Eight things you need to know about the impact of COVID-19 on Saratoga County's economy.
8 @ 8 is a newsletter filled with eight things you need to know on topics related to the economy in Saratoga County, New York. You can expect to see 8 @ 8 in your inbox twice a month. If you have content you'd like us to share or have a topic you'd like to see more of, let us know and we'll work to include it in a future edition! - The Saratoga Partnership Team
1. June 24 Payroll Protection Program Flexibility Act + Forgiveness Guidance FREE Webinar
We are well into the Small Business Administration's Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan period with some businesses beginning to to apply for PPP forgiveness. Join us on June 24, at 11:00 am to hear from experts Steve Bulger from the U.S. SBA, Michael O'Connell from Adirondack Trust Company and CPA Kevin Hedley from Hedley & Co. CPA's who will discuss the Payroll Protection Program Flexibility Act and the process of applying for loan forgiveness. This informative collaboration is brought to you by The Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership, Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, Saratoga Convention + Tourism Bureau, City Center Authority and Saratoga DBA. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER Please submit your questions in advance of the event to Shelby Schneider at Shelby.Schneider@SaratogaPartnership.org
2. Buckets of Help for Saratoga County Businesses
The  Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership  is proud to work with our partner organizations the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, Saratoga Convention + Tourism Bureau, City Center Authority, and Saratoga DBA to get PPE recovery kits out to our small businesses throughout Saratoga County as they phase into reopening! If you need a PPE recovery kit for your small business, please give us a call at 518.871.1887 or email us and we’ll get you covered! Check out coverage from WNYT Channel 13 .
3. SBA and Treasury Announce New EZ and Revised Full Forgiveness Applications for the Paycheck Protection Program
On June 17, in addition to revising the full forgiveness application, the Small Business Administration published a new EZ version of the forgiveness application that applies to borrowers that:
  • Are self-employed and have no employees; OR
  • Did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%, and did not reduce the number or hours of their employees; OR
  • Experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19, and did not reduce the salaries or wages of their employees by more than 25%.
The EZ application requires fewer calculations and less documentation for eligible borrowers. 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.
4. New NAFTA Trade Deal Goes Into Effect On July 1, 2020
The United States, Mexico, and Canada updated NAFTA to create the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). It goes into effect on  July 1, 2020. The agreement benefits North American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses. In 2018, exports from New York state totaled $20.8 billion to Canada and Mexico, just over 24% of total N.Y. exports. If you plan to or currently sell to Mexico and Canada, the Department of Commerce’s new   USMCA website  provides key information about the agreement. You'll also learn how to prepare for exports on   Day One  - including changes to the rules of origin, required certification, and higher values for duty-free express shipments. The major differences, such as more access for U.S. dairy products, can be found   here The modern agreement now has a chapter on digital trade and other issues, see   here  for more details. If you have questions, please contact our expert, Mary Ryckman. She can also connect you to Global NY, the U.S. Export-Import Bank, the U.S. Small Business Administration, the U.S. Department of Commerce and other resources to support your global market needs.
5. How U.S. Consumers are Spending Differently During COVID-19
In 2019, nearly 70% of U.S. GDP was driven by personal consumption. However, in the first quarter of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has initiated a transformation of consumer spending trends as we know them. This infographic from Visual Capitalist dives into credit and debit card spending of five million U.S. consumers over the past few months. It is no surprise that COVID-19 has consumers cutting back on most of their purchases, but a few categories are winning out. Learn about consumer spending trends for general merchandise + grocery, retail, restaurant, food delivery, and travel.
6. Hospitality and COVID-19: How Long Until 'No Vacancy' for US Hotels?
COVID-19 has affected every sector across the globe, and the hotel industry is among the hardest hit. When will we see "No Vacancy" signs again? This report provides helpful insights into the difficulties hotels face in these uncertain times. This report examines a set of recovery scenarios for U.S. hotels, including differing return and recovery timelines for hotels ranging from luxury to economy segment. On the consumer side, the authors look at what guests say will make them feel safe when traveling, including contactless check-ins and check-outs, and an added emphasis on hygiene. 
7. How People and Companies Feel About Working Remotely
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly one-third of the U.S. workforce, and half of all “information workers”, are able to work from home. Though the number of people working partially or fully remote has been on the rise for years now, the COVID-19 pandemic may have pressed the fast-forward button on this trend. With millions of people taking part in this work-from-home experiment, it’s worth asking the question – how do people and companies actually feel about working from home? These graphics show what people like about working from home, some of the challenges people face as they work remotely, barriers to working remotely, and top concerns managers have with remote work. Read More.
8. APPLICATIONS DUE TODAY- Workforce Development Board Seeking New Executive Director
The Executive Director for the Saratoga-Warren-Washington Workforce Development Board (SWW WDB) serves as the primary staff support for the Board and related committees. The purpose of the WDB is to identify local workforce needs of business, develop resources and services to address identified needs and to coordinate a system of local services for both business and jobseeker customers. This is accomplished by engaging business and business organizations, providing oversight of our local career centers and of the use of federal workforce funding (WIOA) received for these efforts, and engaging other local partner organizations in a collaborative process to assist local businesses, workers and job seekers.  Learn more and apply today .
Keep up to date on the latest COVID-19 information and resources on our website www.SaratogaPartnership.org , Facebook , Instagram , Twitter , and LinkedIn .

Saratoga County residents can enroll in the county's CodeRED emergency notification system to receive updates from the county's Emergency Management Team. To enroll, CLICK HERE