AN ACT TO PROVIDE FUNDS TO ASSIST SMALL BUSINESSES.
Includes whereas clauses. Appropriates $250 million from the General Fund to the Department of Commerce (Department). Provides that the funds remain available for the act's purpose to provide grants to small businesses to offset the economic harm following the COVID-19 pandemic. Creates the COVID-19 Small Business Recovery Grant Program (Program) to be administered by the Department to provide a one-time grant to each qualifying business. Limits businesses that qualify under the Program to an entity that (1) is subject to income tax under Article 4, GS Chapter 105, (2) has annual receipts for the 2019 tax year of $8 million or less, and (3) suffered a reduction of at least 25% in sales tax collections resulting from the pandemic for the 2020 tax year when compared to the 2019 tax year. Provides for the Department to accept applications during a time frame and on a form it prescribes until appropriated funds are fully awarded. Caps awards at the lesser of (1) $250,000 or (2) the amount of reduction in sales tax collections of the qualifying business resulting from the pandemic for the 2020 tax year. Caps total awards under the Program at $250 million. Requires the Department to verify the business's qualifications with the Department of Revenue, and authorize necessary disclosures. Conditions awards on the business continuing operations for at least six months following receipt, with the Department authorized to clawback amounts for any portion of that time the grantee does not maintain operations.
Amends GS 105-153.5 to allow a taxpayer to deduct from their adjusted gross income the amount granted to the taxpayer during the taxable year under the Program. Effective for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2022, and expires for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2023.