June 2, 2020 4:00 pm

Today, Governor Cuomo announced that summer day camps statewide can open on June 29th. The state will make a decision on sleep-away camps in the coming weeks.

 

Governor Cuomo also issued an Executive Order allowing low-risk, outdoor recreational activities and businesses providing such activities to open in regions that have met the public health and safety metrics required for phase one.

 

More details on what qualifies as low-risk recreational activities will be provided in the coming days. Please watch for details from the IDA as they become available.

June 1, 2020 11:00 am

Steuben County IDA is pleased to announce that, per the Phase II reopening guidelines, our office has reopened for normal business hours Monday through Friday from 8 am to 4 pm.  We have an appropriate safety plan in place and will be working at a reduced staffing level.  Visitors to the office must have an appointment and follow the agency’s safety protocol.  Please contact us at 607-776-3316 for more information.

 

If you are a Phase I or Phase II business and have not yet completed an attestation with the state, you must do so immediately by visiting https://forward.ny.gov/  and submitting an affirmation that you have reviewed the industry specific guidance and developed an appropriate reopening plan.  Businesses that have not done so need to file this as soon as possible to prevent actions that could force closure of the operation.

 

To determine whether your business is currently allowed to operate, use the reopening tool at https://www.businessexpress.ny.gov/app/nyforward by entering your NAICS code.

 

Over the weekend, the state announced that dentists can reopen statewide today.  Dentist offices will be subject to state guidance on best practices for safety and social distancing.

 

As your business begins the process of recovery, please remember that there are funds available to assist.

 

Loan funds are still available for Steuben County small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Emergency Relief Loan Program (ERLP) provides thirty-month loans of up to $20,000.  Loans have a fixed interest rate of 1%, with no payments required for the first 6 months.  For more information, contact REDEC at 607-962-3021 or send an email to info@redec.us.

 

Also, the New York Forward Loan Fund (NYFLF) supports New York State small businesses, nonprofits and small landlords as they reopen after the COVID-19 outbreak.  The NYFLF targets the state’s small businesses with 20 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees that have less than $3 million in revenue.  More information can be found at https://esd.ny.gov/economic-recovery-covid-19-loans-small-businesses.

May 29, 2020 1:30 pm

Moments ago, Governor Cuomo announced that the Southern Tier joins five other regions to enter Phase II of reopening.

 

Businesses now being allowed to reopen include:

  • All Office-Based Jobs
  • Real Estate Services
  • Essential and Phase II Retail – In-Store Shopping
  • Vehicle Sales, Leases, and Rentals
  • Retail Rental, Repair, and Cleaning
  • Commercial Building Management
  • Barbershop and Hair Salon Services

 

Specifics guidelines, business plan templates and attestations for these industries can be found at https://forward.ny.gov/phase-two-industries and should be reviewed and completed prior to reopening your business.  This includes the affirmation that you are following the state guidance.

 

Pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Orders, the following businesses will remain closed during Phase II:

  • Malls, specifically, any indoor common portions of retail shopping malls with 100,000 or more square feet of retail space available for lease; however, any stores located within shopping malls, which have their own external entrances open to the public, separate from the general mall entrance (e.g. strip malls), may open;
  • Dine-in and on-premise restaurant or bar service, excluding take-out or delivery for off-premise consumption;
  • Large gathering/event venues, including but not limited to establishments that host concerts, conferences, or other in-person performances or presentations in front of an in-person audience;
  • Gyms, fitness centers, and exercise classes, except for remote or streaming services;
  • Video lottery and casino gaming facilities;
  • Movie theaters, except drive-ins; and
  • Places of public amusement, whether indoors or outdoors, including but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, aquariums, zoos, arcades, fairs, children’s play centers, funplexes, theme parks, bowling alleys, family and children’s attractions.

May 29, 2020 1:00 pm

The guidance for Phase II businesses continues to be updated in anticipation of a formal announcement by the state that they can officially reopen.

 

Pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Orders, the following businesses will remain closed during Phase II:

 

  • Malls, specifically, any indoor common portions of retail shopping malls with 100,000 or more square feet of retail space available for lease; however, any stores located within shopping malls, which have their own external entrances open to the public, separate from the general mall entrance (e.g. strip malls), may open;
  • Dine-in and on-premise restaurant or bar service, excluding take-out or delivery for off-premise consumption;
  • Large gathering/event venues, including but not limited to establishments that host concerts, conferences, or other in-person performances or presentations in front of an in-person audience;
  • Gyms, fitness centers, and exercise classes, except for remote or streaming services;
  • Video lottery and casino gaming facilities;
  • Movie theaters, except drive-ins; and
  • Places of public amusement, whether indoors or outdoors, including but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, aquariums, zoos, arcades, fairs, children’s play centers, funplexes, theme parks, bowling alleys, family and children’s attractions.

 

The posted guidelines are for businesses in the following categories:

 

  • All Office-Based Jobs
  • Real Estate Services
  • Essential and Phase II Retail – In-Store Shopping
  • Vehicle Sales, Leases, and Rentals
  • Retail Rental, Repair, and Cleaning
  • Commercial Building Management
  • Barbershop and Hair Salon Services

 

Specifics guidelines, business plan templates, and attestations for these industries can be found at https://forward.ny.gov/phase-two-industries.

 

While the guidelines have been released and the Southern Tier meets all the metrics for reopening, the state has not announced that our region can move to Phase II.  Governor Cuomo is expected to have his daily press conference at 1 p.m. today where we hope to get additional information.

 

In the meantime, you should be reviewing the guidance in preparation for a reopening if you are a Phase II business.

May 29, 2020 7:00 am

Good morning:  Late last night, New York State released the Phase II reopening guidelines for businesses in regions that are permitted to move forward to that phase.

 

The guidelines are for businesses in the following categories.

  • All Office-Based Jobs
  • Real Estate Services
  • Retail – In-Store Shopping
  • Limited Barbershop and Hair Salon Services

 

Specifics guidelines, business plan templates, and attestations for these industries can be found at https://forward.ny.gov/phase-two-industries.

 

While the guidelines have been released and the Southern Tier meets all the metrics for reopening, the state has not announced that our region can move to Phase II.  Yesterday, Governor Cuomo stated that the metrics would be under review in the coming days to determine if reopening could move forward.  The IDA will continue to monitor this progress and will relay new information as it becomes available.

 

In the meantime, you should be reviewing the guidance released last night in preparation for a reopening if you are a Phase II business.

May 26, 2020 8:30 am

Good Morning: I hope everyone had a safe and healthy holiday weekend.  Over the weekend, the Small Business Administration (SBA) released guidelines for forgiveness of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans.

 

PPP loans are designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.

 

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.

 

Details of the forgiveness, guidelines and instructions can be found at the links below.
To download the application, visit:

https://www.sba.gov/document/sba-form–paycheck-protection-program-loan-forgiveness-application
To access complete PPP information, visit:

https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options/paycheck-protection-program

It is recommended that small business owners connect with both their issuing bank and their advisor from the Small Business Development Center for assistance with the forgiveness process. If you do not have an SBDC advisor, you may request assistance here.

VIRTUAL LUNCH & LEARN WITH THE SBDC
PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM FORGIVENESS

Tuesday, May 26th at 12:00 pm

With the recent release of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Guidelines, the Binghamton SBDC will offer a review of the application. They will also address questions about how to properly provide information to help small businesses understand how to maximize the forgiveness of the PPP loan.

To register, visit:
https://binghamton.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwtcempqzspG9ZITa-MGnj3pH-ucJCYGNw6

May 22, 2020 7:00 pm

Today Governor Cuomo announced the New York Forward Loan Fund (NYFLF).  The $100 million program is a new economic recovery loan program aimed at supporting New York State small businesses, nonprofits and small landlords as they reopen after the COVID-19 outbreak and NYS on PAUSE.  The NYFLF targets the state’s small businesses with 20 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees, nonprofits and small landlords that have seen a loss of rental income.  The NYFLF is specifically timed to support businesses and organizations as they proceed to reopen and have upfront expenses to comply with guidelines (e.g., inventory, marketing, refitting for new social distancing guidelines) under the New York Forward Plan.

 

Pre-application for the New York Forward Loan Fund will be open on May 26, 2020 at noon. Priority will be given to industries that have been reopened. This is not a first-come, first-served loan program.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis as regions and industries reopen.  Requirements are as follows:

 

    1. Small businesses and nonprofits must employ 20 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees;
    2. Small businesses must have gross revenues of less than $3 million per year;
    3. Nonprofits must provide direct services and have an annual operating budget of less than $3 million per year; and
    4. The entity has not received a loan from either SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) for COVID-19 in 2020.

 

Please visit this web site for more information – https://esd.ny.gov/nyforwardloans-info.

May 21, 2020 4:00 pm

ATTENTION PHASE I BUSINESSES:   It has come to our attention that there are many Steuben County businesses that HAVE NOT submitted the required attestation under the Phase I reopening guidance issued by the State on May 15, 2020 when the reopening process began.  Phase I allows the following business sectors to begin the reopening process.

 

  • Manufacturing
  • Construction
  • Wholesale Trade
  • Retail – Curbside Pickup
  • Agricultural, Forestry and Fishing

 

In order for businesses in these categories to reopen, they must visit the following website https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase and submit an attestation that they have reviewed the industry specific guidance developed by the state and developed an appropriate reopening plan.   Businesses that have not done so need to file this as soon as possible to prevent actions that could force closure of the business.

 

If you have been operating as an essential business and fall within the Phase I industries that are allowed to reopen, you can continue to operate under the essential business designation however you should also file the appropriate attestation.  If your business does not fall within the Phase I industries that are allowed to reopen but have been operating as essential, you may continue to do so and await further guidance.

 

A detailed list of specific businesses under the Phase I categories can be found by visiting the state’s NY Forward website at https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase.

May 20, 2020 4:00 pm

Earlier in the week, the state released revisions to the guidance allowing essential businesses to continue to operate during the phased reopening plan.  Businesses operating under the state guidance are expected to do so with an appropriate safety plan.  Those essential businesses in industry sectors that can submit the required attestation under the current reopening schedule should do so.

 

For those businesses that fall outside the current phased reopening but continue to operate as essential, NYS is currently building the web page for essential businesses to complete their attestations.  The IDA will continue to monitor the situation and let you know when the page goes live.

 

In addition, the original reopening guidance suggested companies should address liability as part of their reopening plans.  This guidance has been revised to simply recommend that businesses should talk with their insurance carriers to make sure the appropriate steps are in place to satisfy the company’s insurance needs.

 

The IDA will continue to monitor this guidance and provide updates as they become available.

 

May 18, 2020 11:00 am

On Friday, the Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Department of the Treasury, released the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Application and detailed instructions for the application.

 

The form and instructions inform borrowers how to apply for forgiveness of their PPP loans, consistent with the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).  SBA will also soon issue regulations and guidance to further assist borrowers as they complete their applications, and to provide lenders with guidance on their responsibilities.

 

The form and instructions include several measures to reduce compliance burdens and simplify the process for borrowers, including:

 

  • Options for borrowers to calculate payroll costs using an “alternative payroll covered period” that aligns with borrowers’ regular payroll cycles;

 

  • Flexibility to include eligible payroll and non-payroll expenses paid or incurred during the eight-week period after receiving their PPP loan;

 

  • Step-by-step instructions on how to perform the calculations required by the CARES Act to confirm eligibility for loan forgiveness;

 

  • Borrower-friendly implementation of statutory exemptions from loan forgiveness reduction based on rehiring by June 30; and

 

  • Addition of a new exemption from the loan forgiveness reduction for borrowers who have made a good-faith, written offer to rehire workers that was declined.

 

The documents will help small businesses seek forgiveness at the conclusion of the eight-week covered period, which begins with the disbursement of their loans.

 

Click here to view the application and instructions.

 

In news from the state, a new tool is now available to help companies determine whether or not a business is eligible to reopen in New York, and the public health and safety standards with which a business must comply. This tool uses information about the company’s county and NAICS code. To access it, please click here.