Business Resources During COVID-19

New resources are being added daily - We will attempt to share as many as possible with our downtown merchants and business owners. Please feel free to contact us with any questions regarding these resources and we will attempt to help you in every way possible. Send emails to Director Morrissa Angi, or Assistant Director Madeleine Epley at any time, we're always here for you! We are also sharing resources multiple times a day on our Downtown Valdese Businesses Page specifically for

October-

  • A new grant program called RETOOLNC is available to help North Carolina historically underutilized Businesses (HUB) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) firms impacted by COVID.  Additionally, NC Commerce has resources to support mortgage and utility and rent assistance to firms that experienced extraordinary disruptions through the MURR Mortgage Utility and Rent Relief Program.  To learn more about these programs please go to:  https://www.nccommerce.com/grants-incentives/disaster-recovery/mortgage-utility-and-rent-relief-murr-program and https://ncadmin.nc.gov/businesses/hub.
  • The Z Smith Reynolds Foundation is accepting applications for its Community Progress Fund to help communities test an idea, expand a promising effort, and/or achieve greater impact.  Preference is given to areas of the state with relatively higher needs and fewer resources, with grant amounts ranging between $20,000 and $30,000 per year for one or two years.  The foundation’s goal is to award a significant portion of grants to organizations that are run by and primarily serve people of color and it strongly encourages applications from such organizations.  The foundation began accepting Letters of Intent on October 1 and will contact those invited to move forward into the next phase of the process.  Grant decisions are expected to be made in May of 2021  
  • America Walks is accepting applications under its Community Change Grant Program for awards up to $1,500 to provide community stipends for projects that create healthy, active and engaged places to live, work and play.  Applications must be submitted by November 9, 2020.  
  • EPA is inviting applications from communities interested in receiving technical assistance to support local food systems.  Salisbury, NC is a current EPA Local Foods, Local Places winner and would be great to have other communities in NC working to promote their local food systems apply.  This opportunity connects federal partners at EPA, USDA, EDA and others with private and state resources and facilitates a series of workshops and strategic plans on how local foods can be built in an area.  Applications must be received by October 30, 2020.

September-

August- 

June 26, 2020 | NC Phase 2 Extension | Executive Order 147

May 20, 2020 | NC to enter PHASE 2 of Reopening North Carolina | Executive Order 141

May 5, 2020 | NC to enter PHASE 1 of Reopening North Carolina | Executive Order 138:


Grant Opportunities:


Loan Opportunities:


Counseling & Advice Resources for businesses:


North Carolina seeks companies and manufacturers that can produce critical supplies to help our state meet the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
DETAILS: North Carolina Emergency Management has assembled a vetting team to review vendors wishing to supply critical products to the State of North Carolina. Supplies urgently needed include: NIOSH-Approved Respirators (N95s, etc), Other Respirators (KN95s, etc), Procedural or Surgical Masks, Powered Air-Purifying Respirators, Goggles, Safety Glasses, Face Shields, Nitrile Examination/Medical Gloves, Nitrile Non-medical Gloves, Coveralls, Gowns (Isolation or Surgical), Hand Sanitizer, Disinfectant (Spray or Wipe), and Invasive Ventilators.


Unemployment Resources:

Intructions on applying for unemplopyment claim on behalf of your employees

NC Department of Commerce Uneployment FAQ

Executive Order NO. 118 | Governor Roy Cooper | March 17, 2020
This Order will directly aid workers who may have lost wages in restaurants and meeting places due to mass gathering restrictions. For example, workers who lose income due to tips or scheduled work hours, but are still employed, would be eligible for benefits because of this Executive Order. Among other changes:
• It removes the one-week waiting period to apply for unemployment payment for those workers who lose their jobs;
• It removes the requirement that a person must be actively looking for another job during this time when many potential employers are closed and social distancing guidelines are in effect.
• It allows employees who lose their jobs or, in certain cases have their hours reduced due to Covid-19 to apply for unemployment benefits.
• It directs that employers will not be held responsible for benefits paid as a direct result of these COVID-19 claims.
• It waives the requirement that people must apply for benefits in person; workers can apply for benefits online or by phone.
View FULL Executive order here: https://files.nc.gov/governor/documents/files/EO118.pdf
Apply for Unemployment Here: https://des.nc.gov/apply-unemployment/

CARES ACT | 3/26/2020 | Guide to the CARES ACT

  • Under new Stimulus Bill unemployment is now available to self-employed AND part-time employees. Under federal plan, eligible workers would also get an extra $600 per week on top of their State Unemployment Benefit. 
  • Creation of Paycheck Protection Program
  • For other 7(a) loans, as well as loans made under Title V of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, SBA will pay the principal, interest, and any associated fees that are owed on a covered loan for six months. Applies to loans made before the CARES Act was passed.

EXECUTIVE ORDER 131 | GOVERNOR ROY COOPER | The Order is effective for attached claims filed as of April 1, 2020. 
Provides flexibility on the enforcement of some of the normal requirements for filing attached claims. Under the order: 

  • An employer does not need to prepay the cost of the unemployment benefits for their employees at the time the attached claim is filed. 
  • Employers may file attached claims for a period of more than six weeks of benefits. 
  • Employers may submit an attached claim for an employee more than once in a year. 
  • Employers do not need to have a positive credit balance with DES to file attached claims. 


Executive Order 121 | Friday, March 27, 2020. | Essential Business Designation
This order directs that non-essential business and operations must cease, effective on Monday, March 30 at 5:00pm, and will remain in place for 30 days. [EXTENDED UNTIL MAY 8, 2020 THROUGH EO 135] 121 outlines a set of businesses that are considered "Essential Businesses and Operations," and the Order goes into detail regarding those businesses. If your type of business is excluded from the list of COVID-19 Essential Businesses and Operations, set forth in EO 121 — and you believe that in fact your company's operations are essential — you may direct a request to be considered for inclusion to the 'Essential Business' list.  The North Carolina Department of Revenue (NCDOR) will be mangaging your requests in this matter. If your company has submitted a request to the Department of Revenue to be included as a COVID-19 Essential Business or Operation, you may continue to operate until that agency (NCDOR) acts on your request.


If your business is experiencing supply chain disruptions due to the impact of COVID-19:

• Find a manufacturer or supplier for your business here: https://www.manufacturednc.com/


Federal Coronavirus Tax Relief:
-The U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service have announced that the federal income tax filing due date is automatically extended from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. Taxpayers can also defer federal income tax payments due on April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. This deferment applies to all taxpayers, including individuals, trusts and estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers as well as those who pay self-employment tax.


The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers to provide their employees with expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) administers and enforces the new law’s paid leave requirements. These provisions will apply from the effective date through December 31, 2020. More details are available here, including FAQs.


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