Farmers and ranchers will soon be eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), when the $484 billion aid relief bill is signed into law this week. The EIDL program provides emergency grants up to $10,000 for small businesses suffering a loss of revenue because of COVID-19.
Three wins for farmers:
1. While the previous funds excluded farmers, this bill will allow agricultural operations with fewer than 500 employees to qualify for the EIDL, which offers emergency grants of up to $15,000.
2. It also will replenish the now-depleted Paycheck Protection Program, which provides forgivable loans to small businesses (including farmers) to keep their workers on the payroll.
3. Targeted PPP funding will be set-aside for community development financial institutions and smaller banks, intended to increase access to smaller, minority and more vulnerable communities.
What you should do NOW:
If you want access to this funding, contact your bank, local credit union or other lender ASAP to being the process, as these funds won't last long. If you don't have access to a traditional lending source, contact the good folks at California FarmLink who are assisting farmers in need.
Farm Commons will host 2 webinars on eligibility, how to submit an application through the Small Business Administration (SBA), and how the program has performed over the past few weeks.