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401 Grand St. Paterson, NJ 07505 | (973) 881-4000
"Rich History, Bright Future"

Breaking News for the Business Community

BREAKING NEWS FOR THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY

August 13, 2020
Passaic County, New Jersey
 



Passaic County Debuts Blueprint for Recovery Taskforce for Passaic County Businesses
 
Passaic County has formed a “Blueprint for Recovery” Taskforce focusing on the development of programs to assist the business community emerge from the economic challenges that the country is experiencing. One effort, is focused in working directly with company leaders as they innovate to survive the new normal. 
 
This new program links companies on a conference call with a local, well established company president. Companies share best practices and creative ideas in an effort to improve their company’s business operations. 
 
This program is offered by the County of Passaic in partnership with William Paterson University Small Business Development Center. One hour sessions are scheduled for Wednesday mornings from 9 am to 10 am and 10 am to 11 am. Please contact Deborah Hoffman, 973-569-4720 or deborahh@passaiccountynj.org to schedule your session. Sessions will begin on August 5, 2020!

Cultural Trust Grants for NJ Arts Organizations
Institutional/Financial Stabilization Grants
 
Guidelines and application information for fiscal year 2021 New Jersey Cultural Trust Grants for Arts Organizations are now available through the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Operated in partnership with the Cultural Trust, this round of grants will be focused on Institutional/Financial Stabilization projects. 
 
Priority: For FY21, this program is open to qualified organizations whose FY19 actual annual expenditures totaled $1,000,000 or less and whose operations have been deeply affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. 
 
Institutional/Financial Stabilization project proposals must address the financial, operational, and/or capacity challenges that have significant impact on the organization's ability to serve its community. 
 
In order to be eligible for funds from this program, organizations must first be designated qualified by the Cultural Trust.
 
DEADLINES: 
Application submitted to the Cultural Trust for qualification: 
September 4, 2020
 
Application due from eligible applicants: September 10, 2020
Grants are for the period January 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022.
 
TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE:
In order to help you compose and submit your application, applicants can log into the Council's ZOOM Open Office Hours to ask questions pertaining to the application. No appointment is necessary. Please refer to the guidelines for a complete schedule of dates and times. 

With questions or for additional information, please contact: 
Tammy Herman, 609-292-4435 or Mary Eileen Fouratt, 609-984-6815.


NJ Business Action Center
We have an updated updated link for the NJ Business Action Center and the launch of the state's new business portal at business.nj.gov.
The following links provide updates to policies and guidelines, safety recommendations, and business resources.

Quick Resources
 
Federal Resources
 
Additional Resources
Source: Melanie Willoughby
Executive Director, NJBAC 
 
 
Gov. Murphy Announces Grant Funding Program to Assist
Small Landlords and Tenants
$25 Million in CARES Act Funding to be Allocated to Reimburse Small Landlords Whose Tenants Missed Rent Payments between April and July 2020 
 
Governor Phil Murphy today announced a new relief and recovery program created by the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) for families and landlords impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Small Landlord Emergency Grant Program (SLEG) will reimburse small landlords for missed or reduced rent payments between April 2020 and July 2020 due to COVID-19. Applications must be submitted between August 19th at 9:00 a.m. and August 26th at 1:00 p.m. to be considered.  
 
The grant funding is open to Primary Property Owners of residential properties with 3 to 10 rental units. Grant amounts will be generated based on the number of COVID-impacted rental units and the total amount of missed rental payments. Grantees will be required to pass along the benefits of this grant to their tenants by forgiving back rent and late fees that COVID-impacted units accrued between April and July. 
 
Funded by the CARES Act. One-third of program funds is reserved for applicants who are registered in the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs RIMS database as individual or family owners. 
  1. Owners with properties that have at least 3 but no more than 10 total housing units;
  2. Owners with properties that are not seasonal or vacation rentals;
  3. Properties with current fire inspection certificates as of March 9, 2020;
  4. Owners of properties with at least one non-vacant rental unit impacted by COVID-19 between April and July 2020;
  5. Owners with properties that have low-to-moderate income rent levels or rent based on up to 80% of the median area income. 
 
Completed eligible applications will be randomly sorted by computer to give each application an equal chance of being funded. Grant funding will be allocated on a case by case basis, based on the number of COVID-impacted units and the amount of missed rent. Applicants must be the Primary Property Owner of a residential rental property in New Jersey and be registered with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ (NJDCA) Bureau of Housing Inspection. Applicants can check here to see if their property is registered and can access the application for "viewing only" prior to the 19th. 
For more information on the small landlord emergency grant program, visit www.njhousing.gov/rentals/sleg.
 
 
 
“Resources for Small Businesses Post Covid-19”     
Join us for a webinar on August 27, 2020 at 6PM
 
This session will be conducted in Spanish.Panelists will share information and resources available right now to help small business owners during COVID-19 and a subsequent recovery.
 
This is brought to you through the collaboration of the Small Business Development Center at William Paterson University, The Hispanic Star New Jersey Hub, the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of NJ, The New Jersey Small Business Development Center, The New Jersey Economic Development Authority, Passaic County Economic Development, Passaic County Workforce Development Board and The City of Passaic.
 
#HispanicStarinAction #SBDCNJ #PassaicCounty #SHCCNJ #NJEDA 
 
“Recursos para Pequeños Negocios Después de Covid-19” 
Asiste a este seminario en línea el 27 de Agosto del 2020 a las 6PM
Para ingresar haga clic aquí: : https://passaiccounty.webex.com/meet/wdbpcsbr82720
 
Esta sesión se realizará en Español. Los panelistas compartirán información y recursos disponibles ahora mismo para los Hispanos dueños de pequeños negocios para ayudarles durante Covid-19 y una subsecuente restauración. 
 
Esta sesión se realiza con la colaboración del Centro de Desarrollo de Pequeños Negocios de William Paterson University, The Hispanic Star New Jersey Hub, la Cámara de Comercio Estatal Hispana de NJ, el Centro de Desarrollo de Pequeños Negocios de Nueva Jersey, la Autoridad de Desarrollo Económico de Nueva Jersey, el Desarrollo Económico del Condado de Passaic, la Junta de Desarrollo Laboral del Condado de Passaic y la Ciudad de Passaic.
 
#HispanicStarinAction #SBDCNJ #PassaicCounty #SHCCNJ #NJEDA 
 
 
The Small Business Lease - Emergency Assistance Grant Program (SBL-EAGP)
Companies located in Clifton, City of Passaic and City of Paterson are eligible!
 
Launches August 10, 2020
 
The NJ Redevelopment Agency has launched The Small Business Lease - Emergency Assistance Grant Program (SBL-EAGP).  This will allow businesses in 64 eligible municipalities to apply for grants of up to $10,000 for lease costs. The program will assist small business owners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which also assists landlords, many of whom are also small businesses. Companies in Clifton, Passaic and Paterson are eligible.
 
Through the SBL-EAGP, small businesses that have been adversely impacted by COVID-19 will be able to apply for up to $10,000 to assist with lease payments. It will provide grants up to $10,000 to:
  • Tenants leasing commercial space in mixed-use buildings
  • Tenants leasing space in commercial buildings
  • Tenants leasing space to operate a storefront business
 
The program will be targeted to businesses with 5,000 square feet of leased space or less, and is requiring standard debarment and legal qualifications from applying businesses. Applications will open August 10, 2020, online, and funds will be distributed on a first come first served basis. $6 million in federal CARES Act funding will be allocated for this program.
 
Eligible applicants will need to supply:
  • Current copy of executed lease outlining terms and conditions of said agreement
  • Certification from tenant applicant confirming closure date of operations due to COVID-19
  • Copy of current NJ tax clearance certificate
  • Applicant must answer debarment questions included in the application
 
The applicant must provide:
  • Verification from the landlord that the respective business is in good standing with monthly lease obligations prior to March 1, 2020
  • Landlord and tenant will need to sign a certification acknowledging amount of outstanding lease obligations, not to exceed $10,000 (tenant will not be disqualified if monthly lease payments are current/up to date).
 
As part of the grant agreement, both tenant and landlord are required to sign a commitment that once NJRA releases funds and “payment” is received for the lease obligations, the landlord must certify the tenant will not be displaced during this period of recovery (that is, for the time period for which the grant paid the lease obligations). Additionally, the landlord agrees not to seek any remedies against the tenant for not paying the lease obligations that were paid by the grant. In the event the landlord displaces tenant after receipt of lease payment, the Landlord will be responsible for reimbursing the NJRA for the total amount of the grant awarded.
 
Eligible Applicants
Commercial tenants located in NJRA eligible municipalities currently leasing commercial space in mixed-used buildings, tenants leasing space in commercial buildings, and store front businesses that lease their space. Non-profit entities with the following designations will also be permitted to receive grant funding: 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), and 501(c)(7).
 
To be eligible as a small business, the applicant’s leased premises must be less than 5,000 square feet of leasable space. Multiple locations leased by the same business shall be aggregated.
 
Eligible Types of Businesses
Most businesses are eligible to apply for this program but for: Gambling and gaming activities, the conduct or purveyance of “adult” (i.e., pornographic, lewd, prurient, obscene or otherwise similarly disreputable) activities, services, products or materials (including nude, or semi-nude performances or the sale of sexual aids or devices); any auction or bankruptcy or fire or “lost-our-lease” or “going-out-of-business” or similar sales; sales by transient merchants, Christmas tree sales or other outdoor storage; any activity constituting a nuisance; or any illegal purposes. Tattoo shops, vaping and marijuana dispensaries and any business involved in selling alcohol are also ineligible.
 
Eligible Use of Grant Proceeds
Applicants in need of assistance with monthly lease payments due to COVID 19. Applicant does not have to be delinquent on their lease payment(s) to apply for this program. As a small business owner, the applicant may have exhausted all their savings to avoid closure of the business. The NJRA will also assist applicants, delinquent as of March 1, 2020.
 
Selection Criteria
  • Applicants must be in good standing with the State of New Jersey per the state’s annual registration process
  • Projects must meet the Corona Virus Relief Fund “CRF” eligibility guidelines*
  • Applicant will need to provide a current tax clearance certificate (if tax clearance is not presented at the time of application submission, the NJRA will allow the applicant 72 hours to obtain a tax clearance certificate)
 
***The CRF dated April 22, 2020 includes expenditures to allow the state (local government) to respond directly to the emergency by providing economic support to those suffering from employment or business operations due to Covid-19 related business closures. The expenditures of using fund payments from the CRF are considered “necessary” in addressing the current pandemic to avoid closure of small businesses located in the NJRA 64 eligible municipalities.
 
Fees
Not applicable. This program does not entail any fees.
 
Grant Amounts
Not to exceed $10,000
 
Timing
Applications will be handled on a first come, first served basis. The volume of applications anticipated during this period is expected to reach numbers that may result in additional review of applications to determine eligibility.
 
 
 
Micro Business Loan Program offered by NJ Economic Development Authority
Application is now LIVE!
 
 
The Micro Business Loan Program provides financing of up to $50,000 available to businesses with annual revenues in the most current fiscal year of no greater than $1,500,000, and 10 full-time employees or less at time of application. Financing can be used for inventory, the purchase of equipment, or working capital. Ten percent of the approved loan amount may be forgiven if the business is still open and in operation 12 months from date of loan closing.
 
Startup businesses (defined as being in operation 6-12 months) are eligible for financing but must provide the Authority a business plan and five-year projections at time of application.
 
WHAT IS THE MICRO BUSINESS LOAN PROGRAM
  • Loans of up to $50,000 to New Jersey micro businesses. 
  • Business must be registered to do business in New Jersey, have less than $1.5 million in annual revenue and no more than 10 full time employees to be eligible.
  • Startup businesses (in operation for at least 6-12 months), and home-based businesses/all 501c nonprofits (in operation for at least two years) are eligible to apply.
  • Loans can be used for inventory, equipment, and working capital to fund business operating expenses.
  • 2% interest rate, with no principal and interest payments for the first three years of the loan.
  • 10% of will be forgiven if the business is open and operating 12 months after closing date.
  • No application/closing fees for first 3 months of the program.
 
WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO APPLY:
 
  • Your organization’s registered legal name. Please check here to confirm the name is correct: https://www.njportal.com/DOR/BusinessNameSearch/Search/BusinessName
  • Date your business was established and date your business began operating.
  • A list of all owners of the business, with the percentage of the business owned by each owner.
  • For each owner: name, personal address, and social security number.
  • At least one owner/guarantor must have a minimum 600 FICO score.
  • Information on how the NJEDA loan would be used
  • Type, date and amount of other State or Federal assistance the business has applied for: (i.e. NJEDA Small Business Emergency Assistance Grants/Loans, Federal Paycheck Protection Program, Federal Economic Injury Disaster Grant/Loan)
 
AFTER YOU APPLY, BE PREPARED TO SUPPLY NJEDA WITH THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION:
  • Formation Documents, which may vary depending on the type of business you are. Some examples are:
    1. For-Profit- Filed Certificate of Incorporation, Bylaws, Filed Certificate of Authority-NJ (entity formed outside of NJ), Amendments
    2. Non-Profit: Filed Certificate of Incorporation, Bylaws, Filed Certificate of Authority-NJ (entity formed outside of NJ), Amendments, IRS Determination Letter
    3. LLC- Filed Certificate of Formation, Operating Agreement, Amendments, Filed Certificate of Authority-NJ (entity formed outside of NJ)
    4. LLP: Filed Partnership Certificate, Partnership Agreement, Amendments, Filed Certificate of Authority-NJ (entity formed outside of NJ)
    5. General Partnership - Partnership Agreement, Amendments
    6. Trust: Trust Agreement, Amendments
  • Most recent New Jersey WR-30 filing with the NJ Department of Labor
  • Three consecutive years of federal business tax returns (or as many years tax returns as appropriate for entities that have been in business less than 3 years). For nonprofits, three consecutive years of CPA prepared financial statements.
  • Three consecutive years of personal tax returns for anyone with a 10% or more ownership stake in the business. Not required for nonprofits.
  • For startup businesses, a business plan and 5-year projections
  • Information supporting how you plan to use the loan. For example:
    1. Payroll: Payroll reports/ledger
    2. Rent: Current lease
    3. Mortgage: Most recent statement/bill
    4. Utilities: Most recent bill
    5. Taxes: Most recent municipal statement/bill
    6. Inventory/Equipment: Invoices, estimates for equipment installation
  • Collateral Requirements:
    1. Loans of $25,000 or less will be unsecured (no collateral required)
    2. For loans of greater than $25,000, NJEDA will accept various forms of collateral for the full loan amount. NJEDA may look to place liens on any new equipment purchases including rolling stock, blanket lien on personal/business assets, residential or investment property to meet the collateral requirement. Maximum loan to value of 100% for secured loans
 
Rates & Terms:
  • Standard 10 year term, with the ability to increase to 15 years if needed in order to meet the 1.00x global debt service coverage ratio requirement.
  • Interest Rate: 2 percent, set at approval, with no interest and no payment due for the first three years.
  • 10% of the total approved loan amount will be forgiven if the business is open and operating 12 months after closing date.
 
Fees*:
  • No fees for entities that apply within the first three months the program is available.
  • Following the three-month period, fee structure is as follows:
  • Application fee: $300
  • Commitment Fee: 0.5% of loan amount
  • Closing Fee: 0.5% of the loan amount
* All fees are non-refundable.
 
 
NJEDA Small Business Services Team:
Please contact an NJEDA Small Business Services Team member below prior to applying for the Micro Business Loan Program.
 
For startups interested in a Micro Business Loan, the Small Business Services Officer can help connect you with an entrepreneurship training program or Small Business Development Center counseling session in your area.
 
To ask a specific question via email, please send an email to smallbusinessservices@njeda.com and a team member will reach out to you.

Maribel Fermin
Senior Small Business Liaison
New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA)
One Gateway Center, Suite 1410, Newark, NJ 07102
(609)802-2932 (cell)


Governor Murphy Announces the First Phase of the Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program
 
TRENTON – Governor Murphy today announced the first phase of the New Jersey Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program, designed to ensure that the State’s small businesses and non-profits have access to the fairly priced personal protective equipment (PPE) necessary to facilitate safe working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic. The phase was approved by the NJEDA’s Board today, advancing this initial step of a $15 million initiative to address ongoing demand for PPE.
 
In June the NJEDA issued a Request for Information (RFI) to gather input and suggestions that could help to shape a possible program to ensure small businesses had sufficient access to PPE. Taking this feedback into account, the NJEDA crafted the NJ Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program to ensure access to affordable PPE, help business owners understand the specific safety equipment they need, and support the state’s manufacturing sector by encouraging PPE suppliers to manufacture products in New Jersey.
 
Under the Program’s first phase, the State will launch a new website that provides micro and small businesses with the information needed to make easier and better PPE sourcing decision. The website will also offer a vetted list of online retailers that have agreed to verify the quality of the PPE they are selling and offer at least a 10% discount to businesses who enter through the State’s website. Online retailers will be vetted on a first-come, first serve basis by the NJEDA, and must agree to certain performance standards for their site (e.g., transparent pricing, high-quality products, etc.). Vetted online retailers will also be eligible to access an NJDEA grant pool of up to $3.5M to support the purchase of PPE that is manufactured in New Jersey or sourced from a small wholesaler based in a historically underserved community.
 
Assuming the first phase of the program is successful, the NJEDA intends to expand the program with an $11M of support for micro and small businesses PPE purchases. The intent is for this support to flow directly through the vetted online vendors, allowing users to access the grant funds at the time of their online checkout. Through this innovative public-private approach, the State anticipates that it could support more than $45 million in PPE purchases and more than 50,000 small and micro businesses.
 
To support the expansion of local PPE manufacturing in New Jersey, the NJEDA will provide grant funding to subsidize up to 20% of the purchases of PPE that has been (i) manufactured or assembled in New Jersey or (ii) sources from a wholesaler with less than 25 employees and is located in a historically underserved community (Opportunity Zone Eligible census tracts). Throughout the pandemic, NJEDA has been working closely with the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program (NJMEP) to identify and support companies that make or have pivoted to make PPE, many of which could supply New Jersey-made goods to the Program’s vetted online vendors.
 
The NJEDA is setting aside an additional $0.5 million for program development, marketing, administration, and compliance.
 
Applications for the online retailers to participate in the program are expected to launch as soon as possible. The public facing website, including small business decision-making tools and vetted discounted retailers will follow by early-to-mid December. More information can be found on the State’s COVID19.nj.gov website. 
 

Malicious Cyber Actor Spoofing COVID-19
Loan Relief Webpage via Phishing Emails
 
August 12, 2020
 
NJCCIC Members,
 
This Alert is being provided in order to assist in the protection against cyber threats.
 
Summary
The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is currently tracking an unknown malicious cyber actor who is spoofing the Small Business Administration (SBA) COVID-19 loan relief webpage via phishing emails. These emails include a malicious link to the spoofed SBA website that the cyber actor is using for malicious re-directs and credential stealing.
 
This CISA Alert (AA20-225A) provides technical details, indicators of compromise, mitigation recommendations, and is being provided for potential use at the sole discretion of recipients in order to protect against cyber threats.
 
Reporting
The NJCCIC encourages recipients who discover signs of malicious cyber activity to contact the NJCCIC via the cyber incident report form at www.cyber.nj.gov/report.
 
Please do not hesitate to contact the NJCCIC at njccic@cyber.nj.gov with any questions. Also, for more background on our recent cybersecurity efforts please visit cyber.nj.gov.
 
The information contained in this product is marked Traffic Light Protocol (TLP): WHITE. Disclosure is not limited. Subject to standard copyright rules, TLP: WHITE information may be distributed without restriction. 
 
New Jersey Cybersecurity & Communications Integration Cell
24/7 Incident Reporting: 1.866.4.SAFE.NJ
General Inquiries: 1.833.4.NJCCIC