Support for Businesses Impacted by COVID-19 in Palo Alto

The County of Santa Clara Public Health Department is the lead agency on this public health emergency and issuing new public health orders and new, mandatory, industry-specific directives. Please see the most up-to-date information on Coronavirus regulations.

Find Online Resources Offering Information and Guidance on:

Financial Support

City Resources

Palo Alto Utility Rate Relief


For commercial customers, a Proclamation of Local Emergency has instituted a moratorium on customer disconnections for non-payment, late payment, and full-bill payment requirements. Customers  can make partial payments, without penalty and without risk of Disconnection for Non-Payment. The total of missed payments (except Late Fees, which will be waived) will continue to be owed to CPAU, but be eligible for an extended payment plan, at the end of the emergency proclamation period. Additionally, payment arrangements for CPAU residential and commercial customers will be extended to a maximum of 18 months from the termination date of the Proclamation of Local Emergency (PLE). There is no need for a Payment Arrangement until the emergency proclamation is lifted. For more information, see Utility Rate Relief.

Business owners seeking further information or needing assistance can call (650) 329–2161. Utilities Customer Service can help with questions associated with these programs. Customer support is available through the call center and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) at (650) 329–2161, online customer account service at mycpau.cityofpaloalto.org, or email at UtilitiesCustomerService@cityofpaloalto.org. This includes paying bills. 

 

Update on Residential and Commercial Eviction Moratoriums


The Palo Alto City Council extended our City ban on residential evictions, during the health emergency, for tenants who can’t pay their rent for reasons related to COVID-19. Residential tenants are also protected from eviction by an ordinance passed by Santa Clara County, and an Executive Order issued by Governor Newsom. The County ordinance also protects other types of tenants – including businesses, non-profits, and other organizations – from eviction during the health emergency if they can’t pay all or part of their rent for reasons related to COVID-19, provided that they qualify as small businesses under the rules of Small Business Administration.

Santa Clara County Resources

Legal Support


 

 

State of California Resources

Small Business Finance Center Supports


California's Small Business Finance Center is offering Disaster Relief loans to small businesses who need assistance to overcome economic injury caused by COVID-19. They also have a collection of resources by area

Small Business Finance Center - The State of California is allocating $50 million to the Small Business Finance Center at California’s IBank to mitigate barriers to capital for those small businesses (1-750 employees) that may not qualify for federal funds (including businesses in low-wealth and immigrant communities). Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program: This disaster program provides guarantees for loans of up to $50,000 for small business borrowers in declared disaster areas. To contact IBank, email them.

 

California Business and Economic Development Resources


The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) has compiled helpful information for businesses, including employers and employees as it relates to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

California Employment Development Department Programs


Employers experiencing a hardship as a result of Coronavirus may request up to a 60-day extension of time from the EDD to file their state payroll reports and/or deposit state payroll taxes without penalty or interest. The CalCAP, a loan loss reserve program which may provide up to 100% coverage on losses as a result of certain loan defaults. Individual borrowers are limited to a maximum of $2.5 million enrolled over a 3-year period. Contact a Participating Lender to enroll. View a collection of resources for businesses.

State and Federal Tax Filing Delay


Governor Gavin Newsom has issued an Emergency Order delaying the deadline for state tax filing by 60 days for individuals and businesses unable to file on time based on compliance with public health requirements related to COVID-19. California Department of Tax and Fee Administration has delayed tax filings for some businesses. Check their website to determine if your business qualifies.

Resources from the California Treasurers Office


Restrictions on Increased Pricing of Essential Supplies


Governor’s executive order prohibiting sellers from increasing prices on food, consumer goods, medical or emergency supplies, and certain other items by more than 10 percent 

Federal Resources

Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act


The United States Department of Labor announced new action regarding how American workers and employers will benefit from the protections and relief offered by the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act, both part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). FFCRA requires certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to the public health emergency. These provisions will apply from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. Go here for more. You can learn more about the expanded paid leave rules in the Department of Labor’s Fact Sheet for Employers.

 

Paycheck Protection Program


The Paycheck Protection Program is part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This is a $350-billion program intended to provide American small businesses with eight weeks of cash-flow assistance through 100 percent federally guaranteed loans. Program highlights: All small businesses are eligible, loan has a maturity rate of 2 years and an interest rate of 1% and no need to make loan payments for the first six months. The Paycheck Protection application form, highlights the information businesses will need to provide. 

Federal Tax Deadlines Changed


The deadlines for individuals to file and pay most federal income taxes are extended to May 17, 2021. Get details on the new tax deadlines and on coronavirus tax relief and Economic Impact Payments.


The United States Small Business Administration Disaster Loan applications are now open, go to the application link if you own a California business wishing to apply for a disaster loan related to economic damage from the Coronavirus health crisis. Contact the Small Business Administration Disaster Loan center by calling (800) 659-2955.

Guide to Mortgage Relief Options


The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Guide to Mortgage Relief Options


 


The CDC has interim guidance for businesses to plan and respond to COVID-19. OSHA offers COVID-19 info and guidance as well. 


Private and Non-Profit Resources


 

Financial Institutions and Resources


Many banks and lenders have created Coronavirus support programs:

Workplace Safety Guidance

Cal/OSHA- offers Guidance to Protect Workers 

CDC guidance is available for businesses- to help prevent exposures to respiratory illnesses, including Coronavirus.

Helpful Business-Related Online Resources