The shift signals significant demand for the RRG program. Up to hundreds of thousands of restaurant and foodservice operators are expected to apply for grants.

The U.S. Small Business Administration said applicants for the Restaurant Revitalization Grant program do not need to register for a Data Universal Numbering System, or DUNS number—the unique nine-digit identifier for businesses—or on SAM.gov.

The decision is a change from early March, when the SBA was expected to require applicants to provide a DUNS number, same as they do under the SBA’s Shuttered Venues Operators, or SVO, grant program.

The shift signals the significant demand for the RRG program; up to hundreds of thousands of restaurant and foodservice operators are expected to apply. The National Restaurant Association and its state and local partners asked the SBA to streamline and simplify the application process to prevent administrative complexity.

The program is part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 that President Biden signed into law March 11. The Restaurant Revitalization Fund is a $28.6 billion appropriation established to provide tax-free federal grants to restaurants, bars, brewpubs, caterers, taverns, and inns that suffered huge losses during the pandemic. The grants may be used to cover eligible expenses already incurred back to February 2020, and other additional expenses for the remainder of 2021 or even longer, if the SBA extends the covered period.

Those expenses, “incurred as a direct result of, or during, the COVID-19 pandemic,” could include payroll, mortgage payments, rent, utilities, outdoor seating construction, supplies, such as PPE and cleaning materials, food and beverage expenses, and paid sick leave, among other things.

It is available to businesses including:

  • Food trucks
  • Carts and stands
  • Full- and limited-service restaurants
  • Caterers
  • Saloons and taverns, and more

Entities not eligible for grants include:

  • Businesses operated by state or local governments as of March 13, 2020
  • Businesses owned or operated together with any affiliated entities
  • Businesses with more than 20 locations regardless of whether the entities share a common name, have a pending application for or have received a Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, or are a publicly traded on a national securities exchange.

Grants are available to businesses for pandemic-related revenue losses based on the difference between 2020 gross receipts against 2019 gross receipts. Alternative calculations are available for businesses not in operation for all of 2019, or newly opened in 2020. Eligible grant amounts would be reduced dollar for dollar by any amounts received from Paycheck Protection Program loans, first and second draw, regardless of forgiveness status.

For more information on the RRF, visit https://restaurantsact.com/rrf/