Proposal to help small businesses and workers


HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — It is clear that the pandemic has impacted many people, especially businesses — 1 in 4 Americans have filed for unemployment.

Senator Chris Van Hollen hosted a video conference with Maryland state senators and small business owners to discuss a reopening proposal, to help small businesses and workers overcome the challenges of COVID-19.

The senators explained the details of their proposal, The Rebuilding Main Street Act, which would allow employers to share their payroll costs with the federal government, while receiving a grant to cover other fixed costs such as rent and other primary needs.

The senators’ proposal supports and expands work sharing , which is an existing program supported by the CARES Act and provides further support for employers and employees struggling during this hardship.

“Everybody who moves from the unemployment system into this work share program will do better, and the important part for a small business, is that if they participate in this work share program, they will be eligible for a grant that would cover fifty percent of their fixed costs, up to a cap of three hundred thousand, this is for small businesses that are hit hard, as a result of the pandemic.”

The senator goes on to say that it’s no secret that small businesses need help, and it’s important to take the necessary steps to help them recover.

Ann Costlow, owner of the Sophi’s Crepes, Charles Street location, said she was able to utilize the workshare program, and her employees have been able to continue to work and remain supported.

The senator was helped in creating  the legislation by Senators James Rosapepe and Fry Hester, it’s based on the success and further potential of the work sharing program in Maryland. They hope this will help support business and get them reopened soon.


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