Virus relief for restaurants starts today, Axne says

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DES MOINES, Iowa — U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, who represents the Perry area in Congress, announced Monday that Third District restaurants in central and southwest Iowa are eligible starting now to apply for direct relief through the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

The $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund was created by the American Rescue Plan that Axne helped pass in March.

The law incorporated key provisions from the Restaurants Actwhich Axne co-sponsored in the previous Congress.

“Iowa’s restaurants were some of our hardest-hit businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Axne said, “and still will face an uphill battle to safely operate at full capacity in the weeks and months to come. That’s why I fought for specific relief for them over the past year and why I’m pleased to see this vital relief program coming online to help cover pandemic-related losses and keep the cornerstones of our Main Streets on their feet through tough times.”

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund will provide restaurants and other eligible businesses with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss, up to $10 million per business.

The relief does not have to be repaid, provided that the funds are put toward eligible uses by March 11, 2023.

The U.S. Small Business Administration website provides a funding guide and a sample application for interested applicants, and the Restaurant Revitalization Fund application portal can be accessed at the SBA Restaurant Revitalization Fund application portal or through Point of Sale vendors like Square and Toast.

Eligible businesses that may apply include:

  • Restaurants
  • Food stands, food trucks, food carts
  • Caterers
  • Bars, saloons, lounges, taverns
  • Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars
  • Bakeries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Brewpubs, tasting rooms, taprooms (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Breweries and/or microbreweries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Wineries and distilleries (onsite sales to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Inns (onsite sales of food and beverage to the public comprise at least 33% of gross receipts)
  • Licensed facilities or premises of a beverage alcohol producer where the public may taste, sample, or purchase products

Axne said she encourages Iowans to visit the SBA website for full details.

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