Together We Can Survive COVID-19
Your One-Stop Shop for Small Business Assistance

Small businesses often have limited resources to weather a substantial economic downturn, let alone a global pandemic such as COVID-19. We have compiled the following federal and local resources to help our small business community get through this crisis.

Federal Assistance

The U.S. government released a $2.2 trillion dollar stimulus bill, of which $349 billion is set aside for forgivable small business loans to help firms preserve their payroll and business operations. These loans are to be administered through traditional Small Business Association (SBA)-approved lenders, hopefully bypassing some of the challenges experienced under the SBA-direct emergency loan program.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides assistance to businesses that may not usually meet the small business thresholds. You might benefit depending on your industry, legal requirements, and financial and other contractual commitments. The CARES Act includes two different loan programs: the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program. Given the favorable terms of these two SBA loan programs and the potential for loan forgiveness under PPP loans, eligible small businesses who have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic should strongly consider taking advantage of these loan programs. Applications for EIDL loans should be submitted directly to the SBA, while PPP loans will be available from SBA-approved lenders. click here for an easy to follow breakdown of what loans might work for you.

To apply for the PPP here is a quick guide from the U.S. Treasury.

If you have received a loan under the PPP created by the CARES Act, loans may be forgiven if borrowers use the proceeds to maintain their payrolls and pay other specified expenses. The Treasury Department and Small Business Administration recently released the application form and instructions for loan forgiveness. The forgiveness forms, instructions, and worksheets can be downloaded here.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to California small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the COVID-19.

On March 16, 2020, San Diego County was declared a primary county due to the magnitude of Economic Injury Disaster Loan worksheets that were submitted to our office from local businesses.

The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (cal oes) has provided the attached information regarding this declaration. the attachment provides information pertaining to who may apply for the Economic Injury Disaster Loans and how to apply.

Those that have completed and submitted worksheets, still need to apply at sba’s website or email [email protected]. Further guidance on the application process can be found in the helpful links below.

Here’s a comparative breakdown of the different SBA loan options: [link to table]

See here for a complete list of banks in San Diego providing SBA loans. *please note that Wells Fargo is no longer processing SBA Paycheck Protection Program loans.

Two paid leave laws apply to all employers with fewer than 500 employees: the Emergency Family Medical Leave Act and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act. The laws take effect on April 1 and expire on December 31, 2020.

Employees who have been employed at least 30 calendar days by the employer are eligible for this paid family leave. The law specifically expands the Family and Medical Leave Act by broadening the term “qualifying need” to include 12 weeks of leave for “the employee [who] is unable to work (or telework) due to a need for leave to care for the son or daughter under 18 years of age of such employee if the school or place of care has been closed, or the child care provider of such son or daughter is unavailable.”

Paid sick leave will be immediately available to all employees regardless of how long the employee has been employed. Employers shall provide employees with up to 80 hours of paid sick time for those employees who are unable to work (or telework) due to the need for leave for a variety of reasons.

Find an overview from employer-paid benefits and costs in coronavirus bill and an employment law business guide.

Local Assistance

Overwhelmed by all of these federal assistance programs and want some help navigating toward the best option for you? The City of Encinitas has partnered with the NCSBDC to offer free, one-on-one counseling services to small businesses online. The North County SBDC   has a dedicated team to help businesses navigate these programs.  Register here, and a SBDC consultant will be in touch as soon as possible.

CDC Small Business is starting up certain loan programs for small businesses. Terms are generous and it is likely that as a local mission-driven lender they can turn around your application quickly.  You can learn more at this link.  North County businesses should directly reach out to CDC's North County representative, Miriam Torres Baltys, at 619-414-0030.

The North County Economic Development Council ( has a series of great links, including a link to a fantastic financial planning guide and resilience strategy as a response to COVID-19. Their guide is valuable and applicable to small business in any industry in respect to how to maximize cash, minimize expenses, and develop a plan of attack.

Key takeaways include:

  • Communicate with your lender;
  • Pause most/all credit card activity;
  • Consolidate outgoing cash flow;
  • Create payment plans for major Ap balances;
  • Keep payroll going, with changes;
  • Look into benefits deferrals;
  • Look into extensions on business taxes;
  • Opt to defer payment for utilities—in encinitas you can keep your gas, electric, and water on even if you can’t pay the bills;
  • and communicate with your property manager about rent payment or deferment options.
Other Helpful Links: