Short Window of Opportunity to Apply for FEDERAL CARES ACT GRANT money made available to small businesses in NM.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES Act) was passed by Congress with overwhelming, bipartisan support and signed into law by the President on March 27th, 2020. It was designed to provide fast and direct economic assistance for American workers and families, small businesses, and preserves jobs for American industries for the immediate support of small businesses. New Mexico received $1.2 billion in CARES Act funding for that exact purpose, but there is still a lot of money the state must spend before the Dec. 30 use-it or lose-it deadline.
A portion of the remaining funds, in the amount of $100 million has now been appropriated by the state for small business grants. Given the time frame remaining to disperse this money, there is an extremely short window of opportunity to apply. There are many thousands of businesses in need of this money and the amount allotted will not cover them all, so please, thoroughly read through the guidelines and be prepared when you apply. Applications, with all of the required documents, may be uploaded beginning at noon December 7, 2020.
Information and the application for the Small Business CARES Relief Grants will be available at the New Mexico Finance Authority website. The application is live 12/07/2020. (Location to watch complete sideshow presentation is listed at the bottom of this article)
Small Business CARES Relief Grants are available to New Mexico for-profit businesses and nonprofit organizations with 100 or fewer employees that meet one of the following requirements:
1. Sole proprietorship owned by a New Mexico resident, or
2. Corporations, partnerships, joint ventures, limited liability companies or limited partnerships that are at least 51% owned by one or more New Mexico residents, or
3. Nonprofit corporation designated as a 501(c)(3), 501(C)(6) or 501(c)(8) entity, or a 501(c) organization that serves past or present members of the Armed Forces of the United States.
Process for Funding Applications
The applications will be funded in three rounds so that businesses that apply later in the application period still have a chance to obtain funding. The funding rounds and amounts set aside for funding are as follows:
Round 1: Applications submitted by noon on December 10: $40,000,000
Round 2: All applications submitted by noon on December 15 and those unawarded applications from Round 1: $35,000,000
Round 3: All applications submitted by noon on December 18 and those unawarded applications from Rounds 1 and 2: $25,000,000 plus any allocated funds that were not used in earlier rounds.
Applicants should apply only once. If an application is not funded in the round in which it was submitted, the application will roll into the next round and will be considered again.
The application will open the week of December 7 until noon on December 18. The application will close at noon on Friday, December 18. Please note that this is only 11 days. We encourage you to apply as early as possible. Businesses may only submit one application.
You MUST have all of the required documents ready in advance in digital format, because the application has to be filed all at once – there is not an option to save the application and add documents later: If you do start the process without uploading the required documents, the application will be disqualified and you will not be allowed to file again!
- 2019 business federal tax return;
- A quarterly employment wage report submitted to the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions for any quarter ended March 31, 2019 or later. If no report is provided, applicant will be considered a non-employer business;
- applicant’s NAICS Code; (This is the code used for your CRS#)
- bank account information including a copy of cancelled or voided check; and
- copy of the driver’s license or government-issued identification card for the authorized officer and all New Mexico resident owners that make up at least 51% of the business. NMFA may request additional information to verify residency, number of employees, measurement of severe economic impact, or anything else needed to evaluate the application.
Applications that do not have the required documents are considered incomplete. Incomplete applications will be considered the lowest priority and may result in decline. NMFA staff will inform applicants through email regarding missing attachments. Applicants should watch their inbox, junk folder and spam filters for email from @nmfa.net and @formstack.com.
To ensure that grants have been distributed throughout the State, 40% of the funds have been set aside for businesses in rural areas. Businesses in the Hospitality and Leisure industries will be been given priority to the funding as directed by the legislation.
If there are more applications then available funding, NMFA will prioritize the applications based on each business’s profit or loss per employee and will fund the applications in the order prioritized.
Definition of New Mexico Resident
“New Mexico Resident” means an individual who has certified that the individual is domiciled in this state during any part of the year or that the individual was physically present in this state for at least 185 days during the taxable year, as evidenced by a valid New Mexico State Driver’s License or government-issued identification card.
Businesses will be awarded grant amounts based upon the number of individuals they employ. The grant amounts are fixed amounts that are based on quarterly wage reports submitted to the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions. Businesses that do not pay unemployment taxes (non-employer businesses) and those that do not submit a copy of the quarterly wage report will be eligible for a grant of $2,000.
Employees / Grant Amount
0 / $2,000
1-5 / $10,000
6-15 / $15,000
16-25 / $25,000
26-40 / $30,000
41-60 / $40,000
61-75 / $45,000
76-100 / $50,000
I’ve had to reduce staff because of the Emergency Health Orders. How will this affect the amount of grant I receive?
Applicants are able to use pre-COVID employment levels for purposes of determining the grant amount. Applicants are able to submit any quarterly wage report from March 31, 2019 to date.
Use of Grant Funds
The grant may be used for regular business expenses that cannot be paid without additional assistance due to revenue losses because of the pandemic. The grant may also be used for expenses incurred due to the pandemic, such as PPE or retrofitting a business to meet COVID-19 safety guidelines.
If you have more questions please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 505-992-9696.
The webinar Overview: Small Business CARES Relief Grant Program by Marquita Russel and her staff at NMFA provides a thorough overview of the program.