Insights into the world of small business lending and development

Long-awaited aid for restaurants is here: What’s in the new Restaurant Revitalization Fund?

A new grant program, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), is slated to provide relief funding for restaurants and bars affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The RRF, which was established by the newly passed American Rescue Plan, will provide $28.6 billion in grants for small businesses in need.

Below you will find information about the grant program and how your small business may benefit. The official launch date will be announced in the coming weeks.

Who can apply?

Eligible businesses who have experienced pandemic-related revenue loss include:

  • Restaurants
  • Food stands, food trucks, food carts
  • Caterers
  • Bars, saloons, lounges, taverns
  • Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars
  • Bakeries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Brewpubs, tasting rooms, taprooms (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Breweries and/or microbreweries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Wineries and distilleries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Inns (onsite sales of food and beverage to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Licensed facilities or premises of a beverage alcohol producer where the public may taste, sample, or purchase products
    • Eligible businesses cannot be publicly traded and there are limits on private equity firms. 
    • Eligible businesses are not able to receive a RRF grant if they are currently an applicant for the Shuttered Venues Operators (SVO) grant program.

How to apply?

You can apply through SBA-recognized Point of Sale Restaurant Partners or directly via the SBA in a forthcoming online application portal. The SBA will work with the following Point of Sale (POS) Restaurant Partners to help small businesses apply for the RRF grants: Clover, NCR Corp., Square and Toast.

has not provided details yet as to what companies qualify as a Point of Sale Restaurant Partner. 

If you would like to prepare your application, view the sample application form. You will be able to complete this form online. The SBA asks that you do not submit RRF forms at this time.

SBA Form 3172

Additional documentation required:

  • Verification for Tax Information: IRS Form 4506-T, completed and signed by Applicant. Completion of this form digitally on the SBA platform will satisfy this requirement.
  • Gross Receipts Documentation: Any of the following documents demonstrating gross receipts and, if applicable, eligible expenses
    • Business tax returns (IRS Form 1120 or IRS 1120-S)
    • IRS Forms 1040 Schedule C; IRS Forms 1040 Schedule F
    • For a partnership: partnership’s IRS Form 1065 (including K-1s)
    • Bank statements
    • Externally or internally prepared financial statements such as Income Statements or Profit and Loss Statements
    • Point of sale report(s), including IRS Form 1099-K

When to apply

Ahead of the application launch and over the next two weeks, the SBA will establish a seven-day pilot period for the RRF application portal and conduct extensive outreach and training on how to apply, application requirements and where to apply. Participants in this pilot will be randomly selected from existing PPP borrowers in priority groups for RRF and will not receive funds until the application portal is open to the public.  

Following the pilot, the application portal will be opened to the public:

Priority period (Days 1 through 21):

  • The SBA will accept applications from all eligible applicants, but only process and fund priority group applications. See “Priority groups” below. During this period, SBA will fund applications where the applicant has self-certified that it meets the eligibility requirements for a small business owned by women, veterans, or socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. 

Open to all applicants (Days 22 through funds exhaustion):

  • The SBA will accept applications from all eligible applicants and process applications in the order in which they are approved by SBA.

Priority groups

  • A small business concern that is at least 51 percent owned by one or more individuals who are: 
    • Women, or
    • Veterans, or
    • Socially and economically disadvantaged (see below).
  • Applicants must self-certify on the application that they meet eligibility requirements
  • Socially disadvantaged individuals are those who have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice or cultural bias because of their identity as a member of a group without regard to their individual qualities.
  • Economically disadvantaged individuals are those socially disadvantaged individuals whose ability to compete in the free enterprise system has been impaired due to diminished capital and credit opportunities as compared to others in the same business area who are not socially disadvantaged.

Allowable use of funds

Funds may be used for specific expenses including:

  • Business payroll costs (including sick leave)
  • Payments on any business mortgage obligation
  • Business rent payments (note: this does not include prepayment of rent)
  • Business debt service (both principal and interest; note: this does not include any prepayment of principal or interest)
  • Business utility payments
  • Business maintenance expenses
  • Construction of outdoor seating
  • Business supplies (including protective equipment and cleaning materials)
  • Business food and beverage expenses (including raw materials)
  • Covered supplier costs
  • Business operating expenses

NOTE: Eligible restaurants can expect grants that match their pandemic-related revenue loss, calculated by taking their revenue in 2019 and subtracting 2020 revenue and any PPP loan funds received. 

  • The covered period is from February 15, 2020 through December 31, 2021.
  • The grants can be taken alongside the two rounds of PPP, EIDL, and the Employee Retention Tax Credits, though any PPP loans already received will be subtracted from the eligible grant total for any individual business.

Stay tuned for more information about the program and when applications may go live.

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