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New State Guidance for Vaccinated People, Face Coverings; Restaurant Revitalization Grant; Use of Sidewalks, Parklets for Business Use; Shuttered Venue Operators Grant; Economic Recovery Survey; Upcoming Webinars
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May 7, 2021

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Periodically, the City of Oakland’s Economic & Workforce Development Department (EWDD) will send important updates to businesses, nonprofits, independent contractors and our partner organizations who support them. These are just highlights of available resources. For information on all of the support programs available, please visit our Business & Worker Resource web page.
Testing remains important even as vaccines roll out. If you’re experiencing symptoms or have been in close contact with someone confirmed to have COVID-19, please visit Alameda County’s web page to find Community Testing Sites.

Alameda County remains in the Orange Tier in the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, and will remain there until the adjusted cases per day rate drops below the threshold to move to the next tier.

To help us advance to the less restrictive Yellow Tier, please continue to follow the 5 Ws to stay safer:
  • Wear a mask,
  • Wash your hands,
  • Watch your distance,
  • Wait to see loved ones,
  • When it’s your turn, get vaccinated.
New State Guidance for Vaccinated People, Face Coverings
The California Department of Public Health released updated guidance for fully vaccinated people and use of face coverings. Face coverings remain mandated in indoor settings, with few exceptions. For fully vaccinated persons, face coverings are not required outdoors except when attending crowded outdoor events, such as live performances, parades, fairs, festivals, sports events, or other similar settings. While not required, Alameda County strongly advises vaccinated residents to continue to wear masks in public places, including outdoors.
    Applications for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund are now being accepted. The program will provide $28.6 billion in grants to independent food service or drinking establishments – including restaurants, food trucks, bakeries, caterers, brewpubs, taprooms and tasting rooms – that have 20 or fewer locations (as of March 13, 2020) and are not publicly traded.

    While the applications must be submitted in English or Spanish, the SBA has provided information in more than 30 different languages to help you understand eligibility requirements, fill out applications and answer frequently asked questions.

    Several local partners are offering informational sessions for Oakland businesses. Find a roster of upcoming webinars at: https://www.oaklandca.gov/resources/restaurant-revitalization-fund-grant#helpful-webinars

    You may also call the SBA Call Center Help Line, which is staffed from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific Time, at (844) 279-8898. Assistance is available in multiple languages.
    Bars, restaurants and other businesses that want to use the adjacent sidewalk, parking lane or traffic lane for outdoor seating are encouraged to look to the City’s Flex Street Initiative. All fees have been waived and permitting has been streamlined for business’ use of the public rights-of-way, including partial or full street closures. Businesses expanding operations to private parking lots and other private outdoor areas will also benefit from streamlined permitting processes at oaklandca.gov/flexstreets.
    The portal for the SBA’s Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program is live. The program will distribute $15 billion in grants to for-profit and nonprofit shuttered venues. Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with a maximum single grant award of up to $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees. Have questions? Review the Application Checklist, read the FAQs or email SVOGrant@sba.gov
    Share Your Thoughts on Oakland’s Economic Recovery
    We’re proactively developing an economic recovery plan to assist small businesses in reopening and thriving as Oakland emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.

    To be successful, economic development strategies and plans must be built through public contributions, feedback and buy-in from people like you. To ensure that key community stakeholders have a voice and are a part of the effort, we ask that you provide candid feedback by completing a brief survey.

    After gathering community feedback, we will report on the information captured and deliver a final economic recovery plan in Summer 2021.
    Reminder: PPP Loan Application Deadline is May 31
    The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll. For most borrowers, the maximum loan amount is 2.5 times their average monthly 2019 or 2020 payroll costs up to $2 million. For borrowers in the Accommodation and Food Services sector the maximum loan amount is 3.5 times their average monthly 2019 or 2020 payroll costs up to $2 million. SBA will forgive loans if all employee retention criteria are met, and the funds are used for eligible expenses.

    President Biden also announced additional program changes to make access to PPP loans more equitable. SBA will:
    • Allow sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants;
    • Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal;
    • Eliminate PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make student loan payments by eliminating student loan debt delinquency as a disqualifier to participating in the PPP; and
    • Ensure access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawful U.S. residents by clarifying that they may use Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP.

    A recently passed State law will allow California businesses to avoid paying state taxes on forgiven loans from the federal Paycheck Protection Program and to deduct the costs of expenses that those loans paid for.

    While most of the funds are exhausted, the SBA will be accepting new applications from Community Financial Institutions (CFI).  Find a participating CFI by using SBA’s Lender Match tool or this roster of participating local lenders.
    Resources for Re-Opening
    Visit the City’s Planning Resources for Business Re-Opening website for the latest information on resources to support re-opening, including:
    Ongoing Business Support
    A list of up-to-date resources, including information about worker benefits, grants, loans and support services for small businesses, nonprofits and independent contractors, can be found on the City of Oakland’s Business & Worker Resource web page. The site is updated regularly as more information becomes available, so please check it often.
    Upcoming Online Workshops & Webinars
    Below is a sampling of upcoming workshops and webinars. See additional listings and check for last-minute additions at: https://www.oaklandca.gov/resources/webinars-for-businesses-nonprofits-and-independent-contractors

    COVID-19 Weekly Updates Live Q&A
    Wednesdays, 10:30 a.m.
    NorCal SBDC
    Free

    Restaurant Revitalization Fund – Program Overview
    Monday, May 10, 11 a.m. – Noon
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Free
      
    Descripción del Fondo para la Revitalización de los Restaurantes
    Martes, 11 de Mayo, 11 a.m. – Noon
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Gratis
     
    El nuevo programa de protección de cheques de pago (PPP) - Descripción gene
    Martes, 11 de Mayo, 1 – 2 p.m.
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Gratis     
      

    Wednesday, May 12, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
    Alameda County SBDC
    Free

    Restaurant Revitalization Fund – Program Overview
    Wednesday, May 12, 2 – 3 p.m.
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Free

    Restaurant Revitalization Fund – Program Overview
    Thursday, May 13, 9:30 – 10:30 a.m.
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Free

    Descripción del Fondo para la Revitalización de los Restaurantes
    Martes, 13 de Mayo, 10 – 11 a.m.
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Gratis

    Thursday, May 13, 1 – 3 p.m.
    Alameda County SBDC
    Free

    Descripción del Fondo para la Revitalización de los Restaurantes
    Martes, 13 de Mayo, 2 – 3 p.m.
    AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
    Gratis

    Tuesday, May 18, 3 – 5 p.m.
    Alameda County SBDC
    Free

    Wednesday, May 19, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
    NorCal SBDC
    Free

    The Top Marketing Funnels Every Business Needs
    Thursday, May 20, 1 – 2 p.m.
    East Bay SCORE
    $10

    Thursday, May 20, 1 – 3 p.m.
    Alameda County SBDC
    Free

    Wednesday, May 26, 10:30 a.m.Noon
    NorCal SBDC
    Free

    Thursday, May 27, 35 p.m.
    Alameda County SBDC
    Free
     
     

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