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COVID-19

Important Branch Updates

On June 22, our branch lobbies started the process of reopening during normal business hours.  We’ve been busy preparing our branches for you. Here’s what to expect the next time you visit.

We’re Looking Out for Everyone's Safety

We've taken significant steps to provide a safe and healthy branch environment, including:

  • Enhanced cleaning throughout the day
  • Installing clear panels at our teller lines
  • Social distancing and enhanced hygiene practices
  • Options to schedule in-branch appointment
  • Drive-thru services for simple transactions

Preparing for Your Branch Visit

We've made a few changes to help protect you. You can expect:

  • Floor markers to help everyone stay at a safe distance
  • Our bankers to wear masks. Customers are asked to wear masks, as well, and we ask that you remove your hat and sunglasses and briefly lower you mask when you enter the lobby
  • Enhanced identification procedures. Please bring your government-issued photo ID, such as a state driver’s license or U.S. passport
  • Limits on the number of customers allowed in our lobbies.  We may temporarily limit the number of people allowed in our lobbies at any given time

Digital Channels Are Always Available

We encourage all of our customers to utilize the many FREE remote banking capabilities that Belmont Bank offers. By utilizing these delivery channels you can transfer funds, check balances, pay bills and deposit checks.

  • Online Banking - Allows you to move funds between accounts, check balances, view checks, pay bills and transfer money via the Zelle® network
  • Mobile App - Allows you to perform all the transactions the online banking system does, while also being able to deposit checks

SBA Paycheck Protection Program

PPP Forgiveness

On June 10, 2020, the Small Business Administration and Treasury Department released an interim final rule to reflect changes made by H.R. 7010, the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act. 

The Revised Interim Final Rule:

  • Lowers the amount that must be spent on payroll costs from 75 percent to 60 percent. SBA and Treasury issued a statement that the new 60 percent threshold is not a cliff, meaning that if a borrower uses less than 60 percent of the loan amount for payroll costs during the forgiveness covered period, the borrower will continue to be eligible for partial loan forgiveness, subject to at least 60 percent of the loan forgiveness amount having been used for payroll costs.
  • Extends the end date of the “covered period” for a PPP loan from June 30, 2020 to Dec. 31, 2020.
  • Provides a five-year maturity for loans made on or after June 5, 2020, and provides an option for loans made prior to that date to extend maturity from two years to five years at the mutual agreement of the borrower and lender.
  • Extends the loan forgiveness period from eight weeks to 24 weeks. (For loans made prior to June 5, 2020, borrowers may opt to keep the forgiveness period at eight weeks.)
  • Clarifies that if a borrower submits its forgiveness application within 10 months of the end of the loan forgiveness period, the borrower will not have to make any payments on the loan before the date SBA remits the forgiven amount to the lender.

The Small Business Administration released a three-page “EZ” Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness application requiring less documentation and fewer calculations than previously required. Form 3508EZ applies to borrowers who meet any one of these three criteria:

  • Applied for the PPP loan as self-employed, an independent contractor or a sole proprietor with no employees.
  • Did not reduce salary or wages for any employee by more than 25% during the covered period, and did not reduce the number or hours of their employees (except laid-off employees who refused an offer to return).
  • Did not reduce salary or wages for any employee by more than 25% during the covered period, and experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19.

The above criteria are defined in more detail on the Form 3508EZ Instructions.  The SBA also updated the original Form 3508 to reflect recent changes made by Congress in the PPP Flexibility Act including the 24-week period and 60%/40% split of payroll and other covered expenses.  

Links to download the forms and instructions from the US Treasury website are below.  

Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508EZ

Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508EZ Instructions

Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508

Loan Forgiveness Application Form 3508 Instructions

Please visit for a complete program overview, guidance and tools:

https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/cares/assistance-for-small-businesses 

https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options/paycheck-protection-program

Financial Hardship

Belmont Bank & Trust continues to work with those experiencing financial difficulty as a result of coronavirus impacts. Should you, as a Belmont Bank & Trust customer, encounter hardship as a result of coronavirus, please call us at (773) 413-1965 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CST Monday - Friday, to discuss your options. Belmont Bank & Trust offers an array of hardship relief options for which some customers may be eligible, depending on their product(s) and needs.

Update

Belmont Bank & Trust has spent the last several days and weeks learning about the coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it is impacting our world. That means understanding how it affects our customers, employees and our community, and then making the necessary adjustments to our work and operations.

We have one simple objective: keeping you and our employees safe. This has been at the center of our conversations every step of the way. With that in mind, we have made changes in our business in response to the threat of the coronavirus.

We have ramped up cleaning services at our bank and are adding hand sanitizer at the front entrances and at all teller lines. Sanitizing wipes are near workstations and counters so that employees can keep them continuously cleaned.

Remember, we have many ways you can do your banking without coming to the bank. Be sure and check out our online, mobile and debit card banking solutions. Go online to www.belmontbank.com or call us at (773) 589-9500 to learn more about these services:

  • Banking from your home computer, tablet or smartphone
  • Making deposits using your tablet or smartphone
  • Using ATMs to get cash through our Free ATM network
  • Using our BillPay to pay your bills
  • Using debit cards to help you avoid handling cash
  • Using Zelle® for person to person fund transfers

We are closely following the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) guidelines and recommendations on the steps we can take to help prevent the spread of the virus. We have shared specific instructions with our employees on the importance of washing their hands and staying home if they feel sick or are returning from an area of the world identified as posing a coronavirus-related risk. Per CDC recommendations, we will ask employees who have traveled to such locations or have been exposed to others who have traveled to such locations to self-quarantine for 14 days.

During any time of uncertainty, it is common to see a spike in fraud. Please remember that you shouldn’t click on any links or attachments from someone you don’t know. Also, carefully review all incoming email addresses, as fraudsters may be posing as business associates working remotely from a different email address. For more information on Coronavirus scams, please visit the FTC website at https://www.consumer.FTC.gov/features/ scams-alerts.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation and do all we can to protect you and our employees.