State and Local COVID-19 SMB Resources

7 minute read

As the situation continues to evolve, expect different states and individual cities to offer varying levels of relief for small businesses.



State/Local Policy Activity Tracker

MultiState has created an extensive chart to track state and locality policy surrounding the coronavirus and its management.  The chart is updated daily and includes the following information.

  • Link to Each State’s Health Department’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) website
  • Key Contacts
  • State of Emergency Documents for Each State
  • Executive Orders
  • Session Changes/Capitol Closures
  • Travel Restrictions / Info
  • Official Sources (Twitter, etc.)


Small Business Association (SBA) Disaster Assistance Loans

The SBA administration is working directly with state governors to provide low-interest disaster recovery loans to small businesses severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program “provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.”

The disaster relief loans can be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, and accounts payable, among other operational costs. The interest rate for small businesses is 3.75% and 2.75% for non-profits, with repayment timelines of up to 30 years—exact terms are determined on a case-by-case basis.

You can apply for a disaster relief loan on the SBA website.


Coronavirus Resources from State Chambers 

The Council of State Chambers has created a robust list of resources including:

  • State Chamber Recent Announcements / Updates 
    • This section covers any breaking news including State Specific Announcements and Calls to Action.
  • State Chambers Dedicated Websites
    • At the time of this writing 41 state chambers have created a dedicated website with resources related to the coronavirus.
  • U.S. Chamber Resources
    • This is a list of valuable resources for the community.
  • State Departments of Public Health Resources


SBA | Government Contracts 

This resource focuses on small businesses that have contracts with the government—including 8(a) business development, HUBZone, and women-owned small business firms—the SBA advises being proactive about operations. Specifically, if you have a government contract you cannot successfully perform due to circumstances surrounding the coronavirus, reach out to your contracting officer for an extension as soon as possible.  Here is a link to the procurement center representative directory. Contact information is listed by state.

State-Specific Resources

Arkansas | The state chamber website lists many resources including


California |According to the state has reviewed the federal CARES Act and are pleased to report that on Sunday, for the week ending April 11, the EDD will begin issuing the new $600 additional unemployment benefit payments funded by the federal government. Visit the Latest News for Workers for the details.

  • In addition, the EDD has launched a new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance page to keep you informed of eligibility requirements and the around-the-clock effort to build this new program from the CARES Act. This complex program to serve those who don’t usually qualify for regular Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits, including businesses and the self-employed, has to be developed and could rival the size of the current UI program EDD administers for unemployed workers.
  • The EDD will also keep you posted on the CARES Act provision establishing a new 13-week extension of benefits paid for by the federal government when someone exhausts their regular state UI claim between March 29, 2020 and the end of 2020. This too also requires an extensive effort to implement these new extended benefits.

For more detailed updates, visit Worker Resources or Employer Resources.


Colorado, Denver | Economic Development Fund Grant

A $4 million relief fund with priority to support local small businesses and others involved in the food industry. The Denver Economic Development and Opportunity (DEDO) is creating cash grants of up to $7,500, with the highest priorities being those most affected by the coronavirus such as the food industry.

Florida | The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program will make loans to individuals who, individually or collectively, own at least 51% of the equity of the business. A borrower will be required to sign an agreement that the proceeds of the loan will be used only for purposes of maintaining or restarting the business in the designated area.  Use of proceeds to pay off debts already incurred for qualifying business maintenance or restart purposes may be authorized on a case-by-case basis.

Illinois – Chicago | Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot announced a new $100 million economic relief package to support Chicago’s small businesses that are experiencing a temporary loss of revenue as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. The City is launching the new Chicago Small Business Resiliency Loan Fund to provide more than $100 million in low-interest loans to severely impacted small businesses over the coming months, targeting historically under-resourced communities with an emphasis on minimizing hardship for those businesses and their employees.

Maryland | Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund

To allocate more than $175 million to assist small businesses and nonprofit organizations. Up to $130 million in new funding, through the Maryland Department of Commerce, will help support new loan and grant programs as well as manufacturers, and $7 million in funding through the Maryland Department of Labor is designed to help small businesses retain their workforce.


Massachusetts | The $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund will provide emergency capital up to $75,000 for companies with under 50 full0time and part-time employees, including nonprofits with ni payments due for 6 months.

Michigan | The state economic development corporation offers several regional support resources for businesses.


New York | The state’s NYC Business Solutions Center experts are available to help you identify additional financing available, including financing from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) or local philanthropic financing if you are a nonprofit.

Pennsylvania | According to the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development businesses who are temporarily closed due to COVID-19 will be granted Relief From Charges, and your tax rate will not be increased because of COVID-19-related claims. If your business has been affected by COVID-19, you can visit the state’s Employer COVID-19 FAQ Page for more information.

The PA Department of Labor & Industry has programs to assist businesses impacted by COVID-19. The Shared-Work program can help keep employees attached to your workplace by allowing an employer to temporarily reduce work hours rather than resorting to layoffs. You can reach the Shared-Work team at

However, if you are a business that has had to close either temporarily, consider layoffs, or is financially at-risk for permanent closure the Rapid Response Assistance Program is available to assist you with a variety of services and resources to help you and your employees. You can reach the Rapid Response team via email at

Washington State  | The state has made available up to $5 million for SMBs from the Governor’s Strategic Reserve Funds that will be made available as grants to help prevent closure due to COVID-19.

Washington State Drive-In Wi-Fi Hotspots Locator

Free Internet is available at hotspots statewide to serve residents who don’t have broadband in their homes and broadband wifi to search for jobs, telework, file unemployment, do homework, complete the census or access telehealth appointments. Be sure to use good social distancing and hygiene practices at these mobile sites.

California, Oregon & Washington Announce Western States Pact

West Coast States Agree Region Will Move Toward Reopening Based On Health Outcomes

Salem, OR—Today, California Governor Gavin Newsom, Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced an agreement on a shared vision for reopening their economies and controlling COVID-19 into the future.

Joint statement from the Governors:

COVID-19 has preyed upon our interconnectedness. In the coming weeks, the West Coast will flip the script on COVID-19 – with our states acting in close coordination and collaboration to ensure the virus can never spread wildly in our communities.

We are announcing that California, Oregon and Washington have agreed to work together on a shared approach for reopening our economies – one that identifies clear indicators for communities to restart public life and business.

While each state is building a state-specific plan, our states have agreed to the following principles as we build out a West Coast framework:

Our residents’ health comes first. As home to one in six Americans and gateway to the rest of the world, the West Coast has an outsized stake in controlling and ultimately defeating COVID-19.

Health outcomes and science – not politics – will guide these decisions. Modifications to our states’ stay at home orders must be made based off our understanding of the total health impacts of COVID-19, including: the direct impact of the disease on our communities; the health impact of measures introduced to control the spread in communities—particularly felt by those already experiencing social disadvantage prior to COVID-19; and our health care systems’ ability to ensure care for those who may become sick with COVID-19 and other conditions. This effort will be guided by data. We need to see a decline in the rate of spread of the virus before large-scale reopening, and we will be working in coordination to identify the best metrics to guide this.

Our states will only be effective by working together. Each state will work with its local leaders and communities within its borders to understand what’s happening on the ground and adhere to our agreed upon approach.

Through quick and decisive action, each of our states has made significant progress in flattening the curve and slowing the spread of COVID-19 among the broader public. Now, our public health leaders will focus on four goals that will be critical for controlling the virus in the future.

• Protecting vulnerable populations at risk for severe disease if infected. This includes a concerted effort to prevent and fight outbreaks in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.
• Ensuring an ability to care for those who may become sick with COVID-19 and other conditions. This will require adequate hospital surge capacity and supplies of personal protective equipment.
• Mitigating the non-direct COVID-19 health impacts, particularly on disadvantaged communities.
• Protecting the general public by ensuring any successful lifting of interventions includes the development of a system for testing, tracking and isolating. The states will work together to share best practices.

COVID-19 doesn’t follow state or national boundaries. It will take every level of government, working together, and a full picture of what’s happening on the ground.

In the coming days the governors, their staff and health officials will continue conversations about this regional path to recovery.

Governor Websites 

For state-specific updates, resources, and assistance, it is always best practice to check directly with your state governor’s office. 

Stay safe and remain strong in this turbulent time. And remember to check back on this article for updates as details of the above guidance and resources change.


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