Santa Cruz SBDCAptos, CA

YOUR BUSINESS IS TOP OF MIND FOR US.

The Norcal SBDC wants to assure you, we’re going to continue doing everything in our creative power to help your business get through the economic hardship and prepare for a stronger reopen. We can help with applying for relief, guiding you through available resources, cash flow concerns, supply chain interruptions, workforce capacity, insurance coverage and more - at no cost. Please reach out to us if you have any questions regarding your business or our services.

For up-to-date information and announcements regarding CARES, SBA loans, and policy, please visit ASKSBDC.com.

COVID-19

ASKSBDC.COM and LIVE Q&A Town Hall

ASK SBDC – is an initiative of the Northern California Small Business Development Centers (SBDC’s), and is part of our continued effort to do everything in our creative power to help your business overcome the challenges of the current economic crisis and prepare your business for reopening.

Visit ASKSBDC.com to discover the most up-to-date, accurate information concerning COVID-19 and Cares Act resources for small businesses. Call the 833-ASK-SBDC (833-275-7232) toll-free hotline to speak with a dedicated call center staff ready to help your business get answers to questions and connected to the right resources.

Ask your question. Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10:30 AM, join Scott Rogalski and Sunita Maharaj with the NorCal SBDC Finance Center Team as they discuss EIDL and PPP updates and information specific to reopening businesses in Northern California.

Need answers fast? Email loans @ asksbdc.com with your question, and someone from the Norcal SBDC finance team will reply within 1 — 2 business days.

Watch the Q&A LiveStream on ASKSBDC | Interact with us on Zoom


ASK an ATTORNEY

Bring your questions and learn key updates from experienced professionals and attorneys covering topics including PPP and unemployment, practical advice on borrowing, payroll issues and more. Thursdays at 4 PM | Zoom password: baseforce

Join Zoom | Thursdays at 4 PM


Guidance for Restaurants: from California's Dept. of Public Health

This document provides guidance for dine-in restaurants, brewpubs, craft distilleries, breweries, bars, pubs, and wineries to support a safe, clean environment for workers and customers.

Download PDF


The Small Business Owner's Guide to the CARES Act

This guide provides information about the major programs and initiatives that will soon be available from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to address these needs, as well as some additional tax provisions that are outside the scope of SBA.

View the CARES Act Guide


Online Webinars for Coping with COVID-19

Featuring interviews with experts in capital resource, e-commerce and more... These FREE SBDC webinars are designed to equip you with tools to navigate the economic difficulties posed by COVID-19.

Watch the FREE Webinars


Download the SBDC's Guide to COVID-19 Loans and forms.

An application guide for EIDL assistance.

Download EIDL Guide PDF | Visit the EIDL Application Portal


Download the COVID-19 Small Business Survival Guide

We have developed the Small Business Survival Resources related to COVID-19 to help navigate through the chaos COVID-19 is having on our communities. Please reach out to our SBDC center if you have questions regarding how your business can maximize the available help.

Download Survival Guide PDF


 

U.S. Federal Support

  • Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide up to $2M in Disaster Assistance Loans to businesses impacted by COVID-19. Learn More
  • SBA Guidance for employers to plan and respond to COVID-19.
  • Centers for Disease Control (CDC) - Interim guidance for businesses and employers to plan, prepare and respond to coronavirus. Learn More
  • Department of Labor - OSHA- Check out this guide - Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19. Download Now

California State-Level Support

  • Employment Development Department (EDD) - Reduced Work Hours - Unemployment Insurance Work Sharing Program - alternative to layoffs. Employer Info
  • EDD Tax Assistance - request a 60 day extension to file payroll and more. Call the EDD Taxpayer Assistance Center 1-888-745-3886 (toll-free). More from EDD>>>
  • CA Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBANK)- Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program (DRLGP), Jump Start Loan Program and more.
  • Department of Industrial Relations- Cal/OSHA Guidance on Requirements to Protect Workers from Coronavirus. Review the Aerosol Transmissible Diseases (ATD) and required protection.

The Northern California SBDC Finance Center

The NorCal SBDC Finance Center is a partnership of the Northern California SBDC nonprofit network, and our only focus is helping connect your business with the right people and the right kind of money to start, grow, or sell your business. We can help you apply for financial support such as SBA disaster assistance loans to ensure you have a financial plan to endure the weeks and months ahead…

For more information, please reach out to someone on our team woh can connect you with the right resources. Lean more about the Finance Center on their Facebook Page.


Frequently Asked Questions


How can I apply for a SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan?

3/17/2020 3:30 PM ALERT: The SBA COVID19 DIsaster Loan Program is open for applications. Learn more below and start your application at the SBA Online Disaster Loan Assistance Portal. Please apply online or contact us directly to be paired with a SBDC business advisor who will help you through the application.

Decisions are made case by case and first-come first served so download the Disaster Loan Paper Application Form and start pulling together your financial data asap:

  • federal tax returns for the business
  • current business financial statements -- profit & loss, balance sheets
  • personal financial statement
  • schedule of liabilities (what you currently owe)
  • monthly sales figures
  • financial forecasts for sales, COGS etc during period affected by the disaster

Highlights:

  • The loan program is for businesses who can demonstrate their "economic injury is substantial and is a direct result of the declared disaster"
  • These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact.
  • Loans are up to $2 million per business with ong-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years.The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
  • In reviewing your application the SBA will determine if you’re eligible as a disaster-affected business, and they will also check whether you have available credit elsewhere, which might affect the special rate.
  • Since decisions are made on a case by case basis, once the application is in it could be funded in a few days or it might take much longer.
  • We have been told that you should still be able to apply for an economic injury disaster loan even if you already have a separate SBA loan.

Full Formal Announcement from SBA on 3/16/2020: SBA COVID19 Disaster Loan Program Open for Applications

For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail disastercustomerservice@sba.gov or visit www.sba.gov/disaster.

U.S. Small Business Administration is now accepting applications for low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital (Economic Injury Disaster Loans) for small businesses and private, non-profit organizations in designated counties of California and other states to help alleviate economic injury caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

To access SBA assistance, go to the Disaster Loan Assistance portal. You can click on “Eligible Disaster Areas” to see what counties have been designated as coronavirus

disaster affected. As of March 16, 2020, the following 35 California counties were designated:

Alameda, Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Imperial, Kern, Lake, Los Angeles, Madera, Marin, Mariposa, Mendocino, Merced, Mono, Napa, Orange, Placer, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tuolumne, Ventura, Yolo

Economic Injury Disaster Loans are working capital (rather than loans for physical damage) to help small businesses and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster. These loans are intended to assist through the disaster recovery period.

Federal law limits these to $2,000,000 maximum for alleviating economic injury caused by the disaster, and the actual amount of each loan is limited to the economic injury determined by SBA, less business interruption insurance and other recoveries up to the administrative lending limit. SBA also considers potential contributions that are available from the business and/or its owner(s) or affiliates.

These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.

SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s ability to repay.

To apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loans, click on “Apply Online” and create an account and password. Then submit your application. An explanation of SBA disaster application loan process is here. The application requires submitting the following forms (copes of which are available here):

Business Loan Application (SBA Form 5) completed and signed by business applicant. IRS Form 4506-T completed and signed by Applicant business, each principal owning 20% or more of the applicant business, each general partner or managing member and, for any owner who has more than a 50% ownership in an affiliate business. (Affiliates include business parent, subsidiaries, and/or businesses with common ownership or management).

Complete copies, including all schedules, of the most recent Federal income tax returns for the applicant business; an explanation if not available.

Personal Financial Statement (SBA Form 413) completed, signed and dated by the applicant (if a sole proprietorship), each principal owning 20% or more of the applicant
business, each general partner or managing member. Schedule of Liabilities listing all fixed debts (SBA Form 2202 may be used).

Additional information may also be necessary to process your application:

Complete copies, including all schedules, of the most recent Federal income tax returns for each principal owning 20% or more of the applicant business, each general partner or managing member, and each affiliate when any owner has more than a 50% ownership in the affiliate business. Affiliates include, but are not limited to, business parents, subsidiaries, and/or other businesses with common ownership or management.

If the most recent Federal income tax return has not been filed, a year-end profit and loss statement and balance sheet for that tax year is acceptable.

A current year-to-date profit and loss statement.

Additional Filing Requirements (SBA Form 1368) providing monthly sales figures.

How can I keep my food manufacturing business customers safe?

The FDA reported on 2/27/2020 that there is no evidence COVID-19 can be transmitted via food or food packaging as of this alert, so the advice is just to have your team follow standard food and personal hygiene and manufacturing facility food safety protocols. See the food supply chain update from CDPH.

How can I keep my public office, retail, and food service business safe?

The latest direction from CA Gov. Gavin Newsom is for bars, wineries, and pubs is to close. Restaurants are asked to reduce capacity to ensure customers sit at tables at least six feet apart and to offer curbside take out service instead if possible.

For brick and mortar businesses who can't deliver services virtually, The Department of Industrial Relations has compiled some very useful guidelines.

Local businesses have started following some of these following the extra hygiene protocols for public spaces:

  • the usual touching, sneezing/coughing protocols
  • requiring hourly handwashing for employees who work with the public
  • scheduling multiple daily disinfectant wipe-downs of door handles, faucet handles, front counters, and other areas subject to frequent touching or droplets from coughs and sneezes providing kleenex, hand sanitizer, and open (no-touch) trash cans in public areas
  • requiring employees to bring their own cups, dishware, and silverware or use disposable materials instead of communal kitchen items
  • using work sharing/flex work and self-isolation protocols to make sure employees remain at least six feet away from each other and from customers 
  • sending sick workers with any respiratory illess symptoms home until they're fully recovered
  • instituting a policy that requires employees in vulnerable groups to stay home
  • instituting a policy that asks any employee returning from international travel self-quarantine for 14 days

When should I send an employee home?

Business owners who are able to run a business with virtual workers are encouraged to do so. If the employee is showing signs of a respiratory infection or is a member of a group most vulnerable to COVID-19 typical guidance is to send them home until the symptoms pass or the disaster declaration is repealed. See below for the support (sick leave, unemployment insurance, temporary disability) that might be available to help your employee get by. 

Some businesses are reducing employee or opening hours now because sales have dropped so far and so fast that they're not able to keep up with operating expenses. If that's you, reach out to us so we can help you figure out how to support your employees and connect you to a business advisor if applying for a SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan makes sense. And remember--there are rules about how many hours you must pay an employee if they show up to work and are sent home.

 

When should I close?

Again, unless there is a directive from the federal or state government, it's up to you. Some businesses are closing now because sales have dropped so far and so fast that they're not able to keep up with operating expenses. If that's you, please reach out us so we can help you figure out how to support your employees and connect you to a business advisor if applying for a SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan makes sense.

What if I have to lay off employees or close?

Employers who have been affected by COVID-19 but want to avoid permanent layoffs might consider the Unemployment Insurance Work Sharing Program. This program allows you to retain your workers by reducing their hours and wages no more than 60 percent and partially offsetting the wage loss with UI benefits. More information at the EDD web site here.

Employers planning a definite closure or layoffs can contact us for help. Anything you share with SBDC is kept strictly confidential unless you give us written permission to share it.

Employee Sick Leave

If your employee has paid sick leave the law requires that they can choose to use it for illness, diagnosis, care, or treatment; preventive care for themselves or a family member--including self-quarantine after possible exposure to COVID-19. Review this helpful guidance on the Department of Industrial Relations COVID FAQ page.

Paid Family Leave

Employees who are unable to work because they are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Paid Family Leave (PFL) claim. This provides up to six weeks of benefit payments to eligible workers who have a full or partial loss of wages because they need time off work to care for a seriously ill family member or to care for a child home from school due to COVID-19 related closure. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50-$1,300 a week. Learn more at the Employment Development Department COVID-19 home page.

Unemployment Insurance

If the COVID-19 pandemic forces you to shut down or reduce operating hours, your employees may become eligible for unemployment insurance. The same is true if your employee's children's school is closed and they have no other option but to stay home to provide child care. If you plan to reopen when you can, your temporarily unemployed workers are not required to actively seek work each week. The state has also waived the one-week unpaid waiting period, but your eligible laid off employees may still have to wait a few weeks before receiving payment on their first claim. Learn more at the Employment Development Department COVID-19 home page.

Temporary Disability Insurance

Employees who are unable to work due to having or being exposed to COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Disability Insurance claim. This provides eligible workers who have full or partial loss of wages due to a non-work-related illness, injury, or pregnancy. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50 - $1,300 a week. Note: the one-week unpaid waiting period has been waived, so employees can collect DI benefits for the first week they are out of work. But: the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim, so the employee may still face a period of time without cash coming in. Learn more at the Employment Development Department COVID-19 home page.

State Income Tax Extension

California business and individual tax filers affected by COVID-19 now have an extra 60-90 days to file and pay state income taxes. Learn more here and below:

  • Partnerships and LLCs who are taxed as partnerships whose tax returns are due on March 15 now have a 90-day extension to file and pay by June 15.
  • Individual filers whose tax returns are due on April 15 now have a 60-day extension to file and pay by June 15.
  • Quarterly estimated tax payments due on April 15 now have a 60-day extension to pay by June 15.
  • The FTB’s June 15 extended due date may be pushed back even further if the Internal Revenue Service grants a longer relief period.
  • Taxpayers claiming the special COVID-19 relief should write the name of the state of emergency (for example, COVID-19) in black ink at the top of the tax return to alert FTB of the special extension period. If taxpayers are e-filing, they should follow the software instructions to enter disaster information.

State Payroll Tax Extension

Employers directly affected by COVID-19 may request up to a 60-day extension to file their state payroll reports and/or deposit payroll taxes without penalty or interest. A written request for extension must be received within 60 days from the original delinquent date of the payment or return. More on the EDD web site here.

Other Questions

We're working hard and fast to answer questions as they come in. Questions like these...

  • How to best handle remote work?
  • How to help other businesses?
  • How I will be able to continue paying rent, payroll etc when sales decline?
  • I'm not able to restock some of my merchandise due to other countries' shut down - what do I do?
  • How do I increase my customer base and sales to keep money flowing into my business?
  • What is appropriate messaging to relay to the community about safety?
  • How do we stay open and generate revenue when everyone is being told to avoid public places?
  • At what point would it be necessary to close my office or retail store and stop providing services?
  • What would make it necessary to shut down my food manufacturing facility?
  • What do I do if we're forced to close? My employees will be out of work and my clients/customers will not make payments?
  • How long should employees stay home if they show symptoms of a cold or flu?
  • How can employees receive sick pay beyond the 3 days mandated by the state?

Questions & Answers - Pop Up Small Business Survival COVID-19

Questions that small businesses asked on the Pop-Up Small Business Survival COVID-19. If a question is not answered, we are working on getting the answer. If a question is not listed. We are working on publishing all clearly stated questions. Please check back for answers to your questions.

10:00am-12:00pm Pop-Up

Q. Are these ZOOM webinars able to be translated into other languages?

A. Not at this time, but we are working on providing Pop-Ups in other languages.  

Q. Can employees who are sheltered apply for Unemployment Insurance (UI) or paid sick leave outside of what businesses offer? 

A.

Q. Will there be grants or only loans?

A. SBA is not a grant program and is only offering the Economic Injury Disaster Loan for COVID-19 pandemic. 

Q. Is there any guidance on how to discuss deffered payments with property managers, utilities, insurance, etc.?

A. Apply to SBDC for one-on-one adivising for guidance and strategies on how to have those conversations. 

Q. How can I get more details on the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan?

A. You can download the COVID-19 Small Business Survival Guide.

Q. How long is the typical approval process for the loans?

A. SBA's goal is to arrive at a decision on an application within 2-3 weeks. (see the COVID-19 Small Business Survival Guide)

Q. Is it better to apply for the EIDL online or mail in?

A. Online is quicker. SBA is receiving a high volume of applications. Please be patient.

Q. Can all small businesses receive one-on-one SBDC advising to help with EIDL forms?

A. For-profit small businesses can apply for one-on-one advising with SBDC and support with the EIDL forms. Non-profits are referred to partner organizations for one-on-one advising and EIDL support.  

Q. When are taxes due?

A. IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief

Q. How much does SBDC cost services?

A. Nothing 

Q. If you currently have an active loan through SBA can you still be considered for an Economic Injury Disaster loan? (see the COVID-19 Small Business Survival Guide) 

A. Yes

Q. Does SBA EIDL require a personal guarantee?

A. Loans over 25k will require a guarantee.

Q. Is there a limit on how much is borrowed?

A. You may borrow up to $2 million for Economic Injury. (see the COVID-19 Small Business Survival Guide)

 

 

 

 

I'm Self-Employed - Is there help for me?

Yes, if you signed up for the state's optional Disability Insurance Elective Coverage (DIEC) program for self-employed individuals who want to be covered by Disability Insurance and Paid Family Leave? Learn about from the EDD about that. If not, this may be a good time to explore state benefits. We have asked County and City officials if more local resources will be freed up, too.

Apply Now

It all starts here. Complete the application and submit your request. A member of the SBDC will follow up with you and help you achieve your small business goals -- at no cost to you.

COVID-19

As concerns continue about coronavirus (COVID-19), we’re here to help you navigate available resources, answer your business questions and be a trusted partner for your business
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Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA or HSU Sponsored Programs Foundation.