Numerous local businesses have been closed to shut their doors or modify their operations as the state grapples with the novel coronavirus response, and many are unable to retain workers or sales, placing them at risk of not being able to re-open following restrictions.
Greater Grays Harbor Inc. and the state of Washington have been providing regular links to resources available to local businesses impacted by COVID-19 restrictions and closures due to Governor Jay Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order.
If you are confused if your business is considered “essential” during the statewide response, updates have continued on the official state website;
In their latest update, they provided links to some of the highlighted resources;
$10,000 SBA Grants Now Available
Small business owners are now eligible to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan advance of up to $10,000 from the Small Business Administration (SBA.)
Funds will be made available within three days of completing a successful application, and the loan advance DOES NOT HAVE TO BE REPAID.
CARES Act Provides New Relief Options for Businesses
On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law, bringing several new options to businesses seeking economic relief, including:
Be sure to download the Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act below.
SBA Express Bridge Loans
Do you currently have a business relationship with an SBA Lender? This program allows you to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork and help to bridge the gap while applying for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan.
Facebook Small Business Grants
Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses.
Webinar – Small Business Strategies to Maximize the CARES Act
Hosted by Washington Retail Association
Monday April 6
10a – 11am PDT
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is a package of measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This package includes significant relief for small businesses, including $350 billion for Small Business Administration (SBA) loan guarantees and subsidies and additional funding for SBA resources.
You will learn the latest information, grants and loans for small businesses on this largest economic aid package in history. Advisors will share practical guidance on survival and navigation strategies
From the State website regarding the coronavirus;
Businesses that can operate using telework should continue to do so. For businesses where individuals cannot work from home, the Governor’s Office has provided guidance on what businesses are essential, building on the federal government’s and California’s definition of “essential critical infrastructure workers.”
Supporting affected employers and workers
State agencies have been working with federal agencies, employers and workers to support businesses and workers affected by COVID-19.
- The state Employment Security Department has created a frequently asked questions page with information about the new federal stimulus package known as the CARES Act.
- Employment Security Department Commissioner Suzi LeVine has an update for Washington state on the federal stimulus bill – Watch the video on YouTube
- The Employment Security Department has information for employees and employers about possible benefits such as Paid Family and Medical Leave, unemployment benefits and SharedWork.
- The Department of Commerce is working with the federal Small Business Administration to secure loan assistance and has information for businesses experiencing trade impacts.
- The Department of Labor & Industries oversees the state’s paid sick leave law, the workers’ compensation program and workplace safety issues. The agency has FAQs on these and other topics related to coronavirus.
- The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommendations to help employers keep their workers safe with sick leave policies, cleaning routines and more.
- The state Department of Revenue has information on relief for taxpayers, including extensions for filing and paying tax returns.
- The IRS posted filing and payment deadline Q&As to address the federal filing and payment extension to July 15 and the additional extension to Oct. 15, first quarter estimated tax payments, IRAs and HSAs.
- To mitigate barriers to capital for Seattle’s most vulnerable businesses, the City of Seattle will commit approximately $1.5 million in one-time Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to the Small Business Stabilization Fund, an emergency fund that provides working capital grants in amounts up to $10,000 to qualifying small businesses.
- To further support small businesses and nonprofits impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Jenny Durkan signed an Emergency Order that temporarily halts evictions of small business and nonprofit tenants in the City of Seattle.
- Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler urges all insurers doing business in Washington to immediately extend automobile insurance coverage for personal delivery drivers to aid people temporarily assigned this duty during the coronavirus pandemic and state of emergency.
- WorkSource is a statewide partnership of state, local and nonprofit agencies that provides an array of employment and training services to job seekers and employers in Washington.
- Paid Family and Medical Leave is an insurance program funded by employers and employees. This insurance program will allow workers to take up to 12 weeks, as needed, when they welcome a new child into their family, are struck by a serious illness or injury, need to take care of an ill or ailing relative and for certain military-connected events.
- StartUp Washington serves as a clearinghouse for all the information and resources entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses need to achieve success, including funding sources, training and technical assistance, mentorship, education and information.
- The Liquor and Cannabis Board promotes public safety and trust through fair administration and enforcement of liquor, cannabis, tobacco, and vapor laws.
- The Washington State Department of Agriculture provides services to the agriculture community, promotes Washington agricultural products, and ensures regulations are observed. The agency works extensively with farmers and ranchers, but their responsibilities – from ensuring food safety and food access to environmental protection – touch the lives of millions of people locally, nationally, and abroad.
- Governor’s Office of Regulatory Innovation & Assistance Small Business Liaison Team links entrepreneurs and small businesses to Washington state resources.
Insurance information for businesses
The Office of the Insurance Commissioner has information about insurance coverage businesses need to protect themselves from potential losses.
Small businesses and non-profits
The City of Bellevue has put together a great small business and non-profit resource page. Many of these resources apply to businesses statewide.
The Department of Commerce has resources for agencies that provide assistance to unsheltered people.
SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow, and succeed nationwide. SCORE is a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and has been mentoring small business owners for more than forty years. SCORE offers small business entrepreneurs confidential business counseling services at no charge. SCORE provides resources, templates and tools to assist entrepreneurs in developing tools and plans they need to navigate their way to small business success.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) will provide disaster assistance loans for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.
Guidance for state agencies and local governments
Washington State Emergency Management Division has activated the Public Assistance (PA) Program to initiate the recovery process for the COVID–19 Pandemic Outbreak. This is specifically for state and local governments, tribal governments and to certain non-profits seeking federal assistance in response to COVID-19. Please visit https://mil.wa.gov/public-assistance. Questions can be submitted to: [email protected]
Information from the Office of Financial Management helping state organizations prepare for and respond to issues and questions related to COVID-19.
Department of Enterprise Services manages many business and operational services that state agencies and municipal governments need to deliver public services. Their centralized services include facilities and lease management, accounting, human resources, risk management, contracting and printing.