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Financial Assistance For Iowa Businesses During COVID-19

There are quite a few opportunities for you and your business to maintain financial stability during this crisis. We have searched through our resources, and beyond, to pull together some opportunities for our site visitors during the COVID-19 outbreak. For general business resources and best practices, navigate to our Business Guidance page. For a collection of helpful articles, blogs, webinars, and support groups - navigate to this media page.


Our nation's small businesses are facing an unprecedented economic disruption due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. On Friday, March 27, 2020, the President signed into law the CARES Act, which contains $376 billion in relief for American workers and small businesses. 

With the additional funding provided by the new COVID-19 relief package, SBA will resume processing EIDL Loan and Advance applications that are already in the queue on a first come, first-served basis. The SBA will provide further information on the availability of the EIDL portal to receive new applications (including those from agricultural enterprises) as soon as possible.

While the scope of the CARES Act is wide-ranging, this limited summary provides a high-level overview of unemployment benefits and the relief available for qualifying business concerns. The CARES Act includes the following:

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) 

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) ends on June 30th. Almost $130 billion in funding still remains. If you have not accessed the PPP funding and are still interested,  please contact a local lender NOW. It may take you a couple days to find a lender and they need to have time to process the application before submitting it to the SBA. You DO NOT want to wait until June 30th. Under new guidelines recently enacted by SBA and Treasury, borrowers now have 24 weeks to use PPP funds as opposed 8 weeks, and the amount that must be used for payroll in order to qualify the loan for forgiveness has been reduced from 75% to 60 %. For any funds not fully forgiven on loans made after June 5, 2020, borrowers now have a 5 year time-frame to pay off the PPP loan (1% interest rate) as opposed to the original two year time frame. If you have already applied through a lender and it has not been processed yet, follow up on it immediately to make sure they are still processing the application. Please do not wait until the last minute if you want to access this critical funding.

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program. The US Chamber has created a helpful guide and checklist with information on this program and others.

Descargue una presentación informativa de PPP en español.

The SBA is providing Paycheck Protection Program and related materials in 17 languages other than English to help small business owners recover due to the unprecedented economic disruption caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Additional information will be translated and posted periodically, and all documents are being provided for informational purposes only.

SBA Emergency Economic Impact Disaster Loan (EIDL) Grant
To further meet the needs of U.S. small businesses and non-profits, the U.S. Small Business Administration reopened the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL Advance program portal to all eligible applicants experiencing economic impacts due to COVID-19 starting June 15th.

SBA’s EIDL program offers long-term, low interest assistance for a small business or non-profit.  These loans can provide vital economic support to help alleviate temporary loss of revenue.  EIDL assistance can be used to cover payroll and inventory, pay debt or fund other expenses.  Additionally, the EIDL Advance will provide up to $10,000 ($1,000 per employee) of emergency economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing temporary difficulties, and these emergency grants do not have to be repaid.

SBA Disaster Assistance Loans
SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance per small business and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. The program offers a 3.75% interest rate for small businesses and 2.75% for non-profits. Business owners should apply directly through the SBA.

SBA Express Bridge Loan
Allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork. Can be a term loan or be used to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). Will be repaid in full or in part by proceeds from the EIDL loan. Business owners can find an Express Bridge Loan Lender via SBA’s Lender Match Tool or by connecting with your local SBA District Office.

Debt Relief for Existing and New SBA Borrowers
The bill includes $17 billion in funding to provide immediate relief to small businesses with standard SBA 7(a), 504, or microloans. The SBA will cover all loan payments for existing SBA borrowers, including principal, interest, and fees, for six months.

Business Tax Relief
The business tax relief changes included in the Act are federal and will not necessarily automatically apply to Iowa taxes. The Department of Revenue will put out guidance regarding Iowa’s conformity with these changes as soon as possible.

There are several tax relief measures in the CARES Act that benefit businesses, including:

  • A refundable payroll tax credit for 50% of wages paid to employees during the COVID-19 crisis
  • Deferral of certain payroll taxes through the end of 2020
  • Modification of Net Operating Loss carrybacks and carryforwards
  • Allows corporations to claim 100% of AMT credits in 2019 as fully refundable.
  • Increased interest expense that businesses may deduct from 30% of ATI to 50% of ATI
  • Temporary suspension of alcohol taxes on spirits used in production of hand sanitizer in compliance with FDA guidance. Contact the Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division with questions.


Project Better Together has partnered with the Community Foundation of Johnson County to assist in the administration of the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color and Immigrant Owned Business Grant. Applications will be open until Monday, July 27th. More details can be found on the Community Foundation’s website.

The purpose of Project Better Together’s Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and Immigrant Owned Business Grant is to provide one-time grants ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 to private businesses in Johnson County who were negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. This fund is intended to help businesses that:

  • Need help with both short-term needs and long-term recovery efforts to continue their business.
  • Have not been able to access or have been declined local, state, or federal relief funds, or that need additional support to weather this crisis. 
  • May be dealing with additional barriers including but not limited to language, general business knowledge, etc.
  • Are from underserved communities. 

More details are provided in French, Vietnamese, Spanish and more on the website. Learn more about eligibility requirements and the application process today!  If you have questions or need translation help, please contact Nancy Bird, Iowa City Downtown District at, (319) 354-0863 or Kim Casko, Iowa City Area Business Partnership at, (319) 519-6336.


The application for deferral of the eligible taxes and waiver of penalty and interest remains open. To be eligible, businesses must be experiencing business disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the FAQs from the Iowa Department of Revenue and apply for tax deferral here. Due to the anticipated volume of applications, staff will work diligently to review and respond to requests. A complete application is not a guarantee of tax deferral.


This grant will provide up to $3,000.00 of economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing temporary disruption in business due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). Only small businesses & nonprofits located in Altoona, Bondurant, Mitchellville, Pleasant Hill and Runnells are eligible to apply. Any business, 501(c)(3) & 501(c)(6) non-profit organization, 501(c)(19) veterans organization, or Tribal business concern (sec. 31(b)(2)(C). Application deadline is June 1, 2020.


Grant awards will be $1,000 – $5,000, with up to $10,000 for businesses in the City of Des Moines. Preference will be given to businesses that have not received assistance from the Iowa Small Business Relief Grant, the Targeted Small Business Sole Operator Fund or other grants.

Grant Eligibility
- Sole-proprietors or businesses with 0 – 30 employees that have had restrictions placed on their operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Examples of businesses include, but are not limited to, retail stores, personal care services and restaurants.
- Must have a physical commercial location within the cities of Carlisle, Clive, Des Moines, Indianola, Johnston, Norwalk, Urbandale, West Des Moines or Windsor Heights, unincorporated Polk County or cities/unincorporated areas of Warren County.
- Must have been in operation since July 1, 2019 or prior.
- Must be a for-profit business of any legal structure (non-profit organizations are not eligible).


A fund has been created to support Targeted Small Businesses (TSB) with zero employees that have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program will process applications in order of receipt of application and submission of all required documents until funds are exhausted. Please review the requirements and eligibility guidelines here before starting an application. Click here to learn more and apply.


Advance Claims Payment Program (ACPP) | Apply for Support 
To support Iowa dentists during the COVID-19 situation, Delta Dental of Iowa is introducing the Advance Claims Payment Program (ACPP). This program will allow dentists to receive up to 50% of their average weekly claims payment in advance for four weeks. These advance payments are interest-free and will be recovered over a 20-week period beginning in July. 

Nonprofit Emergency Relief Grant | Apply for Grant
Delta Dental of Iowa Foundation has committed $500,000 for a COVID-19 Nonprofit Emergency Operating Relief Fund. Through this fund the Foundation is offering operating grants of up to $10,000 to Iowa nonprofit organizations focused on providing health and wellness services during this crisis, or addressing food insecurity needs. The Foundation will begin accepting grant requests starting March 23rd until the funds are all allocated.


Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where they operate whose business may be experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19.


  • $2,400,000 available, no matching required
  • Available in all 99 counties and cities except: Council Bluffs, Sioux City, Ames, Des Moines, Waterloo, Cedar Rapids, Cedar Falls, Iowa City, Dubuque, Davenport and West Des Moines
  • Available for Non-profits 

Services provided for grant:

  • Job training to expand the pool of health care workers
  • Provide additional testing, diagnosis or other services at a fixed or mobile location
  • Provide additional equipment, supplies and materials necessary to carry-out a public service
  • Create an expanded meal delivery service for quarantined individuals


Read frequently asked questions for financial institutions affected by COVID-19. If you are a bank customer affected by the disease, helpful information is available to you.


As public health professionals, you work within communities and can assist in identifying the infectious disease response necessary to support citizens. Please use this guide to determine if a federally funded Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) administered by the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) can be of assistance.

If you know of any additional resources that would be beneficial to our Iowa Business Community, please contact our team at

All information, when posted, is up-to-date and is subject to change. Please continue to check back regularly for updates.