COVID-19 Small Business Support Services

In this time of crisis, small business owners and entrepreneurs are facing serious challenges to keep the lights on, pay their employees, and support themselves. Local governments, the state, and the federal government have all expanded support to small businesses. Included below is an overview of these supportive programs.

The Assembly Committee on Jobs, Economic Development, and the Economy (JEDE) has recently created a COVID-19 webpage which includes links to key public and private (nonprofit) webpages: https://ajed.assembly.ca.gov/content/covid-19-resources.

CAPITAL FOR STRUGGLING BUSINESSES

Federal Programs

There are a variety of federal programs that provide small business assistance, including loans to support cash flow during periods of depressed revenue. The CARES Act made expansions to multiple programs to assist small businesses and their employees. his included new programs and expansions to existing programs to assist small businesses during this crisis.

At this time, all money allocated to the PPP and EIDL program by the federal CARES Act has been used. Small businesses are encouraged to talk with their bank or lender to see if they can make any accommodations. At this time, the Federal government has not yet allocated more money to these programs.

These include lending programs, such as the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program and the new Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). A full side-by-side comparison of the two programs is available here.

At this time, all money allocated to the PPP and EIDL program by the federal CARES Act has been tapped. Small businesses are encouraged to talk with their bank or lender to see if they can make any accommodations. The Congress is currently considering recapitalizing these programs to provide further support for small businesses, but has not yet done so.

The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) has provided vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications for EIDLs are currently closed due to a lapse in appropriations, but SBA will continue to process received applications on a first-come, first-served basis. For further information on the program, contact disastercustomerservice@sba.gov or call 1-(800)-659-2955.

The Paycheck Protection Program authorized up to $349 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. Paycheck Protection Program Loans have been administered directly through lenders. Please contact your lender for further information on their participation in the program. If you are seeking out a lender, a list of the 100 most active 7(a) lenders is available on the SBA website.

State Programs

The State of California guarantees disaster loans for businesses experiencing hardship due to COVID-19. The Small Business Finance Center partners with lenders to provide emergency loans to small businesses. Qualifying small business owners may apply directly with a participating lender. For a full list of participating lenders, please visit the Small Business Finance Center website.

TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE

There are a number of groups that can assist with applying for the many state and federal assistance programs, including Small Business Development Centers and regional technical assistance programs. The Inland Empire Small Business Development Center provides technical assistance with applying for expanded state and federal emergency loan programs. They are providing their services via e-consultations and other safe, socially distanced ways.

The Inland Empire Women’s Business Center also provides technical assistance services for businesses owned by women. Please visit their website for more information.

A full list of regional technical assistance providers is available here.

FEE WAIVERS, TAX EXTENSIONS AND OTHER ASSISTANCE

The California State Association of Counties announced that counties may cancel penalties and other charges for homeowners, businesses, and other property owners that are unable to pay their property taxes due to circumstances caused by COVID-19. The San Bernardino County Auditor-Controller/Treasurer/Tax Collector (ATC) Ensen Mason announced he will grant a waiver of penalties for payments made after April 10, 2020 but no later than June 30, 2020 on qualifying residences and a great majority of small businesses.

Governor Newsom’s Executive Order N-25-20 allows for tax filing extension. Taxpayers affected by COVID-19 will have until June 15, 2020 to file and pay income taxes. For a full list of the dates extended by the executive order, please visit the Franchise Tax Board’s COVID-19 Extensions to file and pay website.

On March 18, 2020, the California Department of Insurance issued a notice requesting all insurance companies provide their policyholders with at least a 60-day grace period to pay their premiums. Consumers should contact their insurance company if they need additional time to pay their premium. If you are experiencing a problem with an insurance matter, please visit the Department of Insurance’s online Consumer Complaint Centerto file a complaint.

Following Governor Newsom’s executive order, local governments in the 40th Assembly District have adopted ordinances placing a moratorium on evictions for residents and commercial tenants, including San Bernardino County, the City of Redlands, the City of Rancho Cucamonga, and the City of San Bernardino.

The California State Treasurer is tracking other small business financial resources offered by local governments, foundations and other nonprofits, and corporations on this Google Doc. It is updated regularly.

BUSINESS ADVOCACY ORGANIZATION RESOURCES

The California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce has provided a webpage on COVID-19 information and resources. For the English language webpage, click here. Para español, clic aquí.

The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council provides a landing page for resources for women-owned businesses, including information on regional organizations supporting women-owned businesses.

The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce has prepared a landing page with resources on COVID-19 response. They also host a webinar replay on economic relief resources for LGBT-owned businesses during COVID-19.

INFORMATIONAL RESOURCES

A variety of private groups are providing support and assistance to small businesses and workers in the form of informational webinars.

The US Small Business Administration is hosting daily calls at 11:00 am and 4:00 pm to share information and answer questions regarding Economic Injury Disaster Loans and the Paycheck Protection Program. You can sign up to receive information on these webinars here.

The California Entrepreneurship Task Force, with the support of the Office of the Small Business Advocate at GO-Biz, and in partnership with Univision Facebook Live, is hosting a Spanish-language on-demand webinar for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The California Women Business Center is hosting an on-demand webinar that walks people through how to apply for the EIDL using the new simplified process.