Connecting with the Government

Update: The U.S. Small Business Administration and Treasury Department announced that the Paycheck Protection Plan (PPP) reopened this week (January 11, 2021) for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers.


This round of the PPP continues to prioritize millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses through March 31, 2021, and by allowing certain existing PPP borrowers to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan.

To promote access to capital, initially only community financial institutions will be able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13. The PPP will open to all participating lenders shortly thereafter.

Click here to learn more about this round of PPP. 


The US Chamber of Commerce has put together a revised Guide to Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Loans to provide you with the latest information and answers to FAQs about the changes that have been made to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) Program as part of the end-of-year pandemic relief package Congress has passed.

Click here to view the U.S. Chamber's new Guide to Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Loans which we will continue to update as more information becomes available. We encourage you to share this with your members and networks as you see fit. 

Updates from the Governor's office:
COVID-19 Reopening Guidance for Businesses and Workers from Governor Inslee's office.

Lost Wages Assistance program payments are now processing - funds should start to reach eligible claimants this week. Payments will be retroactive for all weeks for which the claimant met eligibility requirements. Refer to the Employment Security Department website for details.

Employers affected by COVID-19 may be eligible to apply for an offset of some unemployment benefit charges, which might reduce their 2021 tax rate. This relief applies to unemployment benefits paid in the first two quarters of 2020 to employees who were temporarily laid off as a direct or indirect consequence of COVID-19 and returned to work for the employer after the layoff. Visit the Employment Security Department website for more information.

FCC Emergency Broadband Benefit Program
Congress has tasked the FCC with developing a new $3.2 billion program to help U.S. households that are struggling to pay for internet service during the pandemic. The Emergency Broadband Benefit will provide a discount of up to $50 per month towards broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for those on Tribal lands. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute between $10 and $50 toward the purchase price. Program eligibility details and participating providers will be announced in the coming weeks. Learn more.

Governor Inslee has announced the creation of two funds to help workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Immigrant Relief Fund will provide $40 million to assist Washington residents who are unable to access federal stimulus programs due to their immigration status, and the Food Production Paid Leave Program will provide $3 million of financial resources to certain food production workers who remain home when ill. Additional information and the links to access these resources will be posted when they are available.

Eligibility
Applicants must meet ALL requirements below:
Be 18 years old or older AND
Reside in Washington state AND
Have experienced hardship due to the pandemic AND
Did not receive a federal CARES Act Economic Impact Payment (also known as a “coronavirus stimulus check”) due to immigration status AND
Are not eligible for unemployment insurance during the COVID-19 pandemic due to immigration status.

Application and more information: https://immigrantreliefwa.org/

A monthly Spanish language webinar series presents information specific to Washington small businesses. The series features brief presentations from state and federal partners and open-mic Q&A time. Topics include unemployment insurance, returning employees to work, PPP and EIDL loans, workplace safety, face covering requirements and other topics important to employers.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, & Economic Security Act (CARES) allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known as the Paycheck Protection Plan (PPP), the initiative provides 100% federally guaranteed loans to small businesses.
CARES ACT Questions and Answers
Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources
Franchise Business Requirements and Opportunities

OnwardWa Matches individuals that have lost their jobs as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) to desperately needed help. Our intelligent matching system will pair you with job listings and resources that align with your needs.

Emergency Student Loan Forbearance Those with federal student loans can contact their loan servicer and request their accounts be put into an emergency forbearance which will halt payments for at least 60 days. 

Violations or suspected violations of the governor’s orders regarding evictions can be reported. There are only two reasons for evictions during the Governor Inslee’s moratorium.

Skagit County Commissioners kick start Mortgage Assistance Program: The Skagit County Board of Commissioners released application materials for a new mortgage assistance program to assist low-income homeowners impacted by the COVID-19 economic downturn. The application information is available at www.skagitcounty.net/Departments/Health. Applications must be hand delivered or mail to Skagit Public Health at:
Skagit County Public Health
700 South Second, Rm. 301
Mount Vernon, WA 98273

Washington Governor Jay Inslee Announcements 

Washington State Coronavirus Response For daily updates on the Coronavirus statistics, information on applying for unemployment, and COVID-19 resources in multiple languages. Spanish: Nuevo coronavirus, BienestarWA, Chinese 中文, Russian: Pусский, Vietnamese: Vi-rút Corona Mới, Korean: 한국어,  more translations...