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Questions about the State's New Business Bridge Recovery Loan Answered by the DECD

Taylor Dichello spoke with DECD Thursday

CONNECTICUT, USA — Q: Hypothetical: I am a restaurant owner. Last week, I had to turn to only doing takeout orders due to coronavirus. I laid off many employees. This week, because I am not getting enough business, I had to make the difficult decision to shut my doors to my restaurant. I can't afford to pay all of my staff because I am not making money. I am laying them off so they are eligible for unemployment. Is my restaurant eligible for the loan requirement? 

A:  Yes. It is based on whether you have or had under 100 employees.  Businesses temporarily shut down are eligible.  We are going to size the loan based on pro-forma expenses.

Q: You need to have been profitable prior to March 10. I understand the state is looking at the profitability of businesses based on 2019. What if I just had a bad year in 2019, but am an otherwise healthy business?   

A: Our financial review team would take that into consideration but it is important the business was profitable previously and has an ability to re-pay

Q: The SBA told people who were pre-revenue to submit any paperwork that shows you exist. So long as you have expenses, the goal was to help cover those expenses. It seems like CT's loan is a much higher obstacle because you have to be revenue-generating and profitable. Is this correct?  

A: You have to have been profitable in 2019 and prior to 3/10/2020.

Q: Is there any guidance available to small businesses on what forms and paperwork to give in the email? The criteria online is confusing people and could put them behind the ball in terms of getting to the loan before other businesses. If one sent email has poor information, but a business follows up with a second email, will that be tracked in conjunction with the first so as to save that businesses spot in line?  

A: It is first-come, first-served.  Businesses are assigned a project manager, so if a company was missing information they would not lose their place in line.

Q: Are we going to be getting more than $25 million in the long run to be made available for small businesses?  

A: To be determined.  

Q: If businesses took the full $75,000, we can only help 333 businesses. There are 2,813 businesses with less than 100 employees in Hartford alone. How many businesses are we expecting to be able to help?  

A: Since companies can receive less than $75,000, it is difficult to give you a clear number at this time.

Q: How long will the application process take to be approved? 

A: A few weeks.  

Q: When can businesses expect a check? 

A: If approved, less than a month

Q: How many businesses applied so far? 

A: Over 700 at last count (3/26 3 pm).