Small Business Disaster Preparedness

Updated as of March 23, 2020, 3:45 pm

The Loveland Business Development Center in conjunction with the Colorado SBDC Network is here to help businesses who have been affected by recent disasters in Colorado including response to the current health crisis. Our consultants and partners including the SBA provide services to assist with disaster loan applications, long term planning, insurance navigation, physical and economic loss estimations, business preparedness and more. Please note that the SBDC is not a health organization; for the latest news regarding the current health situation, please contact the resources listed on this page.

The Colorado SBDC network collaborates with the Office of Economic Development, and other State and Federal agencies to provide you the latest in statewide COVID-19 small business response resources.

This page will be continuously updated. Check back often for new information.

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans

Eligible Entities

Applicants must meet the SBA requirements of a small business (500 employees or fewer)

  • Businesses directly affected by COVID-19
  • Businesses that offer services directly related to the businesses in the declaration
  • Other businesses indirectly related the industry that are likely to be harmed by losses in their community (Example: Manufacturer of widgets may be eligible as well as the wholesaler and retailer of the product)

Ineligible Entities

  • Agricultural Enterprises: If the primary activity of the business (including its affiliates) is as defined in Section 18(b)(1) of the Small Business Act, neither the business nor its affiliates are eligible for EIDL assistance.
  • Religious Organizations
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Gambling Concerns (Ex: Concerns that derive more that 1/3 of their annual gross revenue from legal gambling activities)
  • Casinos & Racetracks (Ex: Businesses whose purpose for being is gambling (e.g., casinos, racetracks, poker parlors, etc.) are not eligible for EIDL assistance regardless of 1/3 criteria above.
  • Cannabis Industry

Loan Approval Criteria

  • Credit History: Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to SBA.
  • Repayment: SBA must determine that the applicant business has the ability to repay the SBA loan.
  • Eligibility: The applicant business must be physically located in a declared county and suffered working capital losses due to the declared disaster, not due to a downturn in the economy or other reasons.

How Much Can You Borrow

  • Eligible entities may qualify for loans up to $2 million. 
  • The interest rates for this disaster are 3.75 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for nonprofit organizations with terms up to 30 years. 
  • Eligibility for these working capital loans are based on the size (must be a small business) and type of business and its financial resources.  

How Can the Funds be Used

These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits or for expansion. Funds cannot be used to pay down long-term debt.

What is Needed to Apply

  • Completed SBA loan application (SBA Form 5).
  • Tax Information Authorization (IRS Form 4506T) for the applicant, principals and affiliates.
  • Complete copies of the most recent Federal Income Tax Return.
  • Schedule of Liabilities (SBA Form 2202).
  • Personal Financial Statement (SBA Form 413).
  • Income, balance sheet, and cash flow documents.
  • Other Information may also be requested.

Other Information that May Be Requested

  • Complete copy, including all schedules, of the most recent Federal income tax return for principals, general partners or managing members, and affiliates (see filing requirements for more information)
  • If the most recent Federal income tax return has not been filed, a year-end profit-and-loss statement and balance sheet for that tax year
  • A current year-to-date profit-and-loss statement
  • Additional Filing Requirements (SBA Form 1368) providing monthly sales figures (This is especially important for Economic Injury Disaster Loans)

How Soon Will Businesses Receive Money

  • Small businesses that submit complete loan packages could receive the money within three (3) weeks
  • Incomplete information and verification of collateral will delay the approval process

Recommendations

  • Include the specific disaster in your application – specifically reference “COVID-19” or Coronavirus
  • Apply online vs by mail (Applying online is best)
  • Write your password down; neither the system nor any personnel are able to retrieve it
  • Save your work at every prompt
  • Do not rush through the application. Check and recheck the filing requirements to ensure that all the needed information is submitted. The biggest reason for delays in processing is due to missing information.
  • Make sure to complete all filing requirements before submitting the application and forms
  • Be sure to use the same contact information (business name and the name of all owners) that you use on your federal tax returns. Double-check that they match
  • If your tax returns reference other businesses that you own, you must also submit those tax returns in order to avoid processing delays
  • If more funds are needed, applicants can submit supporting documents and a request for an increase. If fewer funds are needed, applicants can request a reduction in the loan amount.
  • If the loan request is denied, the applicant will be given up to six months in which to provide new information and submit a written request for reconsideration
  • As you consider applying for the different federal funding sources available for Colorado businesses, the following information can help you make the best choices for your situation:  

    1) Federal funds carry program-specific restrictions and it’s important to know and protect your options. Review each program thoroughly. Your approval and acceptance of a loan from one federal program may cause you to be fully or partially ineligible for other sources of federal funding.  

    2) Different federal funding such as loans and grants from multiple agencies will roll out at different times, so it’s important to consider the timing of the funding source.    

    3) Federal economic disaster recovery loans are accessible right now for qualified businesses; however, no federal economic disaster recovery grants have been announced. Unfortunately, for businesses seeking immediate help, there is no way to predict which future federal tools – including grants – may be employed as COVID continues to impact the US economy. This can place businesses in the challenging position of weighing an immediate federal tool against the possibility of future programs that may or may not be offered, with requirements yet to be determined.    

    We are committed to sharing news of all new economic recovery resources (both state and federal) as they become available and are here to be your guide through this challenging time.

  • All Colorado counties are represented as being located in a certified disaster declaration area. Currently the site is struggling with the traffic load. We would encourage anyone who can to access the site after peak hours (7pm to 7am MST).

Application Information

  • Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela
  • Paper loan applications can be downloaded from www.sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to:
  • U.S. Small Business Administration
  • Processing and Disbursement Center
  • 14925 Kingsport Road
  • Fort Worth, TX 76155
  • Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

SBA Application Training PowerPoint


Statewide Resources

  • Colorado Small Business Navigator & COVID-19 Small Business HotlineThe Small Business Navigator is the first point of contact for new and existing business owners with questions about federal, state and local licensing requirements. The navigator also provides referrals to a variety of state and federal assistance programs and local small business training. In addition, the navigator maintains a comprehensive database of federal, state and local regulatory and permitting requirements. SMALL BUSINESS COVID-19 DISASTER RESPONSE HOTLINE: 303-860-5881 ((OPEN MONDAY-FRIDAY 8AM-5PM))
  • Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE)Visit this website for the latest information for employers and workers. Website links include information on: – Paid Sick Leave for COVID-19 – Workplace Preparedness – Information from the Division of Federal Employees Compensation (DFEC)
  • Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) – Emergency Leave With PayFind details on the latest leave with pay rules and industry specifics.
  • Colorado Department of Public Health and EnvironmentThe Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is a great resource to keep up on the latest throughout the state of Colorado.
  • Colorado Public Health & Executive Orders ExplainedThere have been a number of executive orders and public health orders released by the governor this month and the legal language used can be hard to understand. We have provided this information, written for the rest of us, about what they mean and who is affected.
  • Support CO LocalSupport CO Local is helping local businesses in Colorado sell gift cards in order for them to keep revenue coming in during their closure for the COVID-19.
  • Colorado Office of Economic Development and International TradeThe resources at choosecolorado.com provide state and federal COVID-19 announcements, programs, and information relevant to Colorado businesses.
  • Small Business Emergency Response Roundtable WebinarThe Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center and the Pikes Peak Workforce Center have collaborated to provide our small business community the latest information in small business emergency response. Sponsored by the Colorado Springs Business Journal. We understand that as a small business, you may have already experienced economic injury. This panel will provide you with the latest resources and updates on small business support.

Federal Resources

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)This interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will update this interim guidance as needed and as additional information becomes available.
  • U.S. Small Business Administration – Process for Accesses Relief LendingThe U.S. SBA is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital. Read about the process here. STATUS: Applications now open
  • CDC Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection RecommendationsCleaning of visibly dirty surfaces followed by disinfection is a best practice measure for prevention of COVID-19 and other viral respiratory illnesses in community settings.
  • US Department of the TreasuryIf you receive calls, emails, or other communications claiming to be from the Treasury Department and offering COVID-19 related grants or stimulus payments in exchange for personal financial information, or an advance fee, tax, or charge of any kind, including the purchase of gift cards, please do not respond.
  • IRS Extends Filing Period to July 15The IRS is extending the federal income tax filing deadline to July 15 as part of a growing effort to stem the financial pain from the coronavirus pandemic – announced Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin today.- The news has been verified via multiple news agencies. The IRS site has not been updated. Secretary Mnuchin urged those getting a return to file now to receive their return as soon as possible.
  • ContractingIf a situation occurs that will prevent small businesses with federal government contracts from successfully performing, they should reach out to their contracting officer and seek extensions before they receive cure notices or threats of termination.

From
Larimer County Economic and Workforce Development

The Larimer County Economic and
Workforce Development Department is  counseling businesses that are laying
off employees to encourage their affected staff to apply for
Unemployment Insurance. LCEWD is also encouraging these employers to
give their affected employees written documentation of their date of
layoff and that the layoff is related to COVID-19. When/if the Federal
government provides additional unemployment benefit
supports this documentation should help smooth the process for these
workers. 

Apply for
Unemployment Insurance: https://www.colorado.gov/cdle/unemployment


How to Prepare


More Information

Loans & Grants

Several entities are starting grant programs to specifically assist businesses being affected by COVID-19. 

  • Facebook Small Business Grants ProgramFacebook announced 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.
  • El Pomar Assistance FundEl Pomar Foundation announced the establishment of the Colorado Assistance Fund (CAF). CAF is a $1 million fund offering immediate aid to nonprofit organizations supporting Colorado communities, organizations and individuals affected by the recent outbreak of COVID-19.
  • Kiva LoansThe nonprofit organization Kiva provides 0% interest loans to small businesses worldwide. They are expanding eligibility and the amount of loans provided during this crisis.

Labor, Employment & ADA

As the news spreads about Corona Virus (COVID-19), many businesses have questions about whether they can shut down sites where the infection is present or conduct a preemptive shut-down of sites where there is no infection to safeguard the health of their employees. Businesses are asking, “will their employees be eligible for unemployment insurance benefits during the temporary shutdown”?

The answer is, if an employer stops work (for whatever reason), it is considered a layoff or partial separation. Employees during the temporary shut-down may file a claim to collect unemployment insurance benefits as job attached claimants. They would still be required to meet the eligibility requirements during any weeks they claimed.

Job Attached Layoff

Job attached means that you are expected to return to your most recent employer after a separation of up to 16 weeks. If you are job attached, your work-search requirements may be waived, but you must be available to return to work during this time frame. Union attached is the same except the union must find work for you within 16 weeks.

If your work-search requirements are not waived, keep in mind, we may conduct an audit of your claim up to two years from the start of your claim and you may be asked to provide your work-search documentation at that time. If you are unable to produce your work-search documents with all requirements met, you may be denied unemployment and may have to pay back any benefits already received for those weeks.

The Work-Share Program

Thinking of laying off employees? Consider the Work-Share Program.

The Work-Share Program provides an alternative to laying off employees by allowing them to keep working, but with fewer hours. While an employee is working fewer hours, he or she may be eligible to collect part of his or her regular unemployment benefits.

Requirements and qualifications for employers:

  • You must have reduced the normal weekly work hours by at least 10 percent, but by no more than 40 percent.
  • The reduction must affect at least two out of all employees in the business, or a minimum of two employees in a certain unit.
  • You must have paid as much in premiums as we paid your former employees in unemployment insurance benefits. See the rate notice mailed in November.

Marketing & Tourism

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis declared a state of emergency on March 10 to protect public health and our vulnerable populations and prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. In support of this goal, Colorado Tourism Office has suspended operations for all 10 Colorado Welcome Centers until further notice. All downhill ski areas and resorts in Colorado are closed, as well as many visitor attractions, museums, performance venues and retail stores. Please consult their website or contact them for more information.

Governor Polis has restricted Colorado restaurants and bars from providing dine-in service through April 15. Many restaurants have switched to delivery, take-out, curbside and drive through service to continue serving customers. Many hotels are providing room service. Some communities may have more specific health guidelines. Travelers planning a visit should check with their hotel or the local visitors bureau for guidance.

Manufacturing

This website is compiling COVID-19 updates and resources for manufacturers.

Restaurants & Food Service

Artists

Bookkeeping & Finances

Working Remotely/From Home


As always, the LBDC is working in concert with local, regional, state, and federal resources to provide support to the business community.

Kat Rico

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