COVID-19 Business Resources
Below is our best effort to compile a list of resources that are available to businesses seeking help from the effects of COVID-19. We are adding to this list each day as we become aware of additional programs and information. If you have or know of a resource that needs to be added to this list, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the information, and it will be added as soon as possible.
LAST UPDATED 08/21/2020 AT 10:37AM
Martin County Primary Contact: Charles Banks, Martin Community College Small Business Center, 252-789-0202, Charles.email@example.com.
Regional Support: Small Business Technology & Development Center, East Carolina University, (252) 737-1385, http://www.sbtdc.org/offices/ecu/ The SBTDC also has a COVID 19 webpage: http://www.sbtdc.org/coronavirus/#
State Hotline: Business Link North Carolina (BLNC) at 800.228.8443, M-F, 8:30 am – 4:00 pm. BLNC staff will connect your business to the appropriate organization for assistance. “Se Habla Español.”
Preparing to Reopen Your Business
- CountonMeNC.org . This is a great tool for all businesses – it is both training and marketing for your business that was created the State’s Tourism Department, NC Lodging & Restaurant Association and statewide organizations. It certifies that you are following safety practices and can be used as a marketing and promotional tool. For each business/organization in Martin County that takes the free “Count on Me NC” class to safely reopen, the Chamber will stop by and hold a mini ribbon cutting celebrating a reopening. This is a great way to gain publicity and share with our community and visitors that you are open and implementing safe practices. Contact the Chamber for more information 252-792-4131 or https://www.martinncchamber.com/.
- The Governor’s Three-Phase Plan.This May 5 press release updates the governor’s stay-at-home order, including allowing North Carolina to move into Phase 1 of easing certain coronavirus restrictions.
- N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. Business can find the latest information on COVID-19 in N.C. by visiting the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services website. The site includes links to specialized advice for specific industries including meat and poultry processingand others.
- Protecting Your Business from COVID-19. This guide from the National Institute of Standards and Technologycan help businesses prepare for the impacts of COVID-19 and protect their facility and employees from exposure.
- CDC Posters and Flyers for Your Business. This link provides free downloadable materialsyou can print and display in your workplace. They were developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to support COVID-19 safety recommendations and are available in multiple languages.
- EPA Information on Disinfectants for Use Against COVID-19. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency websiteprovides helpful information that includes a list of disinfectants that meet EPA standards for use against the virus.
- Responding to a COVID-19 Exposure at Your Business. Businesses can download this checklistof what to do if they suspect a COVID-19 exposure has occurred at their facility. The advice is based on CDC recommendations. The business should be sure to refer to North Carolina state recommendations as well.
- OSHA Guidance for Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed the 35-page “Guidance for Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19,” which can be downloaded here.
- OSHA Record–Keeping Requirements for COVID-19. This link highlightsOSHA standards and directives (instructions for compliance officers) that may apply to worker exposure to COVID-19.
- CDC’s “Plan, Prepare, and Respond” Site for Businesses: This CDC websiteoffers many helpful links, including updated guidance to help prevent workplace exposure, a page answering common questions from businesses, and more.
- Guidance for Restaurants. The NC Restaurant and Lodging Association has provided this guideon best practices and procedures for restaurants preparing to reopen.
- Operation Open Doors Checklist for Retailers. The National Retail Federation has issued a checklistfor reopening, encouraging restaurants to work with their legal and financial advisers to adapt recommendations to their specific circumstances.
- NC Retail Merchants Association Website. This website updates regularly to provide industry-specific information for North Carolina retailers managing operations during COVID-19, including webinars, signage to display, details on requirements vs. recommendations, and more.
- S. Food and Drug Administration Food Safety Website. The FDA’s Food Safety and Coronavirus Disease websitehas a wealth of information regarding food safety for consumers as well as businesses and workers in farming and in food production, processing, and retail settings.
- S Department of Agriculture Website. The USDA websitehas a list of frequently asked questions related to COVID–19, operations of the USDA’s Animal, Plant and Health Inspection Service, and more.
Loans and Financial Resources
Facebook Grants for Black-Owned Businesses
Facebook allocated an additional $100 million investment to support Black-owned businesses, creators and nonprofits in the US. Of that, we’re allocating $40 million in grants to support 10,000 Black-owned businesses in the US. Starting today, any majority Black-owned business with 50 or fewer employees can apply for a grant. We know every day counts, so we’re partnering with Accenture and the Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO) to get these grants to Black-owned businesses quickly. Businesses can visit facebook.com/BlackBusinessGrants for more details about the program and how to apply.
Facebook also opened grant applications for Black creators a few weeks ago – dedicating $25 million to support the next generation of Black voices on Facebook and Instagram in the US. The program will provide them with access to funding, education, development resources and local activities to help them grow their community and establish a business across our apps. Creators who are interested can apply at facebook.com/creators/bcp#apply.
NC Department of Commerce Job Retention Grant
Deadline is Sept. 1, 2020. Application can be found here https://www.nccommerce.com/grants-incentives/disaster-recovery/job-retention-grant-jrg
An employer, including both private businesses and certain types of nonprofits, may be eligible for a grant under this program if it meets all of the following conditions:
- It employs at least ninety percent (90%) of the number of full-time employees during the COVID-19 period (March 1, 2020 – May 31, 2020) in North Carolina as it employed in North Carolina for the pay period ending on or about February 28, 2020.
- It demonstrates that it experienced an economic loss in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic as follows:
- For a business, its sales for the COVID-19 period (March 1, 2020 – May 31, 2020) are at least ten percent (10%) below its sales for the same period in the preceding calendar year.
- For a nonprofit, its gross receipts for the COVID-19 period (March 1, 2020 – May 31, 2020) are at least ten percent (10%) below its gross receipts for the same period in the preceding calendar year.
- It did not participate in the federal Paycheck Protection Program, the federal Main Street Lending Program, or the North Carolina Rapid Recovery Loan Program.
Eligible Applicant Type
These classes of businesses or non-profit organizations can apply for a Job Retention Grant.
- A publicly held business
- A privately held business that has at least one W-2 employee and is subject to state income tax
- Nonprofit organizations, of which no part of the net earnings inures to the benefit of any private stockholder or individual. These non-profit types include:
- Generally, 501(c)(3) nonprofits – Cemetery corporations and corporations organized for religious, charitable, scientific, literary, or educational purposes, or for the prevention of cruelty to children or animals.
- Generally, 501 (c)(7) nonprofits – Clubs organized and operated exclusively for pleasure, recreation, and other nonprofitable purposes.
- Business leagues, chambers of commerce, merchants’ associations, or boards of trade not organized for profit. (generally, 501(c)(6) nonprofits)
IMPORTANT NOTE: Applications for this type of nonprofit are being accepted on a provisional basis. This type of nonprofit is not currently eligible for the JRG program, according to current law. However, the N.C. General Assembly has indicated an interest in making this type of nonprofit eligible. So, while we will accept an application from this type of nonprofit, it will only receive a grant if the statute is amended to make them eligible.
INC. Magazine Resource Page of Grants and Loans for Small Businesses
Several companies like Amazon and Google are extending a hand to small-business owners navigating the coronavirus crisis. Free Tools, Resources, and Financial Help for Business Owners Hit by Covid-19 can be found here.
US Chamber of Commerce Grant Program
Small businesses are the foundation of our communities and our economy. Employing nearly half the American workforce, companies like yours keep our neighborhoods running and make them feel like home. Funded by corporate and philanthropic partners, the Save Small Business Fund is a collective effort to provide $5,000 grants to as many small employers as we can. Click here to see if you are eligible. THIS PROGRAM IS NOW CLOSED.
Federal Reserve Main Street Lending Program
The Federal Reserve has announced that it is establishing a Main Street Lending Program (Program) to support lending to small and medium-sized businesses that were in sound financial condition before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Program will operate through three facilities: the Main Street New Loan Facility (MSNLF), the Main Street Priority Loan Facility (MSPLF), and the Main Street Expanded Loan Facility (MSELF). Term sheets for each facility and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (PDF) providing more information regarding eligibility and conditions can be found below. As detailed further in the term sheets, U.S. businesses may be eligible for loans if they meet either of the following conditions: (1) the business has 15,000 employees or fewer; or (2) the business had 2019 revenues of $5 billion or less. Loans issued under the Program would have a four-year maturity, and principal and interest payments on the loans will be deferred for one year. Eligible lenders may originate new loans (under MSNLF and MSPLF) or increase the size of (or “upsize”) existing loans (under MSELF) made to eligible businesses.
NC Rapid Recovery Loan Program
NOTE: This program has reopened since the passage of HB1043 on May 4, which appropriated another $125 million to this fund. The Golden Leaf Board modified the terms of the existing NC COVID-19 Rapid Recovery Loan Program to align with the provisions of the bill. Effective today, loans made from the program to small businesses will include a limit on the number of employees per business, a minimum interest rate for the first six months of the loan term, and an increased time for repayment.
The North Carolina COVID-19 Rapid Recovery Lending program (founded by a consortium of funders including Golden Leaf and Thread Capital) supports North Carolina small businesses and family farms as they recover from the economic impact of COVID-19. This rapid recovery loan helps small businesses bridge the gap between when crisis strikes and when federal loans, insurance payouts, and other relief funds are approved, or businesses have time to recover. This is not a grant program. Applicants may receive zero percent interest for the first six months. Turnaround is no more than 4 business days. Apply here https://ncrapidrecovery.org/
GoFundMe for Small Businesses
The GoFundMe Small Business Relief Initiative is intended to support our local businesses facing financial loss. Make a difference today by donating or starting a fundraiser. Are you a small business owner? Search and claim your fundraiser. Start a fundraiser if you can’t find a GoFundMe for your business. Small businesses may also apply for a matching grant from the Small Business Relief Fund. GoFundMe has partnered with Yelp and Intuit QuickBooks to create a Small Business Relief Fund to help small businesses negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Each of these three companies has contributed $500,000 to the Fund, and it’s receiving additional donations from the public. The fund will provide $500 grants to any small business that raises $500 on GoFundMe. Be sure to read all the fine print as there is a small processing fee.
Small Business Association
**Which loan should I choose? Click here for comparison
Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs)
Note: the application deadline has been extended to August 8, 2020
UPDATE 6/16/2020 – The SBA has re-opened up the program to ALL eligible applicants, not just agriculture-related businesses.
NOTE for EIDL Loan Advances – Per SBA guidance provided in a letter to applicants on April 13, 2020: “To ensure that the greatest number of applicants can receive assistance during this challenging time, the amount of your Advance will be determined by the number of your pre-disaster (i.e., as of January 31, 2020) employees. The Advance will provide $1,000 per employee up to a maximum of $10,000.”
The SBA has approved the North Carolina Governor’s request for a disaster declaration, and you may begin the application process. Applicants are encouraged to apply online: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/Account/Login?ReturnUrl=%2Fela%2FLoanApplication%2FStartApplication
- ADVANCE AVAILABLE : On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the CARES Act, which provided additional assistance for small business owners and non-profits, including the opportunity to get up to a $10,000 Advance on an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). To qualify for the Advance on your EIDL, visit SBA.gov/Disaster to fill out a new, streamlined application. The Advance may be available even if your EIDL application was declined or is still pending, and will be forgiven. To apply for the Advance, you need to submit a new application even if you previously submitted an EIDL application. Applying for the Advance will not impact the status or slow your existing application.
- SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
- These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
- SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s ability to repay.
- For additional information, please contact Charles Banks at Martin Community College, 252-789-0202, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit SBA.gov/disaster , 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail email@example.com.
The US Chamber of Commerce offers some good guidance for FAQ’s for this: https://www.uschamber.com/sites/default/files/023595_comm_corona_virus_smallbiz_loan_final_revised.pdf
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loans
Updated Rules Issued 5/26/2020
Update 8/5/2020 – New FAQ’s have been issued. Click here https://www.sba.gov/document/
- Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) borrowers prepare and submit loan forgiveness applications as provided for in the CARES Act;
- PPP lenders who will be making the loan forgiveness decisions; and
- Inform borrowers and lenders of SBA’s process for reviewing PPP loan applications and loan forgiveness applications.
Loan Review Procedures & Borrower/Lender Responsibilities:
This interim final rule informs borrowers and lenders of SBA’s process for reviewing PPP loan applications and loan forgiveness applications.
*Note: with additional $322 billion funding this program reopened Monday, April 27. The new loan program will help small businesses with their payroll and other business operating expenses. It will provide critical capital to businesses without collateral requirements, personal guarantees, or SBA fees – all with a 100% guarantee from SBA. All loan payments will be deferred for six months. The SBA will forgive the portion of the loan proceeds that are used to cover the first eight weeks of payroll costs, rent, utilities, and mortgage interest.
- Eligible recipients may qualify for a loan up to $10 million determined by 8 weeks of prior average payroll plus an additional 25% of that amount.
- Loan payments will be deferred for six months.
- If you maintain your workforce, SBA will forgive the portion of the loan proceeds that are used to cover the first 8 weeks of payroll and certain other expenses following loan origination.
More program details can be found here:
A list of SBA lenders in North Carolina can be found here:
This is also a good article describing combination EIDL and PPP loans and how to navigate their likely guidelines upon finalization. https://www.businessreport.com/newsletters/should-disaster-loan-applicants-wait-for-the-paycheck-protection-program-to-roll-out-first
SBA Debt Relief
The SBA Debt Relief program will provide a reprieve to small businesses as they overcome the challenges created by this medical event. Under this program, the SBA will pay the principal and interest of new 7(a) loans issued prior to September 27, 2020. The SBA will also pay the principal and interest of current 7(a) loans for a period of six months.
SBA Express Bridge Loans
This program allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork. SBA Express Bridge Loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue many are experiencing and can be a term loans or used to bridge the gap while applying for direct SBA Disaster Assistance. Loans up to $25,000 with fast turnaround that will be repaid in full or part by the EIDL loan. A list of SBA Express lenders can be found on the SBA District Office page https://www.sba.gov/offices/district/nc/charlotte
FEMA Reimbursement Program for Governments and Nonprofits
FEMA Grant Reimbursement Program has opened up the program to Assisting Livings, Day Care Centers, Nursing Facilities and many non-profits organizations in addition to units of government.
The State of North Carolina is requesting all applicants (sub-recipients) register in the FEMA Grants Portal for the COVID19 Event and future disasters, even if you have no cost incurred.
For the COVID19 event, we are also requesting that applicants Submit a Request for Reimbursement in the Grants Portal, once you are registered. Here is some guidance on the COVID19 event: https://www.ncdps.gov/our-organization/emergency-management/disaster-recovery/covid-19-public-assistance. We realize several applicants have access to additional funds for the COVID19 event, such as the CARES ACT funds. We want you to be able to use these monies first, however, the FEMA Reimbursement Program began January 20, 2020 and the CARE ACT funds started March 1, 2020.
Here is a link with more information on the CARE ACT funds: https://www.nc.gov/agencies/ncpro and the email address is NCPRO@osbm.nc.gov. If you have any expenses prior to the CARES ACT funds and any funds after you exhaust all your funds from all sources, you can claim additional cost via the FEMA Grants Reimbursement Program. Currently, there is no end date during this COVID19 event, so if you have expenses in December 2020, you can still claim those expenses. There is a threshold minimum of $3,300, so we suggest, you keep track of all your expenses for this program. Helen Bunch Helen.Bunch@ncdps.gov is Martin County’s contact for COVID19 and any future events.
NC Department of Agriculture Hotline
The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services offers online resources for farmers, agribusiness operators and others who work in the agricultural industry to assist with COVID-19 concerns. The department has also activated a hotline for questions not answered by the online resources, which can be found at www.ncagr.gov or by emailing Covid19Questions@ncagr.gov. The toll-free number is 1-866-747-9823. An operator will be available on the hotline between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m, Monday through Friday. Due to expected call volume, callers are encouraged to check the website first or send an email for faster responses.
USDA Federal Resources Guide
The USDA has created a one-stop-shop of federal programs that can be used by rural communities, organizations and individuals impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide (PDF, 349 KB) is a first-of-its-kind resource for rural leaders looking for federal funding and partnership opportunities to help address this pandemic.
RAFI-USA Grant Program
RAFI-USA will be distributing emergency mini-grants of $500 to farmers who are drastically impacted by market sales disruptions caused by COVID-19. The application for RAFI-USA emergency funds has not been released. The link in goes to a brief inquiry form. If you’re a NC farmer and would like to receive updates for when the application goes live, you can fill out the form at
NC Restaurant Workers Relief Fund
On Tuesday, March 17, 2020, restaurants and bars throughout North Carolina were ordered to close dining area service to the public in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The effects were devastating and immediate. There are now thousands of North Carolinians from the restaurant and hospitality industry without jobs or a source of income. You can DONATE or apply to RECEIVE help here https://www.ncrestaurantrelief.com/.
Highlights of the CARES Act provided by law firm Smith Anderson here
Are you an industry that is continuing to operate?
- What are the new rules regarding expanded family and medical leave for my employees?
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act requires certain employers to provide their employees with expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division administers and enforces the new law’s paid leave requirements. These provisions will apply from the effective date through December 31, 2020. More details are available here, including FAQs.
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Record Keeping Requirements for COVID-19
This link https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/covid-19/standards.html highlights OSHA standards and directives (instructions for compliance officers) and other related information that may apply to worker exposure to novel coronavirus, COVID-19
- Food Safety Guidance, NC State University, Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Member https://www.the-center.org/getattachment/Coronavirus-Update/COVID-19-Resources/COVID-19-Resources/COVID-19-Food-Safety-FAQ.pdf.aspx?lang=en-US
- FAQ on COVID-19 and Food Safety, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) https://www.usda.gov/coronavirus
- Protecting Your Facility, MEP Network
Best practices for protecting your facility and employees from exposure. http://www.mfgfoundation.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/MEPNN-Protecting-your-Business-from-COVID-19.pdf
- Responding to Exposure in your Facility, MEP Network
Serves as a checklist for what you should do if you suspect a COVID-19 exposure has occurred at your facility. http://www.mfgfoundation.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/MEPNN-Responding-to-a-COVID-19-Exposure-at-your-Business.pdf
- Posters and Flyers to Post in Plant, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Printable material to post internally and externally for continued operations click here.
- Manufacturing Surface Disinfectant List, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Information on Disinfectants to use against COVID-19 https://www.epa.gov/coronavirus
- Enterprise Risk Management, NCSU Poole College of Management
Using ERM Principles to Help Navigate Risks Triggered by COVID-19 click here
Childcare Centers and Childcare Information
- Are you a child care provider and are in need of supplies (paper towels, toilet paper, bleach, cleaning supplies, etc.)? Please call the Martin-Pitt Partnership for Children at 252-758-8885 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Are you an emergency or critical worker in need of childcare? The State of North Carolina is urging all families who can keep their children at home, with a responsible adult, to do so. Emergency and first responders and critical workers needing referrals to child care programs that are open and operating for children ages birth to twelve should call the statewide toll–free number, 1-888-600-1685, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Those who can be served include: emergency and first responders; hospital staff; nursing and adult group home staff; frontline healthcare providers; child care program staff; families of children who are homeless, receiving child welfare services, and/or in unstable or unsafe living arrangements; and others who are working to keep North Carolinians safe and healthy.
Apply for Essential Business Status
UPATE: The process and contact has changed.
Effective Monday, March 30 at 5 pm Gov. Cooper has issued a statewide Stay-At-Home order for non-essential businesses. The lists of essential businesses are much more extensive than earlier orders and the link is below to the Order. If a company is essential they do not need any type of paperwork for their employees to go to work.
Governor Cooper Stay-At-Home order: https://files.nc.gov/governor/documents/files/EO121-Stay-at-Home-Order-3.pdf
If a company is uncertain if they are essential, they may make an essential business request with the NC Dept. of Revenue here https://www.ncdor.gov/home/ncdor-actions-covid-19/covid-19-essential-businesses
If a company made a previous request to be considered an essential business it is not valid and they must start again. Again, a company must ask with the new process in the essential business link above if the company is not sure and wants to get an official State decision.
For a good summary, Ward & Smith offers this https://www.wardandsmith.com/articles/dept-of-homeland-security-identifies-critical-industries-plus-guidance-on-ncs-emergency-re-entry-certification-program.
Personal Protective Equipment Manufacturing General Information
- Are you a manufacturer willing to help with production of finished PPE or materials? Is your business able to pivot to manufacturing PPE equipment? Manufacturers interested in contributing to textile PPE (gowns, masks, gloves, etc.) can contact the Carolina Textile District (CTD) https://www.carolinatextiledistrict.com/covid19-response for help in transitioning their production to prototype and producing medical supplies during the COVID-19 crisis. Contact Sara Chester. Carolina Textile District for more info at email@example.com or by phone at 828-674-3141.
- Are you a NC Manufacturer that can provide assistance producing critical healthcare products? Go to https://ncsu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_7R1zT6a3ffz96Hr and complete the form. The NC Manufacturing Extension Partnership will share the information with state and federal leaders who are seeking needed items. This includes parts or production of respirators.
- Looking for a site that facilitates connections for supplies and resources? BIO created the Coronavirus Hub https://hub.bio.org/ to connect companies with capacity and resources with those that need them, including medical research centers, biopharmaceutical companies, testing developers and testing sites requesting supplies. The new hub will enable users to post requests for urgently needed items, as well as posting availability of supplies and capacity.
- Importing materials from international locations? If your company is considering importing needed items or raw materials from overseas and you would like assistance vetting foreign sellers, please reach out to Michael Cole, International Trade Manager at the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina at firstname.lastname@example.org .
- Looking to sell medical supplies to the federal government? Go to FEMA https://www.fema.gov/coronavirus/how-to-help and select the right option under “How To Help – Private Sector”.
Supply Chain Disruptions
Find the Manufacturer or Supplier your business needs at https://www.manufacturednc.com/ or sign up to register.
Facebook Small Business Grants Program
Facebook is offering $100 million in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries due to the effects of COVID-19. www.facebook.com/business/boost/grants?ref=eml
RAFI-USA will be distributing emergency mini-grants of $500 to farmers who are drastically impacted by market sales disruptions caused by COVID-19. The application for RAFI-USA emergency funds has not been released. The link in goes to a brief inquiry form. If you’re a NC farmer and would like to receive updates for when the application goes live, you can fill out the form at
United Way COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund
United Way Worldwide has announced that it has established the COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund to support affected communities and help the most vulnerable populations receive critical financial and social service support during the global crisis. Visit the following link to either donate or apply https://www.unitedway.org/recovery/covid19?utm_source=press&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=covid19&utm_content=learnmore
Business Counseling Services and Layoff Aversion Strategies
Small Business Center Network
The Small Business Center Network is here to assist you and your business with resources and assistance related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The SBCN works in partnership with Federal, State and Local organizations to provide the information and strategies to help your business move forward. Charles Banks, Martin Community College, 252-789-0202, Charles.email@example.com.
Small Business and Technology Development Center-East Carolina University
The Small Business and Technology Development Center provides management counseling and educational services to small and mid-sized businesses, including those in distress. Most of the SBTDC’s services are free of charge, and all are confidential. (252) 737-1385 http://www.sbtdc.org/offices/ecu/
Business Edge Services
Business Edge is a statewide program through the NC Department of Commerce that offers a series of layoff aversion strategies and activities designed to help North Carolina employers prevent or minimize job losses. 800.562.6333 (Choose Option 2 – Business Services) or email DWS_BusinessServices@nccommerce.com . Website https://www.nccommerce.com/business/workforce-development/consulting-services-staffing-business-edge
Filing an Unemployment Insurance claim
NC Division of Employment Security
The NC Division of Employment Security (DES) has received official guidance from the US Department of Labor on implementing the three unemployment programs under the CARES Act. DES is working to modify their systems to make sure people receive accurate payments.
DES intends to implement the programs in the following order:
- Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC):This program provides an additional $600 in weekly unemployment insurance benefits to eligible claimants. DES is currently testing their system for this program and anticipate making the first payments by April 17, 2020.
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA): This program provides unemployment compensation for individuals not eligible for regular unemployment insurance or any extensions to unemployment insurance. This will provide benefits to eligible self-employed workers and independent contractors. DES anticipates the system will be ready to accept claims for this assistance around April 25, 2020.
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC):This program provides up to 13 additional weeks of benefits for those who have exhausted their state unemployment benefits. A definitive timeline for completing system updates for this program is not yet available.
Individuals due any benefits prior to the full implementation of these programs, you will be paid retroactively. For additional information, visit the DES website.
Tax and Insurance Information
IRS Employee Retention Credit
IRS Employee Retention Credit provides a fully refundable tax credit for 50 percent of wages, up to $10,000, for each employee kept on the payroll by businesses that have taken a financial hit because of the pandemic. The IRS published guidelines for businesses that want to apply for the credit, which is applied against the employers’ share of payroll taxes.
My business cannot afford the paid leave requirements passed by Congress.
H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (known as Package 2) requires employers to provide temporary paid leave to employees who cannot attend work due to personal medical needs, caregiving needs, or childcare needs. Included in H.R. 6201 is a refundable payroll tax credit to reimburse employers – dollar fordollar – for expenses they incur for paid sick leave and family and medical leave as well. Additionally, small businesses under 50 employees may apply for a waiver from the Department of Labor (DOL) to exempt them from paid leave requirements if it would place them in significant financial hardship.
My business cannot afford the cash-flow issues that paid leave and a refundable tax credit would create.
In a press release, Department of the Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced, “To protect businesses concerned about cash flow, the Treasury will use its regulatory authority to advance funds to employers in a number of ways. Employers will be able to use cash deposited with the IRS to pay sick leave wages. Additionally, for businesses that would not have sufficient taxes to draw from, Treasury will use its regulatory authority to make advances to small business to cover such costs.”
Tax Filing Extension
On March 17, 2020, Department of the Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced a three-month extension for tax filings. Specifically, this allows individuals to defer filing up to $1 million worth of earnings without incurring interest or penalties. Likewise, businesses are allowed to defer up to $10 million. This is designed to reduce burdens on small businesses and business owners, many of whom pass through their taxes on their individual returns.
N.C. Department of Revenue Special Penalty Relief
In response to the federal payment relief, the N.C. Department of Revenue will not impose a penalty upon individuals and businesses who do not pay their outstanding State income tax liability on tax returns due on April 15, 2020, so long as the taxpayers pay the tax due by July 15, 2020.
Guidance and Other Resources
N.C. Dept. of Health and Human Services
COVID-19 Recommendations for Businesses and Employers can be found here https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-response-north-carolina/businesses-employers
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers is here https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/guidance-business-response.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fspecific-groups%2Fguidance-business-response.html
Human Resources Guidance and Policy
Capital Associated Industries provides resources to guide and support NC employers and has created at COVID 19 Command Center for Q & A regarding workplace issues https://www.capital.org/s/coronavirus.
Nonprofit and Government Assistance
Truist Cares Initiative
Truist Financial Corporation’s Truist Cares initiative supports the short and long-term needs of communities, clients and teammates in response to the COVID19 pandemic. Truist Cares charitable grants will be made to our community partners to support and expand technology initiatives and programs with an emphasis on youth, seniors and small businesses to rebuild, restore and create thriving communities.
- Partnering with organizations that provide broadband services to communities in need or technology devices for students to learn at home
- Engaging teammates in virtual volunteerism and supporting underserved populations. Partnering with food banks to ensure low-income students have access to food or scholarships to the children of individuals with income disruption
- Delivering medical supplies and meals to the elderly. Partnering with organizations that provide food services, medical supplies and other senior assistance initiatives
- Providing funding and technical assistance to local and regional small businesses. Partnering with organizations that provide financial support and/or technical assistance to small businesses that are disrupted
- Helping nonprofits assess needs and expand services to at-risk populations. Partnering with the company’s sponsorship partners to support hourly workers affected by postponed or canceled sports and entertainment events.
Nonprofit organizations may apply for grants to support programs that meet the Truist Cares areas of focus. Please log in to the Truist Foundation website at https://www.truist.com/truist-foundation . When completing the application, choose “COVID19 Response” under “Program Area.” Questions? Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Martin County Economic Development Corporation
415 East Blvd #130, Williamston, NC 27892