WBE Tools, Resources, Information, Connection Bulletin March 1-5

We all know all this information is still unfolding daily so we urge you to review other resources so you can make the most informed decisions for your situation.

General

  • In case you missed it! Building on a month of strong Paycheck Protection Program results, the Biden-Harris Administration and the U.S. Small Business Administration are taking steps that will further promote equitable relief for America’s mom-and-pop businesses. These simple progressive steps by the Biden-Harris Administration further demonstrate the commitment to racial and gender equity, reaching low and moderate-income, rural, urban, and other underserved areas. The SBA has established a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employee that ends on March 9, 2021 at 5:00 pm ET. Additionally, the Agency will:

• Allow sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants
• Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-financial fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal
• Eliminate PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make federal student loan payments by eliminating federal student loan debt delinquency and default as disqualifiers to participating in the PPP; and
• Ensure access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawfully residing in the U.S. by clarifying that they may use an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP.

These actions will help to lay the foundation for a robust and equitable recovery for small businesses across the country. Small businesses employ nearly half of the American workforce; they create 2 out of 3 net new private-sector jobs; they reinvest 68% of revenues to build and sustain communities.
Borrowers can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program by downloading the First Draw PPP loan application or Second Draw PPP loan application and working with a participating PPP lender through the SBA Lender Match tool.
Learn more

  • REGISTER NOW – Women’s HerStory Month Live Stream

    Join us on March 25th for a glass ceiling shattering conversation with Dee C. Marshall, Aisha Glover, Avis Yates Rivers, and Pamela Isom. We’ll follow their journey to success, managing families, building careers and companies, and of course repeatedly shattering the infamous glass ceilings. #pocstock #includeUS #ShatteredCeilings #womensherstory Register Here

  • Join WBENC for a virtual event series in March celebrating Women’s History Month Registration is now open for a new virtual event series from WBENC — WBENC 2021 Focus on the Future. Join us for the entire month of March as we celebrate Women’s History Month and bring together our incredible network of women business owners and those who support them. This event is laser-focused on providing meaningful education, resources, inspiration, connections, and conversation to help our network not only survive these uncertain times, but also grow and thrive. Attendees will have access to an exclusive virtual networking and event platform featuring the opportunity to network with corporations and women business owners, dozens of webinars and session recordings, inspirational celebratory events, industry-focused sessions, executive education, and more. The virtual event series will take place each week throughout March. Explore the full event schedule, session details, and attendee pricing information at wbenc.org/march2021.To participate, register now!The Month will include:
    • Education | Breaking Down Barriers: Every Tuesday participate in educational sessions for WBEs and Corporate Members alike on breaking down barriers for success.
    • Inspiration & Innovation | WBE Growth & Resiliency: Every Wednesday, hear from inspirational and innovative WBEs in a weekly series of conversations, panel discussions, and WBE showcases.
    • Conversation | Real Talk: Every Thursday, participate in open but guided discussion on important topics facing women entrepreneurs and supplier diversity leaders.
    • Community & Celebration: Special celebratory events for our kickoff on March 1, International Women’s Day on March 8, and a grand finale on March 31. 

     

    What else to expect:

    • 31 days of exclusive content & resources
    • Networking opportunities with WBENC Corporate Members and WBEs
    • Executive education sessions with subject matter experts
    • Access to virtual networking and event platform
    • Exciting and inspirational celebratory events
    • Industry-focused spotlights and panel discussions
    • Important conversations on critical topics of importance to women business owners

     

    This event is laser-focused on providing meaningful education, resources, inspiration, connections, and conversation to help the WBENC network not only survive these uncertain times, but also grow and thrive. Attendees will have access to an exclusive virtual networking and event platform featuring the opportunity to network with corporations and women business owners, dozens of webinars and session recordings, inspirational celebratory events, industry-focused sessions, executive education, and more.

  • The past year has shown us how effective communication can be a key factor in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone needs to be aware of public health protocols and vaccination guidelines, so we can limit the spread and protect our communities. However, widespread access to information in one’s native language remains a problem for many vulnerable populations. In Eriksen Translations Inc. latest article, we look at translation through the lens of a public health crisis: Why Culturally Sensitive Translation Is Critical in a Public Health Crisis
    At Eriksen, we believe that language barriers shouldn’t stand between people and the information they need to keep themselves and their families safe. At a time when information must reach everyone—in a language they understand—translated materials must not only be widespread, but accurate, consistent, and culturally appropriate.

 

  • Presidential Scholars Program Support Services | The U.S. Department of Education is seeking information on the availability and interest of qualified sources with the capability to meet the Office of Communications and Outreach’s (OCO) need for a support services contractor for its U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. See attachment (at link provided) for the draft performance work statement.OCO requires the services of a Contractor to provide technical and logistical support for the annual identification, evaluation, selection and recognition of 161 U.S. Presidential Scholars from an eligible candidate pool of roughly 5,600 graduating high school seniors from across the United States and abroad, as well as to enter data, develop reports, and provide application-related assistance to users of the program’s online application OLAS currently provided by WizeHive. The Contractor shall provide expert educational advice on current scholastic assessment practices, standardize testing and the methodology and procedures for identifying high-achieving students, and shall also support the Commission‘s annual selection and recognition process.
  • Registration is open for the 10th Annual Real Estate Women’s Online Conference 
    • March 1 – 5, 2021. Register today for the early bird rate of $75 (regular price $99). Use promo code: GREENPEARL75

 

Small Business Administration

  • SBA to Provide One Year 8(a) Program Extension to Participants Due to COVID-19. SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program due to the challenges of COVID-19. The federal government’s goal is to award at least 5 percent of all federal contracting dollars to small disadvantaged businesses each year. Eligible 8(a) firms must meet the following qualifications:
      • Be a small business
      • Not have previously participated in the 8(a) program
      • Be at least 51 percent owned and controlled by U.S. citizens who are socially and economically disadvantaged
      • Have a personal net worth of $750K or less, adjusted gross income of $350K or less and $6 million or less in assets
      • Before you can participate in the 8(a) Business Development program, you must be certified
      • Demonstrate good character and potential to perform on contracts.
  • Mentor-Protégé program changes
    • As of November 16, 2020, the 8(a) Mentor-Protégé program and the All Small Mentor-Protégé program have merged into one program called SBA’s Mentor-Protégé Program (MPP). The ruling can be found in the Federal Register.
    • To stay up to date with the merger and associated changes, visit the new SBA’s Mentor-Protégé Program webpage.
  • 7(j) Management and Technical Assistance program. The 7(j) program provides assistance such as training, executive education, and one-on-one consulting in a wide range of business activities, including marketing, accounting, opportunity development and capture, contract management, compliance, and financial analysis. If you want to learn more about the 7(j) program or sign up for assistance, contact your local SBA district office. To receive assistance through the 7(j) program, a small business must be one or more of the following:
    • Located in areas of high unemployment or low-income;
    • Owned by low income-individuals; and
    • Certified as an 8(a) participant, HUBZone small business, and/or economically- disadvantaged women-owned small business.
  • Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program is Section 324 of the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act (Economic Aid Act) signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. Following are answers as of Feb. 5, 2021, to frequently asked questions about the program. These will bE updated as new information comes available and additional program details are finalized. Frequently Asked Question about SVOG.

 

  • You can apply for a First Draw PPP Loan until Wednesday, March 31, 2021. SBA is currently accepting First Draw PPP loan applications from participating lenders. Lender Match can help connect you with a lender. You can also view all lenders near you on a map. All new First Draw PPP Loans will have the same terms regardless of lender or borrower. If you wish to begin preparing your application, you can download the following PPP borrower application form to see the information that will be requested from you when you apply with a lender: PPP First Draw Borrower Application Form.

 

  • SBA Shares Resources for Black-Owned Businesses During National Black History Month By Victor Parker, Deputy Associate Administrator for the SBA Office of Field Operations
    This National Black History Month, we commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the destruction of Black Wall Street where hundreds of small business dreams were deferred in the town of Greenwood, Oklahoma. Today, Greenwood’s 1921 Commission and other small business leaders join forces to help this community rebuild and regain economic equity. SBA also celebrates the immeasurable contributions black business owners have made to entrepreneurship in this country. From key historical figures like Madame CJ Walker to well-known innovators like Oprah Winfrey, black business owners throughout history have shaped U.S. entrepreneurship and paved the way for today’s small business owners.

 

  • Looking for more information about the Targeted EIDL Advance? Earlier this week, the SBA added a new frequently asked questions which includes information about the application process, eligibility and program criteria. Learn More.

 

New York

  • COVID-19 Causes Financial Hit to NYC Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Industry
    New York City’s world-renowned arts, entertainment and recreation sector saw the largest decline among all sectors in the city’s economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as employment declined by 66 percent over a one-year period ending in December 2020, according to a report released by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli.
  • This week, Comptroller DiNapoli hosted a discussion with Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer and others to discuss the financial hit to the industry. They were joined by Sade Lythcott, Chief Executive Director of the National Black Theatre; Voza Rivers, Executive Producer of the New Heritage Theatre Group and Chairman for the Harlem Arts Alliance; Aimee Todoroff, Managing Director for the League of Independent Theater; James Claffey, President of IATSE Local One; and Rebecca Damon, Executive Vice President and NY President at SAG-AFTRA. Watch a replay of the event on the Comptroller’s Facebook page.
  • NY State Comptroller DiNapoli Calls on Corporate America
    to Address Lack of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
    New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli announced that the New York State Common Retirement Fund (Fund) has launched a multi-faceted initiative to hold publicly-traded corporations and their top executives accountable for their diversity, equity and inclusion policies and practices.
  • Comptroller DiNapoli Hosts Virtual Lunar New Year Celebration This past week State Comptroller DiNapoli hosted his annual Lunar New Year Celebration. He honored Charles Yoon, president of the Korean American Association of Greater New York; Helen Nguyen, owner of Saigon Social; and the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA), which was received by MOCA President Nancy Yao Maasbach. Visit the Comptroller’s Facebook page to watch a replay of the event.

Connecticut

  • Paycheck Protection Program Updates |Thursday, February 25 | 12:00 pm |

    Upon directive from the new administration, the SBA is working on updating guidelines related to enhancements, clarifications, and ensuring access to PPP for the smallest businesses. Based on these, the SBA will:

    Establish a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees
    Allow sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants
    Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal
    Eliminate PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make federal student loan payments by eliminating federal student loan debt delinquency and default as disqualifiers to participating in the PPP; and
    Ensure access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawful U.S. residents by clarifying that they may use Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP.
    With official guidelines set to be released the week of March 1st, we will cover these updates and their implications for small business owners as they prepare to apply for their first or second-round of PPP.

 

Maryland

  • Maryland Washington Minority Companies Association Contracting Opportunities
  • To be eligible, a business must have between two and 25 employees, less than $7 million in annual revenue, a demonstrated need for support, a strong plan for moving forward, and be in good standing with the state of Maryland. For more information contact Allyson Black, Manager, State Affairs and Economic Development, BGE Allyson.Black@bge.com 410.269.5286
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Webinars

  • Wednesday, March 3rd | From ‘Likes’ to Love: Turning Social Media Engagement into Action A six-week series kicks off on Wednesday February 3 at 1:00pm CT. Ever wish you could read journalists’ minds? Are you making the best use of social media? Does ‘proving your ROI’ feel like an impossible task? If you’ve ever had these questions, this webinar series is for you. Reflect, reset and revisit some industry best practices that will keep you thriving. Let this be the year of more proactive and less reactive.