Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Business and Worker Resources

Resources for Oakland businesses, nonprofits and workers to plan, prepare and respond to Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19).

Date Posted: March 11th, 2020 @ 1:28 PM
Last Updated: July 10th, 2020 @ 6:35 PM

Request one-on-one Business Assistance

Businesses, nonprofits and sole proprietors are asked to take the City's COVID-19 Business Impact Data Survey, to receive one-on-one assistance.

Small businesses, nonprofits, sole proprietors and independent contractors may feel overwhelmed by the many support options available. Please consider:

  • Applying now for the SBA's Payroll Protection Program Loan or Economic Injury Disaster Loan and Grant Advance
  • Pursuing a crowdsourced, zero-interest loan from KIVA
  • Applying for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, which expands Unemployment Insurance to those who don’t typically qualify in California, including Business owners, Self-employed individuals and Independent contractors

Key Business Resources - EWDD Update July 10, 2020

Guide to Available Business and Nonprofit Resources Translated versions

Frequently Asked Questions

SBA Loans & Advance Grant

SBA's Payroll Protection Program

Update: The deadline for applying for the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) was extended to August 8, 2020. SBA data shows that more than 6,700 Oakland businesses have been approved for PPP loans.

If you have not yet applied, please do so today through a participating lender. If you’ve been turned down by one lender, please reach out to another participating lender today.

SBA's Paycheck Protection Program offers loans of up to $10 million in partnership with select banks. This is a forgivable loan to keep employees on payroll and maintain salary levels for up to 24 weeks. To be forgiven, at least 60% of the loan must be used for payroll, including the cost of employer-provided health benefits. If you've already laid off your employees, this loan provides the opportunity to hire them back.

  • Less money is required to be spent on payroll. Originally 75% of the loan had to be used for maintaining payroll in order for the loan to be forgiven. That threshold is now 60% – allowing up to 40% to be used on rent, mortgage, interest and utilities.
  • More time to spend the money. Borrowers will now have 24 weeks to use their PPP funds, instead of the original 8 weeks.
  • More time to rehire staff. Borrowers now have until December 31 to achieve the staffing mandate of maintaining the average number of employees they had on payroll as of February 15.
  • More time to repay. For those loans that are not fully forgiven, borrowers now have five years to pay back loans made on or after June 5. For those with loans made prior to June 5, check with your lender about entering an agreement to extend your repayment period.

PPP Loans Frequently Asked Questions - May 27, 2020 (includes information on loan forgiveness)

Who was generally eligible:

  • Small businesses (generally those with less than 500 employees)
  • Sole proprietors, independent contractors and self-employed persons
  • 501 (c)(3) Nonprofits, 501 (c)(19) veterans organizations
  • Faith-based organizations, regardless of whether they provide secular social services

Frequently Asked Questions- May 6, 2020

SBA guidance to Self-Employed that need a PPP Loan (see page 4)

On May 15, the Payroll Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Application and detailed instructions were released. The form and instructions include several measures to reduce compliance burdens and simplify the process for borrowers.

SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan

June 15, 2020 Update: The SBA has reopened the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL Advance program portal to all eligible applicants experiencing economic impacts due to COVID-19. Now that the EIDL and EIDL Advance application portal is accepting new applications, additional small businesses and non-profits will be able to receive long-term, low-interest loans and emergency grants – reducing the economic impacts of COVID-19 on their businesses, employees and the communities they support.

The SBA has advised the City that businesses who applied for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) prior to March 30, should re-apply now using the online portal.

SBA Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources Espanol

Who is generally eligible:

  • Small businesses (generally those with less than 500 employees)
  • Sole proprietors, independent contractors and self-employed persons
  • Cooperatives
  • Nonprofits – 501(c), 501(d) or 501 (e)
  • Faith-based organizations, regardless of whether they provide secular social services

Need Assistance navigating and SBA loan program?

Grant Programs

Support your favorite local businesses today by nominating them for TMC Community Capital Small Business, Big Heart grant program. Nominated businesses are entered into a lottery selection for grants of $2,000 per employee up to $10,000.

The Verizon/LISC Small Business Recovery Fund offers grants of up to $10,000 to help small businesses, especially entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises that don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital in historically underserved communities. The next round of applications will open on July 27.

The Beauty Changes Lives Nail Professional Relief Grant is available to licensed professionals who can not maintain their regular income during the COVID-19 pandemic. One-time grants of $1,000 are available to provide temporary financial relief to qualifying applicants that demonstrate financial hardships. The two-part application is not responsive to mobile devices, so please apply using a computer or tablet. Applications are now open.

Opportunity Fund's Small Business Relief Fund

East Bay Community Foundation’s COVID-19 – A Just East Bay Response Fund for nonprofits

San Francisco Foundation nonprofit grants

United Way Bay Area COVID19 Community Relief Fund for nonprofits

The Foundation Directory Online helps nonprofits find funding by providing information about the largest public and private foundations in the U.S.

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation COVID19 Crisis Relief Fund for restaurant workers, nonprofits and small business restaurants

Yelp's $25 Million Relief for Restaurants and Bars

Loan Products

Crowdsourced Zero-Interest Business Loans from KIVA up to $15,000

Working Solutions SBA loans

Main Street Launch SBA loans

Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program loans for small businesses and nonprofits

Unemployment Benefits

EDD presentation on assistance programs during COVID-19

The federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program is now live and expands Unemployment Insurance to those who don’t typically qualify in California, including:

  • Business owners
  • Self-employed individuals
  • Independent contractors
  • Individuals who may have qualified for regular UI benefits but have collected all benefits for which they are eligible

Watch an informational video on Pandemic Unemployment Assistance

Legal clinic to help self-employed workers determine if they’re eligible for PUA and assistance with the application process. Sign up over phone at (415) 484-8372 or fill out the online form.

File a State Unemployment Insurance Claim for those who traditionally qualify

Reduced Work Hours - Work Sharing Program

Alameda County flyer on Job Loss and COVID-19

EDD is piloting a SMS text notification option for individuals to receive updates about their Unemployment Insurance (UI) claim. The pilot began on Saturday, May 16th with a small group of customers. Please note that all text messages will be sent from (877) 324-1224 and will begin with: “Message from EDD:” Claimants that receive text messages from the EDD will have the option to opt-out of receiving text messages at any time by replying “Stop.” Claimants may opt back in by texting “Unstop.”

Sick & Disability Leave

COVID-19 and Oakland’s Sick Leave Law

Oakland recently updated its Paid Sick Leave law to protect workers from COVID-19. Employers should read the new guidelines and post the regulations in a public place.

California COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave for Food Sector Workers

California Paid Sick Leave: Frequently Asked Questions

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers to provide employees with paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. Federal tax credits can help cover cost of this leave.

Disability Insurance Elective Coverage for Employers and Self-Employed Individuals

File a Disability Claim if you’re Sick

Paid Family Leave if you're Caring for Someone Ill

Support Programs & Services

Información y Recursos para Pequeños Negocios - California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Pacific Community Ventures Small Business Resources

Alameda County Small Business Development Center webinars, guides and resources

Small Business Majority webinars for impacted Small Businesses

ICA Small Business Resources and News during COVID-19

Free testing for employees of businesses in Alameda County, who have symptoms or who have been exposed to COVID-19

Covered California extends health insurance special enrollment period through July 31, including premium subsidies

Alcoholic Beverage Control eased alcohol delivery restrictions for restaurants, but only with food

Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control is temporarily suspending enforcement of specific legal prohibitions

California State Treasurer Fiona Ma's Small Business Resource List

Community Vision support for nonprofits, click "Schedule Your Call” button

Nonprofits and Coronavirus, COVID-19

State Labor & Workforce Development Agency's Resources for Employers and Workers

CDC's Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers

Kabbage Gift Certificate Support, an initiative that allows small businesses to offer online gift certificates and connects them with consumers across the country

Services for Businesses Reducing Staffing Levels

Are you hiring? List job openings with

California's Anti-Price Gouging Information

Emergency financial assistance, legal representation and supportive services to prevent Oakland residents from losing their housing from Keep Oakland Housed

Steps to Preserve Cash Flow

Federal tax credits for small and midsize businesses to swiftly recover the cost of providing Coronavirus-related leave to their employees. Immediate dollar-for-dollar reimbursement offset against payroll taxes

Employee Retention Credit is a refundable tax credit against certain employment taxes equal to 50 percent of the qualified wages an eligible employer pays to employees after March 12, 2020, and before January 1, 2021. More information in their Frequently Asked Questions.

Small business interest-free deferral of sales/use tax up to $50,000 for businesses with less than $5 million in taxable sales

Payroll Tax Payments Deferral – The CARES Act allows employers to defer the deposit and payment of the employer's share of Social Security taxes and self-employed individuals to defer payment of certain self-employment taxes incurred to December 31, 2020. The amount owed can be paid over the following two years.

Tax relief is provided under the CARES Act for taxpayers with net operating losses. Any business that claimed a loss in tax year 2018, 2019, or 2020, may be able to carry that loss back five years. Amending your tax returns could generate immediate refunds.

Federal Tax Day now July 15: Treasury, IRS extend federal filing deadline and federal tax payments

State Postpones Tax Deadlines Until July 15 due to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Request up to a 60-day extension on State Payroll Taxes

Property Tax Penalty Waivers for Eligible Taxpayers

Request late payment penalty waiver/payment plan for City of Oakland Business Taxes

PG&E COVID-29 Consumer Protections

Eviction Moratorium

Learn about Oakland's Moratorium on Residential and Commercial Evictions

Commercial tenants seeking additional information and support on the eviction moratorium can contact:

Workplace Safety

Orders, Releases and Past Updates

Translated Documents