Resources for Business
This webpage, which is updated daily, includes content curated by the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development. We invite you to submit a resource to be included on this page, provide feedback, ask any questions, or provide your information to potentially have your business added to Utah’s ‘essential business’ list should Utahns be asked to shelter in place using this form.
Helping Utah Businesses in a Time of Need
At the request of Gov. Herbert, Derek Miller, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber, is chairing the economic response subcommittee of the Utah Coronavirus Task Force.
Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development Executive Director, Val Hale, is chair of the Task Force subcommittee focused on federal, state and local resources available to Utah’s business community.
This webpage is a curated source of coordinated information, resources and best practices for Utah’s business community. It includes links to, and resources from, many Utah government and nonprofit organizations.
This webpage is a one-stop-shop resource for all Utah corporations, small businesses and entrepreneurs struggling economically because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Along with keeping Utahns healthy, the economic impact of the coronavirus is a primary concern for state leaders, especially the impact on Utah’s small businesses and entrepreneurs.
Utah Leads Together: A Plan for a Health and Economic Recovery
On March 24, 2020, Gov. Herbert released “Utah Leads Together,” a comprehensive task force plan to mitigate the economic consequences of COVID-19. The plan aims to eventually return Utah to the record-setting economic growth it enjoyed before the pandemic. The report and economic playbook include recommendations from dozens of Utah state and industry leaders. If you have questions or comments about this plan, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We recognize the challenges before us. We also see Utah’s potential. Our response to the COVID-19 pandemic can become another example of how Utahns come together to build a better and stronger state for the future.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R.6201)
Congress has passed H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This bill does several things:
- Establish a federal emergency paid leave benefits program for employees taking unpaid pandemic leave
- Expand unemployment benefits and provide grants to states for processing and paying claims
- Require employers to provide paid sick leave to employees
- Establish requirements for providing COVID-19 diagnostic testing at no cost to consumers
- Treat personal respiratory protective devices as covered countermeasures that are eligible for certain liability protections
- Temporarily increase the Medicaid federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP)
The U.S. Department of Treasury proposed three key terms for COVID-19 legislation specific to the Exchange Stabilization Fund, economic impact payments and small business interruption loans. Click here to view the full stage three proposal.
Federal Communication Commission Coronavirus Webpage
The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) is working to ensure that Americans stay connected during the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more here.
Internal Revenue Service
The Internal Revenue Service has revised federal tax filing and payment deadlines. Learn more here.
Senator Mike Lee
Sen. Lee’s office has published a Coronavirus Resources webpage that includes many one-sheets outlining resources for Americans, small and large businesses, and health department resources.
Senator Mitt Romney
Sen. Romney’s office has published a webpage with coronavirus resources for small businesses and frequently asked questions with answers. Check it out here.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has published a Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business Guide and Checklist, which is available here.
U.S. Department of Labor
U.S. Economic Development Administration
A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Economic Development Administration leads the federal economic development agenda by promoting innovation and competitiveness and preparing American regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. The EDA has a webpage dedicated to government response to COVID-19 and vows to help communities preserve their economies during this national emergency.
EDA Revolving Loan Fund
The EDA encourages counties, districts, state agencies and others unable to maintain a pre-COVID-19 economy to apply for a Revolving Loan Fund grant. Existing regulations allow EDA to approve up to an 80% match application, depending on need and availability of funds. Applicants need to fund 20% of the project’s cost, and the EDA grant would cover the remaining 80%.
If you are a government entity or non-profit lending institution that wants to learn more or begin the RFL grant application, contact Trent Thompson, economic development representative for Utah, at 303-844-5452 or email@example.com.
Supplemental Funding from Congress
Once Congress passes supplemental funding, and this is looking more and more likely, there will be other changes to how EDA can provide support. We will update this webpage’s information as soon as congressional funding becomes available.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
3/20/20 – Due to precautions being implemented by employers and employees related to physical proximity associated with COVID-19, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today that it will exercise discretion to defer the physical presence requirements associated with Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) under Section 274A of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Learn more here.
U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Loan
In partnership with Utah’s congressional delegation, the state emergency management division and the Utah Governor’s Office, we’re pleased to announce businesses located in all Utah counties are now eligible to apply for low-interest loans through the Small Business Administration.
We recognize this loan program will not solve all of today’s economic challenges, but it will be a useful tool for businesses affected by COVID-19.
Details of the new SBA loans are as follows:
- Loan amounts of up to $2 million per entity
- Repayment terms of up to 30 years
- 3.75% interest rate for small businesses, and 2.75% interest rate for nonprofits
The SBA offers a PDF that explains the application process in detail. For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or by email.
You’ll need to select “Economic Injury” and “COVID-19” options. The Utah disaster number is UT00066. The process requires several financial documents and may take over an hour to apply.
Learn about broadband in Utah and what internet service providers are doing during the coronavirus pandemic.
Salt Lake City Emergency Loan Program for Businesses
The Emergency Loan Program is a stop-gap funding source as more robust federal programs come online. Speed is key to deploying these local funds to make a real impact.
Businesses are encouraged to apply for funding to help make payroll, pay bills and to maintain operations.
Salt Lake City is accepting applications until midnight on April 2, 2020.
Loan Program Guidelines:
- Business must be within Salt Lake City limits
- Maximum loan amount: $20,000
- Interest: 0%
- Terms: 5 years
- Loans can only be used for working capital ( i.e., payroll, rent, etc.,), marketing, or inventory
- Repayment will be deferred for approximately 90 days following the expiration of the Mayor’s “Proclamation Declaring a Local Emergency”
Applying for this loan will NOT disqualify you for additional funds from the SBA Disaster Loan
Utah Apartment Association
The Utah Apartment Association announced its plan to help renters cope with the economic impacts of COVID-19. Renters who demonstrate their financial status has been directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic can qualify for rent deferment. When renters qualify, landlords and management companies will provide a plan to defer a portion, or potentially all, of April’s rent payment, to be paid at a later date. Visit uaahq.org to learn more.
Utah Education and Telehealth Network
The Utah Education and Telehealth Network is updating resources for statewide connectivity and learning to support students and parents during the coronavirus pandemic. View UEN’s resources here.
Workers’ Compensation Fund
WCF Insurance provides COVID-19 guidance here.
Utah Government Agencies
Salt Lake County
On March 13, 2020, Salt Lake County closed various facilities to prevent the spread of COVID-19. On March 16, the county declared a public health emergency, effectively limiting some business operations. Learn more here.
Utah Department of Workforce Services
The Department of Workforce Services is closely monitoring the coronavirus pandemic and providing services to Utah workers. It maintains a webpage of COVID-19 resources, including unemployment insurance, child care, food and energy assistance, here.
Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development
Following Gov. Herbert’s leadership, the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development has marshalled its resources to help in all aspects of economic impact resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. The agency maintains the state’s Resources for Business on coronavirus.utah.gov and has a COVID-19 devoted webpage on its site.
Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation
An initiative of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation maintains a list of activities and resources available to help Utahns make good, safe use of the great outdoors during this difficult time. The outdoor recreation resources are listed here.
A Utah Silicon Slopes tech company, Domo, created an interactive, embeddable COVID-19 visualization resource. Check it out here.
Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute
The Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute provides economic expertise to help navigate the effects of COVID-19. Check out their coronavirus webpage here.
Ogden City’s Emergency Loan Fund
Salt Lake City Economic Development
The Salt Lake City office of economic development maintains a list of business resources for COVID-19 here.
St. George Area Chamber of Commerce
The St. George Area Chamber of Commerce Greater Together Small Business Resilience Fund is available to small businesses and nonprofits in Washington County. Learn more here.
Utah Organization Responses
As of March 22, 2020, 20 businesses and organizations in Utah submitted information to the Salt Lake Chamber’s request to understand how others are responding to COVID-19. Most of these organizations have specific plans in place, and, in some instances, promotions, to help during the pandemic. Here, we link to available online resources for responding organizations. If you’d like your organization to be included, please provide your information here.
EDCUtah works with state and local government and private industry to attract and grow competitive, high-value companies and spur the expansion of local Utah businesses.
Working with state agencies, EDCUtah has collected Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) alternative supply chain information for state manufacturers interested in ramping up the production of needed items. Learn more here.
As a resource to local economic developers in Utah, EDCUtah has launched an Economic Recovery Resources for Utah Communities webpage. The resource will help others learn about what’s being done to rise to COVID-19’s economic challenges. Please consider this a bulletin board for sharing best practices and lessons learned with Utah colleagues. We encourage your participation.
International Economic Development Council
RestoreYourEconomy is a resource for up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and its economic impacts. The site is managed by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) with generous support from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and IEDC’s Economic Development Research Partners program.
National Association of Counties
The National Association of Counties’ COVID-19 resource webpage is here.
National Association of Regional Councils
The National Association of Regional Councils has published an extensive list of COVID-19 resources for regions across the U.S.
Salt Lake Chamber
The Salt Lake Chamber has a statewide reach and works on the cutting edge of business advocacy in Utah. The nonprofit Chamber is a key partner, lending its President and CEO, Derek Miller, to chair Gov. Herbert’s Utah Coronavirus Task Force Economic Response Subcommittee.
If you’d like to check it out, the U.S. Chamber offers a Coronavirus Small Business Guide for strategy and resources.
Visit Salt Lake
Visit Salt Lake is Salt Lake City’s meeting and convention organization. They’re publishing COVID-19 updates here.
World Trade Center Utah
World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) provides international business solutions to fight COVID-19 headwinds. The organization shares office space with GOED and is the state’s leading organization focused on advancing Utah’s global business reach and bringing foreign investment to the state. WTC Utah is actively providing grant funding, international matchmaking, webinars and international resources for Utah businesses engaged in the global marketplace. Webinars include training on force majeure and contracts, the view from China during COVID-19, recent changes to employment laws, and how to receive Federal resources and planning. Learn more here.
Federal Programs and Resources — A six-page PDF prepared on March 27, 2020, by WTC Utah.
What the CARES Act means for Utah — A five-page PDF prepared on March 27, 2020, by WTC Utah.
COVID-19 Prevention in the Workplace
The highest priority of any business is to protect the health, safety, and life of employees and clients. Every decision emanates from that single objective, including guidelines employees have within their places of business, the flexibility and encouragement they are given to attend to their own health needs — as well as those of their families — and a supportive workplace environment that has considered and prepared for disruptions in services, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and supply chains.
While many, if not most, businesses may never experience an incident of coronavirus on their premises, almost all will feel the effects of the illness through disruptions in the stock market, a break in the supply chain, or legitimate concerns among employees. Businesses should also be aware of potential shortages for pharmaceutical supplies, health care supplies, and other resources that may be required for needs unrelated to coronavirus or may leave a company unprepared for subsequent emergencies. These are best addressed by advance planning, considering the resources and best practices that encourage healthy engagement and behaviors within the business environment, at the employee’s home, and support throughout the community.
Best practices encouraged by business and health care experts separate into two categories, those who are not feeling well or suspect they have the coronavirus, and those who are feeling well and need to take precautions.
Those who believe they may have been exposed to coronavirus or who are not feeling well should:
- Be actively encouraged to remain at home except to receive health care.
- Stay separate and apart from individuals and animals within the home.
- Call the doctor before visiting to describe symptoms and receive instructions.
- Wear a facemask in public and among household companions.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Clean hands and wash often with soap and water for 20 seconds or an alcohol-based sanitizer.
- Avoid sharing household items.
- Clean all “high touch” surfaces every day.
- Have clothing and bedding washed as frequently as possible.
- Monitor symptoms and inform healthcare professionals, particularly if they worsen.
- Confirm illness and contagion have passed before returning to work or public engagement.
- CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately. Sick employees should cover their noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or an elbow or shoulder if no tissue is available).
Those who are feeling well and have no reason to believe they have been exposed to coronavirus should proceed as they would during any cold and flu season:
- Perform hand hygiene frequently.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Try to remain in open spaces with good airflow.
- Maintain a healthy diet and exercise.
- Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, and clothing items with workmates.
- Clean all “high-touch” surfaces, such as counters, desk- and tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, and tablets, every day.
- Sanitize workspaces and public transportation areas like handles and stabilizing bars in subway cars, as well as arm rests and tray tables in buses, trains, and airplanes.
- Wash clothing regularly.
- Maintain a comfortable distance in conversations and in tight working environments, such as where two or more are gathered around a computer.
- Consider replacing a handshake with a fist bump or friendly salute.
For additional information, please see Interim Guidance for Preventing the Spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Around the office:
- Place posters that encourage staying home when sick, cough and sneeze etiquette, and hand hygiene at the entrance to your workplace and in other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen.
- Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
- Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
- Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene.
- Visit the coughing and sneezing etiquette and clean hands web page for more information.
- Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.
For more general workplace health and safety information, view the U.S. Chamber’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Workplace Tips for Employees. You can also download an infographic about social distancing.
Preparing Your Business
As Utah does everything possible to limit the spread of COVID-19, the best remedy against serious outbreak is prevention. Businesses, no matter their size, can significantly influence their community’s readiness, awareness, resources, and engagement against the spread of COVID-19. This begins with organizational preparedness, including risk management teams and contingency plans.
The CDC encourages all employers to implement strategies to protect their workforce. During a coronavirus outbreak, all sick employees should stay home and away from the workplace, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene should be encouraged, and high-touch surfaces should be cleaned regularly.
Outbreak Response Plan
Employers should prepare an Outbreak Response Plan using the following process:
- Ensure the plan is flexible and involves employees in development and review.
- Conduct a focused discussion or exercise using the plan, to find out ahead of time whether the plan has gaps or problems that need to be corrected.
- Share the plan with employees and explain what human resources policies, workplace and leave flexibilities, and pay and benefits will be available.
- Share best practices with other businesses in the community (especially those within the supply chain), chambers of commerce, and associations to improve community response efforts.
Nitin Nohria, dean of the Harvard Business School, said recently in the Harvard Business Review that a plan should be complemented by a company’s “ability to rapidly evaluate ongoing changes in the environment and develop responses based on simple principles.” The companies best capable of that evolution have:
- Engaged and informed networks rather than hierarchical command and control.
- Distributed leadership rather than centralized bureaucracy.
- A less interdependent business structure among operating groups.
- A dispersed workforce.
- Cross-trained generalists rather than a few specialists.
- Simple and flexible rules rather than procedure driven policies.
Resilience in a Box
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, UPS Foundation, World Economic Forum (WEF) and Disaster Resistant Business (DRB) Toolkit Workgroup have developed a “Resilience in a Box” program based on best practices and designed to educate newcomers on business resilience. The program guides companies toward addressing preparedness issues while building in flexibility to handle potential business interruptions.
Corporate Policy Recommendations
The United States Department of Health and Human Services, along with the Centers For Disease Control, recommends companies:
- Ensure sick leave policies are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and employees are aware of these policies.
- Speak with vendors that provide contract or temporary employees about the importance of sick employees staying home and encourage them to develop non-punitive leave policies.
- Do not require a health care provider’s note for employees who are sick with acute respiratory illness to validate their illness or return to work, as medical providers are extremely busy and likely unable to provide such documentation in a timely way.
- Maintain flexible policies that permit employees to stay home to care for a sick family member. Employers should be aware that more employees may need to stay at home to care for sick children or other sick family members than is usual.
For more information, view the U.S. Chamber’s Guidance for Employers to Plan and Respond to the Coronavirus (Covid-19).
Should an Emergency Remote Work Plan become necessary due to infection among employees, family members, or the community at large, Cali Williams Yost, CEO and founder of Flex+Strategy Group/Work+Life Fit recommends the following:
- Acknowledge the possibility that all or part of your workforce may need to work remotely.
- Map out jobs and tasks that could be affected.
- Audit available IT hardware and software, and close any gaps in access and adoption.
- Set up a communications protocol in advance.
- Identify ways to measure performance that could inform broader change.
Detailed information concerning these recommendations are included in “What’s Your Company’s Emergency Remote-Work Plan?” Harvard Business Review, February 28, 2020.
Employees With Affected Family Members
Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with coronavirus should notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure. If an employee is confirmed to have coronavirus, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).