#SWAAYthenarrative

What is the Paycheck Protection Program?

3 min read
Finance

Earlier this year, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economics Security (CARES) Act was signed by President Trump in order to provide emergency assistance and healthcare response to individuals, families, and businesses that were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Small Business Administration (SBA) was given the funding and authority to modify existing loan programs to assist small businesses nationwide.

The PPP provides the financial resources for owners to stay afloat and continue their payments on payroll costs.

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) provides loans granted 100% by the SBA until August 8, 2020 — originally the program was supposed to stay in place until June 30, 2020, but an extension was granted. The main intent of the CARES Act is to provide relief to America's small businesses. For that reason, the SBA will allow lenders to rely solely on certifications made by the borrower on specified documents to determine loan amount and eligibility for the loan forgiveness.

There are certain requirements you need to meet to become eligible for the PPP, and it is extremely important that you understand their guidelines before applying for the loan. One of the key requirements is you must have 500 or less employees whose principal place of residence is in the United States, or you are a business that operates in a certain industry and meets the applicable SBA employee-based size standards for that industry. In order to be eligible, you need to prove you were in operation on February 15, 2020 and had employees whom you paid salaries to as well as payroll taxes. You are also eligible if you are an individual who operates under a sole proprietorship, an independent contractor, or self-employed on February 15, 2020. To establish said eligibility, you must submit the required documentation, such as payroll processor records, payroll tax filings, or income and expenses from a sole proprietorship as proof.

The PPP is a great opportunity for businesses who found themselves facing difficulties due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

If you are engaged in any activity that is illegal under federal, state, or local law, you are not eligible to receive a loan under the PPP. The same would apply if you are a household employer — meaning you employ nannies or housekeepers — or if you are the owner of 20% or more of the equity of an applicant who is incarcerated, on probation, on parole, or has been convicted of a felony within the last five years. If you or any business you own have ever obtained a direct or guaranteed loan from SBA or any other federal agency that is currently delinquent or has defaulted within the last seven years and caused a loss to the government, you will not be eligible.

Under the PPP, the maximum loan amount you may be granted is $10 million or the calculation of a payroll-based formula specified in the CARES Act. In order to do this calculation, you will need to understand the payroll cost. This involves compensations to employees in form of salary, wages, commissions, or similar compensations.

Said CARES Act formula is calculated by following these steps:

  1. Calculate the payroll costs from the last twelve months for employees whose principal place of residence is the United States.
  2. Subtract any compensation paid to an employee for more than the annual salary of $100,000 or any amounts paid to an independent contractor or sole proprietor for more than $100,000.
  3. Calculate the average monthly payroll costs.
  4. Multiply the average by 2.5.
  5. Add the outstanding amount of an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) made between January 31, 2020 and April 3, 2020 minus the amount of any advance under EIDL COVID-19 loan (because it does not have to be repaid).

When it comes to the PPP, the interest rate will be 100 basis points or 1%, and its maturity will be two years. Even though under the CARES Act a loan will have a maximum maturity of up to ten years from the date the borrower applies for loan forgiveness, the SBA determined that a two-year loan term is sufficient in light of the temporary economic dislocations caused by the Coronavirus. The payments are deferred six months from the date of disbursement. However, interest will continue to accrue during that period.

The amount of loan forgiveness can be up to the full principal amount of the loan and any accrued interest only if it falls under the following:

  1. The borrower uses it to cover at least 75% of compensation not exceeding $100,000.
  2. Not more than 25% of the loan forgiveness may be attributed to non-payroll costs.

And based on this, the PPP loan can be used for:

  1. Payroll costs.
  2. Costs related to the continuation of group healthcare benefits during periods of paid sick, medical, or family leave, and insurance premiums.
  3. Mortgage interest payments.
  4. Rent payments.
  5. Utility payments.
  6. Interest payments on any other debt obligations that were incurred before February 15, 2020.
  7. Refinancing an SBA EIDL loan.

The main intent of the CARES Act is to provide relief to America's small businesses.

The PPP is a great opportunity for businesses who found themselves facing difficulties due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It provides the financial resources for owners to stay afloat and continue their payments on payroll costs. Each business can apply for one PPP loan, so it is advisable they apply for the maximum amount possible. This way, they know the amount they receive will be good to cover their expenses and help them face these new challenges.

5 min read
Self

Lessons Learned and the Power of Turning 50

Except for 16, I have celebrated all of my milestone birthdays in New York City.

I turned 16 in Arnold, Missouri. Arnold is a small town (though not small anymore) 20 miles south of St. Louis. St. Louis is known for the Gateway Arch, a beautiful arch of shiny stainless steel, built by the National Parks Service in 1935 to commemorate Thomas Jefferson's vision of a transcontinental U.S. St. Louis is also known for its custard, a frozen dessert that is so thick, they hand it to you upside down with a spoon inside. Something else about St. Louis you should know is that there is a courthouse just steps from the base of the Gateway Arch where one of the most important cases in history was tried: Dred Scott v. Sanford.

I'm turning 50 during what I define as a miraculous time to be alive.

Mr. Scott was born into enslavement around 1799 and, in 1830, was sold to a military surgeon who traveled back and forth between his military posts in Illinois and Wisconsin, where slavery was prohibited under the Missouri Compromise of 1820. In 1842 the doctor and Mr. Scott both married, and they, all four, returned to St. Louis. Still enslaved, Dred Scott filed a lawsuit against the doctor's wife for his and his wife Harriet's freedom. We don't know exactly why he chose this moment in time to file a lawsuit, however, he did. At the time of filing his, now, famous lawsuit, he was 50 years old. Ultimately, The Scott family did not gain their freedom, but their profound courage in filling this case helped ignite the Civil War and what we would come to know (or think we know) as freedom from enslavement for all human beings. Powerful then and even more powerful now.

My next milestone was turning 21, and I did it in the Big Apple. Having only moved to "the city that never sleeps" a few months prior, I knew nobody except my new friends, the bus-boys from the restaurant I was working at, Patzo's on the Upper West Side. And, yes, pazzo is actually the correct spelling of the Italian word, which translates to "crazy." Trust me we all had several laughs about the misspelling and the definition going hand in hand. I worked a full shift, closing out at around 11 PM, when, my kitchen team came out from the line with a cake singing, "Cumpleaños Feliz." It was fantastic. And the kindness of these almost-strangers was a powerful reminder of connection then as it still is today almost 29 years later.

I design the life I desire and the Universe creates it for me every day. I show up, keep the story moving, and work hard because I am relentlessly devoted to making the world a better place and this is how I choose to leave my legacy.

When I turned 30, I had just finished a European tour with Lucinda Childs dance company. The company had been on tour for months together and were inseparable. We traveled through Paris, Vienna, Lisbon, and Rome. We ate together, we rode on a bus together, we had drinks after shows together, and we even took turns giving company class to get warmed up before a show. It was deeply meaningful and dreamy. We ended the tour back in New York City at BAM, The Brooklyn Academy of Music. It was an incredible way to end the tour, by being on our home court, not to mention I was having an important birthday at the culmination of this already incredible experience.

So, when I invited everyone to join me at Chelsea Pier's Sky Rink to ice skate in late August, I was schooled really quickly that "tour" does not mean you are friends in real life, it means you are tour friends. When the tour ends, so does the relationship. I skated a few laps and then went home. This was a beautiful lesson learned about who your real friends are; it was powerful then as it is today.

Turning 40 was a completely different experience. I was in a serious relationship with my now-husband, Joe. I had just come off of a successful one-woman dance show that I produced, choreographed, and danced in, I had just choreographed a feature film, John Turturro's Romance and Cigarettes, with A-list actors, including Kate Winslet and James Gandolfini, who became a dear friend and had even been on the red carpet with Susan Sarandon at the Venice Film Festival for the movie a year earlier.

And I encourage all women to identify their power and choose to be fully in your power at any age.

This was a very special birthday, and I had, in those 10 years between 30 and 40, come to cultivate very real friendships with some wonderful colleagues. We all celebrated at a local Italian restaurant, Etcetera Etcetera (who is delivering for those of you in NYC — we order weekly to support them during COVID), a staple in the theater district. Joe and I were (and are) regulars and, of course, wanted to celebrate my 40th with our restaurant family and friends. We were upstairs in the private room, and it was really lovely. Many of those in attendance are no longer with us, including Joe's Dad, Bob Ricci, and my dear friend Jim Gandolfini having transitioned to the other side. Currently, that restaurant is holding on by a thread of loving neighbors and regulars like us. Life is precious. Powerful then and today even more so.

I write this article because I'm turning 50, still in New York City. However, I'm turning 50 during what I define as a miraculous time to be alive. And I could not be more filled with hope, love, possibility, and power. This year has included an impeachment hearing, a global pandemic, and global protests that are finally giving a larger platform to the Black Lives Matter movement. Being able to fully embody who I am as a woman, a 50-year-old woman who is living fully in purpose, takes the cake, the rink, and the party.

I'm making movies about conversations around race. I've been happily married for 11 years to the love of my life, Joe Ricci. I'm amplifying and elevating the voices of those who have not previously had a platform for speaking out. I choose who to spend time with and how long! I design the life I desire and the Universe creates it for me every day. I show up, keep the story moving, and work hard because I am relentlessly devoted to making the world a better place and this is how I choose to leave my legacy. Being 50 is one of the most amazing things I ever thought I could experience. And I encourage all women to identify their power and choose to be fully in your power at any age. I'm 50 and powerful. Dred Scott was 50 and powerful. This powerful lesson is for today and tomorrow. We have the power. No matter what age you are, I invite you to use your powerful voice to join me in making the world a better place.