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Relief Available For Small Businesses Impacted By Coronavirus

Patch logo Patch 3/14/2020 D'Ann Lawrence White
a group of people sitting at a table: Business owners with the Upper Tampa Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce gather at a Relationship Builders luncheon Friday at Wild Rover Brewing Co. © Upper Tampa Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce Business owners with the Upper Tampa Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce gather at a Relationship Builders luncheon Friday at Wild Rover Brewing Co.

TALLAHASSEE, FL — Gov. Ron DeSantis announced the activation of the Business Damage Assessment survey to assess the impact of coronavirus on Florida’s local business operations.

The survey, managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, will evaluate businesses affected by COVID-19 and the impacts the virus has had on the local economy so the state can begin relief programs.

“Gathering information about the impact COVID-19 has on Florida businesses and industries will be invaluable to the state’s efforts in coordinating our response,” said DeSantis. “It is important that we understand the total impact COVID-19 has on businesses to ensure that we access the resources that may be available.”

The Business Damage Assessment Survey can be taken online. Results from the survey will be shared with state agencies and local partners.

Surveys submitted by small businesses can also be used to access the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan, made available for COVID-19 through the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act.

For more information, businesses can email Emergency Support Function 18 at ESF18@em.myflorida.com.

“Under Governor DeSantis’ direction, the state of Florida has maintained contact with our business partners throughout the state in order to develop a proactive response for COVID-19 business impacts,” said Florida DEO Executive Director Ken Lawson. “We need feedback from all Florida businesses to provide comprehensive information about the impacts of COVID-19 to our partners at the federal level.”

The North Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce said the coronavirus is "having significant implications for the public as well as businesses here at home..."

To help Florida employers monitor the outbreak and implement strategies to protect their workforce while continuing to operate their businesses, the chamber put together a toolkit to help educate employers and employees on how they can prepare for and address the impacts of the virus.

The toolkit contains workplace tips and resources to combat the virus, help developing a resiliency plan, a corporate aid tracker and a guide for employers.

For any other questions related to COVID-19 in Florida, contact the state’s dedicated 24-hour COVID-19 Call Center at 866-779-6121.

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