Wednesday, March 18, 2020

COVID-19 Update: March 17 5 pm


We continue to assemble resources and information for the business community regarding COVID-19.  Please visit www.gpcovid.com for a complete list of business resources and send any questions to bizinfo@greaterpeoriaedc.org.

        Illinois has filed its paperwork with the federal government to be declared a disaster area.  With your help, the state was able to log over 2,000 individual businesses impacted and believes that the entire state will get the declaration (vs. individual counties).  FEMA has had a very quick turnaround on these applications.  A declaration will make communities and companies eligible for federal assistance, including SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. The Small Business Development Center at Bradley University is preparing itself to provide technical assistance and will be providing more information soon.
        On Sunday Governor Pritzker issued a ban on in-facility dining at bars and restaurants in Illinois, effective at 9 p.m. on Monday, March 16.  You can read a copy of the Executive Order here.  Each county health department is issuing its own guidance to establishments.  Peoria City/County Health Department has advised that patrons can enter an establishment to pick up food provided that there is proper space for social distancing.
        OSHA’s newly released guidance on COVID-19 in the workplace can be found here. 
        This morning, Governor JB Pritzker and Secretary of Transportation Omer Osman ordered the Illinois Department of Transportation to increase truck weights on Illinois roads to 88,000 pounds (currently 80,000 pounds) for a 5-axle vehicle or 10 percent above the legal load for vehicles with fewer axles.  Additionally, the Governor waived all overweight fees for the transportation of emergency relief and supplies. The increased weight limits and fee waivers expire on April 12, 2020. Executive order here and IDOT information here.
        Attention non-profit organizations: Forefront, an association of Illinois grantmakers and nonprofits, has developed a survey in an effort to collect responses from the nonprofit sector regarding the impact of COVID-19. Please take the survey here. Forefront also has a webpage dedicated to keeping the nonprofit sector apprised of COVID-19 developments, available here.
        Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) offices have closed to the public but individuals are encouraged to file for unemployment online here. IDES has filed emergency rules that waive the one-week waiting period to apply for unemployment insurance benefits.
        While the filing day for federal taxes remains April 15, 2020, the IRS has given individual filers an additional 90 days to pay income taxes due up to $1 million while corporations get the same delay for payments up to $10 million. Similar efforts are being made with the Illinois Department of Revenue regarding state taxes.    
        The Illinois Secretary of State’s Office has closed through March 31 and all statutorily-required filings are extended by 30 days.
        AAIM Employers’ Association is hosting a free morning audio briefing on helping employers navigate this health crisis. More information here.

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