investigations and contact tracing for Collin County following a vote by Collin County Commissioners Court on May 29.

Collin College is providing this assistance in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. (Chase Autin/Community Impact Newspaper)
Collin College offering grants, tuition credit for students affected by coronavirus pandemic

Collin College is offering student grants and tuition credit to students who have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic and the college's shift to online courses.

A LongHorn Steakhouse was expected to open in early 2020 at The Citadel development near I-35W and Heritage Trace Parkway. The opening has been delayed, according to staff. (Ian Pribanic/Community Impact Newspaper)
Tuesday Morning bankruptcy, census data and three other DFW-area stories

Here are five recent updates from the metroplex, on delayed openings, mass layoffs and more.

Improvements include extending the right turn lane and adding a left turn lane to the southbound US 75 frontage road at Campbell. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Project that will add an extra lane to Campbell Road kicks off in Richardson

The $2 million projected is expected to wrap up in December.