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Small Business Restart Fund

Gov. Holcomb approved $30 million in federal funding made available through the CARES Act to small business restart grants, helping accelerate the speed of economic recovery activity by providing working capital to cover certain expenses related to the global pandemic. Eligible Indiana small businesses can seek reimbursement for up to 80% of qualified expenses, such as rent/mortgage payments, utilities, lease payments for real or personal property, and safety investments, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) and infrastructure improvements.

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Grant Details

Eligibility requirements:

  • Business must be registered to operate in Indiana
  • Business must have had less than 50 employees at of 12/31/2019
  • Business must have had less than $5 million in revenue in 2019
  • Business must have been profitable in 2019
  • Businesses must demonstrate a monthly revenue loss of at least 40% compared to pre-COVID-19 revenues
  • Business must not have used funding from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), or Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)

Small businesses that meet the eligibility requirements can be awarded up to $2,500 or up to $5,000 for each month in which the business demonstrates a revenue loss of at least 40 percent or of at least 80 percent, respectively, with grants issued up to $10,000 per company. Of the $30 million allocated to the fund, at least $5 million will be reserved for certified minority- and women-owned businesses.

Application

Grant Application Form for Small Business Restart Fund

To better prepare the necessary information for the application, small business are encouraged to ready the following documentation:

  • 2019 State of Indiana Tax Return or Form 1040, Schedule C (if sole proprietorship)
  • Monthly Profit and Loss Statement (2019 and 2020)
  • Expense documentation if planning to use funding for:
    • Copy of paid mortgage statement or lease agreement
    • Copy of paid utility bills
    • Lease payment receipts for real or personal property
    • Receipt for safety improvements/PPE

*Applicants will be asked to authorize the Indiana Economic Development Corporation to access their 2019 State of Indiana Tax Returns or Form 1040, Schedule C (if sole proprietorship) from the Indiana Department of Revenue. Applicants that have not yet filed 2019 returns are encouraged to do so by the July 15, 2020, deadline prior to applying for an Indiana Small Business Restart Grant.

Businesses needing assistance compiling this documentation can contact the nearest Indiana Small Business Development Center (SBDC) office.

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When does this start?

6/3/2020: Applications open

9/30/2020: Applications close

What businesses qualify?

  • Businesses registered to operate in Indiana
  • Businesses with less than 50 employees and under $5M in revenue as of 12/31/2019
  • Businesses that were profitable in 2019
  • Businesses with a revenue loss of at least 40% month over month as a result of COVID-19
  • Businesses that have not received funding from other federal programs, including PPP, EIDL, CDBG

What is needed to apply?

  • 2019 State of Indiana Tax Return
  • Monthly Profit & Loss Statement (2019 and 2020)
  • Form 1040, Schedule C (if sole proprietorship)
  • Documentation of paid expenses if planning to use for funding requests
    • Mortgage statement or lease agreements, lease payments for real or personal property, utility bills, PPE or safety improvements

What other funding is available?

PPP

Paycheck Protection Program - Provides forgivable loans to small businesses and nonprofits that maintain their payroll for eight weeks, and the funds are used to cover payroll, interest on mortgage obligations, rent or utilities. The Indiana Bankers Association and the Indiana Credit Union League are maintaining lists of Indiana financial institutions who are supporting the PPP program.

EIDL

Economic Injury Disaster Loan - low interest loans to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and certain nonprofits to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills incurred during COVID-19.

Local Resources

Many local organizations are offering assistance to small businesses within their regions; a list is available here. Contact your local Chamber of Commerce or Economic Development Organization to see if programs are available in your area.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Program Overview

    Q: What is the Small Business Restart Fund?
    A: The Small Business Restart Fund, recommended by Indiana’s Economic Relief and Recovery Team, was approved by Gov. Holcomb, making federal funding received through the CARES Act available to small businesses to help accelerate the speed of economic recovery activity by providing working capital to cover certain expenses related to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

    Q: How much funding is available?
    A: In total, $35 million is available for Small Business Restart grants. $30 million was allocated by the State of Indiana and will be distributed to small businesses located outside Marion County, while $5 million was allocated by the City of Indianapolis, which received a separate distribution of federal funding through the CARES Act, and will be distributed to small businesses located inside Marion County.

    Of the state’s $30 million, at least $5 million will be reserved for certified minority- and women-owned businesses (MBE/WBE).

    Q: How much funding will eligible small businesses receive?
    A: Eligible small businesses are eligible to receive up to $2,500 for each month in which the business can demonstrate a revenue loss of at least 40%, or up to $5,000 for each month in which the business can demonstrate a revenue loss of at least 80%. Additionally, eligible small businesses can seek reimbursement for up to 80% of qualified expenses incurred between March-September 2020. The maximum amount a business can receive is $10,000.

    Q: What types of costs are eligible for reimbursement?
    A: Eligible small businesses may seek reimbursement for up to 80% of qualified, documented expenses, including: rent/mortgage payments; utilities; lease payments for real or personal property; safety investments, such as the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE), and infrastructure improvements related to the health and safety of employees and/or customers.

  • Eligibility

    Q: Who is eligible to apply?
    A: Indiana small businesses with fewer than 50 employees and $5 million in annual revenue that have experienced a 40% drop in revenue due to the pandemic will be eligible to apply for small business restart grants. Full eligibility requirements are available at backontrack.in.gov they include:

    • Business must be registered to operate in Indiana
    • Business must have had less than 50 employees at of 12/31/2019
    • Business must have had less than $5 million in revenue in 2019
    • Business must have been profitable in 2019
    • Businesses must demonstrate a monthly revenue loss of at least 40% compared to pre-COVID-19 revenues
    • Business must not have used funding from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), or Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)

    Q: Are nonprofit organizations eligible for small business restart grants?
    A: No, nonprofit organizations are not eligible for small business restart grants.

    Q: Are small businesses without an Indiana Secretary of State identification number, such as sole proprietors, eligible for small business restart grants?
    A: Yes, these entities are able to apply for small business restart grants provided they meet the eligibility requirements and can provide certification documentation as requested. Small businesses without an Indiana Secretary of State identification number should apply using an Employer Identification Number (EIN). If you do not have one, you may apply for one online: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/apply-for-an-employer-identification-number-ein-online.

    Q: What does it mean to be ‘in good standing’ with the Indiana Department of Revenue?
    A: Businesses in good standing with the Indiana Department of Revenue do not have an existing tax liability with the state.

  • Application

    Q: How can I apply for a Small Business Restart Grant?
    A: Indiana small businesses should visit backontrack.in.gov to view eligibility requirements and to apply for restart grants.

    Q: What type of information and documentation is needed to apply?
    A: Eligible small businesses will be asked to provide general information about the business, including an Indiana Secretary of State identification number as well as employment and revenue information.

    Additional documentation will be required to support the verification of eligibility:

    • *2019 State of Indiana Tax Return or Form 1040, Schedule C (if sole proprietorship)
    • Monthly profit and loss statement (2019 and 2020)

    Eligible small businesses seeking reimbursement for certain expenses will also be required to provide related expense documentation, such as:

    • Copy of paid mortgage statement or lease agreement
    • Copy of paid utility bills
    • Lease payment receipts for real or personal property
    • Receipt for safety improvements/PPE

    *Please note that applicants will be asked to authorize the Indiana Economic Development Corporation to access their 2019 State of Indiana Tax Returns or Form 1040, Schedule C (if sole proprietorship) from the Indiana Department of Revenue. Applicants will not need to upload these documents directly.

    Q: Where do I find my Indiana Secretary of State identification number?
    A: Please visit INBiz, Indiana’s one-stop resource for registering and managing your business, to locate your identification number: https://bsd.sos.in.gov/publicbusinesssearch.

    Q: I submitted an application. What happens next?
    A: Businesses will receive an email from INSmallBizRestart@iedc.in.gov confirming receipt of the application. Please check your spam folder and/or add this email to your contacts to ensure you receive communications.

    All applications for small business restart grants will be reviewed and verified by representatives of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. If there is additional information required or if there are outstanding questions from your application, you will be contacted by a representative via the INSmallBizRestart@iedc.in.gov email.

    Q: How long will it take to be approved?
    A: We plan to review applications and notify applicants of their grant award status (approval or denial) within 10-14 days of receiving the completed application and required documentation. Please understand that timing of a decision on your application may fluctuate based on current demand or based on the quality and accuracy of information provided.

    Q: My business was approved for a restart grant. What happens next?
    A: After your small business restart grant is approved, it will move to processing, and you will be asked to choose whether you want your grant to be issued via wire or check. Our goal is to send funds within 3-5 days of approval, but please understand that timing may fluctuate based on current capacity.

  • Documentation

    Q: I have not yet filed taxes yet for 2019. Can I utilize a 2018 State of Indiana Tax Return instead?
    A: No. Eligibility criteria for grants is, among other things, based on 2019 revenues and profits, so businesses must be able to demonstrate 2019 figures. Businesses are encouraged to first file corporate (or personal, if sole proprietor) tax returns and payments by the July 15, 2020, deadline prior to applying for a small business restart grant.

    Q: My type of business entity does not submit State of Indiana Tax Returns (i.e. Sole Proprietor). Can I utilize a personal tax return instead?
    A: Yes, personal tax returns may be used as verification so long as it captures your business revenue.

    Q: How many months worth of expense documentation (i.e. paid mortgage statements, utility bills, lease payments for real or personal property) do I need to submit?
    A: Small businesses may be reimbursed for eligible expenses incurred between March - September 2020, and documentation of such expenses will need to be submitted for each month in which the business is seeking reimbursement.

    If you are applying for a small business restart grant prior to September 30, 2020, you may submit documentation for expenses already incurred prior to your application date, but you may not submit forward-looking statements or anticipated costs. If you are approved and receive grant funding, but do not reach the $10,000 maximum award, you may revisit your application at a later date to submit additional documentation for expenses incurred since first applying.

    Q: I don’t have access to some of the required documentation and/or I need help gathering required documentation for the application. Who can help?
    A: Please contact the Indiana Small Business Development Center nearest to you to meet with an advisor at no cost. Visit isbdc.org for a list of regional offices.

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