Media ContactsRalph Dimarucut, Main media contact (831) 420-5017
Eileen Cross, Water Department (831) 420-5213
Joyce Blaschke, Santa Cruz Police Department (831) 420-5844
Janice Bisgaard, Public Works Department (831) 420-5166
Police Department Press Releases, click here
Fire Department Press Releases, click here
City of Santa Cruz Connecting Businesses to Resources in Response to COVID-19
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 16, 2020
Contact: Rebecca Unitt (831) 420-5157
As the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Santa Cruz County continue to rise the City of Santa Cruz is making necessary precautionary efforts to contain the spread of this virus and mitigate its impact. The City of Santa Cruz understands that local businesses are being impacted by this public health event and we are connecting them to helpful resources from our Federal, State, and local partners.
The City’s Economic Development Department has created a webpage (choosesantacruz.com/coronavirus) connecting businesses to a number of business-specific resources regarding how to prevent workplace exposure, strategies to support employees and customers, and financial programs available from State and Federal agencies for businesses and workers who become financially impacted from the COVID-19 outbreak and response. This webpage is being updated regularly as new information and resources become available.
Economic Development Director Bonnie Lipscomb is committed to ensuring we find additional resources to support our local businesses during this challenging time: “We recognize that our local businesses are vital to our community and quality of life in Santa Cruz and they rely on local and visitor spending that is severely impacted during this call for social distancing. The opening of funding through the SBA’s Disaster Loan program is a major resource for businesses to recover from this financial impact and we are just at the beginning of seeking additional resources. We will be looking internally to see what local funding offsets might be available and will be advocating with our state and federal legislators and lobbyists for additional financial resources.”
The SBA’s Disaster Loan Program is now active and impacted businesses in Santa Cruz County will be eligible to apply for funding soon. This program provides businesses with loan funding for working capital to overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. Business can apply for these loans online through the SBA’s website: disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/. Business will also be able to apply for Disaster Assistance through FEMA through their website: disasterassistance.gov/. Economic Development is also encouraging all businesses to closely document their short and long term financial impacts related to COVID-19 as this could be the basis for future allocations if additional funding is identified or awarded to our community from the state or federal level.
The City has opened up all parking lots and garages for free parking and will only be enforcing time limits, loading zone restrictions, No Parking Areas and other Safety Notices during the closure as needed and we encourage the community to be mindful of the posted signage.
Businesses are also advised to follow the Governor’s March 15, 2020 guidance to close nightclubs, bars, wine bars, breweries and pubs, and call for restaurants to reduce their occupancy by half and encouragement to offer curbside food service and at-home food deliveries to reduce public contact.
Additional benefits are available to workers as a result of Governor Newsom’s March 12, 2020 executive order. The Governor’s order provides the following benefits for employers and workers:
- Waives the one-week waiting period for people who are unemployed and/or disabled as a result of COVID-19.
- Delays the deadline for state tax filing by 60 days for individuals and businesses unable to file on time based on compliance with public health requirements related to COVID-19 filings.
- If you’re unable to work because you are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19 you may qualify for Paid Family Leave (PFL).
- If you’re unable to work due to medical quarantine or illness, you may qualify for Disability Insurance. Those who have lost a job or have had their hours reduced for reasons related to COVID-19 may be able to partially recover their wages by filing an unemployment insurance claim.
- If a worker or a family member is sick or for preventative care when civil authorities recommend quarantine, workers may use accrued paid sick leave in accordance with the law.
- If workers are unable to do their usual job because they were exposed to and contracted COVID-19 during the regular course of their work, they may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
Please visit the City’s website for current information regarding impacts to City services by visiting www.cityofsantacruz.com/coronavirus.
For general information on COVID-19 please call 211, or text coronavirus to 211211, or visit www.santacruzhealth.org/coronavirus for updates and links to state and federal guidance.
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