The health and safety of our members, community, and partners is our highest priority during this unprecedented time. The S.O.A.R. Chamber has been actively following the Coronavirus (COVID-19) developments, and we are evaluating actions daily, to best identify how to serve you. Below you will find important information with links that we have compiled to assist with streamlining this information as it is provided.
- Guidance For Employers – How to plan and respond to the Coronavirus
- Workplace Tips – Tips and resources for employers to combat the virus
- Corporate Aid Tracker – How businesses are helping nationwide
- Survey on Business Impact – Results from the American Chamber of Commerce in China
- Resilience in a Box – A toolbox to help businesses put a plan in place (created by the US Chamber Foundation in partnership with the UPS Foundation)
- More Resources – Including consolidated, business-specific guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Work Share – The Governor’s Unemployment Insurance Executive Order expands the State’s Work Share program. Employers are encouraged to implement the program that permits employers to maintain operational productivity during declines in regular business activity instead of laying off workers. More information about Work Share can be found here. It’s important to note that the E.O. now allows all employers to take advantage of the program, regardless of whether the employer’s reserve in the employer’s experience account as of the most recent computation date preceding the date of the employer’s application is a positive number.
Unemployment Benefits – Eligible employees should apply for unemployment benefits online at Michigan.gov/UIA or 1-866-500-0017. A factsheet on how to apply for benefits can be found here.
Additional unemployment resources for employees can be found here and for workers here.
Small Business Loans – At our urging, Governor Whitmer is seeking additional solutions for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Earlier this month, Congress passed legislation that makes $1 billion available to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide low-interest loans to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and nonprofits that have suffered substantial economic losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor has informed SBA that she is seeking an Economic Injury Disaster Loan Declaration for the state and has initiated the process to receive the declaration from SBA. Once granted, small businesses in qualifying areas will be able to access low-interest loans through the SBA. In the interim, we are encouraging small businesses that could benefit from SBA loans to start collecting the information they’ll need to complete and submit their application. Examples of information needed can be found here. For additional information or to obtain help preparing the loan application in advance of the declaration, please contact the Michigan SBA offices in Detroit or Grand Rapids.
MEDC – The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s (MEDC) call center stands ready to support businesses looking for assistance through other available state programs. For more information, visit MEDC’s website: www.michiganbusiness.org or call 888.522.0103. The Michigan Small Business Development Center can also provide resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Visit their website https://sbdcmichigan.org/small-business-covid19/ for additional information.
FEMA Aid – The Governor has requested that President Trump issue a Major Disaster Declaration so that Individual Assistance and Disaster Unemployment Assistance through FEMA may be made available to additional Michiganders affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus. For those who have questions about the state’s actions to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, please call the COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-535-6136 between 8AM – 5PM daily.
Regardless of your status as a Chamber member, you are a valuable asset to our community and it is our goal to assist everyone at this time. If you have questions about these resources, would like help navigating them, or have other concerns that I can help with, please do not hesitate to reach out.