Breaking News
More () »

'More needs to happen' | San Diego businesses ask lawmakers for comprehensive relief packages

Several programs are in the works by the state, but Congress remains in a logjam.

SAN DIEGO — Small businesses continued to call on federal and state leaders to approve comprehensive relief packages as they face the potential of another lockdown. The National Federation of Independent Business estimates one in five businesses may close in the next three months without intervention.

Several programs are in the works by the state, but Congress remains in a logjam.

The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration began accepting applications for the Main Street Hiring Tax Credit on Tuesday. The program gives businesses a tax credit for each new hire during the second half of the year.

“Those dollars are now made available when you hire a qualified employee -- a tax credit from $1,000 up to $100,000, if you're a small business owner, that you can receive in tax credits,” said Gov. Gavin Newsom. 

 The state also announced temporary tax relief including:  

  • Automatic three-month income tax extension for taxpayers filing less than $1 million in sales tax 
  • Extends the availability of existing interest and penalty-free payment agreements to companies with up to $5 million in taxable sales 
  • Provides expanded interest-free payment options for larger businesses particularly affected by significant restrictions on operations based on COVID-19 transmissions 

That's a step in the right direction to help them because I think a lot of them are just trying to make their way through with these challenges,” said John Kabateck, California State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business. 

Newsom indicated the legislature is expected to take up other initiatives in 2021 to provide some relief to owners.

“We're going to talk a lot more about employment insurance, not just unemployment insurance. In January, we're going to talk about waiving more fees and items related to industries that have been disproportionately impacted by this pandemic,” said Newsom.

Kabateck joined members of the governor’s cabinet in a meeting Tuesday about the economic impact of potential new restrictions to blunt the sharp rise in COVID-19 cases.

We’re really wanting to make sure that our policymakers are opening up Main Street and they're doing it responsibly, that they're keeping us safe, but they're doing it in a way that's thoughtful,” said Kabateck.

Congress has the potential to make the biggest impact on small businesses. The Paycheck Protection Program and CARES Act both provided direct relief. However, the federal government remains at an impasse on future programs.

“We need them to get the relief they need. Some is coming, but a lot more needs to happen,” said Kabateck. “If they're shut down and they're on life support right now, we're going to see some grim weeks ahead. So, we're praying for the best. Some of the state relief is a good step in the direction. We need the feds to really step it up and get some more money coming down the pike.” 

Before You Leave, Check This Out