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Small Business Week 2022 | Cheers for Peers

Cheers for Peers

Small Business Week 2022

In honor of Small Business Week, we recognized many businesses throughout Larimer County as part of our Cheers for Peers Appreciation campaign!

During this campaign we asked for nominations of favorite businesses in Larimer County and we received an outpouring votes. Below is a listing of those who were chosen. 

Timnath Beerwerks

Julianne Curtis – Birth and Bereavement Doula Services

Elements of Touch Wellness Spa & River Retreat

Neuhaus Real Estate Inc Office

Salted Grace

Nuance Chocolate

Pig & Plow Pub & Grub

Inkwell & Brew

Berthoud Brewing Company

Sparge Brewing

Congratulations to each of them and to all the small business nominated!!! 🎉

Success Story – Blue Pine Construction

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Blue Pine Construction

Blue Pine Construction is based in Wellington, and run by the husband and wife team of Mike and Lorilyn Bockelman. Their company does home construction/remodeling, and a variety of outdoor “decking” projects, throughout Northern Colorado. Mike’s construction background, combined with Lorilyn’s retail management experience, makes for a productive combination. They have grown the business significantly over the last few years.

Blue Pine Construction now has 10 full time employees, including a new production manager. Mike is a Air National Guard serviceman, and tries to hire veterans when possible. A project coordinator helps with client communication. Mike says “We spend a lot of time communicating status to our clients. Communication is our secret sauce.” 

In 2020, Blue Pine Construction participated in a specialized SBDC program called ScaleUp Smart, which was significantly funded by the Wellington Town and Chamber of Commerce. The program produced customized marketing evaluations and recommendations. Lorilyn said “We didn’t have any active marketing. This program helped us clean up our website, and gave us the knowledge to tailor our marketing, and we work on select tasks every month now.  It also helped us focus on more appropriate projects. Right after completing the ScaleUp Smart program we hired a marketing company to help with our social media and implement what we learned as well.”

Lorilyn adds “We got started with the Larimer SBDC through a HR class, done by Tina Todd of Simply HR. It was very thorough.”

Mike and Lorilyn also met with SBDC construction consultant Andy Meade. Mike commented “We discussed job costing, and also talked a lot about corporate structure; it was really helpful.” SBDC Director Mike OConnell also assisted with proactively using financial ratios to help meet profitability goals.

Today, Mike and Lorilyn report that Blue Pine Construction “is on track to meet all of our goals”, despite the current challenges of material cost increases and shortages.  “We got a great combination of SBDC assistance, across several aspects of our business, it wasn’t any one big thing.”, Mike remarked.

We at the Larimer SBDC look forward to continuing to work with this great local business!

Techstars Startup Week

Are you hungry for more information to make your business aspirations come true?

Be part of Techstars Startup Week Fort Collins!!! It is a free, 5-day celebration of entrepreneurship, community, and business education.

Whether you are a startup, an established business or simply have an idea – Startup Week Fort Collins has something for you!
 
Today we are highlighting:
 
     Retail Merchandising – big business best practices for small businesses – Tami Parker
  • By the end of this presentation, you will learn: the direct link between visual merchandising and retail sales!
     Start Your Own Company (Spanish)  –  Jose Luis Ramos
  • By the end of this panel, you will learn: how to start a company in Colorado. The steps for entrepreneurs looking at starting their own company, going from concept to execution, and the key points in the process.
 
     Why Authentic Marketing Works For Small Business – Seth Silvers
  • By the end of this panel, you will learn: a resolute commitment to market more Authentically.

This session will debunk the “”sell at all costs”” myth by having hearing about how small businesses in Fort Collins are winning by marketing with authenticity. This panel session will feature several local business owners who have made it a priority to insert their story, their values, and their authentic self into their marketing and have seen positive results from that.

https://startupfoco.com/ #StartupWeekFoCo

Are You Eligible for The Employee Retention Tax Credit?

Are You Eligible for The Employee Retention Tax Credit?

    Written by Paul Mueller

The Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) was enacted by The CARES Act in March 2020. Under the original rules, the ERTC was not available to PPP Loan borrowers.

As a result, it didn’t attract a lot of attention until recently.

As part of the Covid Relief Bill signed into law on December 27, 2020, Congress made two big changes to the ERTC:

  • First, the ineligibility to PPP Loan borrowers was retroactively eliminated. That means PPP Loan borrowers can now go back and amend their payroll tax filings for 2020 to claim refunds to the extent they qualified for the ERTC during 2020. As explained below, these refunds could be as much as $5,000 per employee.
  • Second, Congress extended the ERTC through June 30, 2021 and significantly increased the benefit to as much as $14,000 per employee.

How Can I Tell If I’m eligible for the ERTC?

For 2020, Employers were eligible to claim the ERTC if either of these two things happened:

  1. Your operations were fully or partially suspended due to a COVID-19-related governmental order, or
  2. You experienced a more than 50% reduction in gross receipts for one or more calendar quarters of 2020, as compared to 2019.

For 2021, Employers are eligible for the first half of 2021 if any one of these three things happened: 

  1. Your operations were fully or partially suspended due to a COVID-19-related governmental order; or
  2. 1st or 2nd quarter 2021 gross receipts fall by more than 20% compared to the same quarter of 2019; or 
  3. 4th quarter 2020 gross receipts fell by more than 20% compared to the 4th quarter of 2019. This test, though, only qualifies an employer for the ERTC for the 1st quarter of 2021.

If I’m eligible, how much is the ERTC?

For 2020, the maximum ERTC is 50% of qualified wages up to $10,000 for a maximum credit of $5,000 per employee. 

For 2021, the maximum ERTC is 70% of qualified wages up to $10,000 per employee, per quarter, for a total maximum ERTC of $14,000 per employee. 

How do I claim the ERTC?

For 2020, the IRS recently announced employers can amend their quarterly payroll tax filings (Form 941) to claim the ERTC. This is particularly relevant to PPP Loan borrowers who were thought to be ineligible up until the retroactive law change on December 27, 2020. ·

However, an employer that received a PPP loan may not use the same wages reported on their PPP forgiveness application in computing the ERTC.

For 2021, the ERTC is claimed as a holdback against the employer’s required payroll tax deposits. As an alternative, an employer can request the credit in advance, which will then be reconciled on the next quarterly payroll tax filing (Form 941). For employers participating in the second round of PPP Loans, the anti-duplication rule for wages (described in the preceding paragraph) will continue to apply.

The ERTC seems awfully complicated!

Yes, it is, particularly the retroactive eligibility applicable now for PPP Loan borrowers in 2020.

Because these are payroll tax credits, be sure to contact and work with your payroll provider to see how they can help you claim the tax credits you are entitled to.

Based on the per employee amounts, the ERTC can add up to real money fast!