Merchant News COVID-19 as of 01/18/21
Inslee announces “Healthy Washington–Roadmap to Recovery”: Jay Inslee announced “Healthy Washington — Roadmap to Recovery,” a COVID-19 phased recovery plan with only 2 Phases (for now). Beginning on January 11th, the state will follow a regional recovery approach with every region starting in Phase 1. There will be eight regions of four or more counties, divided according to available health care services based on metrics such as hospitalizations, case data and disease mobility. King County is in the King/Pierce/Snohomish region.
See all of the guidelines here on the COVID-19 reopening page.
A region’s phase will be determined by the Department of Health (DOH) in response to four metric requirements. The final metrics for regions will be calculated on Friday, January 8th and will be effective January 11th.
To go forward from Phase 1 to Phase 2, regions must meet all four metrics:
- Decreasing trend in two-week rate of COVID-19 cases per 100K population (decrease >10%)
- Decreasing trend in two-week rate new COVID-19 hospital admission rates per 100K population (decrease >10%)
- ICU occupancy (total — COVID-19 and non-COVID-19) of less than 90%
- COVID-19 test positivity rate of <10%
To remain in Phase 2, regions must meet at least 3 metrics:
- Decreasing or flat trend in two-week rate of COVID-19 cases per 100K population
- Decreasing or flat trend in two-week rate new COVID-19 hospital admission rates per 100K population
- ICU occupancy (total — COVID-19 and non-COVID-19) of less than 90%
- COVID-19 test positivity rate of <10%.
Open Air and Outdoor Seating Requirements
The following four alternatives to indoor seating increase outdoor airflow to reduce risk, but do not
replace other COVID‐19 prevention requirements. Businesses using the alternatives are required to
follow the industry‐specific guidance documents, maintain table seating at least six feet apart from
neighboring table seating, and ensure customers and staff always wear cloth face coverings except
when consuming food or beverages while seated. Any establishment adhering to the following
requirements is deemed to be operating outdoors. Consequently, general outdoor requirements for the
industry will apply.
Regions that fail to meet two or more of the above metrics will be moved back to Phase 1. The metrics for each region will be updated on the Risk Assessment Dashboard every Friday. Dependent on a region’s metrics, DOH will move into a new phase — forward or backward — the following Monday. There’s no directive currently as to what happens after Phase 2.
As a business owner, it can be tough to keep up with changing guidelines during COVID-19. To help keep your business running and your staff healthy, the City has compiled State guidelines and resources into accessible toolkits in multiple languages. In these toolkits, you’ll find checklists, financial resources, printable flyers, and more. We will continue to update these toolkits and relay information from the State as soon as we have it. Please note that Businesses can only open once they can meet all requirements in the guidance outlined on the State Department of Health’s website. All guidance is subject to change at any time. Click here for all the toolkits, including the occupancy load chart.
COVID-19 Merchant Supply Page can be found here.
Farmers Market Site Map: WSFM COVID-19 Layout 5.3
Self-Employed Unemployment Information
• Places an immediate moratorium on small business and non-profit tenant evictions in the City of Seattle for non-payment of rent or due to holdover by the small business/non-profit tenant beyond the expiration of the lease’s term. A “small business” is generally one with 50 or fewer employees per establishment or premises. Landlords are forbidden from enforcing contractual or statutory remedies to remove a small business or nonprofit tenant from its premises or to terminate its lease.
• Requires the Landlord to endeavor to enter into payment plans or workout agreements with the small business/non-profit.
• Prohibits Landlords from charging late fees or interest due to late payment of rent by the small business/non-profit.
• Lasts until the earlier of May 16, 2020 or termination of the civil emergency, and may be extended by the Mayor.
PPP and EIDL Programs
Small businesses in many Washington counties are now eligible to apply for low-interest U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loans to offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. More counties are likely to become eligible in Washington state. Check the SBA website for the most updated information. This is one of the first SBA disaster declarations in the country related to COVID-19.
Ways to contribute
- West Seattle-specific spreadsheet [via NextDoor]
- COVID-19 Survival Fund for the People [COVID-19 Mutual Aid Solidarity Network]
- COVID-19 Mutual Aid Solidarity Network – “Offer Support” volunteer form [COVID-19 Mutual Aid Solidarity Network]
- Seattle Artists Relief Fund Amid COVID-19 [Ijeoma Oluo]
- COVID-19 Artist Trust Relief Fund [Artist Trust]
- Seattle Hospitality Emergency Fund [Jessica Tousignant & Candace Whitney Morris]
- COVID-19 Crisis Fund [Social Justice Fund]
- CID Restaurants and Other Small Businesses Relief Fund [SCIDpda]
- UW Laboratory Medicine Tackling COVID-19 [UW Virology Lab]
- Blood donor center locations [BloodWorks Northwest]
- City of Seattle Protective Equipment Donation Site [City of Seattle; for donating unused masks, gowns, and gloves]
- Your Supplies Save Lives [several major local unions; specifically for donating unused masks]
Financial resources for impacted businesses and individuals
- COVID-19 Mutual Aid Solidarity Network – “Request Support” form (includes links to versions in Spanish, Amharic, and Tigrinya)
- Member Assistance Program [BECU; 0% 24-month personal loans of up to $2,500]
- List of schools offering free grab & go meals for kids [KING 5]
- List of emergency funds for artists [Artist Trust]
- COVID-19 Artist Trust Relief Fund [Artist Trust; grants of $500 – $5,000 to individuals]
- Seattle Artists Relief Fund Amid COVID-19 request form [Ijeoma Oluo & LANGSTON; $100 – $1,000 grants to individuals]
- COVID-19 Arts Emergency Relief Fund [ArtsFund; for organizations only]
- A List of Resources to Help Seattle’s Small Businesses Amid the COVID-19 Crisis [Seattle Met]
- Unemployed Due to Coronavirus Pandemic? Here’s Where to Get Help [United Way of King County]
- Resources for WA State Businesses & Workers Impacted by COVID-19 [business.wa.gov]
- Financial resources for Washington residents impacted by COVID-19 [Washington State Department of Financial Institutions]
- Information for workers and businesses affected by COVID-19 [Washington State Employment Security Department]
- Department of Revenue 2019 Novel Coronavirus Update
- Coronavirus Tax Relief [IRS]
NOTE: Most of the above links came from Sol’s Civic Minute, a newsletter by Sol Villareal.
03/18/20 Square Community Resources
Resources for Your Business and Employees
The Governor has responded swiftly with expanded benefits programs and a resource list. These include programs such as SharedWork, which provides partial wage replacement to avoid layoffs, and standby, which suspends the job-search requirement for workers to collect unemployment benefits if an employer must make temporary layoffs. You can see a chart of available benefits for various COVID-19 scenarios here.
The County has been doing outreach through its Small Business Task Force for the COVID-19 Community Mitigation Branch of the Pandemic Advisory Task Force.
The Mayor has set up a business task force to help with the City’s response to the economic impact of the outbreak. I will be representing the Chamber and our members on that task force. She also announced an initial recovery package, which includes expanding the Small Business Stabilization Fund, tax deferral, utility relief, and assistance to access SBA loans. You can view the elements of that package here.
Our Congressional delegation has been receptive to ideas that would help businesses during the crisis. We are creating a list of ideas that we will propose to our delegation. If you have ideas for help from the federal government, please send them to Mackenzie Chase ().