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COVID-19 Relief Programs for New Jersey Small Businesses

Updated: Jul 13, 2020

Below is a myriad of resources available to NJ small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

New Jersey State-Wide Programs

Deadlines for renewing permits or licenses issued by the New Jersey Attorney General’s Department of Law & Public Safety—including Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control minor employment permits; licenses for Home Improvement Contractor, Home Elevator Contractor, Respiratory Care Practitioner, and Product Warrantor; and all casino licenses requiring renewal or resubmission—have been automatically extended for various periods of time.

The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management, with the assistance of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and The Defense Logistics Agency, has secured the Battelle Critical Care Decontamination System (CCDS) to assist healthcare providers, first responders, and other agencies in decontaminating and preserving critically needed N95 respirators at no charge to the sending agencies.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority offers financial assistance to businesses throughout New Jersey, including Micro Business Loans of up to $50,000, direct loans of up to $3 million, and lease reimbursement for up to 15% of the receiving business’s annual lease payments, which may ease the financial impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on New Jersey businesses.

Holders of plenary retail consumption licenses, hotel or motel licenses, seasonal retail consumption licenses, concessionaire permits, which are generally issued to bars and restaurants, or craft distillery licenses are permitted to sell and deliver alcoholic beverages in original containers or in closed and sealed containers and mixed cocktails in closed and sealed containers for consumption off the licensed premises during the state of emergency.

Despite COVID-19 related closures, day and residential care facilities that provide care to individuals with developmental disabilities will continue to receive certain funding until July 31, 2020.

Elective surgeries and invasive procedures, both medical and dental, are allowed to resume. These procedures must resume according to the policies issued by the New Jersey Department of Health and the Division of Consumer Affairs, which include requirements that providers establish a prioritization policy for providing care and scheduling of these procedures.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority has developed an online screening tool for employers to allow them to quickly determine what emergency assistance programs they may be eligible for during the remainder of the COVID-19 crisis.

This New Jersey Economic Development Authority program will support technical assistance to New Jersey-based companies applying for State and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) programs. The organizations contracted will be paid based on SBA application submissions supported by the technical assistance they provide.

This New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) program provides a guarantee of an investor loan advanced for working capital to an entrepreneurial company that has been impacted by COVID-19. NJEDA will guarantee up to 80% of the total investment amount, not to exceed $200,000 per NJ entrepreneurial company.

New Jersey has retroactively extended the deadline for the filing of real property tax appeals from April 1, 2020 to July 1, 2020, unless countervailing county restrictions apply. The deadline for a county board of taxation to render a decision on appeals filed by property taxpayers is now September 30, 2020, unless countervailing county restrictions apply.

A minimum 90-day grace period is now required for life insurance, insurance premium-financing arrangements, and property and casualty insurance premium payments, and a minimum 60-day grace period is now required for health and dental insurance policy premium payments. During the grace periods, certain insurance companies are not able to cancel policies for nonpayment of premiums. Insurance companies will be required to notify policyholders of this emergency grace period and to waive certain late fees, interest, or other charges associated with delays in premium payments. Insurance companies will also be required to pay any claim incurred during the emergency grace period that would be covered under the policy and any unpaid premium will be amortized over the remainder of the policy term or a period of up to 12 months following the end of the emergency grace period.

New Jersey’s Department of Health is offering free round-trip flights to health care workers coming to New Jersey to help with the state’s efforts to fight COVID-19.

The New Jersey Departments of Health, Agriculture, and Labor and Workforce Development have issued guidance on working conditions as well as testing/treatment procedures to assist agricultural businesses in minimizing the risk and potential exposure to COVID-19.

New Jersey is offering a loan program to offset some of the unforeseen expenses incurred by health care providers in the COVID-19 pandemic. Loans will:

(1) have no application, initial, or annual fees;

(2) be at an interest rate of 0%; and

(3) be secured solely by federal and State grants and other financial aid received by the recipient health care organizations as a response to COVID-19, as well as grants from other private and public sources related to COVID-19 resilience and anything acquired with the proceeds thereof.

Vehicles carrying COVID-19 relief supplies may now obtain special permits issued by the Department of Transportation in order to operate on certain state highways and toll roads at an increased weight limit of up to 92,000 pounds. Companies will be able to obtain these permits until July 23, 2020, unless this program is otherwise rescinded, superseded, or revised by the Office of the Governor.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority has approved a three-month moratorium on direct loan and premier lender participation loan payments (pending approval by the agency bank) for eligible businesses. The New Jersey Economic Development Authority is also allowing collateral releases, subordinations, and substitutions on business assets for businesses impacted by COVID- 19, and waiving late fees on loan repayments and loan modification fees for impacted businesses.

All of New Jersey’s public electric, phone, cable, water, and gas utilities have universally agreed to suspend service shutoffs indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority has opened an online portal where employers in critical industries can post openings for additional employees created by the COVID-19 epidemic during the remainder of the COVID-19 crisis.

Non-emergency childcare centers may reopen starting June 15, and facilities may also be eligible for grants to assist them in implementing safety procedures related to preventing the spread of COVID-19. Facilities that are reopening must follow the childcare safety guidelines posted on the NJ DCF website and may be subject to countervailing or additional city or county restrictions. Businesses should check for any additional city or county restrictions.

New Jersey has assembled a PPE supplier registry to assist private businesses and organizations in locating potential suppliers for PPE and other COVID-related goods and services.

For the duration of the COVID-19 crisis, New Jersey has granted immunity from civil liability for healthcare professional for any damages alleged to have been sustained as a result of the individual’s acts or omissions undertaken in good faith in the course of providing healthcare services in support of the State’s COVID-19 response, whether or not within the scope of their practice and whether or not such immunity is otherwise available under current law. This immunity granted temporary licenses as part of New Jersey’s COVID-19 crisis response.

New Jersey law now allows notaries and authorized officials to execute remote notarial acts during the COVID-19 crisis.

If there are no countervailing city or county restrictions, certain non-essential businesses and public areas, including beaches, boardwalks, lakes, campgrounds, and lakeshores; golf courses; marinas; non-essential construction; drive-thru and drive-in events; car dealerships, motorcycle dealerships, boat dealerships, and bike shops; professional sports and horse racing tracks; outdoor recreational and entertainment businesses, with the exception of amusement parks, water parks, and arcades; and nonessential retail, are allowed to reopen now so long as social distancing protocols are followed. Beginning June 15, 2020, customers will be allowed in non-essential retail stores and restaurants may reopen for outdoor dining. Businesses should check for any additional city or county restrictions for both phases of reopening.

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority will award a total of $45 million in federal CARES Act funding to small businesses in grants under the second phase of its Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program. Businesses will receive $1,000 per full-time employee, (based on WR-30 filing). Sole proprietorships or other companies with no full-time employees will receive the minimum grant amount of $1,000. Applications for the expanded Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program Phase 2 are available now in both English and Spanish. Businesses should review the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s FAQ page for a full list of eligibility requirements and restrictions.

A pilot program from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority that makes available one- year first loss guarantees of permanent working capital loans and lines of credit originated by Premier Lender banks. These loans must be made to cover operating expenses for New Jersey small businesses and non-profit organizations that have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The deadline for New Jersey companies to file state partnership and corporation business taxes has been extended from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020.

Youth day camps may reopen starting July 6, and camps may also be eligible for grants to assist them in implementing safety procedures related to preventing the spread of COVID-19. Facilities that are reopening must submit an attestation to the Department of Health no later than 24 hours prior to the anticipated opening date attesting that they will follow all applicable health and safety standards, and residential and overnight camps are prohibited from operating. Businesses should check for any additional city or county restrictions.


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