More than seven weeks after the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law authorizing the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), access to this much-anticipated grant program is now within sight. The U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) RRF Application Portal is set to open for account registration on Friday, April 30, 2021 at 9:00 AM EDT. Subsequently, on Monday, May 3, 2021 at 12:00 PM EDT, the SBA will begin accepting RRF applications, with the SBA administering the RRF program. With only $28.6 billion appropriated for RRF and demand for the grants expected to soar well in excess of this amount, it appears the Monday mid-day opening will be a sprint to get applications submitted, especially for businesses not included in one of the priority period groups or “set aside” applicants with 2019 gross receipts of $1.5 million or less.
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Now that RRF application guidance has been issued and the SBA has set a date to open the RRF Application Portal, eligible businesses should be vigorously preparing internally and evaluating their application readiness with advisors. RRF applicants are encouraged to apply immediately, as come Monday May 3rd at 12:00 PM, it is anticipated the appropriated funds will go fast with the “first come, first served” application timestamp process. Washington lawmakers have indicated the RRF funds will be replenished when they run out, however, this is not guaranteed.