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All cleaners are welcome to use different areas of the site, there is a Members Only area along with a Platinum Members Only Area. We hope you’ll consider joining our organization if you own a dry cleaning store, or are a supplier to our industry.

Our members have told us that we consistently add value, and help them with all of the issues that face them in business today. 

We also provide our members with Garment Care Alerts having to do with special garments that have found to be problematic in cleaning.

Members are also provided with an online Marketing Toolkit, that will help you pick up photos for ads or brochures, and also there are a number of hang tags you might want to download and print.


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Advantages of Membership - Training classes, garments analysis, webinars, consulting: NCA (National Cleaners Association) is your personal advocate in the dry cleaning industry.

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Our members have told us that we consistently add value, and help them with all of the issues that face them in business today. We have a full dry cleaning facility for training newbies in our business as well as refresher courses for veteran dry cleaners.

Latest news

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  • 23 Sep 2022 8:53 AM | Anonymous

    One of the most difficult problems to explain to the consumer is the appearance of stains or discolorations that occur after a garment is stored at home. The dry cleaner, who cleaned the garment prior to it being stored, is usually blamed for the damage.

    Insect Damage 

    Moth damage is usually isolated to wool, fur, and leather since animal or protein substances act as food for the larvae. Other types of insects, such as beetles, fleas, lice, and roaches can damage both animal and plant fabrics. There are numerous varieties of insects that can plague the household. All insects excrete water and waste, which can stain fabrics. Insects lay eggs and excrete blood, which is yellow or greenish in color. These types of stains are usually very difficult to remove.

    Sublimation of Dye

    Sublimation of dye is a term used to describe the evaporation of a solid into a gas without passing through the liquid phase. Gases in the air dissolve certain dyes. Black, red, and blue dyes have a greater tendency to dissolve. In this gaseous state, the dye redeposits on another fabric (usually whites) as yellow stains or streaks.

    Mildew

    Many fabrics including those made of animal, vegetable, and synthetic fibers are affected by a micro-organism a fungus growth referred to as mildew. The mildew stain can appear in many colors including tan, yellow, brown, pink, purple, and black. Warmth, dampness, and lack of fresh air combined with starch or sizing in a fabric present ideal condition for mildew growth.

    Damage from Plastic Bags

    The use of plastic bags creates poor conditions for garment storage.  Plastic resins can combine with some finishes on fabric and produce “yellowing”. Plastic bags also have the ability to confine stagnant, warm air. Moisture present in the air can result in an acid condition that can stain and discolor fabrics.

    Fume Fading

    Fume fading is a color change or color loss caused by the action of airborne gases found in varying degrees of concentration. These gases are more commonly the products of combustion when heated with wood, coal, gas, or oil. Frequently, a higher concentration of these gases exists in closets and drawers due to the lack of fresh air exchange.  Darker colors will turn pink or red but not necessarily evenly. Sometimes fume fading occurs after the

    garment has been hanging in a closet or after the dry cleaning or wet cleaning processes. In either case, there is no way to correct it. Discolorations may appear after drycleaning or pressing since the heat used in these processes accelerates the action of the gaseous chemical that has already attacked the dye. The dyes on silk and acetate fabrics are most affected by fume fading.

    Light Fading

    Exposure to artificial or natural light can cause the dyes in fabrics to fade or oxidize.

    Inspection
    Examine garments carefully when accepting them for processing. Mildew emits a characteristic dank or damp odor. The customer should be notified. Observe for any fading, yellowing, or unusual staining. Fading can be readily observed by comparing the exposed area with an unexposed area. Check wool and wool blend fabrics for any staining or yarn weakness, which could indicate moth infestation.  Beetle larvae attack all natural fibers including silk, wool, and cotton. As previously mentioned, roaches, fleas, lice, and mites are insects that may also damage fabrics.

    Box Storage
    Cleaners who promote box storage should first properly pre-spot the garments, then dry clean or wet clean them accordingly. The garment should never be stored without first cleaning it since staining substances and residual body odors can attract insects.  

    Summary
    Many customers will improperly store garments and then blame the dry cleaner. Customers should be informed and educated that they should never put away clothes dirty. Garments should never be stored in a plastic bag. The bag the garment is in is for convenience and protection against soil. Garments should never be stored in damp or most areas and should also be kept away from light and heat.

  • 15 Sep 2022 8:04 AM | Anonymous

    Every dry cleaner who remembers the 1980’s may still have nightmares concerning the processing of garments that contained shoulder pads. Many remember the problems, complaints as well as claims concerning these padded garments. Well, for better or worse, shoulder pads are back!

    Shoulder pads were originally introduced during the 1930’s in both men’s and women’s garments. If you’re a fan of old movies, or look at old photos of that era, you will see that shoulder pads were used in the construction of garments such as dresses, blouses, as well as men’s and women’s jackets and coats. The idea was to accentuate the physical attributes of the wearer by making men’s shoulders look broader and women’s waistlines smaller.

    The padding of shoulders lasted into the late 1950’s. For the next two decades, shoulder pads fell out of fashion. During the 1980’s shoulder pads came back with a vengeance. Looking at the fashions of the day, shoulder pads were again present in men’s and women’s garments, sometimes even bigger and broader. In the past several years, shoulder pads have made a comeback, and are extremely popular in today’s fashions.

    There were, and still are numerous challenges concerning the processing of garments that contain shoulder pads. For this reason, we have included a detailed Technical Bulletin that should help in the processing of these garments.


  • 26 Aug 2022 5:05 PM | Anonymous

    Step 1: Welcome to the new and improved National Cleaners Association website www.nca-i.com. Here you will be able to stay up to date on all things NCA and stay connected with other dry cleaners. In the top right corner, you will find the member login, you can navigate this by clicking on the small person-like figure.


    Step 2: After clicking the “login” tab, it will take you here. This is where you can submit the email address you provided to NCA. The password can be found in your email. If you cannot log in, or cannot find an email with the password, NCA most likely does not have your updated address, so please contact us.  Give us a call or email dawnaverynca@gmail.com and we will update the email and send you a new link.


    If we have to update your email and send you a new link the email you receive will look like this.


    Step 3

    Once you log in, it will take you to this page. This is your member portal, this is where we can look up your contact information, and how you can network with other members.

    Under the member portal, you have the following tabs and links

    Management and forms

    Rules and Regulations by State

    Human Resources and Employee Training

    Marketing Toolkit

    Garment Alerts

     

    Coming Soon… Online Store and Updated Technical Bulletins

     

    If you are logged into your NCA membership account and you click the MyNCA icon that will take you to the NEW NCA Communication Portal.

     

    It uses the same login information that you set up for the NCA website 

    MyNCA looks like this:

     

    This platform allows you to communicate with peers, allied trades, and partners, get training, attend events both virtual and hybrid live/virtual, you can meet with partners and see equipment, attend webinars and so much more. The Best Part is- You do not have to be on Facebook!

    We look forward to seeing you on the platform. Be sure to contact us if you do not have your login information or need help getting around the platform.

  • 11 Aug 2022 12:53 PM | Anonymous


    Complete solvent reclamation in your dry cleaning machine depends on three factors:

    1.      The proper amount of airflow throughout the recovery housing and basket

    2.      The correct amount of time that is necessary to completely remove solvent from the load of garments

    3.      Maintaining the correct reclamation temperatures for the type of solvent used

    In order to achieve this, the lint filters (or lint bags) must be properly maintained in order to prevent the blockage of airflow during the reclamation cycle. Blocked lint filters will cause longer reclamation cycles due to slower airflow and the subsequent inability of the steam coil to maintain proper reclamation temperatures.

    In the State of New York, The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation mandates that both the lint filters and button traps be cleaned every third load in dry cleaning machines that use perchloroethylene. While this practice may seem to be severe, it will actually increase the efficiency of any dry cleaning machine, regardless of the type of solvent that is used, by increasing solvent mileage and reducing the duration of the reclamation cycle (this will reduce energy costs as well as “wear and tear” on the machine).

    The proper inspection and maintenance of the lint filter will also prevent many long term issues concerning the build-up of lint and other debris (such as pins, tags, and tissues) that may pass through a worn or damaged lint filter or bag. When lint or other debris are able to pass through the lint filter (see attached photo), they will deposit and accumulate onto the recovery housing, fan housing, both the steam and evaporator coils, as well the bearing housing and front of the basket. When a severe lint buildup occurs, any loosened lint can deposit onto the load of garments. Since the accumulation of lint within the machine will retain both solvent and moisture, the cleaned garments may retain the odor of solvent from the buildup of solvent vapor in the wheel, or a foul odor from a bacterial buildup from the lint retaining moisture. To correct a severe accumulation of lint in a dry cleaning machine, a mechanic must be called in to correct the problem. Since the machine must be partially disassembled, this procedure can be extremely costly.

    Since most dry cleaners clean their foam lint filters with a vacuum cleaner, this practice will erode the foam over time, causing the eventual failure of the filter. Foam lint filters can be inspected by shining a flashlight through them, or by holding them up to a light source. This will reveal any thin areas within the filter. Lint bags should be inspected for any rips, weak areas, or open seams. The inspection of the lint filters or bags should be done on a weekly basis. Since some manufacturers use a wire mesh screen in conjunction with the lint bag, the mesh should also be inspected for damage. It is advisable for the lint filters and bags be replaced on a yearly basis if you alternate two sets. If you only have one set, replace it every six months.

  • 2 Mar 2022 6:00 AM | Anonymous

    Bleaching Chemicals

    Bleaching chemicals are used to react with a stain in order to render it colorless (camouflage it). Some types of bleaching agents will also whiten or brighten fabrics. The bleaching action either adds oxygen to the stain (oxygen bleach) or removes oxygen from the stain (reducing bleach). Since bleaching must be done in the presence of water, the bleaching agent must either contain water or be mixed with water.

    Summary on Bleaches

    1. Bleaches do not remove soils; therefore, the garment must have been dry cleaned or laundered prior to the application of the bleaching agent.

    2. Test the fabric on an unexposed area of the garment to test for colorfastness.

    3. Since bleaching agents become more aggressive when used with acids or alkalis, test for colorfastness with the chemical used to catalyze the bleaching agent

    4. Bleaching agents will double in strength (and will become more aggressive) for every 18º F. of heat applied.

    5. Bleaching agents are accelerated by metals. Only use plastic buckets or epoxy plastic or stainless steel sinks.

    6. Because bleaching agents can harm fabrics and dyes, they are used as the last step for stain removal.

    Rules for Bleaching

    1. Always bleach clean garments.

    2. Never crowd the bleach bath.

    3. Bleaching agents should be thoroughly mixed and dissolved before immersing the garment in the solution

    4. Rinse and neutralize bleaching agents after use.

    Oxidizing Bleaches

    Hydrogen Peroxide

    1. Contains stabilizers that prevent the loss of potency.

    2. Should be kept refrigerated

    3. Accelerated by ammonia and heat (will become more aggressive on dyes- test)

    4. Use 3% 10 Volume Hydrogen Peroxide

    5. Used primarily as a spotting board bleach.

    6. Used to remove the last traces of tannin, protein, and scorch stains

    Sodium Perborate

    1. Is alkaline by nature

    2. Accelerated b an alkali (not recommended)

    3. Purchased in powdered form.

    4. Used primarily as a bath bleach for the removal of tannins, proteins, some inks, and topical medications.

    5. Used on silk and wool as a whitening agent

    6. Slow acting bleach

    7. Use 2ounces per gallon of water at 100ºF.

    8. Must be neutralized with an acid bath (sour).

    9. Safe on all fibers and some dyes.

    Sodium Percarbonate

    1. Similar to sodium perborate.

    2. Releases oxygen more rapidly

    3. Dissolves more rapidly in cooler temperatures of water.

    4. Use the same way as sodium perborate.

    Sodium Hypochlorite (Chlorine bleach-Not commonly used)

    1. Cannot be used on animal fibers such as wool or silk.

    2. Cannot come into contact with ammonia- will emit harmful toxic gasses!

    3. Dangerous to most dyes

    4. Alkaline by nature.

    5. Accelerated by acids.

    6. Bath mixture- ½ ounce per gallon of water (bath)

    7. Board mixture- dilute 50-1 for board use.

    8. Must always be followed by applying an anti-chlor (sodium bisulfite or sodium hydrosulfite).

    Potassium Permanganate

    1. Strongest of all bleaching agents- dangerous on most fibers and dyestuffs!

    2. Sold in liquid form

    3. Generally used on the spotting board

    4. Can be diluted for restorations. Test for colorfastness of fabric before using.

    5. Alkaline by nature- accelerated by acids.

    6. May cause brown discolorations that can be corrected by applying

    hydrogen peroxide.

    Reducing Bleaches

    Sodium Bisulfite

    1. Is sold in powdered form as a mild reducing bleach.

    2. Use 1-2 ounces per gallon of water

    3. Can be used as an anti-chlor.

    4. Can be used as a mild whitening agent.

    5. Can be used on the board for the removal of some tannin stains that contain sugars, dyes and inks

    6. While used primarily as a bath bleach, it can also be used on the board

    Sodium Hydrosulfite

    1. Is sold in powdered form under different trade names

    2. Used for the removal of dyes and fugitive prints, as well as some oxidized tannin stains.

    3. Can be used as a whitening agent

    4. Used primarily as a bath bleach (1-2 ounces per gallon of water.

    5. Can be used as a bleach on the spotting board.

    6. Acid by nature, accelerated by acids.

    7. Should never come into contact with metal tubs, metal garment trimmings, or fabrics that contain metals or metallic coatings.

    8. Safe on most fabrics, unsafe on most dyestuffs.

    Titanium Sulfate

    1. Used to remove dye stains

    2. Primarily used as a spotting board bleach

    3. Cannot be used as a whitening agent

    4. Never use with an alkali- can cause permanent discolorations.

    5. Is a blue-black liquid sold by various manufacturers?

    6. Is acid by nature and will become more aggressive when acids are applied.

    7. Dilute in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

    8. Safe on most fabrics, unsafe on most dyes.

    9. Rust remover will often correct discolorations caused by alkali, chemical reactions with other bleaches and metals.


  • 1 Mar 2022 5:44 PM | Anonymous

    Eidl loans made in 2020 repayment begins 24 months from the date of the loan

    Eidl loans made in 2021 repayment begins 18 months from the date of the loan

    Log in to your portal and it should have directions on how to pay. You should have also received a statement that tells you to go to

    1. https://www.pay.gov

    2. search for 1201 borrower payment form

    3. submit payment using borrower payments form


  • 22 Feb 2022 5:42 PM | Anonymous

    Information made available from the SBA- Click here to read the full article.

    Common threats

    Cyber-attacks are constantly evolving, but business owners should at least be aware of the most common types.

    Malware

    Malware (malicious software) is an umbrella term that refers to software intentionally designed to cause damage to a computer, server, client, or computer network. Malware can include viruses and ransomware.

    Viruses

    Viruses are harmful programs intended to spread from computer to computer (and other connected devices). Viruses are intended to give cybercriminals access to your system.

    Ransomware

    Ransomware is a specific type of malware that infects and restricts access to a computer until a ransom is paid. Ransomware is usually delivered through phishing emails and exploits unpatched vulnerabilities in software.

    Phishing

    Phishing is a type of cyber-attack that uses email or a malicious website to infect your machine with malware or collect your sensitive information. Phishing emails appear as though they’ve been sent from a legitimate organization or known individual. These emails often entice users to click on a link or open an attachment containing malicious code. After the code is run, your computer may become infected with malware.

    Assess your business risk

    The first step in improving your cybersecurity is understanding your risk of an attack, and where you can make the biggest improvements.

    A cybersecurity risk assessment can identify where a business is vulnerable, and help you create a plan of action—which should include user training, guidance on securing email platforms, and advice on protecting the business’s information assets.

    Planning and assessment tools

    There’s no substitute for dedicated IT support—whether an employee or external consultant—but businesses of more limited means can still take measures to improve their cybersecurity.

    FCC Planning Tool
    The Federal Communications Commission offers a 
    cybersecurity planning tool to help you build a strategy based on your unique business needs.

    Cyber Resilience Review
    The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) 
    Cyber Resilience Review (CRR) is a non-technical assessment to evaluate operational resilience and cybersecurity practices. You can either do the assessment yourself, or request a facilitated assessment by DHS cybersecurity professionals.

    Cyber Hygiene Vulnerability Scanning
    DHS also offers free 
    cyber hygiene vulnerability scanning for small businesses. This service can help secure your internet-facing systems from weak configuration and known vulnerabilities. You will receive a weekly report for your action.

    Supply Chain Risk Management

    Use the Supply Chain Risk Management Toolkit to help shield your business information and communications technology from sophisticated supply chain attacks. Developed by the DHS Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA), this toolkit will help you raise awareness and reduce the impacts of supply chain risks.

    Cybersecurity best practices

    Train your employees

    Employees and emails are a leading cause of data breaches for small businesses because they are a direct path into your systems. Training employees on basic internet best practices can go a long way in preventing cyber-attacks. The Department of Homeland Security’s "Stop.Think.Connect" campaign offers training and other materials. 

    Training topics to cover include:

    o    Spotting a phishing email

    o    Using good browsing practices

    o    Avoiding suspicious downloads

    o    Creating strong passwords

    o    Protecting sensitive customer and vendor information

    o    Maintaining good cyber hygiene

     

    Use antivirus software and keep it updated
    Make sure each of your business’s computers is equipped with antivirus software and antispyware and updated regularly. Such software is readily available online from a variety of vendors. All software vendors regularly provide patches and updates to their products to correct security problems and improve functionality. Configure all software to install updates automatically.

    Secure your networks
    Safeguard your Internet connection by using a firewall and encrypting information. If you have a Wi-Fi network, make sure it is secure and hidden. To hide your Wi-Fi network, set up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, known as the Service Set Identifier (SSID). Password-protect access to the router.

    Use strong passwords
    Using strong passwords is an easy way to improve your cybersecurity. Be sure to use different passwords for your different accounts. A strong password includes:

    o    10 characters or more

    o    At least one uppercase letter

    o    At least one lowercase letter

    o    At least one number

    o    At least one special character


    Multifactor authentication
    Multifactor authentication requires additional information (e.g., a security code sent to your phone) to log in. Check with your vendors that handle sensitive data, especially financial institutions, to see if they offer multifactor authentication for your account.

    Protect sensitive data and back up the rest

    Back up your data
    Regularly back up the data on all computers. Critical data includes word processing documents, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable/payable files. Back up data automatically if possible, or at least weekly, and store the copies either offsite or on the cloud.

    Secure payment processing
    Work with your banks or card processors to ensure the most trusted and validated tools and anti-fraud services are being used. You may also have additional security obligations related to agreements with your bank or processor. Isolate payment systems from other, less secure programs and do not use the same computer to process payments and surf the Internet.

    Control physical access
    Prevent access or use of business computers by unauthorized individuals. Laptops can be particularly easy targets for theft or can be lost, so lock them up when unattended. Make sure a separate user account is created for each employee and require strong passwords. Administrative privileges should only be given to trusted IT staff and key personnel.


  • 12 Sep 2021 8:36 AM | Anonymous

    “The SBA’s COVID Economic Injury Disaster Loan program offers a lifeline to millions of small businesses who are still being impacted by the pandemic,” SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman said. “We’ve retooled this critical program – increasing the borrowing limit to $2 million, offering 24 months of deferment, and expanding flexibility to allow borrowers to pay down higher-interest business debt. We have also ramped up our outreach efforts to ensure we’re connecting with our smallest businesses as well as those from low-income communities who may also be eligible for the companion COVID EIDL Targeted Advance and Supplemental Advance grants totaling up to $15,000. Our mission-driven SBA team has been working around the clock to make the loan review process as user-friendly as possible to ensure every entrepreneur who needs help can get the capital they need to reopen, recover and rebuild.”

    Increasing the COVID EIDL Cap. The SBA will lift the COVID EIDL cap from $500,000 to $2 million. Loan funds can be used for any normal operating expenses and working capital, including payroll, purchasing equipment, and paying debt.

    Implementation of a Deferred Payment Period. The SBA will ensure small business owners will not have to begin COVID EIDL repayment until two years after loan origination so that they can get through the pandemic without having to worry about making ends meet.

    Establishment of a 30-Day Exclusivity Window. To ensure Main Street businesses have additional time to access these funds, the SBA will implement a 30-day exclusivity window of approving and disbursing funds for loans of $500,000 or less. Approval and disbursement of loans over $500,000 will begin after the 30-day period.

    Expansion of Eligible Use of Funds. COVID EIDL funds will now be eligible to prepay commercial debt and make payments on federal business debt.

    Simplification of affiliation requirements. To ease the COVID EIDL application process for small businesses, the SBA has established more simplified affiliation requirements to model those of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

    How to apply

    Eligible small businesses, nonprofits, and agricultural businesses in all U.S. states and territories can apply. Visit www.sba.gov/eidl to learn more about eligibility and application requirements. The last day that applications may be received is December 31, 2021. All applicants should file their applications as soon as possible.

    For additional information on COVID EIDL and other recovery programs please visit www.sba.gov/relief. Small business owners may call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955 (1-800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard of hearing) or email DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov for additional assistance. The center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST. Multilingual representatives are available. Small business owners may also contact SBA’s Resource Partners by visiting www.sba.gov/local-assistance.

    FAQ

    Updates



  • 10 Sep 2021 12:30 PM | Anonymous

    When steam travels through equipment and transfers heat, it reverts to a liquid phase called steam condensate. Returning this hot condensate to the boiler is important for several reasons. As more condensate is returned, less make-up water is required, saving fuel, water, and chemical treatment costs. Significant fuel savings occur as most returned condensate is relatively hot (130°F.-225°F.), reducing the amount of cold make-up water (50°F-60°F.) that must be heated to make steam.

    When the hot condensate returns to the boiler, it gets stored in a vessel that is known as a condensate or return tank (see illustration). When the boiler requires make-up water, the hot condensate is pumped into the boiler. If the level of the water in the tank drops below the required level, fresh water is fed into the tank.

    Components of the condensate return system:

    1. Condensate Return Tank. This is the vessel that holds the condensate that will be fed into the boiler as make-up water.

    2. Float Valve. The float valve maintains the water level in the tank. When the water level drops below the desired level, the float valve will let fresh water into the tank until the correct level is reached.

    3. Sight glass. The sight glass will show the level of condensate that is in the tank.

    4. Condensate pump. When the boiler requires make-up water, the condensate pump pumps the condensate from the tank into the boiler.

    5. Strainer and strainer cleanout. The strainer is a screen that traps debris such as sediment and rust, keeping it out of the pump and boiler.

    6. Condensate return flash tube. This is where the hot condensate enters the return tank.

    7. Vent. The vent allows pressure to be released from the tank and keeps the return system from “air locking” by displacing lost water with air.

    8. Drain valve. This valve is to be opened when the tank is drained.

    9. Shutoff valve. This valve shuts off the flow of water to the pump. This valve is normally open. It is closed when the pump is to be serviced or removed.

    Maintenance:

    1 The return tank should be examined for signs of leaks (from corrosion). The tank should be drained out periodically to remove any rust or sediment.

    2. If the water level is not being maintained, or if the tank overflows, the float valve may need to be adjusted or replaced. The float works on the same principle as the float valve found in toilet tanks.

    3. If the sight glass is leaking, it must be replaced.

    4. Check the pump for leaks. If the pump leaks, the seals must be replaced. Listen for any grinding sounds. This could mean that sediment has collected in the impellers. Lubricate the pump as instructed.


  • 7 Sep 2021 8:28 AM | Anonymous

    The Small Business Administration is expected to lift the cap on its Covid Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) sometime after Labor Day on September 6, bringing the low-interest long term loan available to any small businesses struggling amid the pandemic back up to $2 million. 

    The cap was set at $500,000 in March 2021, after the SBA spent several months approving only loans of up to $150,000. Traditionally, the EIDL loan program--which has a 30-year maturity date--has a $2 million cap and loan interest terms that range from 2.75 percent for nonprofits to 3.75 percent for businesses.

    Despite the promising news, not every business will have access to the expanded funds. The amount for which you qualify now is based on your 2019 total revenue minus your cost of goods sold, less any EIDL already received. Plus, it's not yet clear what the requirements will be regarding whether you have to prove economic injury. You may have to show your 2020 numbers and demonstrate financial loss to get any kind of supplemental EIDL.

    Read More

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