If you need something you don’t see or have suggestions about virtual programming we should create to help local business, please shoot us a line at gro.doogelttaes@ofni.
SBA Launches portal to begin accepting Shuttered Venue Operators Grant applications on April 8.
The SVOG program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits and Venues Act, which appropriated $15 billion for it. The American Rescue Plan Act, signed into law by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021, appropriated an additional $1.25 billion, bringing the program funding to a total of $16.25 billion, with more than $16 billion allocated for grants.
Small businesses and nonprofits can apply for a low-interest loan of up to $150,000 to finance expansion and growth as well as recover from the pandemic and subsequent economic slowdown.
The money can be spent flexibly, including on payroll, utilities & rent, supplies, marketing & advertising, building improvements or repairs, and other business expenses. Businesses and organizations with fewer than 50 employees and annual revenues of less tan $3 million who have experienced direct economic hardship due to COVID-19 are eligible to apply. Small Business Flex Fund Loans are supported by the Washington State Department of Commerce. For more information visit HERE.
NorthwestTAAC is a federal assistance program for Northwest manufacturing companies, and they are offering assistance to manufacturing companies hurt by imports. Eligible Northwest manufacturers can receive up to $75,000 in matching funds to implement projects to improve sales growth, new market development, technology improvements, workforce training, and more. Most local manufacturing businesses can make a case for being hurt by imports if you can show reduced sales or employee loss.
There is no charge to your company to apply for the program. The NorthwestTAAC team will ask you some questions to identify if you qualify during a quick, initial phone call. They work to help you meet the program criteria through a variety of pathways based on the criteria below.
- Monthly net sales (total and domestic) for last 36 months
- Employee headcount by month for last 36 months
- If net sales and average employment show at least a 5% decline, NorthwestTAAC can get started with your application.
The program runs on a rolling basis. It usually takes between 4-6 months before your proposal is approved and work on projects can begin. Projects should be completed within five years of being awarded funding.
Contact Northwest TAAC at (206) 622-2730 / (800) 667-8087 or gro.caatwn@caatwn, or visit their FAQ page for more info.
Seattle City Light (electricity) and Seattle Public Utilities (water, sewer, and garbage) have expanded their payment plans, which are available for all customers including businesses and property owners, to help them pay down their past due balance and maintain their utility services. With a payment plan, customers can break up their past due balance into payments that make sense for their budget and pay back their balance over time.
Short-Term Payment Plans
If a customer can pay their past due balance within 60 days, a short-term payment plan offers flexibility to meet the needs of their budget while helping them get caught up on their bills quickly. Seattle City Light and Seattle Public Utilities customers can set up a short-term payment plan on the Utility Services Website or call (206) 684-3000.
Long-Term Payment Plans
If a customer needs more than 60 days to pay their past due balance, we can work with them to set up a long-term payment plan that makes sense for their budget.
- Seattle City Light Business Customers — Complete the long-term payment plan application online.
- Seattle Public Utilities Business Customers — Contact a customer service representative at (206) 684-3000. Tenants requesting long-term payment plans for a Seattle Public Utilities account should have the property owner’s contact information (name, phone, and email address) available when you call.
Customers can learn more about the resources available to them online at www.seattle.gov/UtilityBillHelp or contact a customer service representative.
Translated flyers with more information are available at www.seattle.gov/UtilityBillHelp. If you would like to request information in other languages to share with businesses you work with who are behind on their utility bills, contact vog.elttaes@hcaertuOmmoC_LCS.
The EIDL program provides up to $2 million in loans to small businesses or nonprofits that have suffered substantial economic injury as a result of a declared disaster. COVID-19 EIDL loans have 3.75% interest for businesses, 2.75% for nonprofits, and reach maturity in 30 years.
In the fall of 2021 SBA announced the following major enhancements to the program:
- Increasing the COVID EIDL Cap. The SBA will lift the COVID EIDL cap from $500,000 to $2 million. Loan funds can be used for any normal operating expenses and working capital, including payroll, purchasing equipment, and paying debt.
- Implementation of a Deferred Payment Period. The SBA will ensure small business owners will not have to begin COVID EIDL repayment until two years after loan origination so that they can get through the pandemic without having to worry about making ends meet.
- Establishment of a 30-Day Exclusivity Window. To ensure main street businesses have additional time to access these funds, the SBA will implement a 30-day exclusivity window of approving and disbursing funds for loans of $500,000 or less. Approval and disbursement of loans over $500,000 will begin after the 30-day period.
- Expansion of Eligible Use of Funds. COVID EIDL funds will now be eligible to prepay commercial debt and make payments on federal business debt.
- Simplification of affiliation requirements. To ease the COVID EIDL application process for small businesses, the SBA has established more simplified affiliation requirements to model those of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.
EIDL applications will close Dec. 31. Apply here.
Targeted EIDL Advance and Supplemental Targeted Advance – Applicants for the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) may be eligible to receive up to $15,000 in funding from SBA that does not need to be repaid. These “advances” are similar to a grant, but without the typical requirements that come with a U.S. government grant. To receive an advance, you must first apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan. You do not need to accept the loan or be approved for the loan to receive an advance. Once you apply for the loan, SBA will invite you via email to apply for one of the advance programs if your business is located in a low-income area.
Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
SBA Express Bridge Loans
Guidance for Businesses and Employers
Additional SBA Resources
For a useful article on both the PPP and EIDL programs and how they interact with each other, click here.
For SBA’s customer service center: (800) 659-2955 or email vog.abs@ecivresremotsucretsasid for more information on disaster assistance.
COVID-19 Recovery grants up to $4,000 are now available through September 24, 2021 for small and medium-sized manufacturers through Impact Washington. Funding is available on a 50%-50% match basis up to $4,000. There is no formal application process but applications will go through a no-cost Recovery Assessment with Impact Northwest. For more information about the Assessment and receiving Recovery Assistance, contact them here.
0% Interest loans up to $15K for small businesses through KIVA – Due to the ongoing pandemic, more businesses in the US will be eligible for a Kiva loan. The maximum loan on the Kiva platform has increase from $10,000 to $15,000. New borrowers may also access a grace period of up to 6 months for greater financial flexibility. If you’re a small business owner who believes you can benefit from a Kiva loan, or you know one in your community, apply here.
Businesses featured on Yelp can launch fundraisers and accept donations directly through their Yelp profile. More details here.
Businesses who received a loan from the Paycheck Protection Program can now apply for forgiveness through the new streamlined portal launched by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Small business owners with loans up to $150,000 can apply. Visit the SBA’s PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal for information. Customer service is also available by phone at 877-552-2692.
Southlake Union Chamber Small Business and Nonprofit Relief Fund for Small Businesses and NGOs in South Lake Union. Grants will be awarded in amounts ranging from $1,500-$7,500. Applications are open on a rolling basis and allocated according to available funds.
PDA: COVID-19 Relief Resources – A Google sheet with funding, information, and other resources for farms, small businesses, day stall artists, and residents
GoFundMe Small Business Relief Fund: One-time $500 matching grant program for independently owned and operated businesses. GoFundMe has also compiled a list of ways for small businesses to find help, which is available here
COMMUNICATIONS, MEDIA & MARKETING RESOURCES
Seattle Office of Economic Development (OED) is partnering with the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle (ULMS) to launch the Youth Web Design pilot program. The Youth Web Design pilot provides an opportunity for Black-youth to create websites for Black-owned small businesses. Students meet with small business owners to understand their needs and receive necessary training to create websites. The goal of the pilot is to build community wealth by developing talent among youth and increasing small business resiliency, so that both youth and small business owners can thrive. Although it says the deadline is September 1, 2021, they are still accepting applications. Apply here.
Seattle Office of Economic Development (OED), Comcast and Kay Tita launched the new Digital Sales Access Program (DSAP) to support Seattle’s small businesses most impacted by COVID-19 and the digital divide. DSAP will support 50 small businesses by equipping them with a point-of-sales (POS) system and connecting participating businesses with tools and training needed to pivot their operations to new technology. Each eligible business owner will receive POS equipment, a Square stand, an iPad Air and one-on-one POS training. This program is also still accepting applications (please disregard the June 24 deadline listed). Apply here.
Carrie Hawthorne is offering pro-bono 30-minute digital communications consultation sessions to any small business or non-profit affected by the coronavirus. Whether it’s brainstorming, bouncing around ideas, or questions about specific platforms, Carrie has 15 years supporting small businesses and non-profits and would be happy to see if she can help. You can sign up for an individual session here.
Marketing resources for small business by MailChimp lists various financial, informative, and logistic resources for small businesses in the age of COVID.
COVID-19 Content Marketing Resources from the Content Marketing Institute lists various ways for businesses to adjust their marketing to the COVID landscape. Includes tips on how to shift in-person demand to online event formats, managing teams remotely, and adjusting content analytics.
The AMA’s Support Materials for marketing professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic provides interesting insight into marketing during the pandemic. Includes readings, videos, and toolkits.
The Employment Security Department has put together a return to work page, dedicated to all things related to coming back into the workplace. They have resources for hiring new employees, trainings, and events.
Washington’s SharedWork program provides flexibility for businesses to restart and bring their employees back from unemployment with reduced hours. Businesses gradually build back their team with qualified workers receiving partial unemployment benefits to replace a portion of their lost wages. SharedWork also hosts live Q&A webinar for businesses on Wednesdays between 8:15-9am, as well as employer resources webinar series with local partners each month.
The Washington State Dept. of Labor & Industries has compiled a Worker’s Compensation Coverage and General COVID-19 Common Questions.
Employer resources – Example policies, supplies, planning, contract tracing, and communication resources from the Business Health Trust.
Refreshed, Revitalized and Resilient Bookkeeping Package – Pretty Books is helping building resilience in our small business community by offering a bookkeeping package to businesses whose revenue was affected by 50% or more in 2020. The package includes bookkeeping catch up and data cleaning up to 24 months, a basic projection for the next 24 months, and two 45 minute meetings with the client to help provide financial clarity. Fill out this form to apply.
Full Service Worker’s Alliance – Composed from individuals actively working in all roles in the full service restaurant industry. The FSWA is determined to bring workers and employers together with legislators to stand up and protect our Full Service Restaurant culture. The dynamic created by bringing full service workers together creates an engaged community and positive working environment.
From the Department of Commerce
The state Employment Security Department (ESD) recommends workers take the following four steps to help ensure their unemployment benefits are filed correctly and start quickly:
- Sign up for the agency’s COVID-19 action alerts.
- Download and review the ESD eligibility checker. This will help workers determine if they are currently eligible for benefits.
- Download and read the application checklist to make sure that you have what you need.
- A SecureAccess Washington (SAW) account is needed to file an unemployment claim. ESD recently posted a video that explains the process to be followed in order to apply for benefits. After reviewing the video, please sign up for a SAW account.
“This is an incredibly stressful time for everyone,” ESD Commissioner Suzi LeVine said. “Please know we’re working around the clock at ESD to get Washingtonians the money that they need and give them a little peace of mind as quickly as we can.”
FULFILLMENT & SHIPPING Logistics
FulfillNow – Keep your business sustained through affordable shipping, fulfillment, and delivery with FulfillNow. FulfillNow is offering Seattle Good members a discount for a limited time, including no storage fees, no set-up fees, no monthly fees, and no minimums. See the details for that offer here.
Delvy provides an alternative delivery option to Seattle businesses that may be frustrated with the cost and/or lack of service provided by established major delivery companies. Services include same day delivery services, as well as regular delivery solutions, and the area of service ranges as far south as King County Airport and as far north as N 145th St. They offer a flat rate of $9.50 for every unique order (flat rate may vary for businesses located on the borders of the area of service). Delvy is currently offering their first 2 deliveries on the house to encourage every business to try their service without any financial obligation. Those businesses that wish to find out more information about their service can get in touch with them via email: su.yvled@seireviled.
Sendle is the first 100% Carbon-neutral shipping service, complete with compostable mailers. Sendle has competitive pricing, is a certified B Corp, and is great for small and medium businesses – Sign up for an account through this link to access premium rates.
Evergreen Packaging offers cartons, paperboard, paper, and other sustainably-sourced fiber products. They also offer equipment & parts services.
EcoEnclose offers mailers, boxes, tape, bags, packing tissue, and plenty more, all clearly noted as compostable, recyclable, upcycled, or biodegradable. They even offer free sample kits.
AllPak Container has boxes, palettes, pop displays, totes, customizable items, and much more. A tier 3 champion level EnviroStars and Renton based company.
Trojan Litho offers performance consumer packaging, with Forestry Stewardship Council products available. Renton based company used worldwide.
Biomass Packaging has bags, office & shipping supplies, cleaning & janitorial supplies, food & table service, and custom printed items, all made from plant based materials.
GENERAL RESOURCES AND INFORMATION
Resource Guide that provides business checklists, example policies, and resources related to COVID-19, updated regularly.
Resource Roundup Blog – The City of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development (OED) is committed to keeping you updated through these challenging and unprecedented times. This weekly blog provided news and information about new policies and resources available from the City of Seattle, the State of Washington, the federal government, and our philanthropic partners. This blog is no longer regularly updated, but there’s still a wealth of information available.
Highlights from the Resource Roundup Blog include:
- City of Seattle Food Assistance
- King County Cultural Relief Fund & Public Health Guidance
- WA State Protection for Renters
Small Business COVID-19 response Bi-Weekly Webinars: Seattle Office of Economic Development – These webinars were put on by the Office of Economic Development’s Small Business COVID-19 response. These occurred bi-weekly on Wednesday mornings from 11 – 12 pm. Recordings of past webinars along with Q&A have been posted on their blog.
The Port of Seattle presents its second annual Business Accelerator Program launching this fall.Through the program, women-and minority-owned business enterprises (WMBE) and small businesses will build lasting relationships with industry and agency representatives, while preparing for contracting opportunities at the Port and beyond.
On May 21 the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries issued updated state COVID-19 workplace safety and health guidance to help employers adapt masking policies to meet new CDC guidelines adopted by Governor Inslee.
Communities Rise offer two avenues of assistance for low income small business owners: their Small Business Legal Clinic (for low income Washington state business owners who have short questions for an attorney) and full representation services. To be eligible of r free legal services, business owners must demonstrate the following:
- The business is registered in Washington state;
- Is unable to pay for legal fees without significant impairment to operations;
- Owner(s) household income is below 80% of the King County HUD guidelines; (all owners must qualify if more than one)
- Seeks legal assistance on a business or organizational matter
More information available here.
Washington State Department of Commerce has launched SmartWA Resource Portal to help small businesses locate financial and technical assistance, such as flex funding, various grants and loans, and discounted products or services as they are in the process of reopening. This website also provides resources for public health guidance that will best allow for employees and customers to safely return to in-person shopping. In addition, this website consolidates information on business associations and chambers which specifically serve the needs of marginalized communities.
Washington State Department of Commerce also launched a new SmartWA business decision support system and COVID-19 dashboard. SmartWA uses numerous data sources and artificial intelligence to provide small businesses most impacted by the pandemic with real-time outlooks about public health, economic, and community conditions by county and industry. The decision support system features an interactive simulator that provide industry-specific predictions about which safety protocols are most likely to increase customer traffic in specific sectors.
The state Economic Resiliency Team (ERT) started a Business Response Center to answer general business inquiries around financial help or other business assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak.
“We have a whole team of people from the Department of Commerce, the Joint Information Center and volunteers from throughout state government, who are taking in those questions, creating FAQs, and getting back to people answering their concerns,” said state Department of Commerce Director Lisa Brown.
Businesses with questions can fill out a form here to get information related to COVID-19.
COVID-19 Reopening Guidebook/Business Assistance– Governor’s Office: Resources include: Financial, Export, Employer & Worker, and Insurance assistance
WA State Department of Revenue– General Business Relief Resources during crisis, regularly updated.
Free Legal Support on Lease Amendments – Communities Rise COVID-19 Small Business and Nonprofit Legal Clinic: Client Intake Form
Resources for Manufacturers from Impact WA – Tools and information on PPE, how to protect your workforce, Financial Guidance, and more!
Salesforce – One app for all your sales needs: track customer information, track sales, and metrics gauging the health of your business. Offering small businesses 14 days free.
Small Business Resiliency Assistance from Startup WA, for business owners from culturally and historically disadvantaged communities. Culturally relevant assistance helps you navigate local policies, plan for recovery, and support your workforces.
Free and discounted remote working tools during COVID-19– Notion brings you tools that include sales, marketing, hiring, collaborative working, finance, customer support, security, and more!
COVID-19 Business Resources – Business Impact NW have free or low cost services and lending products. Offering free one on one business coaching for new, growing, or established businesses.
COVID-19 Handbook for Creatives – a regularly updated resource hub for people in the creative industry, by King County.
ICIC’s Small Business Resource Center for COVID-19 has many resources for small businesses, sorted into useful categories.
Federal Resources for U.S. Small Businesses – official federal resource website for U.S. small businesses affected by COVID-19
Complete Guide to Cyber Risk Management for Small Businesses, by Juiced Systems.
SBA Cybersecurity Guide: Cyber attacks are a growing concern for small businesses. Learn about the threats and how to protect yourself.
Many small businesses and property owners are securing their business to stay at home. Following are some tips on securing your business and property:
Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections – Maintaining Vacant Business
RESTAURANT, BAR & FOOD PRODUCER RESOURCES
City of Seattle Support Seattle Small Biz Takeout & Delivery Map: If you’d like to be added to the GIS map or update your information, email vog.elttaes@zibllamstroppus, there is a short survey as part of the vetting process.
Pay Forward Project – Sign up to feature your gift cards on this aggregate site. No fees.
Directory: Eat Local First – Add your information to this directory to let people know where you can find your food or beverage products.
Open Air and Outdoor Seating Guidance by the Governor’s Office details how your business can accommodate guests outdoors
Temporary Outdoor Café, Merchandise Display, Vending, and Street Closure Permits – Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT)’s guide to streamlined, free temporary permits for outdoor cafes, retail merchandise displays, food trucks, and vending carts that are valid through October 31, 2021.
King County COVID-19 posters for restaurants and grocery stores
Open Table – Restaurant Preparedness Resource Center
Full Service Worker’s Alliance – Composed from individuals actively working in all roles in the full service restaurant industry. The FSWA is determined to bring workers and employers together with Legislators to stand up and protect Full Service Restaurant culture.
Save Local Restaurants – The Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC) was formed to save the local restaurants affected by COVID-19. IRC is founded on the simple belief that there is power to affect legislative change if people unite our voice.
Farmers Guide to Direct Sales Software Platforms: While markets, restaurants, and other food distribution channels close or reduce operations to prevent the spread of COVID-19, farms across the country have expressed interest in using software platforms that support direct sales to consumers in their communities. This publication highlights product options and sales models that farmers may find helpful. Put together by the SGBN.
Food Safety And Processing Help Desk
Impact Washington’s highly experienced food processing specialists offer value-driven solutions and training to assist food manufacturers become regulation complaint, implement lean training programs develop growth strategies that help transform their business into an agile and increasingly profitable enterprise.
- Food Safety Regulations – REQUEST HELP
- Food Safety & Modernization Act (FSMA) – REQUEST HELP
- General Food Manufacturing Assistance – REQUEST HELP
- Advanced Technology Help Desk – REQUEST HELP
Makers! Supporting the Capacity and Safety of Small Scale Manufacturers in Washington State – join Washington State Microenterprise Association (WSMA), Washington State Department of Labor & Industries, and the Seattle Good Business Network for a focused discussion with specialists, including SGBN’s own Erin Adams, about resources, safety regulations, and requirements for makers and small scale manufacturers as they bring locally made products to businesses near you. The event takes place virtually on June 28th at 2pm. Register here.
A new website created by the Washington State Small Business Recovery Working Group offers webinars to help small businesses navigate COVID-19 relief options, including Small Business Flex Fund Info webinar (6/21).
SharedWork hosts live Q&A webinar for businesses on Wednesdays between 8:15-9am, as well as employer resources webinar series with local partners each month.
Washington State Department of Commerce in partnership with U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and Thurston EDC Center for Business Innovation launched ScaleUp: The Rebuild Edition that focuses on helping small businesses restart and rebuild. The three-hour online courses are held weekly, allowing up to 100 businesses around the state to restart and rebuild, improving their strategic thinking and decision-making, creating operational efficiencies and strengthening the bottom line as we engage in economic recovery. The ideal candidate for ScaleUp is the president/owner of a Washington State business that has been in operation for two years and has annual pre-COVID revenues in excess of $100,000. Register HERE.
Washington State Biz Fair– Learn from the experts on how to start, grow, or make your business more resilient. Attend seminars, find resources, and shop for vetted products and services relevant to your business. Look for 2021 Fair info here. New Updates to PPP Loan Forgiveness Instruction
Seattle Office of Arts & Culture hosts COVID-19 Webinar – 3/17: Small business resource, Unemployment benefits, Utility relief, direct artist support (25:56), direct artist support from Artist Trust (31:52), rent relief (36:17), frame setting (39:35), funding from Seattle Foundation (41:13), organizational funding (49:06), Q&A (53:04).
Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) – A plethora of webinars oriented towards urban businesses are hosted on their website.
Visit our dedicated PPE page to find out how to buy, sell, manufacture, and learn more about PPE resources!
Seattle Good Business Network members from Northwest Sewn and Seattle Made programs have been manufacturing, donating, buying, selling, and providing materials for the production of PPE/face masks. Find out how you can get involved and/or support these local businesses and their initiatives.
Help Support Our Mission
By supporting Seattle Good Business Network, you help support our work to build a vibrant, sustainable, and inclusive local economy, and to help our local businesses when they need it the most. Learn about all the work we do here.