News & Updates – Assistance and Guidance for Businesses and Workforce
The Office of Economic Development has compiled updates and guidance for businesses and organizations in response to coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
- The Paycheck Protection Program authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. The loan amounts will be forgiven as long as: (1) the loan proceeds are used to cover payroll costs, and most mortgage interest, rent, and utility costs over the 8 week period after the loan is made; and (2) employee and compensation levels are maintained. Find Eligible Lenders
- The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
- PayPal offers financing to small businesses via two programs, PayPal Business Loan and PayPal Working Capital. The PayPal Business Loan program offers loans from $5,000 to $500,000 and is best suited for businesses with at least 9 months in business and $42,000+ in annual revenue. A PayPal Business account is required to fund your loan. The PayPal Working Capital offers loans from $1,000 to $300,000 and is best suited for existing PayPal customers that have had a PayPal Business account for at least 90 days and have processed $15,000+ within the last 12 months.
- Facebook Small Business Grants Program is offering $100 million in cash grants and ad credits to help businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak.
- California IBank has low-interest and state-guaranteed business loans and microloans for small business borrowers who have been impacted by regional disasters and who need term loans or lines of credit for working capital.
- The County of Santa Clara will close all non-essential services to the public effective Monday, March 16, 2020, to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Click here to read the definition of Essential Businesses. COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions.
- The California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development compiled additional resources and FAQs for businesses.
- The State of California’s Employment Development Department has programs to help both employers and employees deal with the costs of illness, caring for ill family members, shorter hours and closures. Employers can even request an extension on their payroll reports and payroll taxes. Layoff alternatives for businesses by utilizing partial claims and work share.
- Guidance on the extended July 15 deadline for filling and paying federal taxes.
- The Santa Clara County Health Department COVID-19 website is frequently updated with guidance for workplaces, travel, schools, at-risk populations, and mass gatherings. Health Department updates are also available through social media through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Visit the City of Milpitas website for news alerts, resources, and announcements.
- The Silicon Valley Small Business Development Center provides expertise at no cost for small businesses related to access to capital, business trainings, marketing and promotions, and various other resources.
- Remote work is being aided by several technology companies that are offering free or expanded services for small businesses. See OpenForBusiness for more information.
- The Centers for Disease Control has a dedicated page for businesses on COVID-19-related information.
- Not all businesses are the same, and some workers may face different levels of risk within the same business. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration maintains detailed guidance in its publication, Guidelines on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19.
- The California Capital Access Program for Small Business (CalCAP SB or Program) encourages banks and other financial institutions to make loans to small businesses that have difficulty obtaining financing. CalCAP is a loan loss reserve program which may provide up to 100% coverage on losses as a result of certain loan defaults.
- The California Labor Commissioner’s Office has listed basic information with relation to employee leave options, compensation, and salary.
- For information about job protection and employment discrimination, visit the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.
- The Silicon Valley Council of Nonprofits has also compiled resources specifically for nonprofit organizations.
Helpful Tips To Keep Your Business Moving Forward
Here are some ways to keep your business running and minimize problems:
- Plan for absences by cross training employees and ensuring they understand how to step into new roles if required.
- Implement policies and practices to increase the physical distance between employees and between employees and the public (e.g., telecommuting and teleconferencing).
- Establish lines of communication among employees, clients, and business partners. Allow employees to call in sick without a doctor’s note. This avoids burdening the health-care system.
- Research ways to further protect your employees based on your industry or operations.
- Consider the impacts on your workforce if local schools close and parents are away from the office.
- Recognize that employees who are well may need to be away to care for ill family.
- Business operations-related:
- Identify your most important business functions and adjust staffing to maintain them.
- Keep track of and respond to changes in customer behavior and prepare to change how you do things to maintain your most important operations.
- Identify key business functions, jobs/roles, and elements in your supply chain. Think about how to operate if these are hit by the pandemic.
- For businesses with multiple locations, allow local managers to act on what is happening locally.
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