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COVID-19 Business Resources
Back to Business Program

The COVID-19 global pandemic has resulted in unprecedented challenges in the United States, and small businesses are being hit particularly hard. Back to Business, a new community business program from Thrive Economic Development (ThriveED) and the Wisconsin Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at UW-Whitewater assists small businesses in Jefferson and Dodge counties as they look for ways to stay afloat during these turbulent times.

Learn more about the Back to Business program, and complete an intake form to get assistance for your business.

 

Additional Resources and Support

In these unprecedented times, Thrive Economic Development will work hard to ensure that businesses in our two-county region have access to the information and resources they need.

Grants & Loans for Businesses

The CARES Act
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed by President Trump on March 27, 2020 to provide direct financial relief to businesses and employees. It includes items like loans for small businesses, changes to SBA loans, payments to individuals, expanded unemployment benefits, work share benefits, and paid leave changes.

Download a Guide to the CARES Act

A few important initiatives in the CARES Act include:

  • Paycheck Protection Program (part of the CARES Act)
    The program would provide cash-flow assistance through 100 percent federally guaranteed loans to employers who maintain their payroll during this emergency. If employers maintain their payroll, the loans would be forgiven, which would help workers remain employed, as well as help affected small businesses and our economy snap-back quicker after the crisis. PPP has a host of attractive features, such as forgiveness of up to 8 weeks of payroll based on employee retention and salary levels, no SBA fees, and at least six months of deferral with maximum deferrals of up to a year. Small businesses and other eligible entities will be able to apply if they were harmed by COVID-19 between February 15, 2020 and June 30, 2020. This program would be retroactive to February 15, 2020, in order to help bring workers who may have already been laid off back onto payrolls. Loans are available through June 30, 2020.
  • Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program
    The Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program (EIDL) can provide up to $2 million of financial assistance to small businesses or private, non-profit organizations that suffer substantial economic injury as a result of the declared disaster, regardless of whether the applicant sustained physical damage. An EIDL can help a business meet necessary financial obligations that it could have met had the disaster not occurred.

Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce has created a COVID-19 Employer Toolkit

Kiva Loans
Kiva is an international nonprofit with a mission to expand financial access to help underserved communities thrive. Kiva lenders have shown their commitment to providing financial assistance to all by making 0% interest loans to entrepreneurs in the U.S. on Kiva.org for the last 10 years. In today’s difficult circumstances, we’d like to make it as easy and impactful as possible for small businesses in the U.S. to have access to affordable capital on the Kiva platform—capital that may be the difference between shutting down and keeping their doors open.

Unemployment | Wage and Hour Information

Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division
The Wage and Hour Division provides information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to influenza, pandemics, or other public health emergencies, and their effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Unemployment Insurance
The Wisconsin DWD has compiled a list of frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 Coronavirus and Wisconsin Unemployment Benefits.

Workplace Safety

OSHA Standards for COVID-19
A page on the OSHA website highlighting OSHA standards and directives (instructions for compliance officers) and other related information that may apply to worker exposure to novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention
This interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will update this interim guidance as needed and as additional information becomes available.

Legislation and Government Directives, including Safer at Home order

The CARES Act
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed by President Trump on March 27, 2020 to provide direct financial relief to businesses and employees. It includes items like loans for small businesses, changes to SBA loans, payments to individuals, expanded unemployment benefits, work share benefits, and paid leave changes.
WMC CARES Act Summary
Business-Related Tax Provisions in the CARES Act
Small Business Owners Guide to the CARES Act

Safer at Home Goes into Effect March 25 for Wisconsin
View the press release here
View the order here
What is considered an essential business or operation? Learn more here.

Treasury and IRS Issue Guidance on Deferring Tax Payments Due to COVID-19 Outbreak
On March 18, the U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued guidance allowing all individual and other non-corporate tax filers to defer up to $1 million of federal income tax (including self-employment tax) payments due on April 15, 2020, until July 15, 2020, without penalties or interest. Read the press release here.

COVID-19 Legislative Updates from Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce

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