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COVID-19 Information and Resources for Small Businesses

In an abundance of caution, WESST has decided to suspend in-office meetings and trainings through the end of June. Business will continue as usual just over the telephone, video conference and email. You will continue to have our wonderful team of consultants at your service throughout this time. All of our contact information will remain the same.  If you would like to meet with a business consultant, please click HERE (WESST ofrece consultoría virtual es español).  For a list of our online scheduled training, please click HERE.  To support our clients, WESST will be suspending client consulting and training fees to clients through the end of December.

At WESST, we are dedicated to supporting small businesses across New Mexico. As our community responds to the global COVID-19 public health emergency, we aim to share as many resources and tools as possible for New Mexico businesses to respond to developments.

This page will be updated frequently as new resources come to our attention.

Financial Assistance

Congress is continuing to expand funding for the SBA Disaster Loan programs. Additional rounds of legislation may be signed into law in the coming weeks. With the current demand for funds, it is expected that this additional funding will be depleted quickly.  WESST team of consultants, located across New Mexico, can help you navigate the disaster loan program offerings, application process, and compliance requirements after you obtain funding.  If you need immediate assistance you can contact our office by completing the online Business Assistance Request form.  Also, here is a good article for additional details:  Forbes: Get Ready NOW – New Small Business Relief Is Coming.

  • NEW!  – City of Albuquerque Economic Development – Commissioners Approve One-Time Grants for Small Businesses:  Bernalillo County is providing emergency financial support through the Bernalillo County CARES small business grant for qualified small businesses to assist with costs associated with business interruption caused by required closures due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Through this program, the county will offer one-time grants up to $10,000 to qualifying small businesses and nonprofits to cover costs such as employee wages, vendor bills, and rent. Five million is allotted for this fund, which is available as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act federal stimulus package.  The application process will open on June 22, and close on June 29.  A link to the application will be provided as soon as available.
  • ALL TOGETHER NM FUNDThe All Together NM Fund has been established by the Governor’s office in conjunction with the New Mexico Coalition of Community Foundations to help New Mexico respond to and eventually recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The first-round of the micro-entrepreneurial grants are being limited to businesses with 2-5 employees, and with an existing relationship with WESST or any of the other three organizations listed on their website. The NM Coalition of Community Foundations has established a series of eligibility requirements for this round of grants – Preference will be given to rural, female, minority, immigrant, and/or refugee-owned businesses. The first round of recommendations will be submitted to the All Together NM Fund by Please by noon on May 12, 2020. Please fill out our general inquiry form if you think your company may qualify.
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) – This loan and advance up to $10,000 will provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing temporary difficulties.
  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) – An SBA loan that helps businesses keep their workforce employed during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
  • U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Save Small Business Fund Grants – a grantmaking initiative offering short-term relief for small employers in the United States and its territories. Businesses with 3-20 employees ONLY may apply.
  • The State of New Mexico is adjusting its business-loan guarantee programs in order to make capital more available to business owners whose operations are severely impacted by the COVID-19 health emergency. To learn more about the COVID-19 Business Loan Guarantee Program and the LEDA Zero-Percent Interest Loans click HERE>>
  • The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act.
  • Facebook Small Business Grants Program – $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time.
  • Fulcrum Fund – Fulcrum Fund to award $60,000 in emergency relief grants, providing $1,000 to 60 local artists who have lost income as a result of cancellations due to the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.
  • GoFundMe – GoFundMe has an initiative that helps small businesses in many aspects of emergency measures with tips, links and a small ($500) grant as part of the program. 
  • Red Backpack Fund – Are you a female entrepreneur with 1-50 employees? Apply for a $5,000 grant from the Red Backpack Fund. Applications opened June 1.

Resources To Stay Up To Date

What you need to know about the virus

To reduce the impact of COVID-19 outbreak conditions on businesses, workers, customers, and the public, it is important for all employers to plan now for COVID-19. The resources in this section provide information about the virus and guidance for businesses and employers to plan and respond.

  • The CDC’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers – The interim guidance outlined by the CDC may help prevent workplace exposure to acute respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19, in non-healthcare settings. The CDC provides planning considerations if there are more widespread, community outbreaks of COVID-19.
  • Centros para el Control y la Prevencion de Enfermedades – Enfermedad del Coronavirus 2019 (COVID‑19).  Los Centros para el Control y la Prevención de Enfermedades (CDC) están vigilando de cerca un brote de enfermedad respiratoria causada por un nuevo coronavirus que se identificó por primera vez en Wuhan, en la provincia de Hubei, en China. Esta es una situación emergente que está cambiando rápidamente y los CDC continuarán brindando información actualizada a medida que esté disponible. Los CDC trabajan a toda hora para proteger la salud de las personas. Es función de los CDC preocuparse y actuar rápidamente cada vez que haya un problema potencial para la salud pública.

Small Business Administration Resources

If you need assistance with filling out the application, you can work with the NM Small Business Development Centers.  (El NM SBDC traduce su sitio al español (a través de google translate) pero todos los documentos descargables todavía están en inglés).

Resources shared here include information about the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, Guidance for Businesses and Employers, SBA Products and Resources, Government Contracting, and Local Assistance.

  •  NEW! – SBA and Treasury Announce New EZ and Revised Full Forgiveness Applications for the Paycheck Protection Program
  • The EZ application requires fewer calculations and less documentation for eligible borrowers. Details regarding the applicability of these provisions are available in the instructions to the new EZ application form.  Both applications give borrowers the option of using the original 8-week covered period (if their loan was made before June 5, 2020) or an extended 24-week covered period. These changes will result in a more efficient process and make it easier for businesses to realize full forgiveness of their PPP loan.  Click here to view the EZ Forgiveness Application.  Click here to view the Full Forgiveness Application.

City of Albuquerque Resources

The Small Business Office (SBO) is a division of the City of Albuquerque’s Economic Development Department. It is the central point of entry for Albuquerque entrepreneurs and businesses providing timely, relevant, actionable information and assistance.

This guide provides tips and resources for businesses and organizations navigating through the Coronavirus. They also include a list of small business ecosystem partners at the end – an incredible list of community providers here to support you.

New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions

  • The city of Albuquerque released a list of COVID-19 tips and resources for small businesses and organizations. View it HERE.
  • Scammers take advantage of fears about the coronavirus.  Here are some tips to keep you safe from scammers in English and Spanish.

Additional resources:

This webinar covers financial support, unemployment, health information, and more from the state of New Mexico.  View slides from the presentation

The Wage and Hour Division provides information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to COVID-19, and its effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

This website has resources, inspiration and connection to other everyday entrepreneurs with creative solutions to keep their business open, even if their doors are closed due to COVID-19.

Meow Wolf has pulled together a list of available resources for artists around the country who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updated daily, with real-world funding, resources, and support for small business owners adapting to the impacts of coronavirus.

  • NEW! – Small businesses that have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus crisis can sign up on GoFundMe to start a fundraiser to benefit their small business. If the business raises $500 on their GoFundMe and meets certain eligibility criteria, they may be considered to receive a $500 matching grant from the Small Business Relief Fund.
  • NEW! – The Farmer Relief Fund will award farmers with cash grants of up to $1,000 each to help them weather the current storm of market disruptions caused by the coronavirus crisis. Initially, eligible applicants include any small and mid-size direct-market producers.
  • NEW! – Southern Smoke: Emergency Relief Program – The Emergency Relief Program provides emergency funding to restaurant and bar owners and employees, as well as restaurant supplier employees, who are facing unforeseen expenses that will not be covered by insurance.
  • NEW! – Are you concerned that an ID thief stole your stimulus payment?  How to report it to the IRS and FTC in English, Spanish, Navajo, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Swahili.