April 27, 2021

COVID Relief News: Regarding Restaurants, Entertainment Venues, Vaccine-Related Sick Leave

As we head into May, a number of new COVID-19 relief efforts are slated to take effect shortly, including a pair of eagerly anticipated measures targeting two of the hardest hit sectors of the American economy: restaurants and live entertainment venues. Here’s the latest:

Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
The SBA has posted sample application forms and guidelines for this key provision of the America Rescue Plan Act, which will provide direct funding for costs ranging from mortgage payments and outdoor seating to inventory and supplies. Most bars and restaurants will qualify; our advice is to read up on the program, download the sample applications, and sign up for SBA email updates.

Shuttered Venue Operator Grant Program (SVOG)
Yesterday the SBA reopened the application portal for this key program designed to extend a lifeline to live entertainment businesses forced to close by the pandemic – theatrical producers, performing arts venues, museum and movie theater operators, talent representatives and many others (Program FAQs). Applications are now being accepted, so if you haven’t done so yet, visit the portal and start the process ASAP.

Finally, a note to all employers about employee vaccinations. Under new terms of the American Rescue Plan, FFCRA Sick Leave payroll tax credits now include paid time for employees to get a COVID vaccine and recovery if needed. The payroll tax credit covers 100% of an employee’s regular wage, capped at $511 per day. For full details, read this guidance from the Treasury Department.

As always, if you have any questions about these programs or any other aspect of COVID-19 relief efforts to date, please contact your Weiss tax professional.

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