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  • 12 Oct 2020 4:58 PM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)


    The SBA and Department of Treasury have jointly posted a new rule affecting the forgiveness and loan review processes for borrowers with Paycheck Protection Plan loans of $50,000 or less.  

    These borrowers are now exempt from any reduction in forgiveness based on the reduction in the number of FTE employees or employee salaries or wages. 

    They can also use SBA Form 3508S to apply for forgiveness, unless the borrower and its business affiliates received loans totaling $2 million or more.  Supporting documentation must still be submitted to their lender.  

    The program has expired, so these conditions only apply to existing loans.

  • 19 Sep 2020 10:17 AM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    USDA CFAP Website

    Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) expanded and now includes COFFEE, MAC NUT, LYCHEE, RAMBUTAN, AVOCADO, MANGO, and more.

    Signup for CFAP 2 will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020. If your business was affected by the pandemic, and you are eligible for assistance, please sign up as soon as you can from September 21.

    USDA to Provide Additional Direct Assistance to Farmers and Ranchers Impacted by the Coronavirus

    President Donald J. Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced up to an additional $14 billion dollars for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020, for this next round of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program payments (CFAP 2).

    Producers whose agricultural operation has been impacted by the pandemic since April 2020 are encouraged to apply for CFAP 2. Payments will be made for three categories of commodities: Price Trigger Commodities, Flat-rate Crops and Sales Commodities.

    Specialty crops are included in the Sales Commodities category, which also includes aquaculture, nursery crops and floriculture and other commodities not included in the price trigger and flat-rate categories. Payment calculations will use a sales-based approach, where producers are paid based on five payment gradations associated with their 2019 sales. Flat-rate Crops include hemp.

    A complete list of eligible commodities, payment rates and calculations are available on

    More information about CFAP 2 is in the full announcement.

    Read the Full Announcement

    CFAP 2 Producer Webinar

    To introduce CFAP 2, the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) conducted a producer webinar Sept. 24, 2020 at  3 p.m. ET and discussed the expanded eligibility for certain commodities, new payment categories including a sales-based approach to specialty crops and other specific commodities, and information on how to apply.

    See the Webinar Slides Here

  • 11 Sep 2020 10:38 AM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    Monthly economic indicators report (08-27-20) + COVID 19 resources as of 09/02/20- Maui County Office of Economic Development

    Aloha Maui Community and Business Leaders, 

    Thank you for all you do for our community and your organization while we continue to help each other during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

    With the ongoing 14-day quarantine for out-of-state travelers and the return to the two-week quarantine for Neighbor Island travelers, we need to continue following safe practices to reduce the spread of the virus in our community. This includes avoiding crowds, observing physical distancing of 6 to 10 feet, wearing face masks in public, staying home when sick and frequently washing hands. 

    We should also remember to practice “ALOHA” with everyone, while we help each other get through this difficult time to emerge Maui County strong. In this e-mail I have attached the press release on State of Hawaii’s online Safe Travels system that became mandatory effective Sept. 1.

    Please sign up for all types of alerts and updates from the County at

    Click here for the list of resources

    Thank you. Please stay safe and healthy.


    Tokie Ogawa
    Business Development Specialist 

    Office of Economic Development

    2200 Main Street, Suite 305

    Wailuku, HI 96793

    direct: 808-270-7415

  • 11 Sep 2020 10:18 AM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    Important Update on Eligibility and Required Documents

    The Holomua Hawaiʻi program is now accepting applications from Sole Proprietors who are not registered with the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA). Upates are underlined below.

    Applicant Eligibility Requirements Update

    • Non- profits and Businesses registered with the Hawaiʻi Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA), and Sole Proprietors. 
    • Non-DCCA Registered sole proprietorships that have filed a 2019 IRS Form 1040 Schedule C or F.
    • Must have been established with the State of Hawaiʻi prior to March 23, 2020.
    • Businesses and nonprofits must be located on Hawaiʻi Island, employ residents of Hawaiʻi, and provide direct services to Hawaiʻi Island communities.
    • Must have 50 or fewer employees including full time, part time, and casual. 

    Required Documents Update

    • Note: all required documents should be submitted in pdf or jpg/jpeg format via the Holomua Hawaiʻi online Grant Application.
    • Compliance Certificate or current DCCA Registration for organizations registered with the DCCA.
    • First page of 2019 business tax return or 2019 Schedule C or annual GET reconciliation for 2019 or GET quarterly filings for 2020 (to verify revenue level). 
    • For non-DCCA Registered sole proprietorships, 2019 IRS Form 1040 Schedule C or F, and 2020 quarterly GET filings are required.
    • Copy of most recent payroll register or Form 941 for 2019 (to verify number of employees; not required for sole proprietorship or single member LLC).
    • Completed Federal Form W-9
    • Clear copies of receipts and or cancelled checks for reimbursement.
    • Completed Holomua Hawaii COVID-19 Expense Workbook.
    • IRS Form 8829 – for Businesses with only residential addresses.

    Additional Update - Note that the telephone number for the Hawaiʻi County Employees Federal Credit Union has been corrected to 935-2969.

  • 03 Aug 2020 5:23 PM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)


    P&A, Pinhalense and their representatives are pleased to invite you to participate in their webinar, whose details can be found below.

    Date and time: August 04, at 10:00am Hawaiian time


    It will include results of regional polls with over 1,200 respondents in Latin America, Africa and Asia

    Please register in advance at the link:

    Carlos Brando will make an initial presentation followed by discussion with the P&A team and he will then answer questions. The webinar will cover the following topics:

    • Market and quality demands and advanced processing technology to meet them
    • Impacts of Covid-19 on producing countries: harvesting and production
    • The role of consumption in producing countries: safety net and complement to exports
    • Addressing myths: suggestions for cuppers, importers and roasters to help producers adapt to the New Normal

    The presentation and discussion will last 60 minutes with another 30 minutes dedicated to questions from the participants.

    Questions can be sent in advance to: or in writing during the webinar, in the Q&A section found at the bottom of the screen.

    Important information of the Zoom Webinar:

    • Feel free to share and forward this message; all attendees must individually register using the link provided above;
    • Try to use a computer or tablet, it is easier to follow presentations and discussions than with a phone;
    • Check the strength of your internet connection;
    • Only the host and presenters will be able to speak;
    • Attendees will be able to use the “Q&A” tool in the lower part of the computer screen to send questions, comments, that will be answered in the end of the webinar;
    • Use headphones if possible;
    • A few short indicative polls will be conducted during the webinar
      • You only need to answer the questions uploaded to the screen by the host by clicking the desired answer and the submit button. 
      • Each poll will take approximately 30 seconds.
      • The results will be shared immediately on your screen.

    Carlos Brando, a partner at P&A and Pinhalense, has already coordinated coffee projects from harvesting to consumption in more than 50 countries on the 5 continents, including countries in the region. Carlos has written chapters for several coffee books, like Nespresso’s recent: “The Craft and Science of Coffee”, is a member of the board of the Coffee Quality Institute (CQI) and he currently chairs the board of the Global Coffee Platform (GCP).

  • 14 Jul 2020 5:43 PM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    Original Source of the Article

    Program Helps Offset Transporting Costs for Farmers and Ranchers Outside the Contiguous U.S. 

    HONOLULU, Hawaii , July 13, 2020 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) in Hawaii State and the Pacific Basin today announced that the enrollment period for the Reimbursement Transportation Cost Payment Program (RTCP) for fiscal year 2020 begins July 13 and will run through Sept. 4.

    “RTCP will help eligible farmers and ranchers offset a portion of the cost of transporting agricultural products over long distances,” said AL Frenzel, State Executive Director. “This program helps U.S. farmers and ranchers outside the 48 contiguous states who are at a competitive disadvantage when transporting agriculture products to market.”

    The Further Consolidated Appropriations Act 2020, reauthorized RTCP and allows farmers and ranchers in Alaska, Hawaii and insular areas including the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, Virgin Islands of the United States, Federated States of Micronesia, Republic of the Marshall Islands and Republic of Palau, to recover any costs to transport agricultural commodities or inputs used to produce an agricultural commodity.

    RTCP payments are calculated based on the costs incurred for transportation of the agricultural commodity or inputs during a 12-month period, subject to an $8,000 per producer cap per fiscal year. If claims for payments exceed the funds available from the program for a fiscal year, payments will be reduced on a pro-rata basis.

    Farmers and ranchers interested in participating in RTCP can obtain applications and other documents by calling toll-free 1-866-794-1079.

    To find your local FSA county office, visit

  • 14 Jul 2020 5:39 PM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    Hawaii Tourism Authority has made some adjustments to their workshop series and have changed them to a webinar series. They've also increased their mini-grant funding to build agri-tourism capacity statewide.

    If you are still interested in attending a webinar or applying for a mini-grant 
    click here to register and get more info.

  • 13 Jul 2020 11:35 AM | Alla Kostenko (Administrator)

    For HCA Members ONLY

    BigCommerce E-Commerce Alliance and Offer

    BigCommerce is a leading e-commerce platform that helps small and medium (SAM) businesses set up online stores as fast and affordably as possible. In response to the COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus) pandemic, FedEx and BigCommerce are collaborating to provide the first 4 months of BigCommerce service free.


    Step one: Please request a demo or start a trial at
    Step two: Utilize your existing FedEx Account number
    Step three: BigCommerce will reach out to the referred business within 2 business days.



    An e-commerce store is essential to helping merchants stay in touch with current customers and find new ones. BigCommerce develops low-cost, quick turnaround solutions for developing online marketplaces and e-commerce websites. It allows users to build an online store, accept payments, ship and fulfill orders, drive traffic via SEO, and convert visitors to buyers.

    Special Offer

    Due to COVID-19, many brick-and-mortar businesses are closing their stores and seeking ways to move their retail operations online. There are a handful of SAM businesses who don't have online operations and need to get online as fast as possible in order to continue making sales.

    To assist these businesses, the FedEx and BigCommerce alliance offers:

    • First 4 months of BigCommerce free


    • Templates and step-by-step guides make building stores easy: BigCommerce offers free and paid themes, so users can design a store with no web design expertise needed. Its video library walks users through each step of store launch, from setting up products to selling on marketplaces. If customers want one-on-one support, BigCommerce offers launch service packages
    • Advanced marketing toolkit: once users choose a theme and upload their products, they can use the built-in marketing and sales tools to attract customers. Advanced SEO features help them gain visibility to new audiences, and easy-to-manage promotions and gift certificate capabilities help them remarket to existing customers
    • 0% transaction fees: BigCommerce will never charge transaction fees, so users can keep more of what they earn


    Click link for the page to populate as below:

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