New loan program ready to launch
Safe Store’s Executive Order
No news from the General Assembly
Important links to live by
CRMA is here to help

  • As we go to print today with our FF, a new Federal Loan program is being launched today.
  • The program, which is part of the federal CARES Act, is designed to give business a much-needed cash infusion to help them get thru at least the short term in this very challenging time.
  • CRMA has been monitoring this new program very closely and has been in direct contact with the leadership of the Connecticut Bankers Association on the details.
  • We are anxious to share this information with you, but also understand that there are a ton of details involved that financial institutions are now working through.
  • We want to provide you with the details as timely as possible – but more importantly, we want to give the CORRECT information. At CRMA, we feel it is our duty to provide members with the most accurate information, so when we hold off just a bit it is because it is our understanding that the details of a program and not quite in place.
  • CRMA President Tim Phelan talked with Tom Mongellow, the President of the CT Bankers Association about the program. Below is a shortened version of their conversation.

Conversation with Tom Mongellow, President, Connecticut Bankers Association

  • Phelan: Great, let start from the start – what is the PPP? 
  • Mongellow: PPP stands for PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM (PPP). The Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) was part of the CARES Act that Congress just passed and authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Phelan: You mention forgivable loans. What does that actually mean? 
  • Mongellow: It means that whatever amount you borrow, and all the terms for everyone are the same, the loan amount will be forgiven as long as the loan proceeds are used to cover payroll costs, and mortgage interest, rent, and utility costs over the 8 week period after the loan is made; and employee and compensation levels are maintained.
  • Phelan: Does that mean all payroll costs? Everybody that works for a retailer?
  • Mongellow: No, payroll costs are capped at $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee. Also, we expect, that due to likely high subscription, it is anticipated that not more than 25% of the forgiven amount may be for non-payroll costs.  
  • Phelan: When can retailers start to apply for this loan?
  • Mongellow: They can start today, April 3, 2020. It is important to remember that any of your smaller independent retailers businesses can apply for and receive loans to cover their payroll and other certain expenses through existing SBA lenders.
  • Phelan: What is the best way for an interested retailer to apply?
  • Mongellow: We think the best way for them to apply is to use their existing banking institution that they are working with. That bank is familiar with them and they understands their business. But they can also apply through any existing SBA lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. We would suggest that your members check with their local lender to see if they are participating in the program. And if they are unsure, they should contact you Tim, or they can go to sba.gov for a list of SBA Lenders.
  • You can view the application for the PPP program by going here.
  • CRMA will send a more extensive version of our conversation with Tom out to you as soon as we are comfortable that all the details of the PPP are ironed out.
  • In the meantime, we urge you to contact your local lender or email us at tim@crmaonline.com if you have any questions.

 Safe Store Executive Order

  • Earlier this week, Governor Lamont issued another executive order that impacted retailers.
  • This one, titled Safe Stores, spells out new requirements for those essential retailers that can remain open.
  • Governor Lamont’s legal team worked with us and others in drafting this EO, which seeks to implement more stringent social distancing standards.
  • Like similar EO the order itself was issued by the Governor and the details of how that order are implemented are spelled out in a guidance document released by the Commissioner of DECD.
  • You can review EO by going here and the guidance document by going here. It is effective today, April 3rd.
  • If you have any questions on this latest notices by the Governor, please feel free to email us at tim@crmaonline.com

 No news from the General Assembly

  • It is looking more and more likely that the CT General Assembly will not be back in formal session before its constitutionally mandated adjournment date of May 5th.
  • Our conversations with key legislators and staff have led us to believe that any work the General Assembly does will be done by granting the Governor Executive Authority to handle.
  • However, if the legislature does go back into session, we expect they will take up only essential business that is non-controversial and that has bipartisan support.
  • One last note from the General Assembly. One of the very best legislators that we have had the pleasure to work with over the entire time he has been in the General Assembly, Sen. Len Fasano, announced this week that he is not seeking re-election this fall.
  • Fasano was our first ever CRMA Legislator of the Year back in 2017. We thank him for his public service and wish him well in his future endeavors. The CT Mirror has a good story on Fasano’s announcement and the chances the General Assembly have of coming back into regular session. View that story here.

Important links to live by

  • As of April 2, 2020, a total of 3,824 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported among Connecticut residents, according to state data. 1,827 patients are currently hospitalized. 112 residents have died. Additional information is available here.
  • State budget officials indicate the state is facing a $500 million budget deficit when the fiscal year ends June 30. CT Mirror has the story here.
  • Lamont today urged CT residents to volunteer to assist the state’s efforts to respond to COVID-19. The Governor’s announcement is here. 

CRMA is here to help

  • We wanted to end this week’s FF, with another reminder that CRMA is here to help you in any way we can.
  • Whether it’s to help with the PPP or with any issue in state government, we have an extensive network of friends in the political and business community that we can call on to be of assistance to you.
  • Please don’t hesitate to call or email us if you have any questions. tim@crmaonline.org or 860 527 1044