COVID19 recovery continues as all areas of the Commonwealth transition into Phase One of reopening. This page is designed to provide a synopsis of resources for businesses impacted by COVID19. Executive Order 63 took effect on May 29, 2020 requiring individuals to wear face coverings while inside buildings, this includes while inside of brick and mortar businesses. Exceptions to this Executive Order include while eating or drinking; individuals exercising or using exercise equipment; any person who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the face coverings without assistance; any person seeking to communicate with the hearing impaired and for which the mouth needs to be visible; when temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to secure government or medical services; and persons with health conditions that prohibit wearing a face covering. Nothing in this Order shall require the use of a face covering by any person for whom doing so would be contrary to his or her health or safety because of a medical condition.
Previous Executive Orders also impact businesses. On March 24, 2020 Governor Ralph Northam issued Executive Order 53, which limits gatherings of more than 10 people and closed non-essential businesses. It remained in effect until May 14, 2020, 11:59 p.m. when portions of the Commonwealth, including Southwest Virginia, entered Phase One. Phase One allows restaurants to offer outdoor dining at 50% capacity and continue carry out orders. It also allows gyms to offer outdoor classes at 50% capacity. Barber shops and salons can open by appointment only. Places of worship can offer indoor services at 50% capacity. Phase One is scheduled to last between two and four weeks. Gatherings of more than 10 people are still not permitted.
What are your needs?
We know, you, our business owners are trying to determine how to maintain during this difficult time, and your time is valuable. The surveys below are offered by the Roanoke Department of Economic Development and Roanoke Regional Partnership. Please take a few minutes to complete the surveys. This information will help determine your needs.
Visit Virginia’s Blue Ridge also has a survey to assess the needs of businesses in the hospitality industry. Again, please take the time to complete this survey if it pertains to your business. This information is valuable in determining the path to recovery.
The Coronvirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) was signed into law by the President on March 27, 2020. The $2.2 trillion package provides relief to workers and small businesses through loans, some which are forgivable.
Paycheck Protection Program – Resumes April 27, 2020
The Paycheck Protection Program provides loans for payroll expenses if businesses under 500 employees retain their workers. The Small Business Administration (SBA) will forgive loans if all employees remain on the payroll for eight weeks and the loan is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. If employees have already been terminated, business owners can apply for a loan if the employees are rehired. Loan payments are deferred at least six months and up to one year. Applications requesting loan forgiveness can be submitted eight weeks after loan approval. Loans are available through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any participating federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union,
Farm Credit System institution, and other regulated lenders enrolled in the program. Lenders began processing loan applications April 3, 2020, and applications will be accepted through June 30, 2020. To search for a participating lender near you click on the following link: www.sba.gov/paycheckprotection/find
Open a Bank Account
During this time, it is crucial for citizens to have bank accounts. A bank account allows citizens quicker access to their wealth through direct deposit of payroll checks, direct deposit of state and federal tax refunds, and direct deposit of stimulus checks. If your employees do not have a bank account or do not have a bank account that meets their financial needs, they are encouraged to visit the link below, which includes information about the Bank On Roanoke Valley (BORV) Program. BORV offers bank accounts with nominal or no fees, and can assist customers who may have difficulty attaining bank accounts due to a barrier such as poor credit history. www.uwrv.org/healthy-adults/bank-on-roanoke-valley/
Citizens who have bank accounts, but did not file tax returns in 2018 or 2019 can enter their bank account information to receive stimulus checks electronically, giving them quicker access to their wealth. Bank account information can be submitted to the IRS at the following link: http://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
The SBA’s EIDL provides economic support through loans to small businesses to help recover the temporary loss of revenue experienced by COVID19. This program is for any small business with less than 500 employees, private non-profit organizations, 501(c)(19) veterans organizations, or tribal businesses. Business owners can receive an advance of up to $10,000, a portion of the loan which is forgivable. To apply for an EIDL click on the following link: https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/