Alaska summer businesses are now allowed to apply for federal payroll aid

Summer businesses are now eligible for the federal Paycheck Protection Program, according to a rule published Monday by the federal Treasury Department.

The rule was released on the same day that the federal Small Business Administration reopened the program, which is intended to allow small businesses to pay employees during pandemic-driven closures and restrictions. Last week, President Donald Trump signed legislation providing $310 billion more for the program, which ran out of money due to demand. The new money is also expected to run out quickly.

Under the new rule, businesses are eligible for loans based on a 12-week average payroll between May 1, 2019, and Sept. 15, 2019. Before the new rule, the window for calculating loan eligibility was March 1 through June 30, which excluded many seasonal businesses in Alaska.

Members of Alaska’s congressional delegation had pressed the Department of the Treasury for a rule change to accommodate summer businesses. In 2019, Alaska employed 35,369 more people in July than January, with much of that increase coming from seasonal fishing and tourism.

Correction: The initial version of this article said last week’s legislation provided $310 million. It is $310 billion.

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James Brooks

James Brooks was a Juneau-based reporter for the ADN from 2018 to May 2022.