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the Best Small Business Grants for Covid Relief 2021

Many small businesses in Hawaii and all over the United States have taken a financial hit because of Covid-19. As a result, the need for business grants is bigger than ever. The great thing about a grant is that it’s like a loan but does not require repayment.


In 2021, there are several good grants to apply for that aim to provide real relief to small businesses during this difficult time. Different businesses may qualify for different grants or be better served by some over others. It is important to be completely honest and transparent when applying for any grant. In this article we discuss the best small business grants for Covid-19 relief this year.

Best Small Business Grants for Covid Relief 2021


Federal Covid-19 relief grants for small businesses


The federal government created two loan programs with grant components to help support businesses that have been impacted by Covid-19 restrictions. These loans are called EIDL and PPP.


The Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), includes a $10,000 grant for eligible businesses. Businesses who meet the following eligibility criteria may qualify for a $10,000 grant:

  • Are located in a low-income community

  • Have suffered an economic loss greater than 30%

  • Have 300 or fewer employees

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is available for a second draw PPP loan for small businesses who are still being impacted by Covid-19, or a first time PPP loan for small businesses who were not able to get the loan in 2020. Applications are being accepted at your local financial institution through May 31, 2021. The loan may be fully forgiven if the funds are spent on approved expenses such as payroll and mortgage interest during the specified time frame.


Note: any portion of the PPP loan that is forgiven will not be counted as income for tax purposes because congress chose to exempt forgiven PPP loans from federal income taxation.


Shuttered Venue Operators Grants


The Shuttered Venue Operator (SVO) Grant program has set aside $15 billion for grants to certain categories of businesses that were impacted by COVID-19, including:

  • Live theatre producers

  • Live event operators and promoters

  • Certain operators of zoos, aquariums and museums

  • Live performing arts organization operators

  • Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria

  • Motion picture theater operators

  • Talent representatives

  • Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements

The applicant must have been in business by February 29, 2020. The SVOG will be reduced by any PPP loan amount received on or after December 27, 2020.


The Barstool Fund


Barstool Sports offers COVID-19 relief through The Barstool Fund. Businesses may apply for help on their website. Grant amounts are not pre-set.


LISC’s Small Business Relief Grant


Through donations from several large corporations and the Rapid Relief and Resiliency Fund, LISC is able to provide many grants and other local funding opportunities, including the Small Business Relief Grant that is specifically designed to help businesses in rural areas who were impacted by Covid-19. The grants range from $5,000-20,000 and can be used to pay for payroll, operational costs and vendor debt.


While grant applications are currently closed, you can sign up to receive notification for the next round of funding: https://www.lisc.org/covid-19/small-business-assistance/rural-relief-small-business-grants/.


How partnering with a PEO can support your business during COVID-19


A PEO provides small businesses with many advantages that they might not otherwise be able to afford. These advantages have become even more important during this international health crisis.


When small business owners form a partnership with Makai HR they:

  • Gain peace of mind that they are complying with all of Hawaii’s labor laws, which is especially important when decisions are being made about how to handle a health crisis.

  • Can provide comprehensive health care plans that allow your employees to go to the doctor for treatment and testing.

  • Get help with workers’ compensation claims.

We are also here to support your business if you are working remotely:

  • Our cloud-based platform means that your employees can manage their HR needs through a computer, tablet or phone, making it easier for them to work from home.

  • Our cloud based HRIS platform means that your HR team can manage HR remotely if they are sick or everyone is working remotely.

Pro tip: this is a good time to encourage all employees to update to Direct Deposit to reduce in person bank transactions and continue timely payroll payments. Do not delay. Contact us today to get started!

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