• This page is dedicated to providing businesses with the most up-to-date information and resources regarding COVID-19 and the business community.  Please Contact Dan Bates, President/CEO, via cell # (267) 249-9649 with any questions.

  • Important Contact information:

    State of Ohio:  coronavirus.ohio.gov or 1-833-4-ASK-ODH

    Find your local HEALTH Department 

    SBA programs for the coronavirus, www.sba.gov/coronavirus 

    Federal programs, visit www.usa.gov/coronaviruswww.gobierno.usa.gov/espanol (en Español).

    Employers and Job Seekers:
    State of Ohio https://jobsearch.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/jobsearch/home
    Butler County - OhioMeans Jobs | Butler County: ohiomeansjobs.com/butler

     FEMA with questions/concerns: Fema-nrcc-nbeoc@fema.dhs.gov

  • Explore Hamilton Promotion

    The Greater Hamilton Chamber is promoting all bars, restaurants, retail, gift & specialty shops, service industry businesses and Arts, parks & recreation at www.hamilton-ohio.com/explore-hamilton.  If your business would like to be listed on that page, please complete the Business Promotion Form HERE!



  • PPP Loans - Significant Borrower Friendly Changes on the Horizon

    PPP Loans
    Significant Borrower Friendly Changes on the Horizon

    Late on June 3, 2020, the US Senate unanimously passed legislation that provides significant relief for PPP loan borrowers. This Senate action mirrors legislation passed earlier in the week by the US House of Representatives on a vote of 417-1. All that remains for this relief to become law is the signature of the President. While this is not guaranteed, the bipartisan legislative support makes that fairly certain.

    This relief addresses many of the headwinds that businesses would otherwise face to achieve full forgiveness. The timing is especially critical as borrowers who received their loan funds early in the application process are facing the end of their 8-week forgiveness period.

    8-week period extended to 24 weeks.  Borrowers previously had 8 weeks from the time they received their loan proceeds to both spend their loan funds as well as restore their workforce to pre COVID-19 levels.  The legislation would expand this period to 24 weeks for both purposes.  Borrowers have the option to keep the 8-week period which may be advantageous under certain circumstances.

    75% Test Becomes a 60% Cliff.  Prior rules required that at least 75% of loan proceeds be spent on payroll-related costs to achieve full forgiveness.  To the extent this 75% threshold was not met, loan forgiveness was reduced proportionally.  Under the revised provisions, the 75% requirement is reduced to 60%. In a very critical change, if at least 60% of the loan proceeds are not spent on payroll-related costs, NONE of the loan will be forgiven.

    Rehire Requirement Relaxed. Previous rules provided for a reduction in loan forgiveness to the extent workforce levels were not restored to pre-COVID levels during the 8-week period – subject to a safe harbor rehire date of June 30, 2020. The new provisions would allow for workforce restoration during the new 24-week period, as well as extending the rehire amnesty period to December 31, 2020.

    New Rehire Exception. The legislation provides an exemption to the workforce restoration rules for borrowers that previously reduced their workforce. There are two potential ways to qualify for this exception:

    Could Not Find Qualified Employees to Rehire. To qualify, borrowers must establish an inability to rehire individuals who were employees on February 15, 2020, and an inability to hire similarly qualified employees for unfilled positions by December 31, 2020.

    Could Not Restore Business to Comparable Level. Borrower must establish an inability to return to the same level business as was in place on February 15, 2020, due to compliance requirements from HHS, CDC or OSHA.

    Repayment Terms Extended. The proposed legislation extends the repayment period for 2 years to 5 years. Payments are deferred until the SBA makes a forgiveness determination. The interest rate on the loans remains at 1% throughout the 5-year repayment period.

    Deferral of Payroll Taxes Extended to PPP Borrowers. The CARES Act provided employers an opportunity to defer payment of the employer share of payroll taxes for up to 2 years. This provision was available only to those who did not receive a PPP loan. The new provisions would extend this provision to all employers without regard to PPP loans.

    Please contact your Kirsch CPA relationship manager if you have immediate questions at (513) 858-6040.

    www.kirschcpa.com   |   513-858-6040   |   info@kirschcpa.com



  • Governor, Lt. Governor Announce New Funding Opportunities for Ohio Businesses

    Click here for details

  • NEW Ohio Small Business Grant and Loan Programs

    Find New Help for Minority Businesses


  • The number of full-time employees will affect your PPP loan forgiveness; here are 4 things to know 

    Business Journal https://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati

    By Grace Donnelly–Reporter, Atlanta Business Chronicle

    As small businesses continue to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the Small Business Administration (SBA) is beginning to clarify the terms of loan forgiveness.  

    As of May 26, the SBA had approved more than 4.4 million loans, using a total of more than $511 billion of the $649 billion allocated for PPP funds. These borrowers are expected to spend 75% of their loans on payroll costs and the remaining 25% on rent, mortgage and utility costs during an eight-week window that begins when the funds are received in order to achieve loan forgiveness. They are also required to maintain the same level of full-time employees to qualify for full forgiveness.

    Guidance issued by the SBA and the U.S. Treasury Department include the template for the loan forgiveness application which was released on May 15 and new rules released on May 22. There are still many questions to be answered, especially for business owners who are struggling to bring employees back to the workplace.    

    While updated terms for PPP loans may be passed by Congress in the coming days, attorneys from Arnall Golden Gregory in Atlanta answered questions last week about calculating your level of full-time employees and how it will affect loan forgiveness based on the information available now. Here are four questions to better understand how terminating, rehiring and paying workers will factor into the forgiveness process: 

    1. How do I calculate my full time equivalent (FTE) employees for purposes of my loan forgiveness calculations?

    Congress did not define the requirements for an FTE in the CARES Act. Many people thought the definition would be based on a 30-hour work week, as full time employment is defined in the Affordable Care Act. However, on May 22 the SBA clarified that an FTE is someone who works 40 hours or more in a given week. 

    If you have a single employee working more than 40 hours per week, they still only count as only one FTE in forgiveness calculations. 

    Employers have two options when it comes to part-time workers. When calculating for loan forgiveness, each part-time worker can be counted as one half of an FTE or business owners can calculate the percentage of hours worked out of 40 and count part-time employees as that percentage of an FTE. For example, someone who worked 30 hours a week during the covered period could be counted as 75% of an FTE. 

    Business owners must choose one option and stick to it for their loan forgiveness application. 

    2. I have terminated employees in the normal course of business since receiving my PPP loan. Or I am having problems with employees refusing to come back to work. Will that affect my loan forgiveness?

    According to SBA guidance, if an employee was terminated “for cause” then they can still be counted as an FTE, however “cause” was not defined. For business owners who need to terminate an employee for performance reasons, they need to document the reason to prove that it’s not driven by economics. 

    If an employee voluntarily resigned, you can still count them as an FTE. If a worker voluntarily asked for a reduction in hours, that employee still counts as an FTE, the SBA says. You need to have documentation of these events for the forgiveness application process. 

    Some employers are facing difficulties bringing back employees who were laid off as many are making more on unemployment than at their previous job. If you have written documentation of an offer to rehire before June 30 and a rejection from the employee, you do not get penalized. You can still count that person as an FTE. 

    You also have to notify your state unemployment office of the fact that the person rejected your offer within 30 days of receiving the rejection.  

    “The government is trying to get people off the unemployment rolls and onto employer paid rolls,” said [cincinnati/search/results?q=Henry M. Perlowski]Henry M. Perlowski, a partner at Arnall Golden Gregory. 

    3. My business has been subject to local orders that required it to be closed. Therefore, I have not been able to let my employees return to work and have not paid them their normal salary or wages. How can I take advantage of the Salary and Hourly Wage Reduction Safe Harbor?

    You can restore those employees by making an offer to rehire them by June 30 or you can restore their salary by June 30. 

    By doing this, borrowers are trying to avoid having a reduction in loan forgiveness by the same percentage as the percentage reduction in FTE employees. For example, if an employer has ten FTEs and declines to eight FTEs during the covered period, this decline by 20% makes only 80% of expenses eligible for forgiveness. 

    The first thing you need to do is choose a “reference period,” which is a time frame either from Feb. 15, 2019, to June 30, 2019, or from Jan. 1, 2020, to Feb. 29, 2020, or, for seasonal employers, either of these time frames or a consecutive 12-week period between May and September 2019. 

    Your FTE employees by June 30 will be compared to the number of employees during the reference period in order to calculate loan forgiveness. 

    If you had to reduce salaries or wages, but you still have the same number of FTE employees, there’s a slightly different rule. 

    You would have to reduce your total forgiveness amount by the total dollar amount of salary or wage reductions that are greater than 25% of base salary or wages between Jan. 1, 2020, and March 31, 2020.

    For example, if a borrower reduced an employee’s weekly salary from $1,000 to $700, the first $250 is exempt from that reduction. The employer will have to take the extra $50 and multiply it by the eight weeks during the covered period, leading to a $400 reduction in loan forgiveness.

    4. When should I apply for loan forgiveness? 

    You cannot apply for loan forgiveness until your eight-week period following the disbursement of the loan ends. 

    There has not been definitive clarification from the SBA about the deadline to apply for loan forgiveness. 

    “Some people are saying the deadline is Oct. 31, 2020, just because the top of the [loan forgiveness] application has an expiration date,” said [cincinnati/search/results?q=Mindy S. Planer]Mindy S. Planer, a partner at Arnall Golden Gregory. “But I don’t know if that’s what it actually means.” 

    As rules and laws for the PPP loans continue to evolve, often to the benefit of the borrower, Planer says it may be advantageous to wait and see how forgiveness requirements change before submitting an application. She does encourage business owners to apply before Oct. 31. 

    Keep in mind that the lender has 60 days after you submit your forgiveness application to make a decision.

    “You may be balancing ‘Do I submit sooner to get my money sooner? Or do I wait to maximize forgiveness?’” Planer said. 

    JUNE 1 - JUNE 30

    (COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Lt. Governor Jon Husted, who serves as Director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, announced  that 150 Ohio companies have been approved for TechCred funding, which will help them upskill their current and incoming workforce to meet the needs of the increasingly tech-focused economy, particularly amid the COVID-19 health crisis.

    The TechCred program was launched in September of last year with the goal of expanding tech talent and helping businesses upskill their current employees in areas such as software development, robotics, and cyber security. As companies work to adapt to new technological demands during the global coronavirus pandemic, the potential positive impact of the initiative has an even greater reach. The Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation has implemented a series of updates to support changing business needs as Ohio’s economy reopens.

    “As businesses restart operations and people go back to work, the need for a tech-savvy workforce is growing,” said Lt. Governor Jon Husted. “From tele-health, to distance work and learning, the need for tech skills increased during the COVID-19 pandemic and we must aggressively prepare Ohioans to compete.”

    The last round of TechCred applications closed at the end of March 2020; 150 Ohio employers were approved, which will result in up to 1,045 credentials to upskill Ohio workers. With the approvals announced, a total of 500 Ohio employers have been approved for reimbursement, which will result in the earning of up to 4,232 technology-focused credentials by Ohio employees.

    “Now, more than ever, a workforce with advanced skills is critical to the success of Ohio businesses and the Ohio economy,” said Director of the Ohio Development Services Agency Lydia Mihalik. “Credentials earned through TechCred will help both employees and businesses prepare for a brighter future.”

    Many of the TechCred pre-approved credentials can be completed 100 percent virtually. Examples of these credentials and training providers can be found at [TechCred.Ohio.gov]TechCred.Ohio.gov.

    “One thing that has not changed during this pandemic is Ohio’s focus on providing skilled workers for in-demand jobs,” said Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner. “Having a TechCred program that responds to the needs of employees and employers during this time will help Ohio and its technology workforce get through the COVID-19 crisis and emerge stronger than ever.”

    In order to support the changing needs of Ohio businesses and workers during the economic recovery, following the COVID-19 crisis, the following changes have been made to the TechCred program:

    • To make TechCred more flexible for upskilling new hires, employers are no longer required to list employee names when applying for TechCred. Instead, they will identify the number of current or prospective employees they will upskill.
    • To account for possible staffing changes, employers who were awarded in the October 2019, January 2020, and March 2020 rounds of TechCred may now substitute employees listed in their original application.
    • Employers awarded in October 2019 and January 2020, who had credential programs interrupted by the crisis, may request to extend their 18-month award eligibility timeline.
    • Employees can now earn multiple credentials during each application period.

    The next application period of the TechCred program will open June 1st and run through June 30th, allowing for another opportunity for companies to train current and/or incoming employees.

    More information on TechCred can be found at TechCred.Ohio.Gov.

  • Sector Specific Operating Requirements


    Click here for sector specific operating requirements.

  • COVID Loan Questions?

    Click on the links below for resources: 

    Have you received your COVID loans yet?


    Call or email the SBA directly and receive updates.
    Email: disastercustomerservice@sba.gov
    Call: 1 (877) 641 8202 or 1 (800) 659 2955

  • May 19, 2020 Update: Stay-at-home order is changing to a "strong recommendation" as Ohio reopens

    Read more... 

  • PPP Loan Forgiveness - Additional Guidance Issued

    PPP Loan Forgiveness - Additional Guidance Issued

    The SBA recently issued additional guidance on requirements for achieving forgiveness of PPP loans. This guidance came in the form of a draft PPP loan forgiveness application and related instructions. We are in the process of incorporating this guidance into an update of our previously issued comprehensive PPP Loan Forgiveness Guide and our loan forgiveness calculator. We will communicate when that update is complete.

    Some significant issues concerning forgiveness were clarified while other questions remain unanswered. In addition, the US House of Representatives passed the Heroes Act on May 15, 2020. That Act includes several provisions that would significantly impact PPP loans. Senate Majority Leader McConnell and President Trump have clearly stated their opposition to the Act in total. However, a bipartisan group of legislators has expressed support for some of the business-friendly provisions specific to PPP loans. Stay tuned!

    The following is a summary of some of the significant clarifications and questions that remain. Note this list is not all-inclusive.

    • Confirms the eight-week period for determining forgiveness begins on the day of loan funding.
    • Provides for an alternative eight-week period for payroll only, beginning on the first day of the first payroll period following loan funding. This applies to employers with bi-weekly or more frequent payroll and eliminates the need to split payroll between payroll periods.
    • Did not completely resolve the question of cash vs. accrual accounting to determine eligible expenses during the eight-week period as the instructions include inconsistent language. We expect further guidance on this question.
    • Provides that FTE calculations will be made assuming a 40-hour workweek. A special election allows borrowers to treat employees with more than 40 hours as 1 FTE and any employee less than 40 hours at a .5 FTE. This may be advantageous in certain circumstances.
    • Provides additional calculation guidance related to the two additional tests which must be met to achieve forgiveness: maintaining total headcount and maintaining individual employee compensation at certain levels.
    • Confirms the ability to meet the headcount requirement up to June 30, 2020, and provides for excluding certain employees who do not return to work even though a position was offered.
    • Describes some of the documentation that will be required to be submitted to the lender in order to achieve forgiveness. 

    Our PPP Loan Forgiveness Guide will be updated to provide you detailed coverage of these and other pertinent topics. Please contact your Kirsch CPA relationship manager if you have immediate questions at (513) 858-6040.

    www.kirschcpa.com  |  513-858-6040  |  info@kirschcpa.com


  • USDA Announces Details of Direct Assistance to Farmers through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

    Farmers and Ranchers to Receive Direct Support for Losses Related to COVID-19

    WASHINGTON, D.C., May 19, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced details of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which will provide up to $16 billion in direct payments to deliver relief to America’s farmers and ranchers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to this direct support to farmers and ranchers, USDA’s Farmers to Families Food Box program is partnering with regional and local distributors, whose workforces have been significantly impacted by the closure of many restaurants, hotels, and other food service entities, to purchase $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy, and meat and deliver boxes to Americans in need.

    “America’s farming community is facing an unprecedented situation as our nation tackles the coronavirus. President Trump has authorized USDA to ensure our patriotic farmers, ranchers, and producers are supported and we are moving quickly to open applications to get payments out the door and into the pockets of farmers,” said Secretary Perdue. “These payments will help keep farmers afloat while market demand returns as our nation reopens and recovers. America’s farmers are resilient and will get through this challenge just like they always do with faith, hard work, and determination.”

    Beginning May 26, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), through the Farm Service Agency (FSA), will be accepting applications from agricultural producers who have suffered losses.


    CFAP provides vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a five-percent-or-greater price decline due to COVID-19 and face additional significant marketing costs as a result of lower demand, surplus production, and disruptions to shipping patterns and the orderly marketing of commodities.

    Farmers and ranchers will receive direct support, drawn from two possible funding sources. The first source of funding is $9.5 billion in appropriated funding provided in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stability (CARES) Act to compensate farmers for losses due to price declines that occurred between mid-January 2020, and mid-April 2020 and provides support for specialty crops for product that had been shipped from the farm between the same time period but subsequently spoiled due to loss of marketing channels. The second funding source uses the Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act to compensate producers for $6.5 billion in losses due to on-going market disruptions.

    Non-Specialty Crops and Wool

    Non-specialty crops eligible for CFAP payments include malting barley, canola, corn, upland cotton, millet, oats, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers, durum wheat, and hard red spring wheat. Wool is also eligible. Producers will be paid based on inventory subject to price risk held as of January 15, 2020. A payment will be made based 50 percent of a producer’s 2019 total production or the 2019 inventory as of January 15, 2020, whichever is smaller, multiplied by the commodity’s applicable payment rates.


    Livestock eligible for CFAP include cattle, lambs, yearlings and hogs. The total payment will be calculated using the sum of the producer’s number of livestock sold between January 15 and April 15, 2020, multiplied by the payment rates per head, and the highest inventory number of livestock between April 16 and May 14, 2020, multiplied by the payment rate per head.


    For dairy, the total payment will be calculated based on a producer’s certification of milk production for the first quarter of calendar year 2020 multiplied by a national price decline during the same quarter. The second part of the payment is based a national adjustment to each producer’s production in the first quarter.

    Specialty Crops

    For eligible specialty crops, the total payment will be based on the volume of production sold between January 15 and April 15, 2020; the volume of production shipped, but unpaid; and the number of acres for which harvested production did not leave the farm or mature product destroyed or not harvested during that same time period, and which have not and will not be sold. Specialty crops include, but are not limited to, almonds, beans, broccoli, sweet corn, lemons, iceberg lettuce, spinach, squash, strawberries and tomatoes. A full list of eligible crops can be found on farmers.gov/cfap. Additional crops may be deemed eligible at a later date.


    There is a payment limitation of $250,000 per person or entity for all commodities combined. Applicants who are corporations, limited liability companies or limited partnerships may qualify for additional payment limits where members actively provide personal labor or personal management for the farming operation. Producers will also have to certify they meet the Adjusted Gross Income limitation of $900,000 unless at least 75 percent or more of their income is derived from farming, ranching or forestry-related activities. Producers must also be in compliance with Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation provisions.

    Applying for Assistance

    Producers can apply for assistance beginning on May 26, 2020. Additional information and application forms can be found at farmers.gov/cfap. Producers of all eligible commodities will apply through their local FSA office. Documentation to support the producer’s application and certification may be requested. FSA has streamlined the signup process to not require an acreage report at the time of application and a USDA farm number may not be immediately needed. Applications will be accepted through August 28, 2020.

    Payment Structure

    To ensure the availability of funding throughout the application period, producers will receive 80 percent of their maximum total payment upon approval of the application. The remaining portion of the payment, not to exceed the payment limit, will be paid at a later date as funds remain available.

    USDA Service Centers are open for business by phone appointment only, and field work will continue with appropriate social distancing. While program delivery staff will continue to come into the office, they will be working with producers by phone and using online tools whenever possible. All Service Center visitors wishing to conduct business with the FSA, Natural Resources Conservation Service, or any other Service Center agency are required to call their Service Center to schedule a phone appointment. More information can be found at farmers.gov/coronavirus.

  • Reopening dates set for daycares, gyms, campgrounds, BMVs and more

    Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted announced reopening dates for multiple industries, including childcare, day camps, gyms, pools, campgrounds, Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicle offices and horse racing.Daycares and childcare facilities will be permitted to reopen May 31 with a reduced number of children. Day camps can also resume on May 31.Campgrounds can reopen on May 21 and gyms and fitness centers...

    Read more....

  • Additional Ohio businesses have been given the green light to reopen.

    • May 15: Hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, tattoo parlors, massage services, day spas, bars and restaurants (outdoors), other personal care
    • May 21: Indoor restaurant/bar service, and campgrounds
    • May 22: Horse racing (no spectators)
    • May 26: BMVs, gyms/fitness centers, non contact or limited contact sports, pools (excluding water parks)
    • May 31: Child care facilities (reduced numbers), day camps


    On May 15 (Friday), most if not all personal care facilities have been given the green light to reopen.

    Businesses permitted to reopen Friday include hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, tattoo parlors, massage services, day spas and other personal care facilities. However, in order to reopen, each of these business must follow strict guidelines. Those guidelines include social distancing and employees wearing face coverings. Hand sanitizers must be provided in high-contact areas, which for most of the personal care industry, is almost everywhere. Read the full list of guidelines here.

    Also on May 15, the state's restaurants and bars may resume outdoor service (indoor service is permitted to resume May 21). But in order to reopen, there are several new rules for customers and employees alike. Notably, parties of 10 or more are no longer permitted. A minimum of six feet must be kept between parties – both when dining and waiting on a table. If this is not possible, the restaurant must utilize barriers and other protective measures. Click here for a full list of mandates for restaurants and bars.


    Bars and restaurants may resume indoor service on May 21. But, again, the restaurants and bars must follow strict mandates.

    Additionally, Ohio's campgrounds are permitted to reopen. But be warned, there are several restrictions in place for campers. Only one family household may occupy each site, the governor said. Campers must still maintain six feet of social distancing. Campground operators must also regularly clean and maintain public restrooms, shower houses and laundry facilities, as well as post signage to communicate COVID-19 guidelines.


    Horse racing may resume in Ohio, but without spectators.

    Racing may only resume if certain safety protocols are met, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted said Thursday, promising to release additional information at a later date.

    This reopening does not apply to casinos and racinos, leaders specify. Additional information will be posted here when available.

    Opening May 26

    Gyms/fitness centers: Ohio's gyms and fitness centers can reopen on May 26. The state's gyms can reopen with several restrictions, Husted said. Those restrictions -- which will include social distancing measures and increased cleaning -- will be made available at a later date. DeWine noted that anybody that goes to the gym knows that with the close proximity in many areas, sanitation is vitally important.

    BMVs: Ohio BMVs will reopen on May 26 for certain services, DeWine said. Services that can be accomplished online should still be done online. Visit oplates.com for more info on online services.

    Non contact, or limited contact sports: Low-contact or non-contact sports like tennis can resume on May 26 if they can meet safety protocols. More details on safety protocols will be posted soon at coronavirus.ohio.gov. Other high-contact sports are still being considered, DeWine said.

    Pools: Pools are able to reopen on May 26, Husted said. He noted that only pools that are regulated by local health departments can reopen. Husted said this pertains to community pools, not water parks or amusement parks, those are still being worked through. There is no evidence that the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas. Proper operation/maintenance (disinfection w/ chlorine/bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in water, DeWine said.

    Opening May 31

    Child care services: Ohio's child care facilities will reopen May 31 with reduced numbers. These providers must operate under reduced staff to child ratios, state officials said, and maximum group size limitations will be put into place. Those limitations include:

    • One child care staff member per four infants with no more than six children in the room.
    • One child care staff member per six toddlers with no more than six children in the room.
    • One child care staff member per nine preschool children with no more than nine children in the room.
    • One child care staff member per nine school-age children with no more than nine children in the room.

    Child care providers must ensure that children wash their hands upon entering the classroom, which may require adult assistance. See a full list of mandates here.

    Day camps: Husted announced Thursday that day camps can reopen on May 31. Husted said day camps can reopen as long as they meet safety protocols and sizes.

    Protocols will be released by the end of the day Friday. Lt. Gov. Jon Husted said just because the camps can open doesn't mean they have to.

  • SBA provides safe harbor for PPP loans under $2 million

    Businesses that together with their affiliates accepted Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds of less than $2 million will be assumed to have performed the required certification concerning the necessity of their loan requests in good faith, according to guidance posted by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) on Wednesday.

    The guidance, provided as Question 46 in Treasury’s Q&As related to the PPP, states that borrowers with loans of more than $2 million may still have an adequate basis for making the required good-faith certification, based on their individual circumstances and the language of the certification and SBA guidance.

    Congress established the PPP to provide relief to small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, P.L. 116-136. PPP funds are available to small businesses that were in operation on Feb. 15 with 500 or fewer employees, including not-for-profits, veterans’ organizations, Tribal concerns, self-employed individuals, sole proprietorships, and independent contractors. Businesses with more than 500 employees in certain industries also can apply for loans.

    The forgivable loans were designed to help employers keep their employees paid and keep their businesses from succumbing to the economic hardships created by the coronavirus pandemic. An eligible recipient of a covered loan can receive forgiveness of indebtedness on the loan in an amount equal to the sum of payments made for the following expenses (subject to limitations) during the eight-week covered period beginning on the covered loan’s origination date: (1) payroll costs; (2) payment of interest on any covered mortgage obligation; (3) payment on any covered rent obligation; and (4) any covered utility payment. Section 1106(i) excludes from gross income any amount forgiven under the PPP.

    The SBA warned April 23 that businesses with substantial access to liquidity may not qualify for PPP loans, and several larger companies returned their PPP funds. On April 28, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced that the SBA would review all PPP loans in excess of $2 million to make sure borrowers’ self-certification for the loans was appropriate.

    Out of concerns whether their loans would be deemed appropriate, some larger companies that initially received PPP funds have returned them. For the same reason, some leaders of smaller companies have also considered returning their PPP funds or hesitated to apply for PPP loans.

    According to the SBA, borrowers with loans below the $2 million threshold are less likely to have had access to adequate sources of liquidity in the current economic environment than borrowers who obtained larger loans.

    The SBA said the safe harbor will promote economic certainty for PPP borrowers with limited resources as they work to retain and rehire employees. The $2 million threshold also will help the SBA conserve its resources and focus its reviews on larger loans.

    If the SBA determines during its review that a borrower lacked an adequate basis for certifying the necessity of its loan, the SBA will seek repayment of the outstanding PPP loan balance and inform the lender that the borrower is not eligible for loan forgiveness. The SBA will not pursue administrative enforcement or referrals to other agencies if the borrower repays the loan after receiving notification from the SBA.

    This article appeared in the AICPA Journal of Accountancy May 13, 2020.

    Larry F. Warner, Jr. CPA

    Stephenson & Warner, Inc.

    1502 University Blvd.

    Hamilton, OH 45011



    4938 Wunnenberg Way

    West Chester, OH 45069


    5995 Fairfield Rd.

    Oxford, OH 45056


  • Ohio Restaurant Promise

    OP3 logo2  

    Ohio Public Private Partnership

    COVID-19 Notification

    Dear Partners,
    We wanted to share the information below regarding The Ohio Restaurant Promise from our partners at the Ohio Restaurant Association.
    Ohio Restaurant Promise
    To learn more about the Ohio Restaurant Promise, click on the image above to visit the Ohio Restaurant Association website



    There has been much discussion surrounding PPP loans and recent SBA guidance related to loan eligibility.  In simple terms, the SBA had announced preliminary guidance that loan recipients would be required to certify a true necessity for the loan, and the borrower did not have adequate sources of liquidity from other sources.  In addition, the SBA announced that they were going to audit all loans in excess of $2 million with regard to this requirement.  They established a deadline of May 14, 2020 for borrowers to return loan funds in order to avoid these additional required certifications.

    On May 13, 2020, the IRS issued additional guidance that was very friendly to borrowers in contrast to their prior position.  The current position establishes a safe harbor for loans of less than $2 million.  All loans less than $2 million will be automatically deemed to have made the required certification in good faith concerning the necessity of the loan.

    In addition, borrowers with a loan of $2 million or greater that do not satisfy this safe harbor can still meet the certification requirement based on individual circumstances.  If the SBA does audit a loan and determines that the borrower lacked an adequate basis for accepting the loan, the only ramification is repayment of the loan.  This contrasts with statements previously made by SBA officials, which included financial penalties and even criminal action.

    We have communicated with many of our clients as the May 14 deadline approached.  We can now recommend that borrowers with loans of less than $2 million no longer need to be concerned about repayment by that deadline with regards to building a case to certify necessity for the loan.  Borrowers with loans of more than $2 million now have the opportunity to build their case with the knowledge that the worst-case scenario is repayment of the loan.

    Please contact your Kirsch CPA relationship manager if you have additional questions at (513) 858-6040.

    www.kirschcpa.com  |  513-858 6040  |  info@kirschcpa.com
  • COVID-19 Update: Pandemic EBT, Additional Services to Reopen, Staying Connected


  • Questions Businesses Should Ask Themselves

    Small Business Overview: COVID-19 Resources. https://ls-info.com/d/nJkyPS

    Small Business - Covid-19. https://ls-info.com/d/gZfKNf

  • OHLQ JobsOhio Ohio Department of Commerce

    For Immediate Release
    May 11, 2020


    JobsOhio and the Ohio Department of Commerce Announce Program to Support Bars and Restaurants

    Columbus, Ohio –  JobsOhio and the Ohio Department of Commerce’s Division of Liquor Control today announced they will offer a one-time rebate to bars and restaurants to defray the cost of restocking high-proof spirituous liquor. Beginning in mid-May, JobsOhio will provide a $500 rebate in high-proof spirituous liquor to eligible permits for purchases made through Ohio Liquor Contract Liquor Agencies. Permit holders must register to be eligible for rebate.

    "The liquor rebate for Ohio’s bars and restaurants is part of ongoing efforts to support Ohio businesses during the COVID-19 crisis," said J.P. Nauseef, JobsOhio president and chief investment officer. "Because JobsOhio’s business model is unlike any other in America, we have had the unique capability to commit up to $300 million for similar initiatives since mid-March to help Ohioans when it is needed most."

    The Liquor Rebate Program is part of a broad directive from Ohio Governor Mike DeWine to find innovative options that assist businesses’ as they navigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

    "We know this has been an uncertain time for Ohio bars and restaurants," said Sherry Maxfield, Director of the Department of Commerce. "We hope this brings some relief as they plan for reopening. Our team and agency partners will continue to find ways to ease some of the burden."

    Rebates will be applied as soon as a permit holder places an order from their assigned Agency. For example, if a permit holder purchases $1,000 in high proof liquor to restock inventory, the rebate will be applied at the point of sale and the actual cash cost to the permit holder will be $500.

    "Bars and restaurants have been hit hard economically by the COVID-19 pandemic, and creative solutions will be needed to help them eventually open once again," said Lorraine Terry, JobsOhio Beverage System Managing Director. "When bars and restaurants make plans to open operations, they can do so with the confidence they will have a rebate available to help them stock their shelves."

    There are more than 13,600 eligible permits in Ohio, totaling $6.8 million in potential rebates available to bars and restaurants. To view qualifying permits and to register for the liquor rebate program, visit Wholesale.OHLQ.com.

    JobsOhio is a private nonprofit economic development corporation designed to drive job creation and new capital investment in Ohio through business attraction, retention and expansion. The organization also works to seed talent production in its targeted industries and to attract talent to Ohio though Find Your Ohio. JobsOhio works with six regional partners across Ohio: Dayton Development CoalitionOhio SoutheastOne ColumbusREDI CincinnatiRegional Growth Partnership and Team NEO. Learn more at www.jobsohio.com. Follow us on LinkedInTwitter and Facebook.

    The Division of Liquor Control is part of the Ohio Department of Commerce. The Department is Ohio’s chief regulatory agency, focused on promoting prosperity and protecting what matters most to Ohioans. We ensure businesses follow the laws that help them create jobs and keep Ohioans safe. To learn more about what we do, visit our website at com.ohio.gov.

    Ohio Liquor is a partnership between the Ohio Division of Liquor Control and JobsOhio Beverage System (JOBS). JOBS owns the spirituous liquor product (intoxicating liquor containing more than 21 percent alcohol by volume) in Ohio for retail and wholesale sales. The division manages wholesale and retail operations for the sale of spirituous liquor in Ohio. OHLQ Locations are private businesses which own and operate retail outlets and sell spirituous liquor products on consignment. Profits from spirituous liquor provide dedicated funding for JobsOhio’s economic development efforts.

    Media contact: 
    Matt Englehart
    Communications Manager
    (614) 300-1152


    Lindsay Leberth,
    Division of Liquor Control
    (614) 572-6180
    Director of Marketing


  • Academy Rental Group -  Rental Tents and More

    As a member of the Greater Hamilton Chamber, we wanted to extend our services and discounted pricing to our fellow chamber members as Ohio starts to open back up for business for any short or long term rental needs. 

    Over the past few weeks we have been working with hospitals and essential businesses for testing tents, overflow tents, crowd control stanchions and more.  With the new regulations surrounding the non-essential business and restaurants during reopening of Ohio, utilizing our products will enable you to seat more guests at your restaurants, extend break-room areas and set up temperature testing as a pre-work check in.  

    Please contact us at 513-772-1929 or https://academyrentalsinc.com/ and mention that you are a chamber member to receive discounted rates. 

    Academy Rental Group is a local, family owned event rental company, who has serviced Cincinnati for over 25 years. We offer tents, tables, chairs, pipe and drape stanchions and other rental products. 


  • PPP Updates as of 5/9/2020

    This week’s news on the Paycheck Protection Program front: Getting your loan forgiven no
    longer depends on your employees coming back to work. The Treasury Department and
    U.S. Small Business Administration released new guidance this week stating that business
    owners who make a written offer to employees for the same position at the same salary
    will not be penalized if the employees refuse to come back.

    That’s big news for business owners across the country who had been waiting for more
    guidance on exactly how to get their loans forgiven. Inc. brought together Neil Bradley,
    executive vice president and chief policy officer of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as
    well as a panel of business experts for Inc.’s exclusive National Small Business Town Hall
    Friday to dig into what the new guidance really means. Plus, they discussed the potential
    for additional relief and when it might arrive. 

    To find out more: 

    Watch the full webinar: What You Need to Know About Changes Coming to PPP Loans: The Latest

    Read a quick summary of our experts’ best advice: How to Get Your PPP Loan Forgiven,
    When to Give it Back, and What's Coming Next

    More Answers to Key Questions
    Don’t have time to watch the full video? We broke it down into clips on some of
    the most important topics: 

    For more clips and ongoing coverage, check out our full Stimulus Q&A resource center.

    -Graham Winfrey
    Senior editor, Inc.

  • Reopening While Preventing Spread of Coronavirus

    COLUMBUS (KDKA/AP) – Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced salons and restaurants can begin reopening on May 15. Restaurants can open outdoor dining on May 15, followed by the restart of dine-in services May 21, the Ohio governor announced Thursday.


    COVID-19 Update: Reopening of Restaurants, Bars, and Personal Care Services

    (COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Lt. Governor Jon Husted, and Dr. Amy Acton, MD, MPH, today announced the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan as it relates to restaurants, bars, and personal care services.

    As part of today's announcement, Governor DeWine reminded Ohioans that COVID-19 is still incredibly dangerous and stressed the importance of continuing to exercise safe health habits as different sectors of the economy begin to reopen.

    "Reopening Ohio is a risk, but it's also a risk if you don't move forward. We're on a dangerous road that has never been traveled before in Ohio and the danger is that we relax and stop taking precautions," said Governor DeWine. "All of us collectively control this. I ask you to take calculated risks and make good judgments. Continue social distancing, washing your hands, and wearing face coverings. If you aren't concerned with what happens to you, do it for others."


    Restaurants and bars in Ohio will be permitted to reopen as follows: 

    • Outdoor dining: May 15

    • Dine-in service: May 21

    To ensure that these establishments operate in the safest manner possible, Governor DeWine's Restaurant Advisory Group created a detailed list of guidelines and best practices for restaurant and bar owners to follow. The full list of mandatory and recommended best practices can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov.


    Personal care services such as hair salons, barbershops, day spas, nail salons, and tanning facilities may reopen on May 15. 
    To ensure that these establishments operate in the safest manner possible, Governor DeWine's Personal Services Advisory Group created a detailed list of guidelines and best practices for personal care service providers to follow. The full list of mandatory and recommended best practices can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov.


    There are 22,131 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in Ohio and 1,271 confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths. A total of 4,140 people have been hospitalized, including 1,167 admissions to intensive care units. In-depth data can be accessed by visiting coronavirus.ohio.gov

    Video of today's full update, including versions with foreign language closed captioning, can be viewed on the Ohio Channel's YouTube page

    For more information on Ohio's response to COVID-19, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.

  • How to improve remote working right now

    Jason Fried is a bona fide expert when it comes to remote work.

    The co-founder and CEO of Chicago-based software company Basecamp has been managing his team remotely for 21 years, and has written several books about the subject. On Wednesday in the latest installment of our Real Talk: Business Reboot virtual event series he shared his wisdom on how to be a better remote leader.

    One example of his great advice: If you’re used to in-person managing, Fried said, you’ll need to rethink your communication patterns. Your employees naturally will tend to over-communicate upon going remote, thanks to the pressure they feel to constantly prove they’re working. “It’s really distracting and really damaging to company culture,” he said.

    So Fried says use phone calls or video calls for nuanced conversations or debates, rather than continuous one-line updates via apps like Slack. Or, if you’re willing to be bold, ditch those Slack-type platforms entirely and rely on email again, so your employees can consistently construct more organized thoughts.

    For more thought-provoking ideas, check out this recap of Fried’s top six tips for getting better at remote leadership right now.

    Watch the full hour-long webinar: How Remote Teams Win

    If you’re short on time, here are clips of the highlights:

  • Federal Emergency Management Agency  Information

    FEMA released information on considerations in reconstituting operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. To download the entire document in a pdf format, click HERE.

  • Pandemic Child Care from Great Miami Valley YMCA

    Through these trying times, the YMCA is in the position to make a difference where it matters most. Because of this we have made the decision to transition two of our YMCA branches to support critical care workers and their families with caring for their children during this crisis. We will continue to provide a safe and caring environment for their children during this difficult time.


  • Facts About Mortgage Forbearance

    Take the time to think it through.
    A forbearance is not a forgiveness. It does not eliminate payments; it only delays them. Therefore, borrowers who can make their mortgage payments should do so.

    If you are considering a forbearance, you need to reach out to your loan servicer. Gain a complete understanding of the pros and cons of a forbearance, making sure you understand the repayment requirements after the forbearance period.

    • Will I have to pay back the foreborn amount all at once?
    • When my payments resume, will they be larger?
    • Will payment be tacked on to the end of my loan?

    “The borrower may be required to make all missed payments at the time they begin making payments again.”

    What is a mortgage forbearance?
    Mortgage forbearance allows homeowners to pause their mortgage payments while dealing with a short-term crisis.

    What does forbearance mean under the CARES Act?
    Under the CARES Act GSE-backed (e.g. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac) mortgage borrowers who are facing economic hardship because of COVID-19 can get mortgage forbearance for up to a year. During this time, lenders cannot foreclose on your property.

    What happens if you’re not protected under the CARES Act?
    Borrowers with privately-owned mortgages are not covered under the CARES Act. Nevertheless, some lenders are offering forbearance and loan modification options for borrowers with privately-owned mortgages.

    Will mortgage forbearance hurt your credit?
    No, mortgage forbearance does not appear on your credit report as a negative activity. However, changes to reporting between servicers and credit agencies may not occur seamlessly so you should keep an eye on your credit report.

    "If you do pursue a forbearance, you should monitor your credit report to catch and report any errors."

    Can you sell your home during forbearance?
    Yes, homeowners in forbearance can sell their homes. The foreborn amount would become payable upon sale of your property.

    Are rental properties or second homes eligible for forbearance?
    It depends on the type of mortgage you have. GSE-backed mortgage securities are eligible for forbearance if they’re used as rental properties or second homes. However, FHA, VA or USDA loans cannot be put into forbearance if the property is used as rental property or second home.

    Bottom line
    Borrowers who can make their mortgage payments should do so. However, if you are considering a forbearance then make sure you have a complete understanding of what it entails and what your repayment options will be.


    Wes Retherford
    555 Wessel Drive
    Fairfield, OH 45014
    Direct: 513-858-7017
  • Assistance with SNAP, Medicaid ad CSFP

    Shared Harvest Foodbank, located in Fairfield, Ohio; Darke, and Miami counties.  The SNAP Outreach team is helping people apply for SNAP, Medicaid, and our CSFP program (for seniors).  If you know of any employees from any of the businesses in your area that could benefit from applying for these programs; they can call us at 800-352-3663 or 513-874-0114 to apply over the phone.  If any employee contacts us that lives outside of the counties we serve, we will gladly refer them to the correct foodbank.  Phone applications typically only take 10-15 minutes.  We will submit their application electronically and then follow up to help them through the application process until a decision has been make from their local Job and Family Services. 

    SNAP is the first line of defense against hunger and can help fill in the gap for people who are waiting for their unemployment benefits to kick in.  This program can help a person with reduced work hours and/or loss of job.  A person can't make over a certain gross income amount (also depend on size of household) in order to be eligible for SNAP.   

    List of food pantries according to city in Butler County.

    Contact SNAP to apply over the phone along with the COVID-19 updates relating to SNAP.

    List of organizations in Butler County that can help your employee

    Shared Harvest Foodbank
    5901 Dixie Highway, Fairfield, OH   45014-4207
    Voice: 513-276-9188

    Toll Free: 800-352-3663

  • Design Responds To a Changing World

    The Coronavirus pandemic has changed everything. Its impact on global wellness and the economy has forced organizations in every industry — including our own — to flex and evolve, both in real-time and in the long-term. In this collection of ideas, tips, thoughts, and strategies, we explore how design can play a role in making the world a healthier place.

    Gensler - Research & Insight

  • Ohio Begins Implementing New Federal Unemployment Programs

    The following press release was sent today for immediate release from ODJFS:

     COLUMBUS, OHIO – Starting on Friday, April 24, Ohioans who are unemployed as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic but who don’t qualify for regular unemployment benefits can begin pre-registering for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), a new federal program that covers many more categories of workers, the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) announced today.  ​

     In addition, more than 400,000 unemployment claimants in Ohio began receiving weekly $600 supplements this week in addition to their regular benefits as a part of the new federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (PUC) program. The weekly supplements are available through July 25 and will appear on claimants’ pay stubs with the designation “FAC.” Both the PUA program and the PUC supplements are authorized by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. ​
     “We are thrilled to provide this much-needed assistance to Ohioans unemployed as a result of the pandemic,” said ODJFS Director Kimberly Hall. “I also know that many eligible Ohioans are still waiting to receive benefits, and I am very sorry for the delay. We understand the urgency of providing individuals with the resources they need to support their families. Since mid-March, we have focused on expanding staff support, working longer hours, and partnering with private sector experts to add more technological capacity to our system. We will not rest until all eligible Ohioans are served.”  ​
     To pre-register for PUA benefits, Ohioans should visit unemployment.ohio.gov and click on “Get Started Now.” The benefit amount will be similar to traditional unemployment benefits, plus an ​
    additional $600 per week through July 25. The pre-registration tool will allow individuals to get in line early and pre-register their account, so that as soon as the agency has the technical ability to process their claims in May, they can log in and complete their paperwork.  ​

    For those eligible, PUA benefits will be retroactive to the date they qualified, as early as February 2. The program will provide up to 39 weeks of benefits to many who historically have not qualified for unemployment benefits, such as self-employed workers, 1099 tax filers, part-time workers, and those who lack sufficient work history. Individuals who have exhausted all regular unemployment and any weekly extensions also may be eligible for the program. Anyone with questions should call (833) 604-0774.

  • Avoid Potential Plumbing Problems When Re-Opening Businesses

    CLICK HERE for helpful information to avoid potential problems that could come with suddenly starting to use a plumbing system that has had little or no operation in a while. 

  • Non-Traditional Unemployment for Self-Employed and Others Now Available

    Ohioans put out of work by the coronavirus pandemic who don’t qualify for traditional unemployment — such as self-employed workers or those making under the state minimum — can start pre-registering Friday for a temporary unemployment program created by the federal CARES Act.

    State officials estimated Thursday that 150,000 Ohioans may qualify for the program, called Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. It provides assistance similar to traditional employment for up to 39 weeks, plus an additional $600 a week through July 25. The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services had to create a new system to process these applications outside of the traditional unemployment program. Though people can start applying Friday, payments aren’t expected to begin until mid- May. They will be retroactive to when someone became eligible, as far back as Feb. 2.

    To pre-register, visit unemployment.ohio.gov and click on “Get Started Now.” Anyone with questions can call 833-604-0774.


  • Coronavirus In Ohio: House Task Force Considering How To Reopen Economy

    The Ohio House of Representatives recently launched a committee to consider how we reopen: 


  • Unemployment Insurance Benefits

    The Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (JFS) just announced that they have updated unemployment insurance benefits to support self-employed individuals and contractors.  

     The new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program will provide up to 39 weeks of benefits to self-employed workers, 1099 tax filers, and some other individuals who previously were not eligible for unemployment benefits. The benefit amount will be similar to traditional unemployment benefits, plus an additional $600. The program's effective date is January 27 through December 31, 2020.

    We are excited to share this new program with you, which JFS looks forward to implementing. Like other states, Ohio is waiting for further guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor on how to operationalize it. Once it is up and running, retroactive benefits will be provided. For more information please go to https://jfs.ohio.gov

  • Job Search Ohio for Employers and Job Seekers

    Lt. Governor Husted announced that the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation has developed a website specifically geared toward matching essential businesses with Ohioans who are able and willing to work as an essential employee during the COVID-19 crisis.


    Both essential businesses and current job seekers can visit JobSearch.ohio.gov to post and search.


    “If you are an employer who performs a critical service, please go to JobSearch.ohio.gov to post your open positions so we can help you fill them,” said Lt. Governor Jon Husted. “If you are a person who can work, please know that there are many who need you to help keep essential services running and we encourage you to do so, even if it's only part time.”


    The site features a highly-streamlined interface with only two main links – one for essential businesses, and one for job seekers. Applicants can search through jobs in their area, their region, and the entire state.


    Local Job Search Assistance:

    OhioMeansJobs | Butler County 4631 Dixie Highway, Fairfield  513-785-6500
    The OhioMeansJobs center is open from 7:30 AM- 4:00 PM to assist people who do not have access to internet and need to file for unemployment. 

  • COVID - 19 Regional 
    Recovery Fund

    Butler County United Way and the Hamilton Community Foundation are partnering with United Way of Warren County and the Warren County Foundation to join forces with Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF) and United Way of Greater Cincinnati (UWGC). This partnership will create a dedicated source of funding for Butler and Warren Counties to address critical needs in this region related to the coronavirus pandemic, especially for those who will be disproportionately affected, through the COVID19 Regional Response Fund. 

    Read More....

  • Hamilton Provides Local Stimulus Package for Small Business

    The city and chamber came together to provide the money


  • Mark Your Calendar

  • Sustaining Sponsors