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The Network Effect
The Chamber has launched a virtual portal for employers to submit questions relating to COVID-19 and its impact on business. Responses are posted at madisonbiz.com/covid19faq.

Submit questions about the CARES Act, Gov. Evers' "Safer at Home" order, availability of assistance for your business and more by visiting Slido.com and entering the event code #ASK4BIZ (or simply click here to go directly to the page). Questions can also be submitted via email at ask@madisonbiz.com.


Good evening --

Here are the latest updates on the COVID-19 outbreak and our organizational efforts to inform and ensure an effective community response:

PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM

As of today (April 3), applications can be submitted for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a new $350 billion lending program designed to incentivize small businesses to keep their workers on payroll by providing loans of up to $10 million for payroll and certain other expenses.
 
Enacted as part of the CARES Act, PPP is modeled on the existing Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) program, with a 100 percent government guarantee. Employers are able to apply through current 7(a) lenders, and additional lenders will be approved for participation. For a current list of all Wisconsin SBA lenders, click here.
 
With no guarantee funding will be available to all who need it, we strongly encourage eligible small businesses in need to make applying for the PPP an immediate priority. This program presents a no-risk opportunity for businesses to continue paying their workers and covering vital expenses.
 
To be eligible for the PPP, you must be a small business as defined by the SBA (typically fewer than 500 employees, but varies by business sector), a 501 (c)(3) non-profit with fewer than 500 employees, or be a sole proprietor, self-employed or an independent contractor.
 
Additional SBA information about the PPP can be found here. We strongly advise that you reach out to your preferred lender to start the conversation.
 
The Paycheck Protection Program and other small business relief measures will be the focus of the next Lunch(UP)date, the Chamber’s new weekly virtual meeting where attendees can take a break and enjoy their lunch while staying connected, curious and informed. Register for this April 9 event here.

For the recording of our first Lunch(UP)date, with Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway, click here.

GUIDANCE ON ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES

Public Health Madison & Dane County (PHMDC) has developed a document listing businesses and other places in Dane County they have deemed opened or closed, in accordance with Gov. Tony Evers’ “Safer at Home” order.
 
PHMDC and local law enforcement are following up on complaint reports of non-essential businesses still operating. If the business continues to believe they are essential following initial outreach, city and county attorneys will work with them directly. PHMDC may allow a business to remain open while awaiting legal guidance, although some may choose to close while waiting for a legal answer.
 
Under the order, businesses determined to be non-essential may still carry out the minimum necessary activities to maintain the value of the business's inventory, preserve the condition of the business's plant and equipment, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits and other related functions, as well as minimum necessary activities to facilitate employees being able to work remotely from their residences.
 
For additional information from PHMDC, check out their Best Practices for Businesses document and Preparing your Business for Coronavirus factsheet. For an FAQ about the Governor’s order, click here.

WWBIC FAST TRACK LOANS

The Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation (WWBIC) has created a new Fast Track loan program focused on existing businesses looking for financing during the COVID-19 outbreak. Business owners can choose either a line of credit or a term loan, depending on their needs.

The line of credit would be for between $5,000 and $10,000 for a 12-month term, with a 9.25 percent interest rate. The term loan would be for between $5,000 and $15,000 for a 60-month term, with an interest rate of 4.5 or 5 percent. There is no collateral needed to qualify for either option.

You can find additional details and the application here.

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For a full archive of previously shared resources, visit madisonbiz.com/covid19.

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