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NEW YORK STATE RECOVERY PROGRAM PROVIDES ASSISTANCE FOR RENTERS AND SMALL BUSINESS

To assist in recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Reimagine, Rebuild, Renew Campaign in New York State has allocated $3.5 billion to the Small Business Recovery Grant Program and the Rental Assistance Program.

Small Business Recovery Grant Program
Applications for the Small Business Recovery Grant Program opened on June 10th for small and micro business and small for-profit independent arts and cultural organizations. Grants will range from $5,000 to $50,000 and will be calculated based on the business’ annual gross receipts for 2019. Priority is given to socially and economically disadvantaged owners, minority and women-owned business enterprises, service-disabled veteran-owned businesses and veteran-owned business, and businesses located in economically distressed communities.

Covid-19 related costs that will be reimbursed includes payroll costs; commercial rent or mortgage payments on New York State property; local property and school taxes; insurance costs; utility costs; costs of personal protection equipment (PPE) for workers and consumers; heating, ventilation, and air conditioning costs; other machinery or equipment; and supplies and materials necessary for compliance with COVID-19 health and safety protocols. These expenses must have been incurred between March 1, 2020, and April 1, 2021.

The Empire State Development Corporation (ESD) will assist small businesses and for-profit independent arts and culture organizations secure financial assistance and grants from state and federal programs.

Rental Assistance Program
Starting June 1, applications for the Rental Assistance Program have been accepted to help households that are behind on rent and have experienced financial hardship, and those that are at risk of homelessness or housing instability.

Through June 30th, the program will prioritize those that are unemployed, those with an income at or below 50% of area median income, and vulnerable populations. After June 30th, applications will be determined on a first-come, first-served basis as long as the funds remain.

Eligible households will receive up to 12 months past due rent and 12 months of utility arrears. Households may also receive up to 3 months of additional rental assistance if the household spends 30% or more of its gross monthly income on rent.

The Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) has partnered with local governments across the state to provide outreach and direct application assistance in multiple languages to potential recipients. Their goal is to ensure awareness of the program to those in need and to prevent fraud such as unreported income and acceptance of duplicate rental payments.

For additional information on the Small Business Recovery Grant program please visit – NYSBusinessRecovery.ny.gov

For more information for the Rental Assistance Program please visit – otda.ny.gov/erap

This is not intended to be legal advice.  You should contact an attorney for advice regarding your specific situation.

Jesslyn Bracco, an intern at Jacobowitz and Gubits, assisted in researching and writing this article.

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Gary M. Schuster is Partner at the firm and practices business, non-profit,  arts and entertainment law and marijuana licensing.
He can be reached at 845-764-9656 and by email.

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