Our federal and state governments have been exacting policies to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus and to alleviate the financial burden of citizens and their businesses. Additionally, private assistance is becoming available in various forms. To help break down what each means to you and connect you to relevant information, we’ve put together this guide as a part of a resource series on the Cross Campus blog.
The U.S. government is working on policies aimed at helping individuals and small businesses impacted by COVID-19. The recently enacted federal policies offer different forms of funding, address unemployment concerns, create temporary exceptions to rules, and extend previously laid out deadlines.
- The $2 trillion stimulus package; what does it mean for you? Find out if you qualify to apply for up to $1,200 in supplementary income support via the government’s latest stimulus package here. (Updated 3/31/20)
- What is the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act that just passed, and how can it help your business? The act includes programs and initiatives that will soon be available from the SBA (Small Business Administration) to assist business owners with whatever needs they have during this time, and some tax provisions as well. Download the guide here. A few things included in the CARES Act:
- EIDLs (Economic Injury Disaster Loans): Your business might be eligible for a loan of up to $2 million to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that can’t be paid as a result of COVID-19. The interest rate for small businesses is 3.75% and 2.75% for non-profits. More info here. You can also call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Apply online. (updated 3/31/20)
- Paycheck Protection Program: You may also qualify for a Paycheck Protection Loan to keep your employees on payroll. The loan will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities; otherwise, this loan has a maturity of 2 years and an interest rate of 1%. You can apply through an SBA-approved bank or your local lending institution. For quick and helpful breakdown made by Medium.com, check out this article. More info from the SBA website here. (updated 3/31/20)
- Do people who are independent contractors/ freelancers/ self-employed qualify for government assistance? Typically, no. However, the federal government has temporarily expanded unemployment to cover self-employed workers who are unable to work as a result of COVID-19. Here’s what you need to know:
The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program (PUA), under the CARES Act, allows states to extend unemployment benefits to self-employed and gig workers and provide an extra $600 per week and an additional 13 weeks of benefits. Learn more here.
The Freelancers Relief Fund will provide up to $1,000 to freelancers who are experiencing sudden hardship as a result of COVID-19. Applications open April 2nd. Find out if you’re eligible and apply here. (updated 4/2/20)
- You could qualify for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) which provides financial assistance to individuals who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits in the event of a disaster. Individual states will publish announcements about the availability of DUA. To file a claim, contact your State Unemployment Agency. Applications must be filed within 30 days of the announcement of the availability of DUA in the state. (See State Executive Orders and Assistance) (updated 4/2/20)
- Know your responsibilities and rights regarding the U.S. Department of Labor Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Find out more about Coronavirus-related emergency paid sick leave, emergency family and medical care leave, and who is eligible. Details here. (Updated 3/30/20)
- Worried about filing your taxes on time? Deadlines to file and pay federal income taxes are extended from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020. Learn more here. (updated 3/30/20)
Your State government has also been making legal changes to how life and business is conducted during COVID-19 to both slow the spread of the virus and manage the economic effects this has on its citizens. We’ve highlighted the most relevant executive orders here, and have also included other state resources and information that could help you and your business.
We have focused on states in which Cross Campus has locations. For more state information, please visit your state government website.
- March 30, 2020: Gov. Executive Order Providing Relief to CA Small Businesses. Provides 90-day extension in state and local taxes, including sales tax, and extends licensing deadlines and requirements for a number of industries. Read more here.
- March 27, 2020: Executive Action to Establish a Statewide Moratorium on Evictions. Prohibits landlords from evicting tenants for nonpayment of rent and prohibits enforcement of evictions by law enforcement or courts. Effective immediately and will apply through May 31, 2020. Read more here.
- March 19, 2020: Stay at Home Order. All individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence, except as needed to maintain continuity of operation of the federal critical infrastructure sectors. Read more here.
- Other Executive Orders issued by Governor Gavin Newsom can be found here.
- April 2, 2020: Expanding Access to Pharmacies. This order allows pharmacies to dispense emergency refills of maintenance medications for up to a 90-day supply or more if necessary, waive electronic prescribing requirements, and more. View the full executive order here.
- March 30, 2020: Stay Home, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected. A policy that promotes social distancing while also promoting social connectedness. See #12 for non-essential businesses. View the full executive order here.
- March 26, 2020: Continuity of Work. State and board licensing must defer requirements to renew licenses, defer requirements to complete continuing education unless offered online, etc. View the full executive order here.
- March 23, 2020: Prohibiting the Closure of Essential Services. Essential businesses like healthcare and other essential infrastructure operations are to remain open. Is your business considered “essential” in Arizona? View the full executive order.
- March 20, 2020: Ensuring Individuals Whose Employment Is Affected By COVID-19 Have Access To Unemployment Insurance. The State is waiving certain Unemployment Insurance application requirements. This applies retroactively to March 11, 2020. View the full executive order.
- March 19, 2020: Limiting the Operations of Certain Businesses To Slow The Spread of COVID-19. Beginning March 20, 2020 all bars, movie theaters, indoor gyms and fitness clubs are to closed to the public in counties with confirmed cases of COVID-19, and restaurants can only serve the public through pick-up, delivery, and drive-thru. View the full executive order.
- Other Arizona Executive Orders can be found here.
- Visit your state’s tax department of revenue to find out if your state tax deadline has been postponed.
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) provides financial assistance to individuals, like those who are self-employed or independent contractors, who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits in the event of a disaster. Individual states will publish announcements about the availability of DUA. Applications must be filed within 30 days of the announcement of the availability of DUA in the state.
- The Rapid Response Program works with your company to minimize the disruptions associated with job losses on your business, workers, and community. Find out what programs are available in your state:
- If you’re in Arizona, Local First Arizona and community partners have launched a Small Business Relief Fund to provide mini-grants to locally owned businesses with up to 3 employees and less than $250,000 in annual revenue that require immediate assistance. They are calling upon the community, from corporate partners to individuals, to help entrepreneurs by donating to the fund. Submit an application. (updated 4/2/20)
The private sector is also trying to help small businesses get through the pandemic, and we’ve highlighted some opportunities here that could help you and your organization.
- LISC (Local Initiatives Support Corporation) is offering grants to help small businesses fill urgent financial gaps until they can resume normal operations or until other more permanent financing becomes available. These are grants of up to $10,000 to businesses facing immediate financial pressure because of COVID-19. The grant can be used for:
To apply, click here and scroll down to the Grant Application “Apply Now.” Applications are due April 4th! They will continue to accept applications for the 2nd round.
- The Facebook Small Business Grants Program is offering $100 million in cash grants and ad credits to up to small businesses in over 30 countries. They will begin applications in the coming weeks. You can sign up for updates here. (updated 4/2/20)
- In the City of Los Angeles, the EWDD is offering Small Business Emergency Microloans. You could qualify for $5,000 up to $20,000. Learn more about terms, eligibility, and required documentation here. Log in and apply here. Questions? Email email@example.com or call (213)744-7130. (updated 4/2/20)
- With the Small Business Relief Initiative, small businesses can sign up on GoFundMe to start a fundraiser. Local community members can search small business relief fundraisers and donate. The fund will issue $500 matching grants to qualifying businesses that reach at least $500 on GoFundMe. Start a fundraiser. (updated 4/2/20)
- If Verizon is your phone service provider, they won’t charge late fees or terminate your service if you cannot pay your bill in full if you are experiencing hardship because of COVID-19. This policy is currently in effect through May 13, 2020. To qualify fill out this short form. Check out Verizon’s other information and special offers here. (updated 4/2/20)
- If you use AT&T Business they are waiving late payment fees and domestic overage charges for data, voice, or text for small business wireless customers. Waiver applies to fees or charges you may incur between March 13, 2020 and May 13, 2020. Sign in and submit a waiver request here. (updated 4/2/20)
If you are a Cross Campus member and applying for a grant, loan, or any other assistance that requires financial or membership documentation, please contact your campus staff: