California Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed into law three bills that will offer support for small businesses and construction projects affected by the coronavirus.
The first is Senate Bill 1447, which creates the Main Street Hiring Tax Credit, a $100 million credit for qualified small businesses that hire employees before Nov. 30. Businesses will be eligible for up to $1,000 in tax credits for each new employee, with a cap of $100,000 per employer.
To be eligible, businesses must have fewer than 100 employees and have suffered a gross revenue decline of 50 percent or more this year.
Newsom also signed Assembly Bill 1577, which excludes federal Paycheck Protection Program loans from a business’ taxable gross income. That means small businesses won’t have to pay taxes on the loans they received through the CARES Act, as long as the loans are forgiven. The bill aligns state law with federal law.
Finally, Newsom signed Senate Bill 115 that allocates $561 million in economic stimulus funds for this year, including nearly $231 million to help jumpstart construction projects.
“Businesses across the state have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and they need support to keep their doors open and their employees on the payroll,” Newsom said at a press conference. “Today, we are taking action to keep money in the hands of small businesses while expanding job opportunities for those who lost their jobs because of this virus.”
Sonya Blake, president of the Valley Economic Alliance in Sherman Oaks, said the measures are a “step in the right direction” towards providing lasting relief for small businesses, but conceded “we still have a long way to go.”