Many small businesses can now apply for federal help from the CARES Act.

Around the country, businesses are feeling affects by the coronavirus pandemic — in many different ways.

“My main business or source of income is from my design and those services that I provide for other clients and entrepreneurs in the area. So when entrepreneurs can’t do their business, I can’t do my business to help them,” shared business owners Ashton Hauff.

“I would say we have over half of our businesses have asked for something, whether it’s assistance with these programs through the SBA or internal accommodation on loans. Over half of our borrowers have at least have had conversations,” said TJ Rooney, the Bismarck President at Security First Bank of ND.

A $2 trillion package called The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act was created to help relieve the country of its current economic crisis.

“The resources that are available from the federal government really are to help our businesses continue on, so they don’t shut their doors,” explained Michelle Kommer, the Commissioner of the North Dakota Department of Commerce.

There are two different options for business owners to receive funding to help them through these tough times.

The economic injury disaster loan is meant to help qualified businesses pay debts, accounts payable and any other bills. This loan is applied for directly through the Small Business Administration.

“One feature of that, that’s really important to businesses that need help right now is the $10,000 emergency advance, which is delivered within three days of when that loan is approved,” shared Kommer.

The other loan is the paycheck protection program. This a forgivable loan, designed to help keep employees on the payroll while they’re stuck at home during the COVID-19 crisis.

“At least 75% is required to go towards payroll. But then the remaining portion can be used for other qualifying expenses. Such as rent, interest on debt that was already in place prior to February 15th of this year even utilities,” shared Rooney.

There are business owners all over the country like Hauff whose businesses are hurting and are in need of these funds to survive.

“What I pay myself as a self-employed person, I completely rely on the work that I do and the clients that I get to work for. Since corona that has been completely at zero. So I need money to pay my own bills,” shared Hauff.

Non-profits like churches could also qualify for the economic injury disaster loans.