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Resources for Oakland Businesses
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March 25, 2022


اللغة العربیة       中文       Español       Tiếng Việt

This is an update from the City of Oakland’s Economic & Workforce Development Department (EWDD) for businesses, nonprofits, independent contractors and our partner organizations who support them. These are just highlights of available resources. For information about worker benefits, grants, loans and support services available, please visit our Business & Worker Resource web page. The site is updated regularly as more information becomes available, so please check it often.

As evidence continues to show, vaccinations and boosters remain the best defense against the virus. Alameda County has posted an Employer Vaccination Toolkit for businesses interested in supporting their employees in getting vaccinated.

If you need individualized business assistance, remember you can book a free, 30-minute appointment at 6 different Neighborhood Business Assistance locations.
State Updates Guidance on Indoor Mega Events
Effective April 1, 2022, State requirements for vaccine verification or proof of negative test for Indoor Mega Events will be lifted and will move to a strong recommendation. Indoor Mega Events are large indoor events with more than 1,000 attendees. The State will continue to recommend vaccine verification or proof of negative test for Outdoor Mega Events with 10,000 attendees or more. Alameda County has aligned with the new guidance from the State.

This follows a change in State masking guidance, that took effect on March 1. The State strongly recommends that all persons, regardless of vaccination status, continue to mask while in indoor public settings and businesses. Alameda County has aligned with the State’s masking announcement.

Masks are still required in certain indoor settings, like public transit, airports, shelters and healthcare offices.
Reminder: Oakland’s Proof of Vaccination Ordinance Still in Effect
People 12 and older continue to be required to show proof that they have been vaccinated to enter many indoor facilities in Oakland. The emergency ordinance adopted by City Council, FAQs, the protocol template for businesses and other details are at: www.oaklandca.gov/VaxOrdinance.
Flex Streets Initiative Continues into 2023
On March 15, the Oakland City Council passed a series of Ordinances to make the Flex Street Initiative a permanent option for businesses to use outdoor public rights-of-way. Since launching in June 2020, the streamlined Flex Street permit processes have helped Oakland businesses weather the pandemic by expanding their operations outdoors through 140 sidewalk cafes and parklets, 13 street closures, 14 permitted private spaces and more than 60 mobile food truck permits. The existing permit programs will remain mostly unchanged and free through July 2023. Businesses interested in expanding their operations outdoors should apply at www.oaklandca.gov/flexstreets.
State Supplemental Paid Sick Leave
Governor Newsom signed SB 114, which will provide covered employees up to 80 hours of supplemental paid sick leave related to COVID through September 30, 2022. Retroactive to January 1, 2022, the supplemental paid sick leave is available to employees:
  • who have been advised to quarantine,
  • those caring for COVID-impacted family members,
  • attending a COVID-19 vaccination or booster appointment for themselves or a family member,
  • experiencing symptoms or caring for a family member experiencing symptoms related to a vaccine or booster

Learn more by reviewing the Frequently Asked Questions at: https://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/COVID19Resources/2022-SPSL-FAQs.html
Low-Interest Loans for Restaurants, Markets, Food Truck Vendors
Through March 2022, Feed The Hunger Fund is offering a special 6% interest rate on loans to restaurants, markets, food truck vendors and other food production entrepreneurs. Loan amounts up to $50,000 to be repaid over a maximum of five years. They also offer free business assistance to entrepreneurs and business owners in food production. To learn more, contact Meche Sansores at meche@feed-hunger.com or (415) 533-7171.
Loans to Launch New Restaurants
Main Street Launch has loans specifically for new restaurants located in Oakland’s seven Community Development Block Grant Districts. The maximum loan amount is $120,000 and the loans are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To learn more, contact Adrian Gomez Zavala at adrian@mainstreetlaunch.org or (510) 830-3230.
0% Business Financing Available
Zero-interest loans for low- to moderate-income entrepreneurs and businesses in low- to moderate-income areas of Oakland are available through Main Street Launch. Loan amounts up to $50,000 with terms up to five years may be used to buy furniture and equipment, to purchase inventory, for working capital, to refinance high-interest business debt and to pay startup expenses. No minimum credit score requirement. Complete the loan inquiry form to get started.
Apply for CalCompetes Tax Credit
The California Competes Tax Credit (CCTC) is an income tax credit available to businesses that want to stay and grow their business in California. Businesses of any industry, size or location compete for millions in available tax credits. Applications will be analyzed based on various factors, including the number of jobs being created or retained, amount of investment and strategic importance to the state or region. Since 2015, more than a dozen Oakland businesses have received tax credits of over $41 million to create quality full-time jobs.

To help businesses apply, an application guide, frequently asked questions and tutorial videos are also available. The application period closes March 28, 2022.
Resources for Re-Opening
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

Virtual Lawyers in the Library
Tuesday evenings, Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons
Oakland Public Library
Free

Is NOT having a Website Costing You Money? Create One Yourself! (PART2)
Monday, March 28, Noon – 1 p.m.
AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
Free

Firing Employees: Process=Protection
Tuesday, March 29, 1 – 2:30 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Women’s Business Summit
Tuesday, March 29 & Wednesday, March 30
U.S. Small Business Administration
Free

Creating a Successful Pitch
Wednesday, March 30, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

为您的企业融资 (普通話)
Wednesday, March 30, 1 – 2:30 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Tax Planning Tips for Microbusinesses
Wednesday, March 30, 6 – 7 p.m.
AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
Free

How to Convert Likes into Sales
Wednesday, March 30, 6 – 8 p.m.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
Free

Basic Bookkeeping 2: Financial Analysis
Thursday, March 31, 10 a.m. – Noon
SBA
Free

Preventive Business Law Office Hours for Entrepreneurs
Friday, April 1, 9:30 – 11 a.m.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
Free

Expansion Capital for Profitable Businesses more than 2 Years Old
Tuesday, April 5, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
NorCal SBDC
Free

Como Iniciar un Negocio Exitoso
Tuesday, April 5, 6 – 9 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Small Business Financial Bootcamp Part 1
Wednesday, April 6, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Equity by Design Workshop: Managing the Challenge of Living & Leading in a Multicultural World
Wednesday, April 6, Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Oakland Chamber
Free

Expanding & Growing Your Business
Thursday, April 7, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
California Hispanic SBDC
Free

Poner Su Negocio en Marcha
Thursday, April 7, Noon – 1 p.m.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
Free

Commercial Lease Negotiation (in multiple languages)
Tuesday, April 12, 3 – 4 p.m.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Buy or Sell Your Business
Tuesday, April 19, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
NorCal SBDC
Free

Small Business Financial Bootcamp Part 2
Wednesday, April 20, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Small Business Finance 101
Thursday, April 21, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Virtual Legal Clinic
Thursday, April 21, 4 – 8 p.m.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Lessons Learned Starting & Running Restaurant
Saturday, April 23, 9 a.m. – Noon
Score East Bay
$23

Owning and Investing in Real Estate for Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs
Tuesday, April 26, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
NorCal SBDC
Free

Fundamentos de un Plan de Negocio y Mercadotecnia
Tuesday, April 26, 6 - 9 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free
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