Established through the American Rescue Plan Act in the spring of 2021, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund is a $28.6 billion federal grant program administered by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to help eligible businesses recover from devastating COVID-19 pandemic-related revenue loss.
To date, 278,304 restaurants applied for RRF grants and were awarded $28.6 billion. Yet, 177,000 eligible restaurants who applied for grants did not receive them, to the tune of $43.6 billion in unfunded applications.
Restaurants are restoring indoor dining, but they remain in dire need of assistance. A smaller workforce, rising food and payroll prices, increased occupancy costs, and additional debt place greater financial strains on restaurants already struggling on thin margins.
The RRF has been a critical lifeline for restaurants across the country, helping them rebuild from the damaging effects of COVID-19. Since the RRF’s closing in July, legislation has been introduced in Congress to replenish the RRF. Specifically, the RRF Replenishment Act will direct $60 billion in funding to the SBA, allowing the agency to complete the mission and provide sorely needed recovery dollars for the restaurant industry.
The National Restaurant Association continues to work with members of Congress and educate policymakers in a bipartisan effort on the critical need to replenish the RRF. Without help from Congress, thousands of restaurants will continue to struggle to remain open and serve their communities.