How Kansas retailers can prepare for a new COVID relief program

Covid 19 Retail Storefront Property Tax Relief
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TOPEKA, Kan. – Kansas Small Business Owners should prepare for the latest property tax relief program, according to Governor Laura Kelly.

Kelly announced today that her administration will launch the application process for the “COVID-19 Retail Storefront Property Tax Relief” program in October.

But before you can be part of this new program, your small business has to have a federal Unique Entity Identifier (UEI).

“The financial assistance provided through this program will give Kansas entrepreneurs resources to continue to grow and invest in their businesses,” said Governor Laura Kelly. “Proactively verifying UEI registration will help small business owners receive this relief quickly and efficiently once the program’s application portal opens in October.”

In June, Governor Kelly signed bipartisan House Bill 2136, investing $50 million to help small businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The bill enacts the COVID-19 Retail Storefront Property Tax Relief Act (Act) to provide for claims for refunds to be paid for tax years 2020 and 2021 for certain claimants that were operationally shut down or restricted at their retail storefront by a COVID-19-related order or action imposed by the State, a local unit of government, or a local health officer.” – HB 2136

The COVID-19 Retail Storefront Property Tax Relief Program is funded through the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which requires a UEI registration to be completed for a business to be eligible to receive assistance. UEI registration ensures the accuracy of information and the security of funding being used for this program. That’s according to Kelly’s Office.

UEI Registration

The UEI is a unique 12-character identifier assigned to all entities and is used as the primary means of entity identification for Federal awards and for those doing business with the federal government. Governor Kelly’s Office states, “The UEI is issued at no cost through the federal System for Award Management website (SAM.gov).”

If a business is already registered in SAM.gov, no additional action is needed to obtain a UEI. UEI registration can be confirmed by logging into SAM.gov and verifying that the business’ Entity Status states “Active Registration.”

Kelly’s Office adds, “Please note that due to recent increases in the number of entities registering with SAM.gov it may take up to 25 business days for new registrations to be processed. For any issues related to registering with SAM.gov or obtaining a UEI the Federal Service Desk can be reached at 866-606-8220.”

Information detailing the application process and dates for the COVID-19 Retail Storefront Property Tax Relief Program is forthcoming from the Kansas Department of Revenue. The application will provide definitions, explain the assistance process in detail, and will specify exactly what information must be submitted in support of the application.

Claimants will have until April 15, 2023, to file an application for this financial assistance.

Kansas Sales Tax and COVID-19 Retail Storefront Act, HB 2136