Small business isn't small to us. 

It's difficult to predict the economic impact of COVID-19 Coronavirus, but current precautionary restrictions will disproportionately affect small business. Below we've gathered information on available resources and answers to frequently asked questions.

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FAQs

Select a category from the options below to see answers to common questions surrounding COVID-19 for small business owners.

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Workplace & Health

What’s the main workplace safety guidance we should follow?


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently published Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19, outlining steps employers can take to help protect their workforce. OSHA has divided workplaces and work operations into four risk zones, according to the likelihood of employees’ occupational exposure during a pandemic. These risk zones are useful in determining appropriate work practices and precautions. Very High Exposure Risk:

  • Healthcare employees performing aerosol-generating procedures on known or suspected pandemic patients.
  • Healthcare or laboratory personnel collecting or handling specimens from known or suspected pandemic patients.
High Exposure Risk:
  • Healthcare delivery and support staff exposed to known or suspected pandemic patients.
  • Medical transport of known or suspected pandemic patients in enclosed vehicles.
  • Performing autopsies on known or suspected pandemic patients.
Medium Exposure Risk:
  • Employees with high-frequency contact with the general population (such as schools, high population density work environments, and some high-volume retail).
Lower Exposure Risk (Caution):
  • Employees who have minimal occupational contact with the general public and other coworkers (such as office employees).
Our guidance focuses on medium to lower risk work environments and please contact us for additional support in Very High and High Exposure settings.




What if an employee appears sick?


The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has provided interim guidance that may help prevent workplace exposures to acute respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, in non-healthcare settings. The guidance also provides planning considerations if there are more widespread, community outbreaks of COVID-19. Recommended strategies for employers to use now are available at Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Recommended strategies for employers to use now:

  • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home:
  • Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants). Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
  • Ensure that your sick leave policies are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and that employees are aware of these policies.
  • Talk with companies that provide your business with contract or temporary employees about the importance of sick employees staying home and encourage them to develop non-punitive leave policies.
  • Do not require a healthcare provider’s note for employees who are sick with acute respiratory illness to validate their illness or to return to work, as healthcare provider offices and medical facilities may be extremely busy and not able to provide such documentation in a timely way.
  • Employers should maintain flexible policies that permit employees to stay home to care for a sick family member. Employers should be aware that more employees may need to stay at home to care for sick children or other sick family members than is usual.
  • Separate sick employees:
  • CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately. Sick employees should cover their noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or an elbow or shoulder if no tissue is available).
  • Emphasize staying home when sick, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene by all employees:
  • Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
  • Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene.
  • Perform routine environmental cleaning:
  • Routinely clean all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops, and doorknobs. Use the cleaning agents that are usually used in these areas and follow the directions on the label.
  • No additional disinfection beyond routine cleaning is recommended at this time.
  • Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.
  • Advise employees before traveling to take certain steps:
  • Advise employees to check themselves for symptoms of acute respiratory illness before starting travel and notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
  • Ensure employees who become sick while traveling or on temporary assignment understand that they should notify their supervisor and should promptly call a healthcare provider for advice if needed.
  • If outside the United States, sick employees should follow your company’s policy for obtaining medical care or contact a healthcare provider or overseas medical assistance company to assist them with finding an appropriate healthcare provider in that country. A U.S. consular officer can help locate healthcare services. However, U.S. embassies, consulates, and military facilities do not have the legal authority, capability, and resources to evacuate or give medicines, vaccines, or medical care to private U.S. citizens overseas.
  • Additional Measures in Response to Currently Occurring Sporadic Importations of the COVID-19:
  • Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.
  • If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.




Can we ask an employee to stay home or leave work if they exhibit symptoms of the COVID-19 coronavirus or the flu?


According to CDC guidance, individuals who have had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19 should self-quarantine. Employers can require an employee who has been exposed to the virus to stay at home.




When should we exclude workers or visitors from the workspace?


Employees should stay home or go home if they have symptoms of coronavirus infection. But dedicated staff often resist taking sick days, instead dragging themselves into work where they may infect others. Given the threat this epidemic presents, managers shouldn’t hesitate to send employees who present with Covid-19 symptoms home. Likewise, employees or visitors who are symptomatic or at high risk for Covid-19 should be kept separate from staff and helped with arrangements to leave the workplace and obtain medical evaluation while minimizing their public exposure. For example, they should avoid public places and public transportation, and, ideally, should stay six feet away from others unless they are wearing a mask. If Covid-19 becomes widespread in the community, companies can check temperatures using hand-held thermal scanners and consider excluding staff or visitors with temperatures over 100.4 F. Temperature is not an exceptionally accurate way to assess risk, though, as some with the coronavirus will be contagious but have no fever, and others will have higher temperatures not related to this virus. Thus, an elevated temperature in combination with respiratory symptoms is the best indicator of possible infection. For more, see the CDC’s “Guidance for Risk Assessment” and separate guidance for healthcare settings.




Should we revise our benefits policies in cases where employees are barred from the worksite or we close it?


The likelihood that increasing numbers of employees will be unable to work either because they are sick or must care for others means that companies should review their paid time off and sick leave policies now. Policies that give employees confidence that they will not be penalized and can afford to take sick leave are an important tool in encouraging self-reporting and reducing potential exposure. A Harvard Business Review (HBR) survey found that nearly 40% of employers have or plan to clarify their pay policy if worksites are closed or employees are furloughed. While few companies outside of Asia have closed worksites yet because of the epidemic, about half of the Chinese companies we surveyed had shut down worksites at least temporarily. Such closures will likely become more common outside of Asia should the epidemic continue on its current course. Most firms will treat Covid-19 in their policies as they would any other illness, and sick leave or short-term disability insurance would be applicable. However, exclusion from the workplace might not be covered by disability policies, and prolonged absence could last longer than available sick leave. The same HBR survey found that more than 90% of employers in China paid their workers in full and maintained full benefits during furloughs. Companies should promulgate clear policies on this now and communicate about these with employees. Most will want to offer protections to their workforce to the extent this is financially feasible. (HBR) Later in this FAQ, we list Regional resources mobilizing to support impacted employees.




How can we maximize employees’ ability to work remotely?


While many jobs (retail, manufacturing, health care) require people to be physically present, work, including meetings, that can be done remotely should be encouraged if coming to work or traveling risks exposure to the virus. The CDC and Governor Holcomb are now recommending no gathering of over 50 people and Governor Holcomb on March 12 encouraged businesses to utilize telework wherever possible. Videoconferencing, for instance, is a good alternative to risky face-to-face meetings. Free conference call services Zoom GoToMeeting Join.Me Skype Meetup Articles Psychology Today: 5 Tips for Working From Home During COVID-19 Staff.com: Remote Work Benefits, Obstacles, and Best Practices Harvard Review: 15 Questions About Remote Work LinkedIn: Making Remote Work Work Lushin & Associates Lushin & Associates is offering 1-hour free webinars on helping their people in various departments shift to working remote and being productive in the changing times. Emplify: Employee Well-Being Assessment Tool Local tech firm Emplify created a free tool for managers that helps assess the well-being, remote readiness, and specific needs of their teams as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to unfold. Get started with the assessment tool at https://emplify.com/wellbeing/. Accenture Accenture has developed a publicly-available thought leadership to help companies manage remotely during COVID-19. COVID-19: Managing the human and business impact of coronavirus




Do we have reliable systems for real-time public health communication with employees?


Dangerous rumors and worker fears can spread as quickly as a virus. It is imperative for companies to be able to reach all workers, including those not at the worksite, with regular, internally coordinated, factual updates about infection control, symptoms, and company policy regarding remote work and circumstances in which employees might be excluded from or allowed to return to the workplace. These communications should come from or be vetted by the emergency response team, and they should be carefully coordinated to avoid inconsistent policies being communicated by different managers or functions. Clearly this requires organizations to maintain current phone/text and email contact information for all employees and test organization-wide communication periodically. If you don’t have a current, universal contact capability already, now is a good time to create this.




Should we revise our policies around international and domestic business travel?


The CDC currently recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel. It is prudent to limit employee business travel from areas where Covid-19 is most prevalent — both to prevent illness and to prevent loss of productivity due to quarantine or employee exclusion from the workplace after travel. Companies should track the CDC Travel Health Notices and the State Department Travel Advisories to determine what business travel should be canceled or postponed. Employees should be especially careful not to travel if they feel unwell, as they might face quarantine on return if they have a fever even without significant risk of coronavirus infection.




Should we postpone or cancel scheduled conferences or meetings?


If you have any questions about best practices, contact your local health department. Many employers are cancelling all but the most essential business travel. See Coronavirus Impacts Business Travel. There is mounting evidence that social distancing can delay the epidemic and potentially save lives, so most meetings and conferences should be converted from in-person to virtual. The CDC now recommends suspending all gatherings of over 50 people. If you have a meeting, limit the number of attendees and encourage those who are older or have chronic disease to attend virtually. Provide room to allow attendees to sit or stand at least six feet away from others. Discourage hand-shaking and assure that proper handwashing facilities (and/or hand sanitizers) are easily available.




What steps can we take now to minimize risk of transmission?


Repeatedly, creatively, and aggressively encourage employees and others to take the same steps they should be taking to avoid the seasonal flu. For the annual influenza, SARS, avian flu, swine flu, and now the COVID-19 coronavirus, the best way to prevent infection is to avoid exposure. The messages you should be giving to your employees are:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.Avoid close contact with others, especially those who are sick.
  • Refrain from shaking hands with others for the time being.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Perhaps the most important message you can give to employees: stay home when you are sick.
As an employer, you should be doing the following:
  • Ensure that employees have ample facilities to wash their hands, including tepid water and soap, and that third-party cleaning/custodial schedules are accelerated.
  • Evaluate your remote work capacities and policies (see later section on Remote Work for more information). Teleconference or use other remote work tools in lieu of meeting in person if available.
  • Consider staggering employee starting and departing times, along with lunch and break periods, to minimize overcrowding in common areas such as elevators, break rooms, etc.
  • Have a single point of contact for employees for all concerns that arise relating to health and safety.
  • Follow updates from the CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO) regarding additional precautions.
You may reference OSHA’s Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for an Influenza Pandemic for additional information on preparing for an outbreak. Additional resources on pandemic preparedness can be found at Ready.gov. SHRM offers a simple, easy to use poster. Dentons Global COVID-19 Tracker and Resources
Dentons Global offers a global tracker for employers regarding your COVID-19 responsibilities. Click here to request a discussion to check you have what you need in place to implement effective remote working protocols for your inhouse legal team. Contact our global taskforce for a fast response on any COVID-19 issue you may have.




Are there resources to disinfect COVID-19 contamination sites?


Heritage Enviro can answer non-urgent questions at disinfect@heritage-enviro.com, or for immediate assistance with a disinfection call at 833-484-7871. Nelbud Services Group
Nelbud is committed to being flexible to your needs by continuing to be your life safety partner. We’ve learned from over 40 years of past experiences with other outbreaks like H1N1 and Influenza and have continually refined and improved our ability to protect our employees and our customers.




What resources exist for mental health during quarantine?


EmberWood Center provides in-home therapy to new and existing clients on home computer, tablets, and telephones. In response to the current COVID-19 pandemic and following guidelines of CDC, the Governor of Indiana, and the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addictions, the EmberWood Center has established a new protocol for treating our clients. In-person direct services have been suspended until further notice from the CDC, and tele-therapy will be offered instead. Clients can participate via their phones, tablets, or computers and they will be contacted with instructions by their counselors. Please, be patient with us as we are navigating this new method of services provision and we are prioritizing our higher-need clients. Our staff is checking voicemails and will return calls as we receive them. Please, opt for contacting emberwoodcenter@mhai.net with any questions or requests for services. The Daily Boost from First Person This newsletter shares best practices, strategies and resources to help you feel confident and empowered and guide you through these uncharted waters of COVID-19. Community Health Network The mental health effects of COVID-19 are an increasingly important challenge for businesses and communities. To aid individuals, employers, and first responders, a variety of organizations are working collaboratively as the Resilience and Emotional Support Team (REST Team).




Will taking temperatures help keep my office safe?


SHRM has provided a detailed guide and recommendations on how-to take termperatures and other steps to keep offices safe as we return to work. Review the best practices here.




What do I need to stay up to date on my unemployment insurance requirements and reporting?


The Department of Workforce Development has a direct link with guidance for employers.

https://www.in.gov/dwd/3474.htm

Also you should be aware of new forms created to help with notice requirements and reporting directly related to COVID 19 situations.

640-WR: Notice of Work Recall Refusal (Employer) (https://www.in.gov/dwd/2406.htm)

640-P: Unemployment Insurance Protest (Employer) (https://www.in.gov/dwd/2406.htm)

New Hire Reporting: https://in-newhire.com/

Fraud Reporting: https://www.in.gov/dwd/2464.htm




Is wearing masks mandatory?


The State of Indiana does not require individuals to wear masks though strongly encourages the use for safety measures. However, as of July 9, wearing masks in Marion County is mandatory per the Marion County Health Department. Review the order here.





Finance

Does my business insurance cover income losses due to the COVID-19?


To determine if your business would qualify for a business interruption claim, check with your business insurance policy or provider. While each policy could be different in a few cases, policies may cover losses on a limited basis if they include a clause known as ‘interruption by communicable disease’. Additional information available from Risk Strategies.




Is there financial support available for small businesses?


We've laid out out emergency loan assistance options in the Loans section to walk you through your options. More details on loans and other financial assistance programs are below. U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Assistance Program The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low interest federal disaster loans to small businesses across Indiana. Click here to learn how to apply. Funds will be allocated and available directly through the SBA website at www.sba.gov/disaster. The disaster assistance program is run centrally in Washington D.C. Please note that funds received through this SBA program are loans that have financial/underwriting qualifications and must be repaid. More information regarding disaster assistance can be found at www.sba.gov/coronavirus. Here's a 3-step process for applying for disaster loans through the SBA. Learn more about the application process here. SBA Search Engine for PPP Lenders In addition to the tools above, the U.S. Small Business Administration also offers a Lender Match program. Lender Match is a free online referral tool that connects small businesses with participating SBA-approved lenders.

SBA UPDATE: MAY 14

The SBA is committed to helping small businesses recover from the economic impact of COVID-19. Additional assistance includes:

U.S. Chamber Foundation - Save Small Business Fund The Save Small Business Fund is part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Save Small Business Initiative—a nationwide effort to address small business owners’ immediate needs, mitigate closures and job losses, and mobilize the long-term support the small business community needs for recovery. The Chamber Foundation will distribute $5,000 grants to small employers in the U.S. and its territories. Grant application will open on April 20, 2020. SBA Counseling & Advice No-cost, one-on-one virtual or telephone business advice regarding COVID-19 and other matters. Business Ownership Initiative In addition to free one-on-one business coaching, the Business Ownership, a program of the Indy Chamber and SBA partner, offers loans of $1,000-$25,000 to eligible small businesses. Click here to learn more and start the process. Facebook - Small Business Assistance Facebook announced Tuesday a $100 million program to help small businesses as governments throughout the country urge gyms and restaurants to close their doors to slow the coronavirus pandemic. Facebook is offering cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time. Salesforce Salesforce will be offering Salesforce Care Small Business Grants of $10,000 to provide capital to help keep businesses afloat. These grants will support small businesses as they work to replenish materials, pay salaries, or adapt their business model to overcome these challenging times. The grant application will be available to US businesses in mid-April and we will be providing additional details on financial support to international small businesses in the near future, for a total financial commitment of $5 million. Huntington Bank Huntington Bank today announced the immediate, comprehensive steps it is taking to alleviate economic injury experienced by consumers and businesses due to the coronavirus pandemic. Forum Credit Union As the world implements containment measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19, FORUM recognizes members may experience financial strain as a result. FORUM is here for members to help lessen the impact of any potential financial distress by providing individualized solutions to our membership. Fifth Third Bank Fifth Third Bank announces additional hardship relief immediately available for customers affected by the Coronavirus. FHL Bank The Community Investment Program (CIP) provides our members with at-cost loans and letters of credit to support affordable housing and community economic development activities that benefit low- and moderate-income families or neighborhoods. These funds have been used in the past to develop affordable housing, support infrastructure improvement, and boost local job creation. Horizon Bank Horizon Bank announces that it is pledging $250,000 in aid for those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds will be allocated across several not-for-profit groups who are working to assist affected individuals in the communities we serve in the States of Indiana and Michigan. LISC Indianapolis and KIVA LISC and Kiva are partnering together to expand financial opportunities for entrepreneurs and small business impacted by COVID-19. QuickBridge The Bankable QuickBridge Loan is a microloan sized loan product for the purpose of providing relief to small businesses in central Indiana and throughout the state of Indiana that are experiencing hardship due to the Coronavirus outbreak. KSM Managing Cash Flow in Times of Uncertainty The unprecedented events in response to the COVID-19 pandemic are impacting every business in complex ways. Maintaining adequate cash flow to sustain successful operations is likely to elevate as a significant risk for many companies. Boone County Small Business Economic Relief Fund The Boone EDC is offering the Boone County Small Business Economic Relief Fund for Boone County established small businesses affected by the economic downturn caused by COVID-19. To learn more or to apply, please visit https://www.betterinboone.org/sberf/ Town of Plainfield Rolls Out Relief Grant Program The Town of Plainfield is rolling out a Plainfield Small Business Crisis Response Grant Program to help small businesses recover from the economic downfall of the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant program will allow small businesses, employing 50 or less employees, to apply for a grant of up to $2,500. APPLY HERE Mooresville Redvelopment Commission The Mooresville Small Business COVID-19 Relief Fund is a partnership program between the Mooresville Redevelopment Commission and the Morgan County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) to support recovery and job retention for existing small businesses in the Consolidated Mooresville Economic Development Area Allocation Area (the “Mooresville TIF District”) impacted by COVID-19. The program will end when funds run out. There is no fee to apply. APPLY HERE Shelby County Emergency Relief Assistance Assistance for Shelby County Businesses and Non-profit Organizations to apply for emergency relief. LEARN MORE




Is there an extension for filing taxes?


There are extensions at both the federal and state levels. Review these links for more info.




How can small businesses use SBA Loans under the federal CARES Act?


Our partners at Barnes & Thornburg have provided the following detailed summary of the status of federal CARES Act programs:

For many affected businesses, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) provides opportunities to receive assistance or relief in order to make it through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Included in the act is $349 billion allocated for loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) to small businesses and other businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 500 employees, which will run through the SBA’s existing Section 7(a) business loan program.

As of this date, the application process has not been finalized. However, eligible businesses will find it in their best interest to get in touch with their bank as soon as possible to determine whether the bank is an approved SBA lender and to initiate discussions regarding the loan. Also, the SBA has a “Lender Match” tool available to assist such businesses in finding an approved SBA lender.

<h4 class="font_4"> PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM LOAN (PPP LOAN)</h4>

Eligibility: The act increases the number and types of businesses that are eligible to receive assistance as compared to a typical SBA loan. Under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan, in addition to small business concerns eligible for SBA loans, eligible entities include businesses, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, veterans organizations, or Tribal business concerns with 500 or fewer employees (including full-time and part-time employees), which number may be increased for certain industries that are subject to higher employee thresholds as set forth in the SBA’s size standard tool. Certain self-employed individuals, sole proprietors and independent contractors also may be eligible to participate in the PPP Loan program; as are certain hospitality and food service industry businesses as long as they do not have more than 500 employees working at each different physical location. To be eligible, the business concern must also have been in operation on Feb. 15, 2020, and paid employees or independent contractors during operations.

One potential limitation on the eligibility of a company relates to the application of the SBA’s standard rules on affiliation. If two or more businesses are considered “affiliates” under these rules, the number of their employees of each company will be aggregated to count toward the 500-employee limit. For example, two affiliated companies with 300 employees each would be considered to have 600 employees, and neither would be eligible for the PPP Loan program. The SBA affiliation rules are very broad, and affiliation is determined based on a wide-range of methods of control, as determined by the SBA, including more than 50 percent ownership; significant minority ownership vis-à-vis other minority owners; certain voting/contractual veto, approval, or other similar rights; or managerial control.

Loan Size: An eligible business may receive an amount of up to 2.5 times the average of the business’s monthly “payroll costs” or $10,000,000, whichever is lower. Payroll costs are defined in the act to include: salary, wages, commission, or similar compensation; payment of cash tips or equivalent; payment for vacation, parental, family, medical or sick leave; allows for dismissal or separation; payments for providing group healthcare benefits, including insurance premiums; payments for retirement benefits; and payments of state or local taxes assessed on the compensation of employees.

For any employee whose compensation is greater than $100,000 on an annualized basis, that portion in excess of $100,000, on a prorated basis, is excluded from the determination of “payroll costs.”

Self-employment income or compensation for sole proprietors and independent contractors, subject to a similar $100,000 limitation, are included in “payroll costs.”

Use of PPP Loan Funds: The business may use PPP Loan proceeds to pay salaries and wages (including normal commissions), costs related to continuing group healthcare benefits during paid leave, other employee compensation, mortgage interest, rent, utilities, and interest on debt if the obligation was incurred before Feb. 15, 2020. If the business already received an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) on or after Jan. 31, 2020, it may refinance and convert the EIDL to a Section 7(a) loan using the proceeds from the PPP Loan.

Favorable Business Terms: The act sets out a number of favorable business terms for PPP Loans. In addition to potential forgiveness of PPP Loan principal, any portion of the PPP Loan that will need to be repaid will have up to a 10-year term with an interest rate not to exceed 4 percent.

The act waives the requirements of business owners providing personal guarantees and businesses having to provide collateral to secure the PPP Loan. In addition, a “credit elsewhere” underwriting test is used for other SBA loan programs – where a business could be ineligible if the SBA determines that it could obtain credit from a private source on reasonable terms – is eliminated with respect to PPP Loan. Finally, the act protects individual business owners by eliminating any personal recourse that the SBA may have against any individual owner except to the extent the funds are used for an unauthorized purpose.

Borrowing Procedures: In order to apply a PPP Loan, the act requires a borrower must make a good faith certification that the loan is necessary in light of the current economic conditions, an acknowledgement that the funds will be used for the outlined purposes, and that it does not have other applications or has not received any funds for other PPP Loans.

Once the SBA finalizes the application process (expected during the week of March 30-April 3), SBA lenders will know what other information will be required for PPP Loans. In the meantime, though, businesses considering applying should gather certain basic information, such as key organizational documents, its tax identification number and payroll costs (including associated benefit costs described above) for the past 12 months. Applications are expected to be processed on a rolling basis in the order of applications received.

Many commentators have noted that the $349 billion allocated for the PPP Loan program likely will not satisfy the demand, so it is important for business to make contact with an approved SBA lender as soon as possible.

<h4 class="font_4"> </h4> <h4 class="font_4"> LOAN FORGIVENESS AND DEFERRAL</h4>

A business receiving a PPP Loan is eligible for forgiveness of the loan in an amount equal to the payroll costs, interest on a mortgage, rent, and utility payments incurred during the eight-week period starting from the date of the loan. As a result, it is possible that the full amount of the PPP Loan could be forgiven.

To apply for forgiveness, the business must submit an application to the lender including documentation verifying payroll, pay rates, mortgage payments, rent payments and utility payments. The business must also provide an officer’s certificate acknowledging that the presented documentation is true and the amount of requested forgiveness was used to retain employees and for other qualified purposes. The lender must make a decision regarding qualification for forgiveness within 60 days after its receipt of the application for forgiveness.

The amount of forgiveness may be reduced due to reductions in number of employees or salary as compared to a specified pre-COVID period. However, if the business rehires or restores salary before June 30, 2020, to pre-COVID levels, the amount of forgiveness will be determined without regard to the previous reduction in employees and salary. Pursuant to the act, the amount forgiven will not create income tax.

Lenders are required to provide deferral of all principal, interest and fees for PPP Loans for at least six months, up to a period of one year. This deferral period should give businesses and lenders time to determine the amount of any loan forgiveness.

<h4 class="font_4"> </h4> <h4 class="font_4"> ECONOMIC INJURY DISASTER LOANS</h4>

The act also made an existing SBA loan program easier to obtain and more attractive. Through Dec. 31, 2020, any business with 500 or fewer employees may apply directly to the SBA for an EIDL in response to COVID-19. For EIDLs made during the covered period, personal guarantees will not be required for loans of $200,000 or less. A new benefit provided by the act is the opportunity for an immediate emergency advance of $10,000. The amount of the advance would not have to be repaid even if the EIDL is denied. The SBA is obligated to fund the $10,000 within three days of its receipt of the application. The act authorizes an additional $10 billion for such loans.




Which loan option is right for my business?


Our friends at Huntington Bank have pulled together a guide to answer this question, and our internal team has compiled a high-level summary of available options.




Is there any guidance for PPP Loan forgiveness?


Yes, the US Chamber of commerce has provided a downloadable guide to PPP loan forgiveness. UPDATE - June 11: According to the Journal of Accountancy, borrowers under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) can qualify for partial loan forgiveness if less than 60% of the PPP loan is used for payroll, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Treasury. MORE INFORMATION




Has the State of Indiana updated the qualifications for Small Business Restart Fund Grants?


Earlier this week (9/21/2020), Indiana changed one of the qualifications for its Small Business Restart Fund Grant. Now small businesses that received economic relief funding through federal programs (Paycheck Protection, Economic Injury Disaster Loans, and Community Development Block Grants) are eligible to apply. To learn more about this program, please visit https://backontrack.in.gov/2377.htm.




Where can I find information on Ready for Winter Grants?


The City of Indianapolis and Visit Indy announced the launch date for the Ready for Winter grant program, a $1 million reimbursement plan for local businesses to enable outdoor dining in the coming winter months. The program was first announced earlier this month. along with the $11 million Hospitality Establishment Lifeline Payment (HELP) grant program for local restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues. Businesses can find more information in the press release here OR at Visit Indy's website here.





Employee Support

What unemployment resources are available for my impacted employees?


Unemployment: Individuals can file for unemployment insurance through the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. Indiana Unemployment Insurance Instructions Indiana Unemployment COVID-19 Instruction FAQ Pandemic Unemployment Assistance One of the programs that was created by the federal legislation is Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA). The PUA is in addition to Indiana's traditional Unemployment Insurance (UI). PUA provides emergency unemployment assistance to workers who are left out of regular state UI or who have exhausted their state UI benefits.

Those eligible for PUA include self-employed workers, including independent contractors, freelancers, workers seeking part-time work, and workers who do not have a long-enough work history to qualify for state UI benefits.

PUA will provide income support to many workers who are shut out of state UI systems in this country. In fact, workers who are eligible for state UI are not eligible for the PUA program.

PUA applications are now available on Indiana's Department of Workforce Development UI application system (Uplink) to those who have already applied for and been denied regular UI benefits. PUA applications will be available to others as soon as they apply for and are denied regular UI.

If you applied for traditional UI after April 4, 2020, and got denied, go to the DWD Uplink and apply for PUA.

If you have not applied for UI or PUA yet, first apply for traditional UI on the DWD Uplink at unemployment.in.gov. If you are rejected for traditional UI, apply for PUA (available in Uplink). Even if you know you will be rejected for traditional UI, you must apply before applying for PUA. PUA is only available if you are ineligible for traditional UI.




What childcare resources are available for my impacted employees?


Childcare is critical and attached is a referral map you can share with your employees. The Family and Social Services Agency recently released this info on how they’re adapting to provide greater assistance to families and childcare providers. Also, check out childcare resources provided by the City of Indianapolis. YMCA Childcare Assistance Starting on Monday, March 30th, the YMCA of Greater Indianapolis will provide childcare for essential workers who are helping to keep our communities up and running. The YMCA is open Monday – Friday, 6am – 8pm, and costs $50/day per child. Financial assistance is available. Simply call them at 317-484-9622.




What employment resources are available for my impacted employees?


Employment: Department of Workforce Development, (DWD) and WorkOne Resources for Employers and Employees have a regional footprint. Marion County/Indianapolis is considered Region 12, and Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Johnson, Madison, Morgan and Shelby Counties are considered Region 5. Marion County/Region 12: Mayor Joe Hogsett’s office, in partnership with EmployIndy, will offer free, no-strings attached financial counseling available through Pete the Planner. Individuals interested in the service can get started by emailing recover@petetheplanner.com.

  • Virtual job seeker resources and career development tips are available on workoneindy.com, and the EmployIndy Job Board will be updated regularly by EmployIndy staff for job seekers to use as a tool during the job search process at employindy.org.
WorkOne Indy, located at 4410 N. Shadeland Avenue, is CLOSED as of March 16. Their services are still available virtually. Job seekers will be able to utilize resources on-site such as:
  • Job search assistance
  • 1:1 career navigation
  • Publicly available computers
  • Career development tools
  • Assistance with filing for unemployment benefits
Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Johnson, Madison, Morgan and Shelby Counties: The Region 5 Workforce Board, WorkOne Central provides employers and employees with services such as job skills training, filing for unemployment and employer assistance with job postings, trainings, and much more. For more information, contact: WorkOne Central Lance D. Ratliff, Executive Director
Regional 5 Workforce Development Board 836 S. State Street
PO Box 69
Greenfield, IN 46140 317-467-0248, Ext. 317 WorkOne Offices Boone County Lebanon Business Plaza 358 Mount Zion Road Lebanon, IN 46052 (765) 482-0160 Fax : (765) 482-0178 Hancock County 836 S. State St. Greenfield, IN 46140 (317) 462-7711 Fax : (317) 462-6340 Johnson County 97 Umbarger Lane Franklin, IN 46131 (317) 736-5531 Fax : (317) 736-8402 Shelby County 2177 Intelliplex Drive, Room 112 Shelbyville, IN 46176 (317) 392-3251 Fax : (317) 392-3419 Hamilton County 300 N. 17th Street Noblesville, IN 46060 (317) 841-8194 Fax : (317) 841-8275 Hendricks County 995 Andico Road Plainfield, IN 46168 (317) 838-9335 Fax: (317) 838-9598 Madison County 222 E. 10th St. Suite B Anderson, IN. 46016 (765) 642-4981 Fax : (765) 641-6557




What support can our employees receive from utility companies?


Indianapolis Power & Light (IPL) is the primary electric provider for the city of Indianapolis. IPL also serves the communities of Beech Grove and Speedway. Contact IPL at (888) 261-8222 or visit www.iplpower.com. Check out the specifics on payment and billing options. Citizens Energy Group provides natural gas, water, and wastewater service throughout the Indianapolis area. Contact Citizens at (800) 427-4217 or visit www.citizensenergygroup.com. They've recently suspended disconnections. Duke Energy provides electric service for the majority of communities surrounding Indianapolis. Contact Duke at (800) 521-2232 or visit www.duke-energy.com. Here's information on customer assistance in the wake of COVID-19. Vectren Energy provides natural gas and electricity service to many of the communities in Indiana. Contact Vectren at (800) 227-1376 or visit www.vectrenenergy.com.




Are there food options for the children of our employees stuck at home?


Indy Parks is continuing its FREE after school meal services for youth ages 18 and under, and will follow the schedule on the Facebook link. Second Helpings is providing sandwiches for adults. Also, Gleaners and Indianapolis Public Schools are providing access to meals for families with students. Finally, the Community Compass can help people identify food banks, meal services, and other nutritional resources across Indianapolis.




My employees need help paying rent, utilities, etc. Is anyone helping with this?


The United Way of Central Indiana connects Central Indiana residents to critical support every day. Their 211 line is open 24/7. Some of the services include: housing and utilities assistance, healthcare assistance, and food and clothing assistance. The Neighbor Relief Fund for Marion County The Neighbor Relief Fund for Marion County, seeded with $250,000 from The Indianapolis Foundation, will provide resources and support to grassroots and neighborhood organizations working directly to support seniors, residents without health insurance or sick days, those with limited English proficiency, health care workers, hourly employees who have lost work, communities of color and economically vulnerable populations, during the pandemic. In alignment with CICF’s mission, organizations serving marginalized neighborhoods and communities of color with programs and services that are easily accessible and designed with resident feedback will be prioritized. Proof of resident engagement will be required for consideration. The fund will be administered with the help of our resident-leader Neighborhood Ambassadors and other community partners. If you are able to support our efforts with this fund, please click on the link below and follow the few brief steps to make a contribution to our efforts: https://www.cicf.org/giving/give-now/contribution-to-the-neighbor-relief-fund-of-marion-county/ Please feel free to email me or call me directly on my cell phone (317-502-0272) with any questions or assistance in making a much needed contribution to The Neighbor Relief Fund of Marion County.




Are there specific initiatives for service workers and bartenders?


Thanks to the quick response and creativity of Indy tech entrepreneur Jeb Banner, If you are an Indy area service worker and out of work during the closure of bars and restaurants please add your Venmo info to this list so others can "tip" you to help fill the gap during this time.




What should I do if I or my employees lose job-based health insurance?


Connecting Kids to Coverage Indiana Funded through a grant from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to the Indiana Rural Health Association, this program assists furloughed employees through applying to Indiana Health Coverage Programs. These furloughed employees may now be eligible for Hoosier Healthwise (children up to age 19, and expectant mothers) or the Healthy Indiana Plan (adults 19-64). More information is available via their website, email via navigator@indianarha.org, or phone at (812) 478-3919 x248. The Brookings Institution has also provided steps and resources for comprehensive insurance coverage.




My company is continuing to recruit new employees during this crisis. Are there resources for virtual talent and workforce recruitment and onboarding to our community?


The Indy Chamber has created these linked materials as part of talent and image marketing initiatives for the Indianapolis region. A number of local employers have been using our video content and materials with good results. We can also assist with virtual community tours and specific materials as needed. Ask a question at the bottom of this page and select Employee Support as a category to receive guidance on this. Also, IndyHub offers community connection and onboarding for earl-career hires. MIBOR REALTOR Association can provide real estate and housing information, and Ascend Indiana can help recruit early-in-career talent.




Where can my impacted employees look for work?


Rapid Response Talent supplements the resources of our partners Employ Indy and Ascend Indiana.




What resources do you offer to help me find talent?


Rapid Response Talent supplements the resources of our partners Employ Indy and Ascend Indiana.




How can my employees build their skills?


Check out offerings through Employ Indy and local colleges and universities like Ivy Tech.

Also, Eleven Fifty Academy offers free courses in tech https://elevenfifty.org/courses/free-intro-to-ux-ui-design/




As the federal eviction moratorium winds down, what steps are available to avoid an eviction crisis?


Eviction Crisis: As the federal eviction moratorium winds down, what steps are other states and communities taking to avoid an eviction crisis? Here's great information from the International Economic Development Council. The rental assistance portal is designed to help Indiana renters whose income has been adversely affected by COVID to avoid eviction by connecting them with programs that can help them cover monthly rent or past due payments





Legal


Operations

What are the restrictions on operations?


Governor Holcomb announced additional restrictions including support of the CDC’s advice to limit public gatherings to less than 50 people.




What resources are available to support changes in my business operations?


Below are current resources available when navigating your business needs. If you have specific questions, reach out with the form below. We have resources available to help you navigate the challenging business decisions ahead. Business Planning Considerations: US Chamber Resilience in a Box Indiana Chamber Executives Association: Resource Center Business Affected by COVID-19: Provide Customers with Updated Info HBR: What's Your Company's Emergency Remote Work Plan? CDC: Print Resources for Display in Business First Person
Benefits & Leave Expert Resource COVID-19 Hotline for Employees ThinkHR COVID-19 Resources US Chamber of Commerce Read about 8 things your small business needs to do as soon as possible. This includes top CDC-recommended tips that small business owners can take to mitigate risk, protect employees and support customers during COVID-19 pandemic. Please find below a list of all of our most recent guides to the aid and programs being made available to assist businesses during the ongoing pandemic, including our newest guide to the paid sick and FMLA programs.

US Department of Labor
Take a look at DOL's answers to common questions around COVID-19 and FMLA. Market Insights provided by JPMorgan Chase Take a look at Coronavirus (COVID-19) research compiled by JPMorgan Chairman of Marketing & Investment Strategy Michael Cembalest. Workplace Contingency Plans Provided by Chase A good plan requires assessment of the following: What-systems and processes will be affected? Who-must be notified? When-do specific actions need to be taken, in order of priority? Where-will your business operate? How-will circumstances change the way employees do their work?
More Information is available here. Assistance IU Kelley School of Business at IUPUI Professors at the Kelley School of Business have offered their strategic advising services to business owners. Email ksbiinfo@iupui.edu for assistance. SOURCEstarts – Digital Media Resource This new program delivered by SOURCE is focused on enabling online e-commerce web development with free consultancy and tools, developed to help businesses adjust more of their business to e-commerce. SOURCE Entrepreneurship Center partnered with Indiana University School of Informatics and their COMET Lab to create three levels of free service:
  1. Basic website creation or existing site refresh,
  2. Web site with customer directed calendar scheduling feature, and
  3. Web with e-commerce features. Each option is intended to counter the recent pandemic by allowing businesses to continue and grow virtually with less customer face contact.
Interested businesses should contact SOURCE Entrepreneurship Center Director Steve Thrash at 317.737.2155. Salesforce Care
Salesforce is providing free rapid response solutions to help companies navigate COVID-19. VonLehman CPAs
VonLehman has pulled together resources on business continuity updates, tax updates, and HR & benefits updates. US Department of Labor Under the recently passed Families First Coronavirus Response Act, employers may have additional responsibilities to employees impacted by this crisis. For employees and employers, the following is a summary of the new benefits requirements. Butler Old National Bank Center for Business Excellence https://www.butler.edu/business-excellence/covid-19-resources




My restaurant is now focusing on carryout and delivery. How do we let customers know about this change?


Per the Indiana Restaurant and Lodging Association (InRLA), fill out this form to join an online database for Hoosier diners to understand which restaurants will still be offering takeout, delivery, or drive-thru options.




Where can I find Indianapolis resources in Spanish?


Visit indy.gov for resources in both English and Spanish.




How do I get started with shipping or direct mail needs?


USPS can help you start shipping or with any direct mail needs. Contact mary.k.dando@usps.gov or faith.v.mckinney@usps.gov.




How can restaurants survive COVID-19?


  • Consider discount prices to up revenue, minimize loss, attract patrons who are now thriftier
  • Craft new offerings - comfort food, cook at home
  • Brand for short-term, special offers, acknowledging crisis response
  • “Hurdles to devaluation” - things customers must do for discounts
Read more from Harvard Business Review.




My company is continuing to recruit new employees during this crisis. Are there resources for virtual talent and workforce recruitment and onboarding to our community?


The Indy Chamber has created these linked materials as part of talent and image marketing initiatives for the Indianapolis region. A number of local employers have been using our video content and materials with good results. We can also assist with virtual community tours and specific materials as needed. Ask a question at the bottom of this page and select Employee Support as a category to receive guidance on this. Also, IndyHub offers community connection and onboarding for earl-career hires. MIBOR REALTOR Association can provide real estate and housing information, and Ascend Indiana can help recruit early-in-career talent.




Is there any assistance for developing a digital storefont for my business?


Yes, the Kelley School of Business is offering assistance in building or modifiying websites.

Process:

  • Go to ISBDC.org and click on “let’s work together link” https://isbdc.org/request-assistance/ and complete form. Takes a minute. Under ‘how can we help you succeed’, they should type something along the lines of "Kelley HOPE Digital Project" or simply describe the digital problem / opportunity to address.

  • Your local SBDC should contact you within 2 days.

  • When you are contacted, the SBDC will determine what type of help is needed. Since the purpose is to help businesses who do not have the resources or the money to get this type of work done, they will ask questions to make sure that it really is a company that needs help and not a big company trying to get the work done for free. You will need to become a member of the SBDC (more info below – no cost to join and sign confidentiality agreement. Takes just a minute).

  • The SBDC will then connect the businesses with a team at KSB.

Qualifications:

The only qualification is that have to be a client of the SBDC.

  • It does not cost anything to join.

  • The owner just needs to sign a confidentiality agreement. The agreement is really one-sided. It basically prohibits the SBDC from releasing any information regarding the company. This is the make the business owners feel comfortable that no one will steal their ideas, etc.




Are there specific opportunities for businesses who receive HUD Section 3 Funding?


Yes, HUD Section 3 Business Registry and Opportunity Portal. The portal is a great opportunity to connect local businesses who are recipients of HUD funding. The portal provides a means for businesses to connect with businesses/contractors. Each portal is free and open to the public.

Please review the links for more information:

Opportunity Portal https://hudapps.hud.gov/OpportunityPortal/ and

Business Registry https://portalapps.hud.gov/Sec3BusReg/BRegistry/BRegistryHome

The platforms have complimentary roles by connecting businesses with potential applicants. The Opportunity Portal allows candidates to upload their resumes for contractors to view and candidates can view employment opportunities as well.

The business registry is similar in nature by connecting contractors with businesses and vice-versa to meet the federal Section 3 requirements https://www.hud.gov/sites/dfiles/documents/19580_SECTION3.PDF





Government

What are Indiana's COVID-19 business recommendations and mandates at this time?


Please visit IN.gov/coronavirus.




Are there any relief options for upcoming tax payments?


Please see the guidance of the Indiana Department of Revenue.




Is there any update on legislative relief for the business impact of COVID-19?


The US Chamber created a simple summary of what small businesses need to know about the federal CARES Act that was recently signed into law.




Is there payment relief for the rental of our physical workspace and its utilities?


For rent and other payment relief, we will stay tuned and monitor any additional government support. You should reach out to your financial and business contractors as needed in the interim. In many communities across the US, there is a sense of collaboration with many novel short-term solutions. These are unprecedented times, and our community is taking unprecedented measures to keep each other safe.




Governor Holcomb just announced a stay-at-home order. What does that entail?


MARCH 23: We've linked to the full release and text of the Governor's order here for more context.




What are Economic Impact Payments? How do I know if I am eligible?


The IRS is committed to helping you get your Economic Impact Payment as soon as possible. The payments, also referred to by some as stimulus payments, are automatic for most taxpayers. No further action is needed by taxpayers who filed tax returns in 2018 and 2019 and most seniors and retirees. See if you are eligible for an Economic Impact Payment. If you are eligible, use our guide to figure out which IRS tool you should use to get your payment.




What federal place-based interest resources exisit?


The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development curated a resource packet outlining funding opportunities of place-based interest, webinars, and additional tools and resources. View the packet.





Info Basics

What are some of the best sources of up-to-date health information?


Check out the virus overview from Marion County Public Health. Subscribe to Indiana State Department of Health updates for the latest information on how to respond to COVID-19 developments.
Subscribe to CDC updates on COVID-19 for latest guidance from the federal government. Indianapolis Hospital Networks and Insurance Anthem Issues updates regarding COVID-19 COVID Symptoms versus Allergies Community Health Network What you need to know about COVID-19 Ascension St. Vincent Indianapolis
Ascension Online Care is offering a discounted $20 online visit for urgent care using the promo code HOME. Visit their online resource to learn more or enroll. Franciscan Health
Our member Franciscan Health has compiled all relevant documentation to keep you up-to-date on the Coronavirus and recommendations to prevent its spread. Visit their website to learn more. IU Health
IUHealth's Virtual Clinic is offering free Coronavirus screenings to all residents of Indiana via its IU Health Virtual Visit app. This portal is staffed 24/7 by healthcare professionals. Click here for more information. Or visit IU Health's Coronavirus Resource Center.




Can you share the contact info for health departments?


Indiana State Department of Health 2 N Meridian St, Indianapolis, IN 46204 Indiana COVID-19 Call Center: 877.826.0011 General Information: https://www.in.gov/isdh/ Coronavirus: https://www.in.gov/coronavirus/ Marion County Public Health Department 3838 N. Rural Street, Indianapolis, IN 46205 P: 317.221.2000 General Information: http://marionhealth.org/ Public Health Emergency Preparedness: http://marionprepares.org/ Hamilton County Health Department 18030 Foundation Drive, Suite A, Noblesville, IN 46060 P: 317.776.8500 General Information: https://www.hamiltoncounty.in.gov/254/Health-Department COVID-19 Information: https://www.hamiltoncounty.in.gov/1595/COVID-19-Coronavirus-Information Hancock County Health Department Hancock County Annex, 111 American Legion Place, Suite 150, Greenfield, Indiana 46140 P: 317.477.1125 General Information: https://hancockcoingov.org/hancock-county-government-departments/hancock-county-health-department Johnson County Health Department 460 N Morton St., Suite A, Franklin, IN 46131 P: 317.346.4365 General Information: https://co.johnson.in.us/health/ Shelby County Health Department 1600 E State Road 44, Suite B, Shelbyville, IN 46176 P: 317.392.6470 General Information: http://health.shelbycounty73.us/ Morgan County Health Department 180 S. Main St., Ste. 252, Martinsville, IN 46151 765.342.6621 General Information: https://www.morgancountyhealth.com/ Emergency Preparedness: https://www.morgancountyhealth.com/emergency-preparedness Hendricks County Health Department 355 S Washington St, #G40, Danville, IN 46122 317.745.9214 General Information: https://www.co.hendricks.in.us/department/index.php?structureid=16 Boone County Health Department Boone County Office Building, 116 W Washington St, Suite B202 Lebanon, IN 46052 765.482.3942 General Information: https://boonecounty.in.gov/Offices/health-department Madison County Health Department 206 E 9th St #200, Anderson, IN 46016 (765) 641-9524 Coronavirus Update: https://5ad2f38c-85c6-4702-b0a8-4b8a6b4c1687.filesusr.com/ugd/3f7b74_fceb20b95a744984b338b03122cde275.pdf General Information: https://www.madcohealth.org/




What are the important dates regarding COVID-19?


These dates will be updated based on Local, State and Federal government guidance:

  • Shelter in place until May 15
  • Indiana Sales tax for companies:
    • Those originally due April 15 are now due July 15
    • Those originally due May 15 are now due August 17
  • Personal taxes now due June 15
  • Indiana primary elections have been moved to June 2
  • Indy 500 rescheduled for August 23





Nonprofit

Are there nonprofit support services available?


Selflessly is helping Indiana nonprofits continue to thrive during the COVID-19 pandemic via its Virtual Giveback Program. Selflessly believes that pooling resources together and offering a centralized way to share information is a vital need. They have developed an initial strategy to help nonprofits based on industry experience and feedback.




How can we engage young talent and volunteers during this time?


As we all work together to address the spread of COVID-19, IndyHub has been working to provide ongoing opportunities to engage for our city's young talent ( even from a distance). Below are some resources and upcoming opportunities. We've had staff from many of your companies already take part, and I'd encourage you to share these resources with anyone who might benefit. IndyHub Together Collection of digital opportunities, resources and ways to give back for our city's 20- and 30-somethings. Site is updated daily with a collection of virtual gatherings, personal wellness resources and more. We've already launched a digital book club, held a conversation with Pete the Planner on recession-proofing your finances, and will continue to host leadership development panels and social gatherings throughout the quarantine. More info at www.indyhub.org/together Virtual Core Connections Each year, IndyHub meets with hundreds of new arrivals, as well as those just looking to get more plugged in. Typically over a cup of coffee, we hear from the individuals and help make connections for them to get the most out of their time in the city. During stay-at-home orders, we're providing this opportunity virtually. If you have new employees or folks looking to get more connected, we can help.




In Indiana, nonprofits with fewer than 4 employees are not considered employers, and therefore don't pay state unemployment taxes. Their employees also can't collect unemployment benefits. Has this changed during this pandemic?


Yes, there are two sections in the CARES Act (2102: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and 2017: Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation) that extend benefits to employees who would otherwise be ineligible. Additionally, if a nonprofit employer self-certifies, there will likely be no monetary consequence to the employer. See the DWD Employer Handbook, page 12.




Nonprofits of 4 or more employees pay state unemployment taxes, but can choose to pay the state only when an employee has filed for benefits. Has this changed during the pandemic?


For a nonprofit that has chosen to be a reimbursable employer, under the CARES Act, that nonprofit that pays such reimbursements when there is an unemployment claim can receive half the cost of benefits provided to laid off-employees through December 31, 2020.




Can nonprofits apply for federal Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) or the Payment Protection Program (PPP)? Explain.


Yes, nonprofits can apply, but your nonprofit is not able to receive loans from both programs. So carefully determine the best option for your organization. Key first step is to start with your banker.

The EIDL is a long-standing program run by the Small Business Administration (SBA), normally offers loans to small businesses and nonprofits to help in tough times caused by a disaster. In general, EIDL loans are NOT forgivable. The loan amount is determined by the SBA on a case-by-case basis after the nonprofit completes an application. Recently, however, the SBA announced that due to the surge of applications, for the next two months it is limiting disbursements to $15,000.

When the CARES Act was passed by Congress in late March, it included the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). This relief loan is eligible for forgiveness if your nonprofit meets employment criteria, and is issued through SBA-approved lenders. They don’t require any personal guarantee or collateral from borrowers.

For additional information, read more here.

For a visual overview of PPP and a formula to calculate average monthly payroll costs, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has created an infographic to help. Click here to view.




When is my nonprofit's Form 990 return due in 2020?


In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IRS announced that nonprofits and foundations could extend May 15 filings for two months out to July 15. This includes IRS Form 990, Form 990-EZ, Form 990-N, Form 990-PF and Form 990-T. The deadline change is automatic and nonprofits do not need to file an extension to qualify. However, those who need additional extensions beyond July 15, 2020, will be permitted to extend only until their original statutory or regulatory extension dates. For additional details, check out this resource from Withum.




What is the best way to ensure that my volunteers are safe during COVID-19?


Whether a formal or informal volunteer with a nonprofit, safety and well-being are priorities and limiting the spread of COVID-19 is of utmost importance.

The Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health has a blog entry and a single page COVID-19 volunteer safety tips.




Our nonprofit is considering hibernating during this pandemic. What are the requirements in Indiana to maintain our nonprofit and tax-exempt status?


In Indiana, hibernation is not an official legal status. A nonprofit corporation may suspend (pause) its operations temporarily, while revenues or operations are minimal, which is in essence a defacto hibernation.

To protect its tax-exempt and nonprofit status, the organization must remain in good standing and comply with several state and federal filing requirements. The state requires the filing of a state business entity report (Indiana Code 23-0.5-2-13) every two years with the Secretary of State and the filing of an annual information return (Form NP-20). On the federal level, tax-exempt organizations are required to annually file an IRS Form 990 series return. While the Indiana Nonprofit Corporation Act does not require a certain minimum amount or type of other activity, it is a good practice to have at least an annual board meeting.




Where can I go to find the most up-to-date resource info for nonprofits?


Our partners at Charitable Advisors are maintaining an updated list of resources for nonprofits affected by COVID-19. Click here to view.




What is the Indiana Humanities CARES Grant? Is my organization eligible?


Applications are now open for Indiana Humanities CARES Grants, which are designed to distribute funding relief to nonprofit organizations that provide public humanities programming and have faced financial hardship during the current COVID-19 pandemic. More than $500,000 will be awarded to Indiana humanities organizations. The deadline for applications is May 8. LEARN MORE.

  • Award size: $5,000 to $15,000, depending on the size of the organization’s budget. No matching required.
  • Purpose: General operating support.
  • Eligibility: Nonprofit organizations registered in Indiana that provide strong humanities programming (including libraries and archives, museums, historical societies/heritage organizations, historical sites and homes). Religious organizations, government organizations, K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and individuals are ineligible.




Will PPP loans be subject to single audit requirements?


The Small Business Administration’s guidance is that Paycheck Protection Plan loans will not be subject to single audit requirements; however, EIDL loans will be.




My nonprofit carries event insurance coverage. Our organization’s fundraiser had to be cancelled in April, amounting to a 50 percent reduction of our annual revenues. Can we file a claim?


In most states, exclusions must be clear and unambiguous, and attempted exclusions are commonly interpreted against the insurance company. A common exclusion is the virus or contagion exclusion. This exclusion typically excludes damages related to a virus. But there still may be coverage. To the extent your nonprofit is not directly affected by the virus itself, but instead is affected by a shutdown order (or other slowdown related to the pandemic generally), you may be able to tap into your event or interruption insurance. It doesn’t cost you anything to make a claim, and then let the insurance companies respond. Be sure to respond carefully to their questions because those can be tricky.




The COVID-19 pandemic has caused my nonprofits to temporarily shut down. Earlier this month, I filed a business interruption claim and just received a follow-up questionnaire from my insurance company. Are the losses that I’ve suffered covered in my general business liability policy?


Many policies have an exclusion for damage that is not covered by a “physical loss.”

Initially, you might think that means some sort of physical harm to your property, such as a tornado or flood. However, case law makes it clear in many jurisdictions that “physical loss” actually means “loss of use.

Courts have held that losses for loss of use must be covered. A governmentally-ordered partial-or-full shutdown that results in an inability to use your property for your charitable program could very well be a “physical loss” due to the “loss of use.” If your nonprofit believes it has a claim under event cancellation insurance, or even your property or business interruption policy, then make it.




I have heard that it may be difficult for my nonprofit to be successful filing a “business interruption” insurance claim. Is this true?


Yes, insurance companies are fighting these claims mightily. After the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak, many insurers added an exclusion for losses caused by viruses or bacteria, but it is generally silent on pandemic, shutdown, and social distancing-related damages. There is often "physical loss" language, which actually means loss of use in applicable caselaw.

Litigation regarding these exclusions has already started across the country. While the outcome of the litigation is not yet known, there is at least a solid chance of coverage at this point. Make a claim as soon as you know of a reduction in revenue to let the insurance company know you are still experiencing a loss and will have continuing damages for a time.

As a policy holder, your nonprofit has an obligation to notify the insurance company of the claim in a timely manner, and if you wait, the company may use your delay as an excuse to deny coverage for the earlier part of the time frame.




Where can nonprofits go to find Restart Grants?


United Way of Central Indiana Nonprofit Restart Grants will be awarded in amounts between $200-$5,000 to registered 501(c)(3)s located in Marion County based on reimbursements for purchases of PPE, disinfectant products, and capital improvements that include, but are not limited to signage, air handling, partitioning for social distancing, and improvements for safe queueing. Nonprofits must submit all receipts to receive a Restart Grant. Each 501(c)(3) is limited to one application and grants will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Applications opened June 23. To applyvisit: https://uwci.org/nonprofit-restart-program/





Hiring Options

Where can I find information as a displaced worker?


Through partnerships across the Indianapolis region, we've pulled together a running list of available job openings and partner organizations here.




As an employer, where can I find much-needed workers as my business needs change?


Through partnerships across the Indianapolis region, we've pulled together a running list of available job openings and partner organizations here.





Stay-At-Home Order

When does the order take effect?


The Stay-At-Home Order takes effect Tuesday, March 24 at 11:59 p.m. ET.




When does the order end?


The order ends on Monday, April 6, at 11:59 p.m. ET, but could be extended if the outbreak warrants it.




Where does the order apply?


The Stay-At-Home Order applies to the entire state of Indiana. Unless you work for an essential business or are doing an essential activity, you must stay home.




Is this mandatory or a recommendation?


This order is mandatory. For the safety of all Hoosiers, people must stay home and prevent the spread of COVID-19.




How will this order be enforced?


Staying home is critical to reducing the spread of COVID-19 in your community. Adhering to the order will save lives, and it is the responsibility of every Hoosier to do their part. However, if the order is not followed, the Indiana State Police will work with local law enforcement to enforce this order. The Indiana State Department of Health and the Alcohol and Tobacco Commission will enforce the restaurant and bar restrictions.




Will the Indiana National Guard enforce this order?


No. The Indiana National Guard is aiding in planning, preparation and logistics with other state agencies. For example, the Indiana National Guard assists in distributing hospital supplies the state receives.




What is an essential business?


Essential businesses and services include but are not limited to grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, police stations, fire stations, hospitals, doctor’s offices, health care facilities, garbage pickup, public transit, and public service hotlines such as SNAP and HIP 2.0.

A list can be found in the Governor’s executive order at in.gov/coronavirus.




What is essential activity?


Essential activities include but are not limited to activities for health and safety, necessary supplies and services, outdoor activity, certain types of essential work, and to take care of others.

A list can be found in the Governor’s executive order at in.gov/coronavirus.




I work for an essential business. Will I be allowed to travel to and from work?


Law enforcement will not be stopping drivers on their way to and from work, traveling for an essential activity such as going to the grocery store, or just taking a walk.




Will the grocery store/pharmacy be open?


Yes, grocery stores and pharmacies are essential services.




Can I still order take out/delivery from restaurants and bars?


Yes, restaurants and bars can continue to provide takeout and delivery, but should be closed to dine-in patrons.




Can I get my groceries delivered? Can I still get my online orders delivered?


Yes, you can still receive packages, get groceries delivered, and get meals delivered.




How can I get medical care?


If you develop symptoms such as fever, cough and/or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or have recently traveled from an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19, stay home and call your healthcare provider.

If you suspected you have COVID-19, please call the healthcare provider in advance so that proper precautions can be taken to limit further transmission. Older patients and individuals who have severe underlying medical conditions or are immunocompromised should contact their healthcare provider early, even if their illness is mild.

If you have severe symptoms, such as persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse, or bluish lips or face, contact your healthcare provider or emergency room and seek care immediately, but please call in advance if possible. Your doctor will determine if you have signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and whether you should be tested.

Nonessential medical care such as eye exams and teeth-cleaning should be postponed. When possible, health care visits should be done remotely. Contact your health care provider to see what telehealth services they provide.




What is the guidance for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities?


State-operated developmental centers, intermediate care facilities for individuals with developmental disabilities and community integrated living arrangements will continue to provide care. All in-home direct care staff are considered essential staff and should continue to support individuals in the home setting.

If you have specific questions about your support and services, reach out to your provider or individual service coordination agency.




What if I still have to go to work?


You should stay home unless your work is an essential function such as a health care provider, grocery store clerk or first responder. If you have been designated essential by your employer, you should continue to go to work and practice social distancing.




What if I think my business should be closed, but they’re still asking me to report to work?


Essential businesses will remain open during the stay-at-home order to provide services that are vital to the lives of Hoosiers. If you believe your business is nonessential but still are being asked to show up to work, you may discuss it with your employer.




A certain service is essential for me, but the governor didn’t include it. What do I do?


The stay-at-home order was issued to protect the health, safety and well-being of Hoosiers. Although some businesses such as fitness centers and salons will be closed, essential services will always be available. For a list of essential businesses that will continue to operate during the order, visit in.gov/coronavirus.




Will public transportation, ride-sharing and taxis continue?


Public transportation, ride-sharing and taxis should only be used for essential travel.




Will roads in Indiana be closed?


No, the roads will remain open. You should only travel if it is for your health or essential work.




Can I still take a plane out of Indiana?


Planes and other types of transportation should be used for essential travel.




What if my home is not a safe environment?


If it is not safe for you to remain home, you are able and encouraged to find another safe place to stay during this order. Please reach out so someone can help. You can call the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE or your local law enforcement.




What about homeless people who cannot stay at home?


The administration wants to protect the health and safety of all Hoosiers, regardless of where they live. State agencies are partnering with community organizations to ensure the homeless population has safe shelter.




Can I visit friends and family?


For your safety, as well as the safety of all Hoosiers, you should remain at home to help fight the spread of COVID-19. You may visit family members who need medical or other essential assistance, such as ensuring an adequate food supply.




Can I walk my dog or go to the veterinarian?


You are allowed to walk your dog and seek medical care for your pet should they require it. Practice social distancing while out on walks, maintaining at least 6 feet from other neighbors and their pets.




Can I take my kids to the park?


State parks remain open, but welcome centers, inns, and other buildings are closed. Families will be able to go outside and take a walk, run or bike ride, but they should continue to practice social distancing by remaining 6 feet away from other people. Playgrounds are closed because they pose a high risk of increasing spreading the virus.




Can I attend a religious service?


Large gatherings, including church services, will be canceled to slow the spread of COVID-19. Religious leaders are encouraged to continue livestreaming services while practicing social distancing with one another.




Can I leave my home to exercise?


Outdoor exercise such as running or taking a walk is acceptable. However, gyms, fitness centers and associated facilities will be closed to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. While exercising outside, you still should practice social distancing by running or walking at least 6 feet away from other people.




Can I go to the hair salon, spa, nail salon, tattoo parlor or barber shop?


No, these businesses are ordered closed.




Can I leave my home to do laundry?


Yes, Laundromats, dry cleaners and laundry service providers are considered essential businesses.




Can I take my child to daycare?


Yes, daycares are considered an essential business.




Can I pick up meals at my child’s school?


Yes, Schools that provide free food services to students will continue on a pickup and take-home basis.




Is there someone I can reach out to for questions clarifying Indiana's Stay At Home order?


The state of Indiana is helping guide businesses and industries through the details of Governor Holcomb’s executive order. This center, reachable by emailing covidresponse@iedc.in.gov, is for business and industry questions only.





Communications

I need to communicate to key stakeholders about my company’s response to COVID-19. Where do I start?


  1. Designate a small team to oversee all COVID-19 communications.
  2. Identify your key audiences with whom communication is critical – such as employees, customers, investors and suppliers.
  3. Determine what each audience group needs to know or do as the result of your communication right now. Make these messages clear and to the point. Bring attention to them visually if you can. The best messages are concise, factual, calm, reassuring and empathetic.
  4. Decide who in your organization is the most relevant messenger to convey your information to each of your audience groups.
  5. Select the communications channels and methods that are most relevant for each of your audience groups.
  6. Send or post your communication to your key audiences. Be sure to include a point of contact at your organization and commit to updating your audience on the situation as it continues to evolve.
  7. Promptly follow up on questions and feedback you receive.
  8. Repeat this process for ongoing communications around the virus.

Template communication materials are publicly available online from the International Association of Business Communicators and The Communications Network.

Source: VOX Global Indianapolis




How should I be communicating with my employees around COVID-19?


Employees are a critical audience to any business, and it’s imperative to keep them informed of any changes to your organization or policies as the result of COVID-19. Businesses should also strive to provide employees with factual information from public health officials and connect them with community resources and services, such as Connect2Help (211).

To reassure employees in this uncertain time and communicate critical public health guidelines, business leaders should:

  • Communicate frequently and through channels that are highly visible – whether it’s the company intranet, e-mail, break room or social media.
  • Help employees understand how and why decisions are being made that impact their roles and responsibilities.
  • Reiterate the importance of following the latest guidance from the CDC, WHO and state and local health officials and share links to these resources frequently.
  • Acknowledge that the situation is fluid and commit to providing timely updates and information as your company’s response, approach and policies evolve.
  • Express empathy and reassurance for employees who are feeling anxious, nervous or distraught by the pandemic.

Source: VOX Global Indianapolis




How frequently should I communicate?


As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, we recommend communicating with audiences that are critical to operations – such as employees and suppliers – no less than once every two days. For other important audiences, we recommend communicating as least once a week or as major developments occur, such as the successful launch of a virtual store.

Source: VOX Global Indianapolis




What sources should I use when communicating around COVID-19?


It’s critical for businesses to only share information that is from a trusted source – such as the CDC, WHO and state and local health officials. Sharing misleading or false information is not only a reputational risk to your business, but it also jeopardizes the health of others.

Source: VOX Global Indianapolis





Arts

What resources are available for artists?


Emergency Relief Fund The Indy Arts & Culture COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund was created for individuals working in the arts sector and impacted by the current public health crisis. Primary concern is for the health and well being of individuals: specifically independent artists and staff working for small-to-midsize nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. This fund will provide rapid response $500 grants to help bridge the severe lost wages that make many in our creative community vulnerable. #IndyKeepsCreating Resources The local arts campaign #indykeepscreating has compiled a list of resources for artists, arts organizations, advocacy, and health updates for the arts community. Small Business Loans Artists and musicians are small businesses too, which means they can apply for a small business loan. See our loan page for more information. Service Workers & Artists List Jeb Banner, founder of Small Box, Boardable and Musical Family Tree, started a spreadsheet of service industry professionals that you can “tip” or help fund. A large majority of these people are artists and musicians and the list is growing. Billboard Resource Guide for Music Professionals Billboard created an article for music professionals that lists the resources available nationally and state-by-state during the COVID-19 pandemic. Big Car Collaborative Big Car Collaborative is supporting the community in general and artists and arts audiences by utilizing the very democratic platform of FM broadcast radio with our community- and art-focused station, 99.1 FM. This FCC-licensed broadcast station covers most of the city and beyond and streams worldwide from wqrt.org. We're opening up unlimited free air time to community and arts partners, to neighbors, and to local artists of all kinds — especially musicians — to share important messages and provide enjoyable programming that draws people of all backgrounds together at a time when we’re facing a health crisis and a crisis of social isolation. We’re also utilizing our social media platforms with a combined audience of more than 50,000 to share public service announcements and other important information — including what we and other arts organizations and artists are doing in response to the pandemic and social distancing. We’re also working on citywide projects like #FirstFridayFromHome where we encourage people to share art from their own homes on social media and talk about why it means so much to them. Lastly, we’re working with neighborhood leaders to support vulnerable individuals and business owners alike in the South Indianapolis Quality of Life area where we're based. More about our response at https://www.bigcar.org/coronavirus/ Additional Resources

The Music Strategy COVID Resource Guide with music specific resources and best practices: https://www.indymusicstrategy.com/

Kheprw Institute’s LEAD (Local Entrepreneurs and Artist Direct Support Fund: https://kheprw.org/lead/

Indy Jazz Fest’s Musicians Relief Fund: https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/indy-musician-relief-fund

Indiana Venue Alliance: https://www.indianavenuealliance.org/





Return to Work

What best practices are available for planning to reopen my business?


Over the next several weeks and months, as areas stabilize from the COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home restrictions are lifted, organizations will begin to bring workers back into the physical workplace.

Cushman Wakefield, OHSA and Lear Corp have developed blueprints for businesses returning to work after COVID-19.

CICP Safe Return to Work for Indiana’s Manufacturing, Logistics, and Warehousing Sectors

Anova has provided an interactive reopening playbook for construction management organizations.

National Restaurant Association has provided guide to reopening here.

National Retail Federation has provided guidance for retailers reopening doors here.

USI Executive Series Webinar for Return to Work

US Chamber of Commerce has provided a digital resource center.

Cummins has provided their Safe Work Playbook free to download here.

Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP)

CICP has released three return-to-work playbooks for the manufacturing, logistics and warehousing, office, and customer-facing settings. These practical and comprehensive guides were produced by CICP, in partnership with Cummins Inc. CEO Tom Linebarger and members of Cummins’ global team, working together with other regional business leaders.

The three playbooks are:

All three playbooks are available on the CICP website HERE. Feel free to share and distribute broadly.




Governor Holcomb just announced Indiana's Roadmap to Reopen. What does that entail?


Governor Holcomb announced the Back On Track Indiana p lan to safely open the economy and remain vigilant about protecting Hoosiers’ health and wellbeing. We have linked to his full statement and staged plan on Indiana's reopening process here. Click here for the Back on Track Indiana Plan Guide




Where can I get more information on Indiana's Reopening Plan and PPE Marketplace?


The state’s small business PPE marketplace is now live: www.backontrack.in.gov

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions, for reference.

Who can use the marketplace?

Small businesses and nonprofits registered in Indiana that employ 150 or less and are required to use PPE as a condition of reopening qualify for the marketplace.

Who is required to use PPE?

Per the state's reopening guidelines, workers in restaurant, personal services, retail and office environments will be required to use PPE. Restaurant workers, for example, will be required to wear face masks.

How much does it cost?

PPE through the marketplace is currently free, but that could change.

What kind of PPE is available?

Masks, face shields and hand sanitizer will be available in bundles.

How do businesses request PPE?

Beginning Wednesday, businesses can visit www.backontrack.in.gov where they will be directed to the PPE marketplace.

All requests will be evaluated and fulfilled based on work environment risk profile, stock availability, and the number of outstanding requests. At times, partial or delayed fulfillment of requests may occur.

Where does the PPE come from?

The marketplace includes PPE manufactured and sourced in Indiana by companies like Cardinal Spirits distillery in Bloomington and Worldcell Extrusions in Elkhart County. More manufacturers are listed on the IEDC website.

What if the marketplace runs out?

The marketplace will continue to be replenished, but it should be used as a secondary source of PPE. Businesses should attempt to secure PPE from other sources before turning to the marketplace.

If a business can't get PPE from another source and it misses out on initial disbursements, IEDC will work with that business to get in on the next round of supplies. We also encourage businesses to work together to secure PPE.




What changes are coming to Indianapolis as businesses plan to reopen?


The City of Indianapolis released two new posters outlining guidelines to reopen safely. Businesses will be following this guide. General awareness guidelines may be found here.





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