Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) announced on Tuesday that it is launching a new trade grant program to help the state’s small and medium-sized companies continue doing business overseas even as international travel is restricted during the coronavirus pandemic.
In recent days, two Democrats in the Florida congressional delegation called for the release of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) guidelines to opening states and businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.
Last week, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) insisted that these expenses could not be deducted. Supporters of the bill insist that was not what Congress wanted when it launched the PPP as part of the $2.2 trillion stimulus package at the end of March.
This week, U.S. Rep. Greg Steube, R-Fla., threw his support behind U.S. Rep. Chris Pappas’, D-NH, proposal to ensure nonprofits which help small businesses, including local chambers of commerce and tourism organizations, will be able to get assistance from the federal government through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
As Florida enters Phase I of its reopening, some governments are doing their best to remove red tape and help small business owners while others are putting up barriers that make it more difficult to survive. Nowhere is this more evident than Central Florida’s restaurant industry.
On Monday, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., the chairman of the U.S. Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, and U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Mary., the top Democrat on the committee, sent a letter to Russell Vought, the acting director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regarding the implementation of Section 889(a)(1)(B) of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (FY2019 NDAA).
Two Democrats in the Florida delegation signed on a letter as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus wrote U.S. Treasury Sec. Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Jovita Carranza calling on them to make sure affiliation rules are not changed to allow large private equity firms to get funds set aside for small businesses.
U.S. Rep. Greg Steube, R-Fla., called on Mnuchin to make sure the PPP funds, which were supposed to be used to support small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic, are not used to help large revenue corporations.
But how long will restaurants be able to maintain just being open at 25 percent? “That’s the question,” said Chris Reuschle of RWF Wealth Advisors in Jacksonville, a financial analyst for the Florida Radio Network.
Last week, U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., joined several other members of the U.S House Judiciary Committee in calling on Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to appear before the committee to testify about competition concerns relating to Amazon's business practices.