COVID-19 Business Resources
The City of Concord understands that the COVID-19 shelter-in-place order may present financial challenges for local businesses. To help mitigate these challenges, the City has highlighted a variety of resources that businesses can pursue during this difficult time.
Federal Paycheck Protection Program
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
The CARES Act dedicated $349 billion to the creation of the Paycheck Protection Program, which is designed to help small businesses keep their workforce employed. The program is retroactive from February 15, 2020 to allow employers to rehire recently laid-off employees. Small businesses and eligible non-profits, Veteran organizations, and Tribal businesses, as well as self-employed individuals or independent contractors, are eligible to apply if they have 500 or fewer employees.
The program offers loans up to $10 million with an interest rate of 0.5 percent and maturity of two years. No collateral or personal guarantees are required and loan payments will be deferred for six months. The SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.
Businesses can apply through any existing SBA lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Lenders may begin processing loan applications as soon as April 3, 2020. Loans will be administered on a first-come, first-served basis.
For more information, including a sample form to prepare your application, visit the SBA Paycheck Protection Program page. This page will be updated with a list of approved SBA lenders once identified.
Federal Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
The SBA is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. The program offers an interest rate of 3.75 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for non-profit organizations, with long-term repayments up to a maximum of 30 years. The deadline for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan is December 16, 2020.
Businesses can apply on the SBA Disaster Loan Assistance page, or mail completed applications to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155. For application assistance, call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email email@example.com. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may dial (800) 877-8339.
Temporary Rent and Eviction Moratorium
City of Concord
On March 25, 2020, City Council approved an ordinance freezing evictions and landlord-imposed utility shut-offs and late fees for COVID-19 affected residential and commercial tenants who fail to pay rent/utilities. The ordinance allows tenants 90 days to repay rent for each month of overdue rent, and urges financial institutions and utility companies to freeze foreclosures and utility shut-offs.
Tenants must provide a notice to their landlords that they have experienced a loss of income of at least 20% as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic at least seven days before rent is due. Within three days after rent is due, the tenant must provide written documentation that shows they have experienced at least a 20% reduction of monthly income or gross business receipts as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Visit the March 25, 2020 City Council Meeting page to access the agenda and view supporting documents related to the ordinance. If you are a commercial landlord or tenant with compliance concerns, please contact the City of Concord Economic Development Division: Brian Nunnally, Business Development Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online Webinars for Coping with COVID-19 and No-Cost Personalized Assistance
Contra Costa Small Business Development Center (Contra Costa SBDC)
The Contra Costa SBDC has created this Online Webinars for Coping with COVID-19 page to provide tools for navigating the economic difficulties posed by COVID-19, including step-by-step directions on filing an application for the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan. For no-cost personalized assistance, businesses can visit contracostasbdc.org and click "APPLY TODAY" to register and access the scheduling platform.
Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz)
The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development has compiled helpful information for employers, employees and all Californians as it relates to COVID-19. The COVID-19 resource page includes information about the State of California’s small business loan programs and tax relief programs.
Loan programs listed on the resource page include the IBANK’s Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program for loans up to $1 million and the Jump Start Program for loans up to $10,000. In addition, the California Capital Access Program encourages financial institutions to make loans to small businesses experiencing difficulty obtaining financing.
Resources for Workers and Employers Impacted by COVID-19
California Employment Development Department (EDD)
The EDD has created a centralized COVID-19 resource page for both workers and employers impacted by COVID-19. Workers experiencing reduced hours, as well as those who must miss work to receive treatment or care for sick family members or children during school closures, will find helpful resources. The resource page also includes information for self-employed/independent contractors.
Employers who are experiencing a hardship due to COVID-19 will find helpful resources related to tax relief, such as a 60-day extension to file state payroll reports and deposit payroll taxes, and potential closure or layoffs. For example, the Work Sharing Program, a form of unemployment insurance, helps employers reduce hours as an alternative to layoffs. Also, employers facing potential closure or layoffs can receive help through the local workforce development board’s Rapid Response Program.
Note: Businesses interested in the Rapid Response Program should contact the Workforce Development Board of Contra Costa County: Patience Ofodu, Business Services Manager, (510) 453-6950, email@example.com.
Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The CDC has published interim guidance on what is currently known about COVID-19 and how businesses and employers can plan, prepare, and respond to the disease. The guidance is of particular importance to essential businesses still operating during the shelter-in-place order. Visit the CDC website to view the interim guidance for businesses and employers.
Resources for Employers and Workers
California Labor & Workforce Development Agency (LWDA)
LWDA is an executive branch agency that provides leadership to protect and improve the well-being of California’s current and future workforce. The agency has created this centralized COVID-19 resource page to help workers, employers, and families access information and assistance.
Requirements to Protect Workers from COVID-19
California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA)
Per Cal/OSHA’s Aerosol Transmissible Diseases (ATD) standard (section 5199), employers must protect workers exposed to airborne infectious diseases such as COVID-19. CAL/OSHA’s COVID-19 resource page offers guidance to help employers comply with safety requirements and to provide workers with information on how to protect themselves.
FAQs on Laws Enforced by the California Labor Commissioner’s Office
California Labor Commissioner’s Office
The mission of the California Labor Commissioner’s Office is to ensure a just day’s pay in every workplace in the State and to promote economic justice through robust enforcement of labor law. To help employers and employees understand their obligations and rights, the California Labor Commissioner’s Office has created this COVID-19 FAQs for Labor Laws page.
FAQs for California Employers
California Employers Association (CEA)
CEA is a not-for-profit employers association that provides support services to businesses in California. The employers association has created this COVID-19 FAQs for California Employers page to help employers understand their workplace obligations.