FAQs

Select from the dropdown list below to find answers to your workforce and loan-related questions.


CARES Act/Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) Questions

I know each state has to determining factors for eligibility but under federal assistance, if a business had to reduce FT staff hours to part-time hours, would they still be eligible for the full $600 benefit even if states provide reduced benefits?

The primary focus of the new guidance of the CARES Act authorizes individuals who are otherwise entitled to received regular unemployment compensation (UC) will also receive a $600 flat payment through July 31, 2020 or when they can return to work. As long as the employee is entitled to $1 of UC they are eligible and will receive the $600 flat payment.



Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)/FMLA Questions

I have an employee who has told me they did not want to work due to the threat of the coronavirus and wish to self-quarantine, do I have to approve this request and provide them paid leave?

The policies governing paid sick leave are unique to each state. The self-quarantined employee could be covered under the FMLA if the employer meets th 50 employee threshold. This would require a family member to have the virus in an active state. otherwise, they would be required to use their PTO or sick leave.



Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)/Coronavirus Safety Protocol Questions

Is it safe to allow beverage cart service?

Beverage carts can be considered a food and beverage delivery method. The operators must be trained like all other F&B employees and wear proper PPE (mostly laytex gloves) and don't permit customers self-serve from the carts. We recommend a cashless system it at all possible.



Department of Labor (DOL)/Independent Contractor Rule Questions

I have a 1099 employee who is my superintendent, he does all the chemical applications, sets reels, manage and manages grounds crew. Any thoughts on classifying him going forward? It is truly payroll but as an independent contractor. It would seem that he would only have the right to file bases on his employees for his other properties that he manages. In our case I pay employees he manages.

It sounds like he is a Part-Time employee. You need to review your state's guidelines on "what is an employee". An independent contractor should not manage your personnel, use your equipment to perform their work nor be required to follow a schedule you set. If he is a licensed contractor, then perhaps you should consider a standard services purchase agreement as you would with any other vendor. Mis-classifiying of an employee could result in costly fines and penalties



Department of Labor (DOL)/Paid Sick Leave Act (PSL)

Is the payroll tax credit good for the PSL?

Yes, the credit covers both the PSL and FMLA programs

Can employee apply for unemployment of May 1 if they were scheduled to start seasonal work May 1 and have not yet started when May 1 gets here due to business closure.

Each state has its own guidance on qualifying for unemployment so we would recommend you review your state's website as this a general question being asked. Example: in SC the business was not open and the employee was not employed prior to being contacted to return to work they would remain on unemployment, if they meet all other criteria.

With regard to leave, our Governor has mandated that anyone over 65 is to stay home. Is it correct this this falls under the PSL program?

Governor orders are not directing quarantining. These employees would not be covered under PSL or FMLA



Internal Revenue Service (IRS)/Employee Retention Tax Credit Questions

Is there an application for the employee retention tax credit?

Eligible Employers will report their total qualified wages and the related credits for each calendar quarter on their federal employment tax returns, usually Form 941, Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return. Form 941 is used to report income and social security and Medicare taxes withheld by the employer from employee wages, as well as the employer’s portion of social security and Medicare tax.In anticipation of receiving the credits, Eligible Employers can fund qualified wages by accessing federal employment taxes, including withheld taxes, that are required to be deposited with the IRS or by requesting an advance of the credit from the IRS. In anticipation of receiving the credits, Eligible Employers can fund qualified wages by accessing federal employment taxes, including withheld taxes, that are required to be deposited with the IRS or by requesting an advance of the credit from the IRS.



Small Business Administration (SBA)/Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Questions 

How do I know if I'm eligible for the SBA loan programs?

Current guidance is that your Governor have had to issue a state of emergency. Once the declaration has been made, all small businesses are eligible to participate in SBA programs. Please check out website for the latest updates on states issuing state of emergency orders.

Please clarify the SBA's definition of "business with credit available elsewhere are not eligible"

The lender must determine that the applicant is unable to obtain the loan on reasonable terms without a Federal government guaranty, and that some or all of the loan is not available from the resources of the applicant business or the personal resources of the principals of the applicant business. As part of the credit elsewhere test, SBA requires the personal resources of any owner of 20 percent or more of the small business applicant be reviewed. (13 CFR 120.102) The rule also applies to each person when the combined ownership of the spouses and dependent children is 20 percent or more. If some or all of the loan applied for is otherwise available on reasonable terms from any of these sources, the loan application must be reduced or declined.

Are 501(c)(6) organizations eligible for SBA COVID funding?

Only 501c(3) and (19) are eligible for the PPP program. All other 501(c) organizations can apply for the Emergency Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

When applying for my EIDL it ask for my gross revenue and cost of good sold. my COGS is very low. Is the need based on COGS? What is driving the number?

The EIDL financial data request is determining your net expenses. COGS for some industries will be very high, while for golf courses this number will be low. It has no impact to the final determination for qualifying loan amount.

Is NGCOA aware of any restrictions on business income that could jeopardize SBA funding? Sample would be gift cards, pre selling discounted rounds.

NGCOA is unaware of any unapproved business activity that would disqualify a business, other state or federally recognized illegal activities.

Are Independent Contractors Eligible for the SBA loans?

An independent contractor or sole proprietor will itself be eligible for a loan under the PPP, if it satisfies the applicable requirements. Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) program. These loans are available up to $2 million and have a 3.75% interest rate. Payments can be deferred for up to four years. You can qualify for such loans if you need the money to pay for certain business expenses that you can’t pay due to the pandemic. You can also get an emergency grant of up to $10,000 while you apply for such a loan.

If I am self-employed how do I document my payroll for an EIDL?

IRS just issued this clairifying guidance for self-employed businesses https://www.sba.gov/document/policy-guidance--ppp-interim-final-rule-additional-eligibility-criteria-requirements-certain-pledges-loans

Can you still apply for EIDL? I heard funds ran out!

AS of 4-15-2020 we have heard this but has not been confirmed. Once we have confirmation we will provide update on our website.



Small Business Administration (SBA)/Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Questions

Is payroll paid considered rate of pay or total compensation paid when talking about no more than 25% reduction?

Under the PPP Forgivenss program, payroll expenses must equal a minimum of 75% of the total expenses. Payroll expenses include, total wages and employer share of benefits paid. The 25% allowance is for other allowed operating expenses.

If you receive a check for PPP when does the 8 week period start? Does it start upon cashing the check or upon receipt

The 8 week period begins the day your loan was deposited into your back account.

We pay staff every 2 weeks. Do we need to accrue our payrole?

At this time our information from the SBA is that all expenses are based on total amount paid. Thus if you had accruals when the 8 weeks period began, the payment would be an allowable expense. If you are unable to ensure all payables are not paid by the last day of the 8 week period, then those expenses cannot be included in your forgivable expenses.

Will workers comp payments and retirements plans qualify as payroll expenses?

Yes, these are considered part of yout benefit expenses.

How is the full time equivalent count and the hours associated with it calculated, so that we can attempt to spend the loan along the same lines?

At this time we are unsure how the SBA defines a full-time equivalent. We suspect they will use the same as the American Cares Act (ACA) used, which is 30 hours per week. As soon as we have a definitiave answer we will provide an update.

Can we pay out bonuses to use up our loan, and are they forgiven at the full amount we pay during the 8 weeks or 2/12 of the amount?

Yes, bonuses are permitted labor expense when determining total payroll cost when qualifying for the 75% threshold for loan forgiveness. The 2.5 is the factor used to determine the total amount eligible for the PPP loan. It does not apply to the final allowed expenses.

Can we spend more on our retirement plan funding than we used for the original loan application, and still have this entire amount forgiven, and is it forgiven at the full amount we spent during the 8 weeks or just 2/12 of the amount?

Yes, This expense will be considered a paid bonus. Bonuses are permitted labor expense when determining total payroll cost when qualifying for the 75% threshold for loan forgiveness. The 2.5 is the factor used to determine the total amount eligible for the PPP loan. It does not apply to the final allowed expenses.

Can we pay BOTH employees who are working AND employees who are not working?

Yes, you can pay your employees even if you are unable to bring them all back to work due to COVID-19 Executive restrictions. States Unemployment Insurance (UI) guidance differs from state to state. Check with your local employment services guidelines to know when you are allowed to call employees back to work or remove them from their unemployment rolls.

Do we have to get permission from non-working employees in order to pay them?

States Unemployment Insurance (UI) guidance differs from state to state. Check with your local employment services guidelines to know when you are allowed to call employees back to work or remove them from their unemployment rolls.

Can we reduce an employee's salary down to $100,000 just for the 8 weeks, in order to not have it reduced when we ask for forgiveness?

Yes, you can adjust your labor expenses to optimize your eligible forgivable allowance.

Can we reduce an employee's salary down to $100,000 just for the 8 weeks, in order to not have it reduced when we ask for forgiveness?

Yes, as long as the total employee salary does not exceed $100,000

If you spend less than the loan amount you received, can you return the dollars not spent, without penalty?

Yes, this would be pre-payment of the outstanding loan balance, which has no pre-payment penalty.

Is the payroll calculation based on when it is paid or when it is accured or both?

At this time our information from the SBA is that all expenses are based on total amount paid. Thus if you had accruals when the 8 weeks period began, the paid accruals would be an allowable expense. If you are unable to ensure all payables are not paid by the last day of the 8 week period, then those expenses cannot be included in your forgivable expenses.

Are utility calculations based on dates of payment or service during the 8 week period as utility service dates often will not coincide?

At this time our information from the SBA is that all expenses are based on total amount paid. Thus if you had accruals when the 8 weeks period began, the payment would be an allowable expense. If you are unable to ensure all payables are not paid by the last day of the 8 week period, then those expenses cannot be included in your forgivable expenses.

So the EIDL...does that have the same spending protocols as the PPP?

No, EIDLs can be used for all business expenses. Only the advance is eligible for forgiveness if they are part of direct payroll expenses.

If you are seasonal (i.e. our restaurant is only open 8 months a year). Do we still have to annualize the Chef’s weekly salary when he is only paid 8 of the 12 months.

For seasonal operators you have two periods to choose from to determine your operational expenses when applying for a PPP loan. The new guidance provides a seasonal business that will be considered to have been in operation as of February 15, 2020, if the business was in operations for any 8-week period between May 1, 2019, and September 2019. Seasonal golf course owners who generally don't open until late March or early April will have a better period in which to determine the loan amount based on a peak operational period. You would select the period that best reflects your highest labor cost.

I missed if federal payroll taxes can be used with PPP

Payroll taxes are not approved expenses for the forgiveness portion of the PPP loans.

My loan will be dispersed May 7th. Will my 8 weeks run into the first week of July or does all forgiveness end on June 30th?

The 8 week period begins the day your loan was deposited into your back account.

We have received our PPP & have decided to pay our employees their average hours they worked from 1/1/20-3/14/20 without them currently working. Is this legal? The employees want to stay on UI.

Yes, you can pay your employees even if you are unable to bring them into work due to COVID-19 Executive restrictions. States Unemployment Insurance (UI) guidance differs from state to state. Check with your local employment services guidelines to know when you are allowed to call employees back to work or remove them from their unemployment rolls.

Does the 8 weeks start the day we sign the loan documents or the date the funds hit our bank account

The 8 week period begins the day your loan was deposited into your back account.

Am I responsible for interest in the forgiven loan amount?

No, if the full principal of the PPP loan is forgiven may differ on a case-by-case basis. However the maximim terms of the loan feature a 1-year term with interest capped at 4 persent.

As a sole/single LLC owner that does not receive a weekly paycheck but regularly works at the course, how should I account for my salary with regards to my total labor expenses?

If the owner can identify their labor expense against the business, such as a draw or distribution, this can be added to their total labor expense. What qualifies as "payroll costs?" Payroll costs consist of compensation to employees (whose principal place of residence is the United States) in the form of salary, wages, commissions, or similar compensation; cash tips or the equivalent (based on employer records of past tips or, in the absence of such records, a reasonable, good-faith employer estimate of such tips); payment for vacation, parental, family, medical, or sick leave; allowance for separation or dismissal; payment for the provision of employee benefits consisting of group health care coverage, including insurance premiums, and retirement; payment of state and local taxes assessed on compensation of employees; and for an independent contractor or sole proprietor, wage, commissions, income, or net earnings from self-employment or similar compensation.

As a sole/single LLC owner that does not receive a weekly paycheck but regularly works at the course, how should I account for my salary with regards to my total labor expenses?

If the owner can identify their labor expense against the business, such as a draw or distribution, this can be added to their total labor expense. What qualifies as "payroll costs?" Payroll costs consist of compensation to employees (whose principal place of residence is the United States) in the form of salary, wages, commissions, or similar compensation; cash tips or the equivalent (based on employer records of past tips or, in the absence of such records, a reasonable, good-faith employer estimate of such tips); payment for vacation, parental, family, medical, or sick leave; allowance for separation or dismissal; payment for the provision of employee benefits consisting of group health care coverage, including insurance premiums, and retirement; payment of state and local taxes assessed on compensation of employees; and for an independent contractor or sole proprietor, wage, commissions, income, or net earnings from self-employment or similar compensation.

Am I entitled to unemployment benefits along with my employees. I am part owner and also the superintendent. I do not receive a W-2. I pay estimated quarterly taxes.

He has to have some record of payment or payroll. If not salary, it could be a draw or distribution. But there has to be a paper trail.

How does PPP handle seasonal businesses?

In evaluating a borrower’s eligibility, a lender may consider whether a seasonal borrower was in operation on February 15, 2020 or for an 8-week period between February 15, 2019 and June 30, 2019.

What qualifies as payroll cost?

PPP loans covers payroll costs, including costs for employee vacation, parental, family, medical, and sick leave. However, the CARES Act excludes qualified sick and family leave wages for which a credit is allowed under sections 7001 and 7003 of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (Public Law 116–127).

We are closed but want to start bringing back employees can I count them in my salary expense?

Yes, they can bring the employees back and still include them if rehired between March 1 and Jun 30. When calculating your total labor cost for qualifying amount you have two options. You can take a one year period and divide by 12 month to get an average or you can use the total labor cost of any 12 weeks between Feb 15 and Jun 30

When applying for PPP loans when calculating Rents, does this include leases such as golf cart leases

The Treasury fact sheet specifically says “Rent, under lease agreements in force before February 15, 2020”. The bill itself is similar. While it’s not explicit, our take is that this is related to real property, not something like golf carts.

Is NGCOA aware of any restrictions on business income that could jeopardize SBA funding? Sample would be gift cards, pre selling discunted rounds.

NGCOA is unaware of any unapproved business activity that would disqualify a business, other state or federally recognized illegal activities.

Are Independent Contractors Eligible for the SBA loans?

An independent contractor or sole proprietor will itself be eligible for a loan under the PPP, if it satisfies the applicable requirements. Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) program. These loans are available up to $2 million and have a 3.75% interest rate. Payments can be deferred for up to four years. You can qualify for such loans if you need the money to pay for certain business expenses that you can’t pay due to the pandemic. You can also get an emergency grant of up to $10,000 while you apply for such a loan.

Can you get PPP loan and file for payroll tax credits under the PSL and FMLA?

Yes, these are two separate programs.

Any updates on the inclusion of 501(c)(7) entities in future funding?

No, NGCOA along with other allied golf associations are continuing to urge expansion of the SBA PPP program to include both c7 and c6 nn-profit organization.

I filed with SBA for the disaster relief grant but it only asked for my 2019 cost of goods. I’m a real small course in rural community in North West Ohio but the figure asked for does not even come close to the cost off operations do you know how this monies will be determined. I’ve so far lost 2/3 rds of my membership and have only allowed my members to play so the loss so far is considerable

No, NGCOA along with other allied golf associations are continuing to urge expansion of the SBA PPP program to include both c7 and c6 nn-profit organization.

If I hire everyone back on June 30 at the same rate as before, does this mean I will have no reductions?

Restoring employees to work and raising salaries and wages following a pay cut can mitigate reductions in loan forgiveness. Where layoffs or salary reductions occurred between February 15, 2020 and April 26, 2020, the loan forgiveness amount will not be reduced if the cuts in personnel and salaries are undone prior to June 30, 2020. To accomplish this, the company must (by June 30, 2020): 1. Rehire employees such that its FTEE levels are at least where they were as of February 15, 2020, AND 2. Reinstate all salaries and wages for employees making less than $100,000 that were reduced by more than 25% back to the level of those salaries and wages as of February 15, 2020

As a sole proprietor, can I include my monthly health insurance premiums?

No, insurance premiums are not an allowable use of funds under PPP.

If I choose to provide employees bonuses when no plan was in place previously, are these payments subject to be denied as part of the loan forgiveness program?

No, the SBA has identified that bonuses and/or hazard pay that do not cause an employee's salary to exceed the statutorily annualized $100,000 limit are permissible. There is no discussion of, or attempt to quantify, a "reasonable" or "excessive" bonus--they simply treat bonuses and hazard pay as cash compensation which falls under the same parameters as other compensation, with a limit of $15,385 per employee for the 8-week covered period.

Is payroll paid considered rate of pay or total compensation paid when talking about no more than 25% reduction?

Yes you must show that 75% of the funds have been used to retain and pay staff during the reporting period, this includes your wages paid, paid health insurance benefits, and any leave or vacation time paid during this period

Is there a difference between Full Time and Part Time employees for the forgiveness? I've heard that you have to maintain the same number of Full Time employees to have all the payroll amounts forgiven, regardless if you are closed. Is that true?

The CARES Act uses the standard of “full-time equivalent employees” to determine whether loan forgiveness must be reduced in the measurement period. The loan forgiveness application provides for a calculation of average full-time equivalency which is calculated as the average number of hours paid per week, divided by 40 and rounded to the nearest tenth. The maximum for each employee is capped at 1.0. A simplified method is provided that assigns a 1.0 for employees who work 40 hours or more per week and .5 to employees who work fewer hours.

My payroll date fell 1 day after Day one of my loan, but was funded the day before. Can I ignore that pay period (which was reduced hours) and use the pay period that falls the day after 8 weeks, but is funded the day before? (Which will be higher now we have increased hours)

The SBA's guidance allow a PPP borrower to deduct payroll cost "paid" or "incurred" during the 8 weel period. Under this guidance, payroll cost are considered paid on the day that the paychecks are distributed or tthe borrower originated as ACH credit transaction. Payroll cost are considered incurred on the day that the employee earned the pay. This distinction allows employers some flexibility in timing their use of PPP funds.



State Employment Administration/Supplemental Unemployment Insurance Benefit Questions

If furloughed employees are receiving unemployment and the $600 supplemental support, will it not be difficult to have them return to work once we reopen?

Based on your question, I assume you have recieved your PPP funding and wish to know you have to pay employees? Yes you must show that 75% of the funds have been used to retain and pay staff during the reporting period, this includes your wages paid, paid health insurance benefits, and any leave or vacation time paid during this period. You are permitted to use the remaining 25% on other direct business expenses; mortagage interest (not principal), rent (real property), utilities and the refinancing of an EIDL loan (the $10K advance).


Other Questions Received (Uncategorized)

I think it’s great news that the state of California is allowing golf courses to open under certain guidelines. I can’t wait to play myself. My question is, does this re-opening order pertain to mini golf as well? If they are able to get their courses social distance ready and comply with the Park and play safety guidelines?

As you know the decision to permit golf courses to re-open is one made by the County. While our Park and Play protocols were designed with the green grass golf facilities in mind, I'm sure many would be applicable to your operation. With that being said, NGCOA is not in a position to assume the intent of the County's executive order. I would recommend you contact your local county administrator and request clarification.

Can you tell me if the NGCOA has a suggestion on requiring only one rider per cart?

NGCOA has issued at Park and Play set of protocols to assist owners and operators with ensuring they operate in accordance with CDC guidelines and social distancing compliance. We recommend all carts be issued as single rider (only exception may be if they are family members residing in same home). While many have added to our list of operational protocols, operators failure to adhere to established protocols could jeaperdize your ability to remain open and could result in further spread of the virus.

Can golf facilities like Golftec be open and teaching?

Golf instruction may be more challenging as the provider and the student must maitain the approved social distance of 6ft. If this is feasible and delivered in an outdoor environment, then is may be an approved activity. However its important to note their are other protocol issues that need to be followed as well, such as no touching others equipment or person (inlcuding golf balls and ball baskets). Golf balls must be sanitized before issuing to student or instructor.

Wisconsin Shelter at Home prohibits renting Golf carts. How can we (Golf Course) owners comply with it while balancing ADA compliance? We have golfers with disability already upset at us.

Excutive Orders are the prevailing rule. If the practice is found to be non-compliant with ADA, then the executive order will need to be updated. Affected persons should file their complaint with the Governor's office.

How are you handling Driving range customers? Do you have someone patrolling the range to insure they are 6 feet apart? What about sanitizing range balls and bag stands?

The industry has yet to develop protocols addressing operation of driving ranges. First ensure your staff are using proper PPE when handling balls and equipment. Some best practices that are currently in use where permitted, consist of sanitizing range balls in approve sanitizing solution, sanitizing ball basket before issuing, expanding hitting stations to ensure minimum of 6ft separation between hitters, and staff monitoring guest to ensure they follow social distancing protocols.

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