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Small Business Grants, Remote Business Assistance, New State Portal, and other Business Resource Updates
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September 24, 2021


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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.
All individuals within Alameda County are required to wear face coverings – regardless of vaccination status – when indoors in workplaces and public settings, with limited exemptions. The County also recommends that businesses make face coverings available to individuals entering the business. The county’s FAQs for face covering indoors and in workplaces provides guidance on business responsibilities, including signage requirements.

Vaccinations remain the best protection against COVID-19, preventing most related hospitalizations and deaths. Alameda County has posted an Employer Vaccination Toolkit for businesses interested in supporting their employees in getting vaccinated.
Comcast RISE $10k Grants for Oakland Small Businesses - Opens October 1!
The Comcast RISE Investment Fund will provide 100 grants of $10,000 to help Oakland small businesses owned by people of color grow as they navigate the pandemic. The application period opens October 1 and closes October 14. Eligible businesses will have been in operation for more than 3 years and have between 1 and 25 employees. Oakland’s chambers of commerce are hosting information sessions on October 1 and 8; find registration links in the webinar listings later in this email or online here.
State Small Business Grants $5k-$25k - Accepting Applications through September 30
Through September 30, Round 9 of the California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program will be accepting new applications. Grants range from $5,000 to $25,000 based on annual revenue as documented in your most recent tax return. Waitlisted applicants from certain previous rounds will also be considered in this round and do not need to re-apply. Check the webinar listings later in this email and online for upcoming workshops offered by our partners to help you apply for the grants.
California Launches Dedicated Small Business Portal
California’s Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA), part of the Governor’s Office of Business Economic Development (GO-Biz), announced the launch of calosba.ca.gov – a website that connects California’s small business community with critical resources from the state. Highlighting programs that help historically underserved small business groups is an important component of the CalOSBA website.
Get Business Support Services at Neighborhood Libraries
Whether you’re starting a new business, expanding your business or just need business support, City staff are here to help. Through the Remote Business Assistance Center (BAC) pilot program, Oakland Economic & Workforce Development staff will be available for 30-minute appointments at five library locations:
  • West Oakland (every other Monday morning)
  • 81st Avenue (every other Tuesday evening)
  • César E. Chávez (every other Wednesday evening)
  • Golden Gate (every other Thursday morning)
  • Eastmont (every other Friday afternoon)

Appointments through December are by reservation only. To schedule an appointment, visit www.oaklandca.gov/RemoteBAC. For help scheduling an appointment, call (510) 238-7398. If you can’t make it to one our the neighborhood locations, fill out our online request form and a staff member will call or email you within two business days.
SBA Targeted EIDL Advances up to $15,000 Still Available
If your business or nonprofit is in a low-income area, you may qualify for up to $15,000 in federal Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) advances. These “advances” are like grants, and do not need to be repaid. You do not have to qualify for or accept a loan to receive the advances. Much of Oakland below I-580 qualifies as a low-income area.
  1. Up to $10,000 Targeted EIDL Advance if your business or nonprofit is in a low-income area, lost more than 30 percent in revenue, and has 300 or fewer employees.
  2. Additional $5,000 Supplemental Targeted Advance if your business or nonprofit is in a low-income area, lost more than 50 percent in revenue, and has 10 or fewer employees.

The Supplemental Targeted Advance can combine with original EIDL and/or Targeted EIDL Advance for a total of up to $15,000.

If you have not previously applied for EIDL, apply now!

If you previously applied for EIDL, the SBA should have contacted you with details. If you cannot find that email, you can contact SBA’s Disaster Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY 1-800-877-8339) or by email at
TargetedAdvance@sba.gov to request a new invite. Be sure to include your application submission number.

While the applications must be submitted in English, the SBA provides documents in different languages to help you understand eligibility requirements, fill out applications and answer frequently asked questions.

Business support partners are offering ongoing application assistance.
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

California Relief Grant Webinar
Monday, September 27, 10 – 11 a.m.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
Free

Owning and Investing in Real Estate for Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs
Tuesday, September 28, 10:30 a.m. – Noon
NorCal SBDC
Free

¿Pagaría por el Rescate de su Información Digital? ¡Proteja su negocio!
Martes, 28 de septiembre, 1 – 2 p.m.
AnewAmerica Women’s Business Center
Gratis

California Relief Grant (Vietnamese)
Tuesday, September 28, 2 – 3 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Inside Oakland: Business License Tax Blue Ribbon Task Force Updates
Thursday, September 30, 9 – 10:30 a.m.
Oakland Chamber of Commerce
$15

Financial Management for your Business
Thursday, September 30, 10 – 11:30 a.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

California Relief Grant (Mandarin)
Thursday, September 30, 2 – 3 p.m.
NorCal SBDC
Free

Access to Capital
Thursday, September 30, 5:30 – 7 p.m.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
Free

Bay Area Capital Connections XIII: Imagining Our New Selves
Friday, October 1, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Alliance for Community Development
$35

Comcast RISE Grant Application Support Webinar
Friday, October 1, Noon – 1 p.m.
Oakland’s Chambers
Free

Economic Development Forum: Industrial Lands Policy Update
Wednesday, October 6, 2 – 3:30 p.m.
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Free

Online Marketing
Thursday, October 7, 1 – 3 p.m.
Alameda County SBDC
Free

Virtual Legal Services Clinic
Thursday, October 7, 4 – 6 p.m.
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Comcast RISE Grant Application Support Webinar
Friday, October 8, Noon – 1 p.m.
Oakland’s Chambers
Free

Planning your Business
Thursday, October 14, 10 a.m. – Noon
NorCal SBDC
Free

Equitable Access to Small Business Credit
Thursday, October 14, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
Free

Virtual Legal Services Clinic
Thursday, October 21, 4 – 6 p.m.
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights
Free

Inside Oakland: An Oakland Update with Mayor Libby Schaaf
Friday, October 29, 9 – 10:30 a.m.
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce
Free

Alameda County Human Resources Guidelines
Tuesday, November 2, 1 – 3 p.m.
Alameda County SBDC
Free

 
 

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