Restaurant Return-To-Work Tax Credit

The $35 million Restaurant Return-to-Work Tax Credit Program provides an incentive to COVID-impacted restaurants to bring restaurant staff back-to-work, and to increase hiring at NYS restaurants. Qualifying businesses are eligible for a tax credit of $5,000 per new worker hired, up-to $50,000 per business.  The Program is open to eligible restaurants located in New York City, or in an area outside of New York City that was designated an Orange or Red Zone for at least thirty consecutive days.

To be responsive to the needs of COVID-impacted restaurants, the Restaurant Return-to-Work Tax Credit provides a Fast Track Option, which allows a business to claim the credit before the end of the tax year.

Restaurants may claim the credit after August 31, 2021 (Fast Track Option), if the business can demonstrate a net employee increase of at least 1 full-time employee as measured from April 1, 2021 to August 31, 2021.

Alternatively, restaurants can choose to claim the tax credit on their 2021 NYS tax return if the business can demonstrate a net employee increase of at least 1 full-time employee as measured from April 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021.


  • The program is open to all small independently owned and operated restaurants (excludes franchises) with less than 100 employees in New York City or in areas that were designated by the NYS Department of Health as either an Orange or a Red zone for at least 30 consecutive days
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate COVID-related losses of at least 40% in gross receipts or full-time equivalent employees
  • Applicants must hire at least one full-time worker at the restaurant

Eligible businesses are full-service and limited service food and beverage establishments in New York State that predominately support on-premises, in-person dining, such as:

  • Full-service restaurants (i.e. waiter/waitress service)
  • Limited-service restaurants – where patrons generally order food at a counter and pay before eating
  • Bars, taverns, nightclubs, or other drinking places
  • Certain breweries/wineries/cideries/distilleries/meaderies with a tasting room

Interest Rate Reduction Grant

The Interest Rate Reduction Grant will help reduce the interest expense owed on an existing loan with select Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI). CDFIs focus on serving businesses who cannot easily access capital and creating opportunities that positively impact the communities they serve. SBS has partnered with 11 CDFIs who work primarily with Asian, Black, Latinx, and immigrant business owners.

The grant will free up cash flow for your business that can be repurposed to help restart or maintain operations. Businesses must have an existing loan with CDFIs listed below and should contact their CDFI to confirm if they are eligible to apply.

Participating CDFIs

If you need additional help identifying and applying for funding for your business, visit

LMI Storefront Loan

Product Details:

  • Loan amount: up to $100,000
  • Loan term: 60 months, including no payments the first six months
  • Interest rate: 0%
  • Pre-payment penalty: none
  • Closing fee: $300 (only if loan is approved)

Who Can Apply?

Businesses must:
  • Operate in one of these eligible LMI neighborhoods
  • Employ between 2-99 employees in total across all locations
  • Have been in operation since January 1, 2018, or before
  • Be cash flow positive in 2019 and be able to demonstrate the ability to repay
  • Have no personal or business tax liens or legal judgements within the past three years
  • Provide a personal guarantee for the loan. All owners of 20% or more of the business must co-sign on the loan and must have an average personal credit score of 625 or higher.

Tri-State Business Opportunity Fund

The mission of the Valley Economic Development Center’s (VEDC) Tri-State Business Opportunity Fund is to support consistent, high quality employment in communities in the New York area. The VEDC specializes in funding minority- and women-owned businesses, including start-ups and nonprofits, with loans ranging from $50,000 to $500,000 and microloans between $2,500 and $50,000. When packaging loans, the VEDC considers credit history, not credit score.

NDC Grow America Fund

The NDC Grow America Fund, a community development lender, offers financing, education, and workshops, including monthly courses on business credit, to entrepreneurs and economic development professionals. NDC’s average loan size is $450,000, but smaller loans are available to a variety of diverse businesses, from repair shops to consulting firms.

BOC Capital

Operated with the Business Outreach Center (BOC), BOC Capital is a participating lender providing affordable payback rates starting with microloans at a minimum of $500 to $50,000 as well as community advantage and contract based loans ranging from $50,000 to $500,000 in all five Boroughs.

Accion East

For over 25 years, Accion East, a nonprofit lender, has provided affordable loans to entrepreneurs and established small business owners. Customized loans of up to $250,000 and microloans from $1,000 to $50,000 are available. Common loan uses include working capital, equipment purchases, operating costs, marketing and promotional materials, vehicle purchases, location changes, inventory purchases, and expansion.


WE NYC is an initiative based out of the NYC Department of Small Business Services, that is dedicated to helping women start and grow their business. WE NYC offers a range of tailored business services including networking events, business courses, and mentorship sessions.

Business Center for New Americans

The Business Center for New Americans (BCNA) helps New Yorkers achieve financial independence and home ownership through workshops about obtaining microloans, developing business management skills, understanding everyday cash management, and more.