City of Spokane Valley COVID Resource Guide

Washington State COVID-19 website

Access Washington State’s central COVID-19 website with resources, links and updates for businesses, workers and citizens.

Guidance for reopening businesses

On May 29, Gov. Jay Inslee released an updated, county-by-county based “Safe Start” reopening plan for resuming activities. This plan builds off the 4-phase plan he announced May 4. View safe start guidelines and guidance for reopening. View the Governor’s Office COVID-19 website.

Spokane County received approval on May 22 to move to Phase II utilizing specific business and safety guidelines. Note: business activities are not authorized to open until a business is able to meet all safety criteria.

Phase 2 guidelines

Phase 1 guidelines

Essential Business Guidance

Many essential businesses are currently being allowed to operate under specific safety guidelines. For a list of essential businesses click here.

Phase 1 of the four-phases began May 5 across the state; phase 2 began May 22 in Spokane County. Here is a current summary of what is open, closed and prohibited. General questions from employers about the safe start plan can be directed to the state’s Business Response Center.

Help with locating Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

New 5/26/20! Need PPE for your employees so that you can reopen your business safely? The Association of Washington Business has developed a PPE Marketplace website that connects Washington businesses with manufacturers and distributors who supply PPE.  Area manufacturers and suppliers can also request to be added to the marketplace.

Additional resources for business reopening & recovery

Financial support for businesses and workers

Regional Business Tool

New! 4/24/20 Spokane-area Chambers of Commerce have launched a new digital tool to help businesses determine the local, state and federal resources that are currently available and best meet their needs. Businesses can register to receive updates as new resources come online.

COVID-19 Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act

The CARES Act, a $2 trillion economic stimulus package created to address COVID-19 impacts, was signed into law on March 27. President Trump signed another stimulus bill on April 24 that added $484 billion to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and provided additional aid to hospitals and support testing. The CARES Act provides aid to individuals, small businesses, large corporations, health facilities, education systems, and local, state and federal government programs.

Business loan assistance

Federal resources

Small Business Administration (SBA) programs for COVID-19 Assistance: 

  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). This SBA loan helps businesses keep workers employed during COVID-19. Sole proprietors and contract workers can also apply. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest or utilities. Loan applications need to be submitted through a qualified lender. The SBA resumed accepting PPP applications on April 27.
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Emergency Advance. This loan advance will provide up to $10,000 to businesses that are experiencing temporary difficulties. Applications for this program are currently limited to eligible US agricultural businesses.
  • SBA Debt Relief. This program will provide relief to businesses with current and new 7(a), 504 and microloans for a period of six months.
  • Express Bridge Loan. This program enables small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly. This loan may provide vital economic support to a small business to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster loan.

State resources

The Washington State Department of Commerce (DOC) has set up a resource website that addresses COVID-19 related issues, including employment, financial assistance, insurance, health updates, small business tools and more.

Private funding or grants

5/13/20. Innovia Foundation has announced a second round of grant funding for community-based organizations engaged in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts in Eastern Washington and North Idaho. Applications for funding will be accepted through May 26, and grant recipients will be announced by June 12. Approximately $800,000 will be awarded. Application information can be found here.

Relief for tax filing

  • Federal Taxes. Most IRS 2019 filing returns are now due July 15. The IRS has posted filing and payment deadline Q&As to address additional extensions, first quarter estimated tax payments, IRAs and HSAs.
  • State Taxes. The Annual 2019 return is now due June 15; the Quarter 1 return is now due June 30 for those that file quarterly. Businesses should still file tax returns even if they are unable to pay. Contact the Department of Revenue for additional information.

Employment and workplace assistance

Employment Security Department

The Washington State Employment Security Department is updating information daily.

  • Update 4/20/20. State unemployment benefits have been expanded to include many people who were previously not eligible, including many self-employed people and independent contractors.
  • Gov. Jay Inslee has issued a proclamation giving high-risk workers the right to protect themselves from COVID-19 without jeopardizing their employment or loss of income. The action provides high-risk workers with additional rights and protections.
  • The state Employment Security Department has created a frequently asked questions page with information about the new federal stimulus package known as the CARES Act. This act will impact state employment benefits.
  • Workers who are laid off or furloughed temporarily, or who have their hours reduced can learn if they are eligible for employment benefits and file claims here.
  • The Department of Labor and Industries has information about Paid Sick Leave. When this leave is not available for employees to utilize, Paid Family & Medical Leave may be available to help.
  • The Department of Labor and Industries also has guidance regarding workers’ compensation coverage for employers of healthcare workers and first responders. The Industrial Insurance Act allows for healthcare and treatment of COVID-19 when work-related activity has resulted in probable exposure to the virus and certain criteria are met.
  • 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. Learn more.
  • Print this easy-to-read reference guide that provides a list of scenarios related to COVID-19, and the benefits that may apply to workers who are impacted.

Managing workplace safety

The State Department of Labor and Industries and US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) can provide guidance and resources to employers and workers to plan when services reopen. Information is available for specific industries, such as construction, manufacturing, retail, delivery services, agriculture, and food & beverage.

Insurance information

The state’s Office of the Insurance Commissioner has information regarding health insurance, business insurance, event cancellation insurance, travel insurance and more.

Export assistance

The state’s Export Assistance Team/Division can help companies identify alternative markets and provide firms with STEP Vouchers to defray the costs of trade show or trade mission fees, airfare, interpreter and translation services, business matchmaking, export training programs and more.

Area Chambers of Commerce

Greater Spokane Incorporated and the Greater Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce, in addition to other local chambers, maintain a COVID-19 website that provides helpful resources, state and federal news and policy updates, and online webinars to help businesses in the recovery process.

Update 4/24/20 Spokane-area chambers have launched a new digital tool to help businesses determine the local, state and federal resources that are currently available and best meet their needs. Businesses can also register to receive updates as new resources come online.

Support for families and individuals

Public health information

Additional resources

Reopening your business

Ready to Reopen: A Playbook for Small Business – a publication of the US Chamber of Commerce

Research and Data

The Spokane Business Library is a collaboration between the Spokane County Library District and Spokane Public Library that provides web-based access to numerous research and information databases.

Marketing resources for all businesses

Keeping your small business going during a crisis
Navigating COVID-19 for Small Business

Facebook resources
Twitter resources

Funding campaigns (crowdfunding, gift card purchasing, etc)

Buy Now, Play Later Initiative set up by Washington Tourism Alliance to assist small businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak by encouraging customers to purchase gift cards. Businesses can sign up for the program here.

The Spokane-area Chambers of Commerce have launched a program to support regional small businesses that are closed due to COVID-19. It encourages financial donations to help purchase gift cards at nominated small businesses. The gift cards will be donated to area nonprofits and will generate revenue for participating small businesses.

Guidance for restaurants:

National Restaurant Association – information and resources
COVID-19 Survival Guide for Restaurants (Modern Restaurant Management)

Guidance for travel/hotel/tourism businesses

Destination International – recovery plans, free webinars


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