wbc-logo.png

RELIEF FUND

ABOUT THE FUND

For small businesses and nonprofits that have lost revenue due to public health orders and/or have incurred COVID-19 related expenses

  • Timing:  Opened August 4, 2020; Closed September 15, 2020

  • Funding: Up to $300,000; Cannot apply more than one time per program

  • Eligible Entities: Businesses with 100 or fewer employees and 501 (c)3, (c)6, (c)12, (c)19 nonprofits with at least one paid full-time employee and no more than 50 percent of time spent on lobbying

  • Eligible time frame: March 13, 2020 to application date 

  • Total Funding Available: $185 million in total 

    • $50 million is set aside for businesses that were required to close by public health order and either received dollars from the Interruption Fund and have additional losses due to COVID-19 or were unable to apply in the first round.

    • $135 million is available to eligible businesses and nonprofits that were not required to close that incurred COVID-19-related expenses and direct or indirect revenue losses due to public health orders

BUSINESS ELIGIBILITY 

  • 100 or fewer employees

    • Companies that have between 101 to 110 employees and can show good cause will be considered by the Wyoming Business Council.  

  • Established on or before March 13, 2020 

  • For-profit, privately or publicly owned businesses

  • Headquartered in Wyoming or have more than 50 percent of their primary work located in Wyoming and at least 60 percent of their employees employed in Wyoming or 60 percent of the business payroll paid to individuals living in Wyoming.

NOTE: Businesses that received dollars from the Interruption Fund can apply for the Relief Fund. These businesses must certify new or increased expenses due to the public health orders.

NONPROFIT ELIGIBILITY 

  • Must be one of the following: 501(c)(3), 501(c)(6), 501(c)(12) and 501(c)(19) 

  • Must have at least one paid full-time employee 

  • 100 or fewer employees

    • Nonprofits that have between 101 to 110 employees and can show good cause will be considered by the Wyoming Business Council.  

  • Established on or before March 13, 2020 

  • Headquartered in Wyoming or principal operations in Wyoming and at least 60 percent of their employees employed in Wyoming or 60 percent of the business payroll paid to individuals living in Wyoming.

  • Must have no more than 50 percent of time spent on lobbying

Eligible businesses and nonprofits can apply for both the Relief Fund and the Mitigation Fund but applicants cannot apply more than one time per fund. Businesses that received a stipend from the Interruption Fund can also apply for these next funds. Recipients are not required to pay back the funds; however, all funds received through the COVID-19 Business Relief Program are considered taxable income.

HOW TO CALCULATE YOUR RELIEF FUND AMOUNT

WORKSHEET TO CALCULATE  - FOR BOTH PROGRAMS (REQUIRED TO CLOSE & NOT REQUIRED TO CLOSE)

The Relief Fund calculation worksheet has been updated to better reflect the application and to be more user friendly. Please DOWNLOAD the worksheet and click on "Enable Editing" at the top for it to work properly.

CALCULATION EXAMPLE SCENARIOS

REQUIRED TO CLOSE EXAMPLES

NOT REQUIRED TO CLOSE EXAMPLES

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How do I know if my business/nonprofit was required to close?


The following businesses were officially named in public health orders and are deemed “required to close” for the purposes of the Relief Fund: theaters, bars, nightclubs, coffee shops, employee cafeterias, self-serve buffets, salad bars, unpackaged self-serve food service, gyms, conference rooms, museums, restaurants, nail salons, hair salons, barber shops, massage therapy services, tattoo, body art and piercing shops, cosmetology, electrology, esthetic services, and child care centers or home daycares.




If approved, how will I receive my money?


Monies will be disbursed either via electronic funds transfer or by paper check from the Wyoming State Auditor’s Office. Checks will be mailed to the mailing address listed in the application. Businesses/nonprofits set up in the state Vendor Management System will receive an electronic funds transfer; businesses/nonprofits not in the system will receive a check mailed to the mailing address listed in their application. If the applicant applied for the Relief Fund and the Mitigation Fund, they will receive two separate checks, one for each fund allocation. All applicants receiving stipends under any of the Wyoming Business Relief programs will have their name (or business name) and the amount of any stipend(s) received listed on the Wyoming State Auditor's transparency website at wyopen.gov All funds received under the Wyoming Business Relief Programs must be reported as taxable income on your next federal tax filing. Applicants are encouraged to work with a qualified accountant to determine how funds awarded under this program affect their tax situation; the Wyoming Business Council cannot advise you on tax or business matters.




I’m a nonprofit. Can I apply?


You can apply for the Relief Fund if you are a 501 (c)(3), 501(c)(6), 501(c)(12) and 501(c)(19) and have at least one paid full-time employee, in addition to meeting the other eligibility requirements, you may apply. However, if your nonprofit’s primary activity is lobbying (if 50 percent or more of your time is dedicated to lobbying), you will not qualify. Any government-owned entity, including tribal government-owned businesses, is not eligible.

  • 501(c)(3)- Charitable, educational, religious, literary, testing for public safety, promotion of amateur athletics, prevention of cruelty to children or animals
  • 501(c)(6) - Business Leagues, etc.
  • 501(c)(12) - Benevolent Life Insurance Associations, Mutual Ditch or Irrigation Companies, Mutual or Cooperative Telephone Companies, or Like Organizations (if 85 percent or more of the organization's income consists of amounts collected from members for the sole purpose of meeting losses and expenses)
  • 501(c)(19)- Veterans' Organizations




How do I know my application was submitted?


After you submit your application, you will receive an email confirming the successful submission and a unique application number.




I received funding from the Interruption Fund. Can I apply for this too?


Yes. Eligible businesses that received dollars from the Interruption Fund can apply for the Mitigation Fund. These businesses must certify new or increased revenue loss and expenses due to the public health orders between March 13, 2020 and their Mitigation Fund application date.




Are government entities eligible?


Governmental or government-owned entities are not eligible to apply for the Relief and Mitigation Funds. This includes tribal government-owned businesses.




Can I apply multiple times?


No. You are only allowed one application for each fund. You can only apply once for the Relief Fund and once for the Mitigation Fund. The maximum you can apply for is $800,000 between the two (Up to $300,000 from the Relief Fund and up to $500,000 from the Mitigation Fund).




Who is considered a full-time employee?


Someone who works 30 hours or more per week.




What does “headquartered in Wyoming” mean?


Eligible entities must have more than 50 percent of their primary work located in Wyoming and at least 60 percent of their employees employed in Wyoming or 60 percent of the business payroll paid to individuals living in Wyoming.




What does “principle operations in Wyoming” mean?


Have more than 50 percent of your primary work located in Wyoming and at least 60 percent of your employees employed in Wyoming or 60 percent of the business payroll paid to individuals living in Wyoming.




How do I apply?


Applications must be completed and submitted online at wyobizrelief.org.




Is there a paper application?


No, applications must be completed and submitted online at wyobizrelief.org.




What is the application review process?


  • Each application will be assigned a unique identifying number.
  • Wyoming Business Council staff reviews to ensure accuracy, eligibility, and completeness.
  • Secretary of State’s Office reviews for accuracy and to insure the entity is in good standing.
  • The Wyoming State Auditor’s Office performs a final check to ensure accuracy for IRS reporting requirements.
  • Monies will be expended on a first come, first served basis.




How long will it take to know if my application is approved and to receive funding?


Timing to receive funding after approval depends on a number of factors; however, most applicants should receive their funds within 21 business days from their review date.




If my application is denied, is there an appeal process?


Yes, applicants must first notify the Wyoming Business Council of their intent to appeal via email at wbc.brp@wyo.gov within three (3) business days of the application denial date. 

  • After three (3) business days the application will no longer be eligible for funding.
  • Denied applications may appeal with a typed summary of business’ activities, history, industry, etc. plus one or more of the following documentation:
  • Tax Return forms filed with the IRS; (B) Schedule C of IRS form 1040, Schedule F of IRS form 1040, any other form necessary to establish a business’ existence 
  • Documentation of EIN from IRS 
  • Failure to submit the aforementioned documentation within three (3) business days will result in denial of the application. 
  • Any eligible business found using multiple methods (EIN and SSN) to apply for numerous awards may be denied any or all applications at the Business Council’s sole discretion. 
  • The approval or denial determination of the Business Council is final.




Will I be audited if I receive funding?


Funds awarded under these programs are subject to random audits as provided in statute and program rules. Current rules may be found online at rules.wyo.gov. Knowingly making a false statement to obtain funding under these programs may require total or partial repayment of the funds and is punishable under the law, including under 18 USC 1343 by imprisonment of not more than thirty years and/or a fine of up to $1,000,000 and Wyo. Stat. Ann. 6-3-402 by imprisonment of not more than ten years and/or a fine of up to $10,000.




Who is eligible to apply for the Relief Fund?


Businesses and nonprofits can both apply for the Relief Fund! For Businesses:

  • A business independently owned and operated that was established on or before the date of enactment of any applicable public health order issued by the state or any local government of Wyoming (March 31,2020) that required closures of businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Independently owned and operated
  • Headquartered in Wyoming and has its principal operations located in Wyoming
  • Must have been adversely impacted as a result of COVID-19 pandemic or as a result of business interruptions due to a required closure or public health order
  • As of March 31, 2020, had employed one hundred (100) full-time employees or less for applicants requesting COVID-19 Business Relief Program
For Nonprofit Organizations:
  • If IRS designated organizations - 501 (c)(3), 501(c)(6), 501(c)(12) and 501(c)(19) and have at least one paid full-time employee, in addition to meeting the other eligibility requirements, you may apply.
  • If your nonprofit’s primary activity is lobbying (if 50 percent or more of your time is dedicated to lobbying), you will not qualify.




How do I calculate my application amount?


Please refer to the graphic, worksheet and details above. An Excel worksheet as been provided to help you enter your gross revenue figures, operating expenses, COVID-related expenses, Interruption Fund awards, federal funds received and other data necessary to calculate your fund amount. Once you complete this worksheet, you will enter your numbers directly into the application. We encourage all business owners and nonprofit managers to contact their accountant, banker or another finance expert like your SBDC regional director for assistance with these application calculations.




What extraordinary COVID expenses can I claim?


The section on extraordinary COVID expenses is ONLY to be filled out by businesses that were required to close. If you were not required to close, please move to the Expenditure Plan section. COVID-19 Related Payroll Expenses (Between March 13, 2020 and Application Date):

  • Past Payroll can only include payroll expenses specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Past Payroll could include: Expenses related to hiring/training new or current staff to comply with health orders (cleaning, temperature checks, training, etc.), COVID-19 compliance expenses, etc.
  • Past Payroll CANNOT include: Normal business operation payroll expenses.
Past Business Supplies (Between March 13, 2020 and the Application Date):
  • Past Business Supplies can only include supplies necessary to operate the business during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Past Business Supplies Could Include: office supplies, serving supplies, and other supplies needed to maintain normal business operations during COVID-19.
  • Past Business Supplies CANNOT include: Any supplies expenses that the business would have continued to incur if COVID had not happened.
Past Business Equipment (Between March 13, 2020 and the Application Date):
  • Past business equipment can only include equipment expenses specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Past Business Equipment could include: computers and equipment for telework, protective barriers, telephones, food serving equipment, personal protective equipment (gloves, masks, sanitizer dispensers, etc.), thermometers, etc.
  • Past Business Equipment CANNOT include: Any equipment expenses that would have been incurred if COVID didn't happen.
Past Business Rent & Mortgage (Between March 13, 2020 and the Application Date):
  • Past Business Rent & Mortgage can only include rent and mortgage expenses incurred specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Past Business Rent and Mortgage could include: Renting out or purchasing an office or workspace to comply with social distancing. (Expenses must have already been incurred at time of application)
  • Past Business Rent and Mortgage CANNOT include: Any rental expenses in the future, any business rent/mortgage that was in place before COVID, etc.
Past Other (Between March 13, 2020 and the Application Date):
  • Past Other can ONLY include other expenses that are a direct result and due to COVID-19.
  • Past Other could include: Any other expenses that have been incurred as a DIRECT result of COVID-19.
  • Past Other CANNOT include: Any expenses that the business regularly incurs in the absence of COVID.




How long do I have to apply?


Although there is no formal end date or due date, we expect demand for funding to be high and recommend not waiting to apply for the fund.




What documents do I need to complete the application?


Most applications will not require any attachments, but there are a few documents you’ll want to have handy before you apply:

  1. The most recent tax documents for the business entity you’re applying for. For most businesses with an EIN, this will be IRS Schedule C or Schedule F, and non-profits will use IRS Form 990. Sole proprietors and some single-member LLC’s applying using a Social Security Number will want to have their most recent federal income tax documents.
  2. Your business financial records from March 2020 to the date you apply, as well as your records for the same time period in 2019.
  3. Records for any other federal COVID-19 assistance your business may have received, such as Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), as well as funds received under the WBC’s Business Interruption Stipend Program (aka Program 1).
  4. A justifiable and reasonable calculation of any future “Extraordinary Expenses” your business may incur as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. You may also use our helpful Calculation Worksheet available above.




How do I know if I need to provide my EIN or my SSN?


If the applicant is applying as a business entity, they need to provide the EIN (Employer Identification Number) that exactly matches the business' legal name on IRS registration documents. If the applicant is applying as an individual (i.e. sole proprietor), they need to provide the SSN (Social Security Number) that exactly matches the Business Representative's name as used for filing IRS tax forms.




If I claimed other federal funding in my Interruption Fund application, do I need to include it in my application for the Relief Fund?


All CARES Act-related funding received that will not be required to be paid back must be included in the application for the Relief Fund and Mitigation Fund, even if you included it in your Interruption Fund calculation. These funds include but are not limited to the Payroll Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance, and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA).




What are gross revenue losses and what can be claimed?


We are looking for gross revenue figures, whatever income a business has from normal business activities. Gross revenue is the total amount of sales/services recognized for the reporting period, prior to any deductions. 2020 Gross Revenue: We are looking for 2020 Gross Revenue from March 13, 2020 to the application date. DO NOT include Cost of Goods Sold or any CARES Act money received in 2020 Gross Revenue. 2019 Gross Revenue: We are looking for 2019 Gross Revenue from March 13, 2019 to the application date in 2019. DO NOT include Cost of Goods Sold in 2019 Gross Revenue.




How will I need to submit my future extraordinary expenditure plan? What needs to be included in that plan?


Recipients will be required to report on how these requested funds were used by December 1, 2020 and may include submitting receipts/documentation/etc. to show how funds were spent in accordance with the program. Inaccurately reporting future expenditures or failure to comply may result in repayment plus a 2 percent penalty. Future Payroll Expenses (Between Application Date and December 1, 2020):

  • Future Payroll can only include continued payroll expenses specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Future Payroll could include: Expenses related to paying new or current staff to comply with health orders (cleaning, temperature checks, training, etc.), COVID-19 compliance expenses, etc.
  • Future Payroll CANNOT include: Normal business operation payroll expenses.
Future Business Supplies (Between Application Date and December 1, 2020):
  • Future Business Supplies can only include supplies necessary to operate the business during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Future Business Supplies could include: office supplies, serving supplies, and other supplies needed to continue normal business operations during COVID-19.
  • Future Business Supplies CANNOT include: Any supplies expenses that the business would have continued to incur if COVID had not happened.
Future Business Equipment (Between Application Date and December 1, 2020):
  • Future business equipment can only include equipment expenses specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Future Business Equipment could include: future expenses for computers and equipment for telework, protective barriers, telephones, food serving equipment, personal protective equipment (gloves, masks, sanitizer dispensers, etc.), thermometers, etc.
  • Future Business Equipment CANNOT include: Any equipment expenses that would have been incurred if COVID didn't happen.
Future Business Rent & Mortgage (Between Application Date and December 1, 2020):
  • Future Business Rent & Mortgage can only include rent and mortgage expenses incurred specifically due to COVID-19.
  • Future Business Rent and Mortgage could include: Continued expenses resulting from renting out or purchasing an office or workspace to comply with social distancing. (An office space or building must have already been bought or rented at time of application)
  • Future Business Rent and Mortgage CANNOT include: Any business rent/mortgage that the business would’ve incurred had COVID-19 not happened.
Future Other (Between Application Date and December 1, 2020):
  • Future Other can ONLY include other expenses that are a direct result and due to COVID-19.
  • Past Other could include: Any other expenses that will continue to be incurred as a DIRECT result of COVID-19.
  • Past Other CANNOT include: Any expenses that the business regularly incurs in the absence of COVID.




Why is 100 percent of our lost revenue not covered?


By tying revenue loss to expenses through this calculation, we can help businesses and nonprofits receive a more proportional amount of income to expenses to help make it through this time. The idea is that you would've received that gross revenue to pay for these expenses and we are trying to fill that void as much as possible.




My business just opened and we do not have a year's worth of gross revenue to compare. How should we figure our fund calculations?


We recommend using an average of the first few months in 2020 and using that figure to come up with the full 2019 picture. If you have more questions, we encourage you contact your accountant, lender or other financial advisor, or reach out to the Wyoming Business Council at 1-877-257-7844.




If I receive a Relief Fund grant, what can I use those funds for?


Any money received from the Relief Fund should be used to offset normal revenue that would have been realized were it not for the COVID-19 pandemic or to cover general operating expenses. If you entered any Extraordinary Expenses in your Relief Fund application, you will be required to report how those funds were used and provide information detailing those COVID-19 related expenses. Any funds not used or meeting the criteria of "extraordinary COVID-19 expenses" will have to be paid back with a two percent penalty.





NEED MORE INFO?

If you have more questions about this fund or the COVID-19 Business Relief Program in general and how your business or nonprofit can learn more and apply, below are some resources that can help: