ST. LOUIS — Small businesses are getting a second chance at coronavirus relief funds, after a $484 billion measure was added on.
$310 billion will refuel the Paycheck Protection Program, also known as PPP. Its goal is to bring economic relief to small businesses during COVID19.
Its first launch of $349 billion dried up after hitting its lending limit, approving over one million loans.
Many business owners ran out of luck.
Andy Karandzieff, owner of Crown Candy Kitchen said they did not make the first round because the money ran out.
"It's critical to get that money and get back up and running. That PPP is crucial for a lot of us and I know a lot of people that haven't gotten it yet and really counting it," Karandzieff said.
Nudo House and Mai Lee restaurant owner Qui Tran also said, "We actually missed the first round, they ran out of money."
In this second wave, the Small Business Administration said hedge funds and private equity firms aren't eligible for small business relief loans.
Ruth's Chris and Shack Shack got in on the first go-around, but then returned the money.
All that happened while many mom and pop shops didn't even get their hand in the pot.
Tran said they are hoping to get funds this second time around.
"We don't know what the future looks like. That would help us tremendously keep us afloat," Tran explained.
Karandzieff is also banking on this money to keep his 107-year-old store afloat.
"The initial start of capital will carry through the first couple of weeks being slow," he said.
But even if they do get the money, there are a lot of questions still in the air.
For the money to be forgivable, 75% has to be for payroll, 25% can used on rent and utilities. It also has to be done in a specific time frame.
If you don’t use the money, it becomes a two-year loan with a 1% interest rate. So for businesses who can't open right now, that can be a challenge.
"It’s not a one size fits all. It depends on what your business is doing," Tran said.
Karandzieff closed on April 10 and plans to reopen May 12. He's excited to get his crew back to work.
"There's 32 employees here. Most of them have been with me for 10 to 40 years," he said.
Right now, many owners are in limbo worried about the unclear road ahead. As they wait on their fate on whether they get federal funding, all they can do during this time is hope for a positive outcome.
"I don't want to wait for round three, but if we have to we have to," Karandzieff said.
If you've already applied, check with your bank to see if you're automatically considered or if you need to submit again.
The program is set to resume Monday at 9:30 a.m., according to the Small Business Administration.