Minnesota businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic. Some financial relief for eligible businesses has been made available for a limited time, however. The deadline is rapidly approaching, so if your eligible business hasn’t received a relief check, it’s time to act.
The Minnesota Department of Revenue has already issued slightly more than $67 million in Covid-19 Business Relief payments. Nearly 3,900 eligible businesses received relief under the bipartisan legislation designed to help restaurants, bars, convention centers, movie theaters, bowling centers and gyms hurt by the pandemic.
It also provided funds to Minnesota’s 87 counties so that they could distribute local relief grants.
State officials speak
Governor Tim Walz said the “relief comes at a crucial time for our businesses who continue to make enormous sacrifices for the health and safety of Minnesotans. This is a critical lifeline for those businesses and for the Minnesotans whose livelihoods depend on them.”
Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan said the program supports “our small business communities and working families” and Revenue Commissioner Robert Doty added that “these payments will give some relief to Minnesota businesses we know are hurting due to the pandemic.”
To determine business eligibility for the funds, the state’s Department of Revenue used sales tax filings. Checks were then mailed to the businesses.
The Department of Revenue said it “cannot release a list of businesses receiving a payment because they are a direct payment sent to business owners based on private, non-public tax data.”
Eligibility criteria include the following:
- The business must be in Minnesota
- Had a minimum of $10,000 in taxable sales in 2019
- Filed sales tax returns last year and in 2019
- Had a 30 percent or more drop in year-over-year taxable sales for April-September periods
- Categorized as a restaurant, bar, gym, bowling center or similar business
Good news: if your business didn’t receive a relief payment, but you believe it is eligible, you can complete an online inquiry process by Feb. 5. Additional payments will be made after that day.