New Updates

May 22 Updates
May 21 Updates
  • A new webinar series to feature resources for small businesses and an interagency panel for Q&A will launch today, May 21. This weekly webinar series will offer resources and information specific to small businesses and their needs. A panel of representatives from various State agencies will respond to live Q&A. Find out more and sign up on the Eventbrite page.
  • Here’s another great initiative within the region, Buy Local Auburn, which is a three year old program that promotes buying local from restaurants to hotels. The City runs a digital ad campaign around the initiative and it generates over 2M impressions a month. Check out BuyLocalAuburn.com as another example of communities supporting small businesses.
  • UPDATE – DEADLINE EXTENDED for the Economic Impact Survey. The deadline for round two of the Economic Impact Survey is now May 29th. Please update your network and continue to spread the word to business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities.
May 19 Updates
  • Here’s how to REPORT UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS FRAUD. You can report unemployment fraud by calling Employment Security Department's (ESD) Office of Special Investigations toll-free number: 800-246-9763.
  • REMINDER: Economic Impact Survey Part Two expires tomorrow, May 21. Please share this survey with your business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities.
  • Saving Local is an initiative of the City of Tukwila to help support local businesses through the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. The program provides an opportunity for stores, restaurants, and entertainment venues across King County to promote special offers and generate cash flow while their businesses remain closed or restricted due to public health guidelines.
May 19 Updates
  • As part of the Working Washington Small Business emergency grant program, Commerce has awarded the first 500 emergency grants in 20 counties. Restaurants, wineries, bakeries, childcare, health care, auto repair, clothing, fitness, manufacturing, salon businesses among first emergency assistance recipients. Read the press release here.
  • Snohomish County Executive, Dave Somers, proposed new grants to provide businesses support and relief to preserve the economy. Read more about the proposed Small Business Relief, Recovery and Resiliency Grants and the First in Flight fund here.
  • Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber has a Rapid Response – South Sound web page for COVID-19 information, resources, webinar sign-ups, and support for businesses.
May 18 Updates
  • The SBA and Treasury releases the Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness application. As of Friday, May 15th the application and detailed instructions for loan forgiveness is available. Read the press release here and download the application here.
  • Pierce and Snohomish Counties have been extremely active with their COVID-19 response. For a quick snapshot for their current initiatives and updates on their activities, read more here for Pierce County and here for Snohomish County.
  • REMINDER: Economic Impact Survey Part Two expires on May 21. Please share this survey with your business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities.
  • Another great resource page for COVID-19 is the WEDA resources directory. Check out the page here.
May 15 Updates
  • REMINDER: Economic Impact Survey Part Two is now open. Please share this survey with your business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities. The survey will be open until May 21. A third and final survey is planned for early June.
  • The Consul General of Mexico in Seattle has created a comprehensive Spanish resources guide for COVID-19. You can find the guide here.
  • SeaTac Airport launches FlyHealthy@SEA. Stay up to date on actions the Port of Seattle is taking to support public health at SEA. Read more.
May 14 Updates
  • Snohomish County launches a Needs Assessment survey for businesses in the county as part of the Office of Economic Recovery and Resiliency. Please fill out the short survey if you are a business in Snohomish County. The survey expires on May 16.
  • Back to Work Readiness Webinar hosted by Impact Washington. You can join the virtual program by selecting the link on May 18 at 11:00am. Registration is not required.
May 12 Updates
  • REMINDER: Economic Impact Survey Part Two is now open. Please share this survey with your business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities. The survey will be open until May 21. A third and final survey is planned for early June.
  • The US Chamber of Commerce has updated their resources page for responding to COVID-19. The page now has resources for guidelines on how to move forward with reopening economies.
  • A model for restaurants as we work towards reopening. A Hong Kong restaurant chain has become the new global model for how governments and the restaurant industry can move forward, putting safety first. The article referencing the guide can be found here. Actual guide can also be found on the Black Sheep website.
May 11 Updates
  • REMINDER: Economic Impact Survey Part Two is now open. Please share this survey with your business owners, nonprofits, and independent workers within your communities. The survey will be open until May 21. A third and final survey is planned for early June.
  • The IEDC has created a page dedicated to resources for reopening. The resources include IEDC research, insight into industries reopening, and resources from state and municipal government, public institutions, and private firms.
  • Aftercare and BRE takes center stage. Wavteq produced a webinar on why aftercare and BRE is imperative to our long term recovery. Take a look at the slides from the April 30th webinar.
May 8 Updates
May 7 Updates
  • The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) has released their Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for their $1.5 billion supplemental appropriation from the CARES Act. Read and download the announcement here, and you can download the CARES Act specific portion here. A great summary from the IEDC including a FAQ can be found here.
  • Gov. Jay Inslee and the state Department of Health released an update today to the Risk-Assessment Dashboard. This tool helps gauge when and how to best lift restrictions around ‘Stay Home, Stay Healthy” in Washington. Read more here.
May 6 Updates
  • Gov. Inslee announces three Safe Start advisory groups. The advisory group leaders are: Department of Health Sec. John Wiesman for Public Health and Health Care System ; Department of Commerce Director Lisa Brown for Safe Work and Economic Recovery and Department of Social and Health Services Sec. Cheryl Strange will lead Social Supports.
  • Funding resources are still available! See what Business Impact Northwest has to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19.
  • Update on City of Everett’s $500,000 Everett CARES Small Business Grant using CDBG funds.
  • Everett for Everett: Everett’s Social Distancing Shopping Guide
May 5 Updates
  • Washington wins federal grant to support economic recovery from COVID-19. The grant will:

    • Place laid-off workers into jobs to respond to or mitigate effects of the COVID-19 disaster, including positions in emergency management; treatment and quarantine area set-up; unemployment claims intake; behavioral and developmental health, custodial services; delivery; food banks, shelters, and social and human services
    • Provide more workers with:
      • Career coaches to help create customized re-employment plans.
      • Immediate help with job search and placement into jobs on the state’s COVID-19 essential jobs list and other high-demand occupations.
      • Short-term job readiness training for laid-off workers.
      • Longer-term training to help people enter secure careers as the economy recovers.
    • Provide equipment, connectivity and training to help the state’s workforce system adapt to virtual services.
May 4 Updates
  • On May 1, Gov. Inslee announced an extension of Washington State’s stay-at-home order through May 31. He also detailed plans to begin reopening some businesses in mid-May, though a four-phased approach.
May 1 Updates
  • May 4-8 is International Economic Development Week! The IEDC is hosting daily programs on great topics that will help us all do our work better as our region look towards reopening and recovery. Topics include : partnerships on a regional level, reinforcing small businesses and commercial districts, economic development on a state level, rethinking BR&E in the COVID-19 era, and workforce engagement. Learn more on the IEDC website.
  • Everett Cares Grant Program. Made possible by the CARES Act, the City of Everett is awarding 50 grants of $10,000 to small businesses. Apply here.
April 30 Updates
  • Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan joins 10 leading mayors to head up Global Mayors COVID-19 Recovery Task Force. Read the announcement here.
  • Federal Reserve Board announces it is expanding the scope and eligibility for the Main Street Lending Program. Read the announcement here.
April 29 Updates
  • #SupportPugetSoundSmallBiz Map. The City of Seattle has expanded their map to include 20 partner cities and counties. The map guides residents in finding small businesses providing takeout or delivery in their neighborhood. View the expanded map.
  • Yelp data finds that 4500 area businesses have closed amid COVID-19 pandemic. Between March 10 to April 19, seasonally adjusted consumer interest fell for broader business categories such as beauty & spa services (-79%), bars & nightlife (-72%), and hotels & travel (-71%), according to Yelp. More specifically, shopping centers saw a 73% drop in consumer interest, while tapas & small plates were down 63%, and yoga was down 62 percent.
  • “New Normal” business checklist and baseline recommendations for employers. View the checklist here.
April 28 Updates
  • WA state will distribute funding to local governments from federal stimulus package. Gov. Jay Inslee announced nearly $300 million will be awarded from the state’s federal stimulus funding to local governments that did not receive direct distributions under the CARES Act.
  • Exporting Assistance provided by the SBA to help small businesses that export directly overseas or those that export indirectly by selling to a customer that exports their products.

    • Export Express loan program allows access to capital quickly for businesses that need financing up to $500,000. Businesses can apply for a line of credit or term note prior to finalizing an export sale or while pursuing opportunities overseas, such as identifying a new overseas customer should an export sale be lost due to COVID-19.
    • Export Working Capital program enables small businesses to fulfill export orders and finance international sales by providing revolving lines of credit or transaction-based financing of up to $5 million. Businesses could use a loan to obtain or retain overseas customers by offering attractive payment terms.
    • International Trade loan program helps small businesses engaged in international trade to retool or expand to better compete and react to changing business conditions. It can also help exporting firms to expand their sales to new markets or to re-shore operations back to the U.S.
  • A tool kit for businesses as the economy begins to re-open. Madrona Ventures created the tool kit along with partners from leading tech, retail, the Seattle venture community and aerospace companies and the Seattle Metro Chamber and Bellevue Chamber of Commerce.
April 27 Updates
  • From the SBA as of Friday, April 25. Additional Funding Notice: The SBA will resume accepting Paycheck Protection Program applications from participating lenders on Monday, April 27, 2020 at 10:30am EDT. With the additional funding provided by the new COVID-19 relief package, SBA will resume processing EIDL Loan and Advance applications that are already in the queue on a first come, first-served basis. We will provide further information on the availability of the EIDL portal to receive new applications (including those from agricultural enterprises) as soon as possible.

    To learn more about the relief options available for your business, click here.
  • World Economic Forum takes a look at the impact of COVID-19 to global value chains.

Small Business Resources

Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans guaranteed by the SBA range from small to large and can be used for most business purposes, including long-term fixed assets and operating capital. The SBA works with lenders to provide loans to small businesses. The agency doesn’t lend money directly to small business owners. Instead, it sets guidelines for loans made by its partnering lenders, community development organizations, and micro-lending institutions. $20 million in supplemental funding is available to fund administrative expenses for loans to U.S. small businesses via the emergency spending bill passed by Congress on March 4.

If there is a presidential disaster declaration, SBA may offer low-interest disaster loans. The International Economic Development Council offers a step-by-step preparedness plan for local governments to put in place an economic development plan in case of disaster. The Institute for Business and Home Safety created an easy and practical toolkit for disaster preparation.

If there is a presidential disaster declaration, HUD offers a Block Grant recovery program for declared emergencies, with a special focus in low-income areas. Congress may appropriate additional funding for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program as Disaster Recovery grants to the affected areas and provide crucial seed money to start the recovery process. Since CDBG Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) assistance may fund a broad range of recovery activities, HUD can help communities and neighborhoods that otherwise might not recover due to limited resources.

Business and Employer Resources

The following are resources to help your local economy, and that of the region, manage and recover from these impacts as quickly as possible. The guidelines are not county-specific and provide a lot of information, including checklists, templates, and plans. We encourage you to share them with businesses and business organizations in your area.

Jobs Resources

For those whose jobs have been impacted by COVID-19, GSP has created a resource page to help unemployed or underemployed individuals in greater Seattle find job opportunities in sectors providing essential services under the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order.

Managing the Impacts

The effects of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel corona virus, are impacting the economic health of our communities. Many businesses are affected by the telecommuting, supply chain, travel and tourism, and restaurant/retail impacts.

Health officials are the best sources of information about how to prevent the spread of the virus.

According to the Washington State Department of Health, if an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19 infection, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure. See OSHA Guidance on occupational exposures
to COVID-19 here.

Employers should not be reporting these incidents to the public health agency; reporting happens through the employee to their doctor. Employers should not be sharing private health information.

Regional Business Resources

Business resources provided in multiple languages.