Select Page

COVID-19 Small Business Resources

Columbia County Economic Team (CCET) is working to assist businesses in responding and navigating through the Coronavirus pandemic and resulting in economic disruption….and help plan for recovery.

Business survival and retention is a top priority. We all want to emerge from the other side of this with the ability o restore our businesses, livelihoods, and economy.

Reaching out countywide, Columbia County Economic Team will be communicating with you regularly.

Please bookmark us and visit often for updates.

PPE for Small Business

The State of Oregon to provide
FREE SUPPLIES FOR
SMALL BUSINESS AND CHILD CARE PROVIDERS
Wednesday, 9/16, a new program went live to provide masks and gloves to small business at no charge until resources are depleted. Businesses with fewer than 50 employees that are headquartered in Oregon with principal operations in Oregon are eligible. In addition to the small business program, the Early Learning Division is providing supplies such as gloves, disinfecting wipes, masks and more to child care providers around the state as part of the effort. The order form is online and is now accepting orders. Businesses and child care providers can access the form here: https://supplyconnector.org/states/oregon/free-ppe/
OR

Get PPE for your small business here. Order Today!! Masks, Gowns, Sanitizer and Gloves

Keep your employees and customers healthy and safe – at an affordable price. Download your PPE order form here and send it back immediately to info@columbiacountyoregon.com. If received by 5 p.m. Thursday, your order will be available on Friday the next day, anytime between 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. at CCET Office at the St. Helens Library. 

Free disposable masks (limit 200 per week, per business) and quality anti-microbial masks, plus sanitizer and gloves.

This program brought to you as a service of Columbia County Board of Commissioners, CCET – Columbia County Economic Team, and the Columbia County Fair Board.

FAQ 

Daily Updates

LOCAL

PCC Community & Workforce Development’s new digital literacy webpage, which includes several exciting new opportunities and resources, including monthly, no cost digital literacy workshops. Running the first Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of each month from 1pm to 2pm, these no cost training workshops topics include: Upcoming Workshops:

Tues, July 6: Using the Internet
Wed, July 7: Learning on YouTube
Thurs, July 8: Zoom Etiquette and Tips

Plus — Google Workspace, Microsoft Basics and access to tools and a Resource Library. All courses are offered remotely via Zoom. (Flyer attached)

Download flyer (insert link to flyer) Learn more here or register here: Register to Attend

STATE

3/8/2021

Applications Now Open for Commercial Rent Relief Grants 

Business Oregon is now accepting grant applications to assist small businesses that are behind on their lease payments due to impacts from COVID-19 between March 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021.

The program provides grants to building owners to cover outstanding lease payments from small business tenants. The grants can go up to $100,000 per business tenant, but not more than $3 million for each landlord.

The program is intended to help for-profit small business tenants that have 100 or fewer employees. The agreement will include additional protections for tenants, such as 6-month non-eviction clauses for non-payment, and a waiver of penalties and interest on COVID-impacted payments. Both the business tenant and property owner will need to participate in the application process and sign the grant agreement, but the initial application needs to be completed by the landlord. 

The online application is now available on Business Oregon’s website in multiple languages. The application period will be open for two weeks, with eligible submissions chosen by a lottery system that will also ensure geographic distribution across all regions of the state.

The information needed for the initial application is minimal, it includes:

  • Landlord name and address
  • Tenant name and address
  • Tenant’s number of workers (part/full-time)
  • Tenant business classification (industry)

Base rent amount due, and actual paid per month

******************************************************************************************************

Oregon’s RESIDENTIAL Landlord Compensation Fund Program has launched. 3/3/21

The Landlord Compensation Fund Program provides relief to residential landlords who have been unable to collect tenant rent due to tenant financial hardships. Landlords can directly apply for these resources through an online application portal. Landlords whose applications are accepted and awarded will receive 80% of unpaid rent they are owed by qualified tenants from April 2020 through the application period. They will be required to forgive the remaining 20% of unpaid rent. For more information, visit: https://lcf.oregon.gov/lcf.

To support applicants, Oregon Housing and Community Services provides a screen-by-screen Instruction Guide to the application system as well as a video overview of the rent roll template

*********************************************************************************************************************

Landlord Assistance!
Oregon’s Landlord Compensation Fund Program has launched

The Landlord Compensation Fund Program provides relief to residential landlords who have been unable to collect tenant rent due to tenant financial hardships. Landlords can directly apply for these resources through an online application portal. Landlords whose applications are accepted and awarded will receive 80% of unpaid rent they are owed by qualified tenants from April 2020 through the application period. They will be required to forgive the remaining 20% of unpaid rent. For more information, visit: https://lcf.oregon.gov/lcf.

*********************************************************************************************************************

Modified guidance is now in effect for indoor activities in Extreme Risk counties, effective Friday, January 29. These modifications allow for limited activities to resume at indoor entertainment, recreation and fitness establishments to resume with associated guidance for ongoing social distancing, cleaning protocols, and face coverings. Expanded opportunities for outdoor dining are also available, while indoor dining continues to be prohibited in Extreme Risk counties. Read the full news release here. Updated Guidance Overview Chart is now available here – https://sharedsystems.dhsoha.state.or.us/DHSForms/Served/le3461.pdf and modifications to the Extreme Risk guidance for specific sectors is available as follows:

o   Eating and Drinking Establishments – https://sharedsystems.dhsoha.state.or.us/DHSForms/Served/le2351b.pdf

o   Indoor Entertainment Establishments – https://sharedsystems.dhsoha.state.or.us/DHSForms/Served/le2351a.pdf

o   Indoor Recreation and Indoor Fitness Establishments – https://sharedsystems.dhsoha.state.or.us/DHSForms/Served/le2352.pdf

**********************************

****************************************

OHA launches COVID-19 vaccine dashboard showing the status of the state’s COVID-19 vaccination effort. The dashboard will provide daily updates on the number of people partially and fully vaccinated, along with key demographic information showing race, ethnicity, sex and age of everyone immunized.

The dashboard also shows information by county.

**********************************

Masks, face shields and face coverings are currently required statewide for indoor public spaces (for example, grocery stores, pharmacies, public transit, personal services providers, restaurants, bars, retail stores, and more). In addition, face coverings are required in outdoor public spaces when physical distancing is not possible.

Children age 5 and up are required to wear a face covering. People with a disability or medical condition may request accommodation from the business if they cannot wear one.

**********************************

Governor Kate Brown Releases School Health and Safety Metrics

Updated guidance for schools is released 

1/20/21

As part of its planned guidance and metrics review process with the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) released an update to the Ready Schools, Safe Learners guidance.

The updated guidance includes updated advisory metrics for in-person instruction. The metrics are based on the latest COVID-19 studies and data and help Oregon’s schools make informed decisions about returning to in-person instruction.

While health metrics have shifted from required to advisory, schools must follow all the required guidelines. All staff must be trained on the first three sections of Ready Schools, Safe Learners and schools need to designate a school leader to implement, support and enforce health and safety protocols.

A new requirement, that when students and staff return to in-person instruction out of alignment with the advised metrics, schools must offer access to on-site COVID-19 testing for symptomatic students and staff identified on campus as well as those with known exposure to individuals with COVID-19.

The update also includes multiple new resources to support learning outside, field trips, equitable grading practices, attendance best practices, contact tracing partnerships, COVID-19 testing, and more.

video of ODE Director Colt Gill explaining the updates is available. 

Updated guidance will be posted to coronavirus.oregon.gov.

NATIONAL

UPDATE: PPP Loans

IRS guidance on first round PPP loans

WASHINGTON — The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service issued Revenue Procedure 2021-20 PDF for certain businesses that received first-round Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans but did not deduct any of the original eligible expenses on their tax return because they relied on guidance issued before the enactment of tax relief legislation in December of 2020.

Under prior guidance, businesses that received PPP loans to cover payroll costs, interest on covered mortgage obligations, covered rent obligation payments, and covered utility payments could not deduct corresponding expenses when reporting business expense deductions.

With the Dec. 27, 2020, enactment of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, businesses now may claim these deductions even though they received PPP loans to cover original eligible expenses. These businesses can use the safe harbor provided by this guidance to deduct those expenses on the return for the immediately subsequent year.

More information is available here.

 

Coronavirus Funding Options

Grants

Northwest Oregon Works – This is an additional funding option for businesses that can make PPEs, masks, or something essential in addressing the COVID-19 health and economic pandemic, and/or if you need more workers to do that.

Oregon Small Business Stabilization Grants

Finder.com – Local, State, Federal and Private Grants for Small Business Owners

Facebook Small Business Grant Program – Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where they operate. The application process is not open yet and we will share more details as they become available.

Pamplin Media Marketing Grant – Pamplin Media has established a $1million marketing grant fund to assist local businesses with their advertising during these challenging times.

Restaurant Employee Relief Funds

The Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (“Fund”) was created to help restaurant industry employees experiencing extraordinary hardship in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Through this Fund, grants will be made to restaurant industry employees who have been impacted by COVID-19, including a decrease in wages or loss of employment.

Guidance for Businesses and Employers

Small Business Navigator

Small Business Solutions Video Series courtesy of the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce

SBA Guidance & Resources

Health and government officials are working together to maintain the safety, security, and health of the American people. Small businesses are encouraged to do their part to keep their employees, customers, and themselves healthy.

Guidelines for Businesses and Employers

SBA Products & Resources

SBA Local Assistance

Join the SBA Relief Efforts

SBA Government Contracting

Small Business Development Center Resources

The PCC SBDC is available to assist you in assessing the appropriate actions for your business. Please email: sbdc@pcc.edu if you need assistance in this planning process, or if you have any questions regarding the guidelines.

SBDC COVID-19 Business Resources

SBDC Guide to Navigating a Business Crisis

SBDC PPP Factsheet

SBDC EIDL Factsheet

Information for Employers

This is an ongoing list of resources and guidelines for employers during COVID-19. We want to provide you with the most timely and relevant information to keep your employees safe, and to ensure that you are following guidelines from the Oregon Health Authority.

State of Oregon Employment Department-  The health and safety of workplaces is of utmost importance to the Oregon Employment Department. This information provides general guidance to employers, workers, and job seekers who may be impacted by the COVID-19 virus.

This web page will be updated as more information becomes available. The Oregon Employment Department is working with partner agencies nationwide and the U.S. Department of Labor to ask for additional unemployment benefits options related to COVID-19.

Columbia County Worksource Office: 503-397-4995.
Please note: The office is currently staffed to receive phone calls but the lobby is not open to the general public.

Reduced Hours via Workshare. Work Share provides an alternative for larger employers who may be facing the prospect of a lay off situation. With Work Share, instead of reducing staff, an employer reduces the hours of work for a group of workers. Partial Unemployment Insurance benefits are then paid to supplement workers’ reduced wages.

Permanent Layoffs: Rapid Response Assistance – If you are considering a long-term or permanent layoff of workers, contact the WorkSource center for rapid response assistance. Local Rapid Response teams can help you navigate through this challenging process and assist with the development and implementation of a transition strategy.

CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Guidance for Businesses & Employers

Below are the recommended strategies for employers to use now:

  • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home
  • Separate sick employees
  • Emphasize staying home when sick, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene by all employees
  • Perform routine environmental cleaning
  • Advise employees before traveling to take certain steps
  • Check the CDC’s Traveler’s Health Notices for the latest guidance and recommendations for each country to which you will travel.
  • Specific travel information for travelers going to and returning from designated countries with risk of community spread of Coronavirus, and information for aircrew, can be found on the CDC website.

Additional Measures in Response to Currently Occurring Sporadic Importations of the COVID-19:

  • Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.
  • If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, 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.

Local Partners & Resources

Count on your local partners to be there for your business during these unprecedented times and to provide additional support as needed.

Northwest Oregon Works

On-the-job-training is a business service provided through the Northwest Oregon Worksource centers.
The Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (WIOA) On the Job Training (OJT) program beneficial to employers in Columbia County. On the Job Training (OJT) services are provided at no cost to the company. Info, FAQ and contacts here…

Local Credit Unions & Loan Assistance

Wauna Credit Union. – Wauna Credit Union is an SBA-approved lender. Click here to apply for the SBA PPP Loan.

Wauna is currently providing a variety of low-cost borrowing options, which may help contribute to your ability to cope and maintain the necessities of life for you and your families during and following the coronavirus pandemic:

 

InRoads Credit Union. – InRoads Credit Union is an SBA-approved lender. Current credit union members are eligible to apply through InRoads.

SBA Payroll Protection Loan Program – Round Two Applications

  • The SBA PPP loan program will again begin accepting applications Monday, April 27.
  • We expect this round of funding to again be depleted quickly.  Current InRoads business members should send an email to payrollprotection@inroadscu.org to receive a link to a secure application.
  • Completed applications will be processed in the order received although we cannot guarantee funding due to high demand nationwide.

Member Assistance

During this unprecedented time, InRoads continues to be a resource for our members and our communities. To help you navigate through any financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, we’ve put new programs in place including*:

  • Emergency Assistance Loans: A zero interest loan up to $2,500 and no payments for 90 days to assist existing InRoads members to pay bills, rent, cover groceries, or other financial needs. Click here to apply. 
  • Personal Loans: We’ve lowered the rates on new personal loans to help those who may be seeking a little extra security in their wallets right now. We’re also offering no payments for 90 days. Click here to apply. 
  • Skip Payment: If you have an existing InRoads loan that qualifies, you may be able to skip payments for two months with no skip payment fee.
  • Pay loans by phone: We are currently waiving all pay by phone fees.
  • Rewards Checking requirements: We will waive the 10 debit card purchases per cycle requirement to receive rewards during this time.
  • Business Assistance Loans: Email us at business.assistance@inroadscu.org to request assistance with your current InRoads business loan(s) during this time.

We are here to work with you. Have a need that’s not listed? Reach out via email at member.service@inroadscu.org, by phone at 503.397.2376, or our LIVE app and we’ll talk more.

Local Business Advocacy and Chambers of Commerce

Local Goverment Resources

Utilities

NW Natural Business Continuity Plan. NW Natural has activated its business continuity plans. Residential and small businesses will not be disconnected if they can’t make payments due to the impacts caused by COVID-19. Customers will continue to receive bills and past-due notices. But NW Natural will not send a final shut-off notice and disconnect service.

State Resources

Here’s a list of relevant state resources to help navigate your business through this crisis. We’ll keep this page updated and add or remove relevant and timely information as needed.

We encourage you to explore your options, and don’t hesitate to reach out with additional questions. We are here for you – let us know how we can help!

Governor Kate Brown COVID-19 Resources for Oregonians

Oregon Health Authority

Oregon State Chamber of Commerce

Business Oregon

Travel Oregon

Oregon Community Foundation

Oregon Economic Development Association

Northwest Grocery Association Guidelines

 Ready to reopen? Here’s what you need to know – From SAIF

 

 

National & International Resources

Here’s a list of national resources to help navigate your business through this crisis, and to help you stay informed about COVID-19 at the national level  We’ll keep this page updated with timely and relevant information as we receive it.  

Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers the most up-to-date information on COVID-19. This interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). For updates from the CDC, please see the following:

U.S. Government Resources

International Resources

Reach Us

P.O. Box 1653
St Helens, OR 97051

(503) 805-5139

Leave A Message