March 25, 2020,

If you are a Maryland-based business impacted by the Coronavirus with under 50 full- and part-time employees, or a Maryland manufacturer, check out the programs below to see if you qualify for assistance.

Maryland Department of Commerce

Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Loan Fund– This $75 million loan fund (for for-profit businesses only) offers no interest or principal payments due for the first 12 months, then converts to a 36-month term loan of principal and interest payments, with an interest rate at 2% per annum.

Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Grant Fund – This $50 million grant program for businesses and non-profits offers grant amounts up to $10,000, not to exceed 3 months of demonstrated cash operating expenses for the first quarter of 2020.

Maryland COVID-19 Emergency Relief Manufacturing Fund – This $5 million incentive program helps Maryland manufacturers to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) that is urgently needed by hospitals and health-care workers across the country. More details are expected to be announced by Friday, March 27, 2020.

Maryland Department of Labor

COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund – This fund is designed to support businesses undergoing economic stresses due to the pandemic by preventing or minimizing the duration of unemployment resulting from layoffs. The award (up to $50,000 per applicant), will be a quick deployable benefit and customizable to the specific needs of your business to minimize the need for layoffs.

Labor is accepting grant applications from small businesses for awards from now through 30 days after the State of Emergency ends (subject to funding availability). Labor staff will process applications within two business days of receipt. Upon approval and receipt of signed contract, payment will be expedited.

Small Business Administration

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) – Working capital loans to help small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster. These loans are intended to assist through the disaster recovery period.
Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to SBA. Collateral is required for all EIDL loans over $25,000. SBA takes real estate as collateral when it is available. SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but SBA will require the borrower to pledge collateral that is available. The maximum interest rate for this program is 3.750 percent. SBA will determine an appropriate installment payment based on the financial condition of each borrower, which in turn will determine the loan term. The actual amount of each loan is limited to the economic injury determined by SBA The law limits EIDLs to $2,000,000 for alleviating economic injury caused by the disaster

PENDING—–Small Business Interruption LoansAs of March 24, 2020, this loan program consisting of $350 billion for employers with less than 500 employees is being debated and hopefully approved by the US Congress.  The concept behind this loan program is to provide continuity of employment through business interruptions the U.S. government would provide a 100% guarantee of the loans and local financial institutions would actually lend the funds. The hope is that local lenders would streamline the underwriting process:  The Treasury Department to issue regulations establishing appropriate interest rate, loan maturity, and other relevant terms and conditions.