Maryland Governor Larry Hogan Thursday announced a small business tax relief program, forgiveness of small business loans, support for low-income housing and rental programs and other initiatives to help struggling Marylanders and businesses cope with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
An executive order issued by Hogan provides small business with a break from major increases in their unemployment taxes by revising the calculation. Also, $75-million in emergency loans granted to businesses during the first round of economic relief in March will be converted to grants.
The state also anticipates providing nearly $25-million to finance about 2,000 units of low-income housing.
“We continue to take constant actions on a daily basis to fight this virus from all directions, while Congress continues to fail at the one simple thing we have been asking them to do for the last eight months, which is to provide additional relief for our struggling families and small businesses,” Hogan said. “Today, we are immediately taking additional state actions to help businesses struggling to hang on to avoid the prospect of more layoffs right before Christmas, or being forced to go out of business in a matter of weeks.”
A health concern is also prioritized, with the commitment of $94-million in new investments to help people with prediabetes and diabetes manage their conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic. $10-million in federal funding is also allocated to support virtual and multijurisdictional initiatives for law enforcement, youth services and victim services. The COVID-19 Safe Futures Collaborative will provide emergency assistance to crime victims and refer them to appropriate services.