March 23, 2020
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
COVID-19 « All Categories

BREAKING: Gov. Inslee set to announce new 'enhanced strategies' in address tonight

Gov. Jay Inslee will address the state tonight at 5:30 p.m. on the novel coronavirus. The announcement will reportedly include "enhanced strategies to mitigate the COVID-19 outbreak," although details of the strategy weren't immediately announced. The News Tribune has the story. TVW will live-stream the address.

President declares a 'major disaster' in Washington

President Donald Trump on Sunday declared a "major disaster" in Washington and several other states hard-hit by the COVID-19 virus. He approved calling out the National Guard, although it's not clear how troops would be used in Washington. Every part of Washington is also eligible for SBA disaster loans.

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AWB survey finds that 81% of employers have been affected by COVID-19

A survey of AWB members found that COVID-19 has already had a significant impact on Washington's employers, especially small businesses. More than 700 employers responded to AWB's survey last week, with more than eight in 10 reporting impacts already from the COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to contain it.

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Employer resources highlighted in second of AWB's series of COVID-19 calls with experts

From registering your business as essential, to applying for loans and unemployment insurance, state and federal officials covered a wide range of practical tips for Washington employers on a webinar today. More than 1,200 people logged on to hear the latest about the extraordinary public health crisis that is impacting all Washington communities.

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Help for small business expands slightly, but major relief has yet to come through

Many small business in Washington and across the country have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. These employers need help now, supporters say. Although some new grants were announced last week, major state and federal relief has yet to materialize.

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Manufacturers step up to help produce medical supplies, from N95 masks to ventilators

Washington manufacturers are pillars of their communities and our state economy. Now they are also helping to save lives. AWB put out a call last week for manufacturers who can help produce much-needed medical supplies, and across the state, employers stepped up. From distilleries making hand sanitizers to high-tech firms ramping up to make ventilators, manufacturers are helping during this difficult time.

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Be There for Local Business

In this unprecedented time of coronavirus, we need to be there for local businesses

By Maribel Perez Wadsworth and Kevin Gentzel, USA Today

The safety measures that have forced us indoors and away from others to help stop the spread of COVID-19 are the right thing to do. We're confident our strength and resilience will carry us through. But we also recognize our small business owners need us more than ever as they take their own precautions.

To emerge from this with our communities strong and intact, we need to ensure that what make them special -- the coffee shop down the road, the local car dealership and our neighborhood music teachers -- are able to stay afloat.

While we may not be able to give them our patronage in person right now, there is much we can do to show our support.

Visit your favorite restaurant's website and purchase gift cards for yourself and others to keep some money flowing to their bottom lines. If those restaurants are still offering takeout or delivery, make a point to order from them now and again soon. And get gift cards for massage studios, arts and crafts stores, local jungle gyms and myriad other businesses.

If your local shops sell their merchandise online, make purchases -- even if the goods won't be available right away.

If you're shopping online for things you'll need while in self-quarantine, like home exercise equipment or activities for the kids, seek out local businesses to make these purchases...

Read the full column in USA Today
Speak Up for Clean Power

Don't let Snake River dams be a coronavirus casualty. Call in to save them

By The Tri-City Herald Editorial Board

In our community-wide effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus, we must not become so focused on the pandemic that we neglect other, critical issues facing the Tri-Cities.

Of upmost importance is protecting the Snake River dams, which continue to be in jeopardy.

Last week's time for phone-in comments on the recently released, federal draft Environmental Impact Statement has come and gone, but there are three more scheduled over the next two weeks, and Tri-City participation is crucial.

Considering many people have hunkered down in a semi-quarantine, this could be a good way to spend some time. Why not prepare a statement and send in your testimony, either online, by mail or by calling it in?

Knowing you are helping to protect reliable power production and the region's economy could be invigorating. And it could take your mind off the disease for a little while...

Read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald