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Regional Updates 4/1

April 1, 2020

As we come to the end of the day, we want to share updates from around the region in the form of relief and clarity.  But first, we want to acknowledge that we are fully aware that there are some serious flaws in the relief programs outlined by the CARES Act.  We are working daily with state partners around the country and our national partners to collect those concerns and create a coordinated ask as we go into phase IV of relief.  Our intention is to ensure issues are addressed, corrected and reflected as this package is being refined. In the meantime, we want to offer guidance based on questions we received throughout the day.

PPP Application Date vs. PPP Loan Origination Date: Currently the PPP loan is for an 8-week period sometime between Feb 15 and June 30. This means the latest the loan origination date can be is May 5th, which makes the loan period May 5th-June 30th. It is important to note that the loan application date and origination date do not have to be the same, and you are able to apply starting April 3rd with an origination date as late as May 5th.

Understanding that there is a very clear end date to this loan, we are looking at opportunities for relief in Phase 4 of Congressional legislation that either extends PPP or provides support in meaningful ways. We will share more information as it becomes available, but in the meantime we encourage you to examine available SBA loans to determine what makes the most sense for you. Finally, as a reminder you are eligible to apply for a PPP and EIDL loan at the same time, but the two loans cannot be used for the same purpose. Meaning your EIDL loan cannot cover payroll for the same time period you are utilizing the PPP loan.

Rent Abatement: Rent abatement during these uncertain times is one of the issues that we know is front of mind for everyone. The National Restaurant Association joined a coalition of industries to urge America’s governors and mayors to use their authority to provide rent abatement for our industry during this period. RAMW is supporting these efforts, and is separately in conversations with local landlords and developers to encourage abatement at this time.

Webinar on Families First Coronavirus Response Act
The National Restaurant Association is hosting a webinar on the “Phase II” Legislation (Paid Sick Leave) tomorrow, April 2nd at 3:00pm. Click here to register. As you know, the mandate begins today, April 1, although DOL enforcement will be focused on good-faith compliance.

DC ABRA Renewal Deadlines Extended
To provide financial relief to customers impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19), the ABC Board has determined to extend select payment deadlines and expirations including the following:

  • Annual License Payments | Extended from March 31, 2020 to June 1, 2020.
  • Alcohol License Expirations | Any alcohol licenses, including ABC Manager Licenses that expire March 16 - May 31, 2020 are now valid through June 1, 2020.
  • Fines | Any fines due between March 16 - May 31, 2020 are now due June 1, 2020
  • Q1 Statements | Extended from April 30, 2020 to June 1, 2020.

Maryland Renewal Extensions
In Maryland, according to the Governor’s Executive Order, all licenses, permits, registrations, and other authorizations issued by the state, its agencies or any political subdivision that would expire during the current state of emergency will be extended until at least the 30th day after the state of emergency is lifted.

Montgomery County, MD Emergency Relief Package
Yesterday, the Montgomery County Council passed legislation that provides $20 million in grants for businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak. Small businesses with 100 employees or fewer will now be able to apply to earn checks of up to $75,000 from the county’s new “Public Health Emergency Grant Program.” An amendment is being introduced to reserve a quarter of the funding pool for restaurants and retailers. Grant funding must be used for employee wages and benefits, taxes, debt, rent or other operating losses during the public health emergency. We will share information about the application process as it becomes available.

Fairfax County, VA Support
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors is looking at establishing a Continuity Loan Fund which would aid small businesses facing economic injury and that are at-risk of closing. While this idea is still taking shape, it could provide capital to existing, viable small businesses and serve as a secondary loan to a SBA loan, or other lines of credit. The goal is to assist small businesses with fewer than fifty employees. This will likely be brought before the Board at the April 14th Board Meeting. We will keep you updated as this develops.

ServSafe Updates
Processing for both ServSafe Food Safety Manager and Alcohol Manager print exams has been halted as of March 20 due to the Illinois Shelter-in-Place order (ServSafe’s headquarters state). The Shelter-in-Place order is in effect until April 3 and if lifted, ServSafe will be able to resume grading print exams on April 6. In-person classes at RAMW will resume to our posted schedule at the time the DC Stay-at-Home Order is lifted.

To help keep you and your employees safe, ServSafe is offering the online Food Handler, COVID-19 Takeout and COVID-19 Delivery courses, for free at now through April 30. Take advantage of this offer to get the essential training every restaurant and foodservice worker needs to keep diners and themselves safe.

Additionally, the new ServSuccess Restaurant Professional and Restaurant Supervisor Learning Suites will also be offered free of charge at through April 30. ServSuccess certifications provide restaurant employees a way to demonstrate and restaurant employers a way to gauge the skills, competencies and knowledge required for jobs in the industry.

As a reminder, DC DOH is not issuing Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM) certificates, therefore they will not take any negative action for those not in possession of a newly expired CFPM.  When operations are normal again DOH will give facilities 30 days to obtain their CFPM. At this time, they are also only conducting complaint and/or emergency inspections.

We encourage you to check out our Coronavirus Resource Page as all emailed materials are available on our website. If you have any questions please email to ensure you receive a timely response.

Stay safe. Stay kind.