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. Are You A Small Business Owner or Future Entrepreneur? - Here is A Program You Need To Know About
The Small Enterprise Economic Development (SEED) is a new Loan Program for future Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners that bases the lending decision on the character of the applicant and feasibility of the business model. Maximum Loan = $35,000. Visit University at Albany's Website for more details.
The program was developed to address the following needs in the community:
  • Entrepreneurship opportunities for individuals who have indicated an interest in starting a business(*) but lack the credit, capital and/or collateral for traditional funding or for expanding a business where financing is difficult to obtain.
  • Provide economic growth and community revitalization by extending loan funds to projects typically not fundable within current lending formulas.
  • Offer a model program that will evaluate the character of the borrower as well as the Business Model and project feasibility in determining fundability of the business that can be duplicated statewide.
2. Are you struggling to fill job openings? Our Workforce Development Team can help!
We understand the immense challenges facing employers and workers in this current crisis and many employers are still struggling to fill positions. Our local workforce development agency can help. The Saratoga County Career Center offers free skill training options for current employees and laid-off workers to plan for their eventual return to the workforce. Which job openings are you struggling to fill? What skills are most needed at your company? Complete the brief Employer Survey online to determine relevant screening, hiring, and training solutions available to you and your employees! All free services available to you.
3. HVCC Launches Career Launchpad Workforce Training Program
As you are aware, the Capital Region’s unemployment rate has increased significantly since COVID-19 emerged this spring. As a result, we have seen more and more interest in programs that will allow our local workforce to get the training they need to enter a new career or enhance their skill set within their chosen field. In June, President Ramsammy assembled a task force to help the college respond to the growing demand for this type of specialized training and education.  

For more background information on the strategy behind providing short-term training solutions to assist individuals in returning to work in a post-COVID world, listen to “The Future Works, Episode 3 - Looking Back to the Future” from The Future Works - A Podcast for Workforce Leaders. The task force has now created a unique initiative called Career Launchpad. This new initiative combines workforce training opportunities; community and professional education courses; credit-bearing micro-credentials or “career bundles”; and, when appropriate, even certificates and degrees, all designed to help students secure work in a post-COVID world. Students can sign up for courses that earn them the certifications they need to advance in their field, or help build their resumes to switch careers. The Career Launchpad also provides access to Department of Labor information on career outlooks in various sectors to help students choose which path is right for them. Click here for more information on Career Launchpad
4. NY Loan Fund Still Has Money Available For Small Businesses, Learn More About One Small And How It Helped
The New York Forward Loan Fund was set up to assist small businesses that did not receive help from the federal Covid-19 relief programs. One such company is A Bead Just So in Ballston Spa. Read about the loan fund and the small business here. Eligible small businesses and small residential landlords can apply for a 60-month, no-fee loan with a 3% fixed interest rate; while eligible non-profits can apply for a 60-month, no-fee loan at 2% fixed interest. The maximum loan amount is $100,000. Loan funds can be used for working capital including payroll, operating and emergency maintenance, property taxes, utilities and costs associated with refitting physical space to follow social distancing guidelines. More information is available online at nyloanfund.com.  Applications are still being accepted.
5. Restaurant Revolution: How The Industry Is Fighting To Stay Alive
Coming into 2020, the restaurant industry was thriving. Within a few short months, we now see an industry massively disrupted by an external force so unprecedented it is almost unfathomable, the COVID-19 pandemic. Two months into the pandemic, 40 percent of America’s restaurants were shuttered and 8 million employees out of work—three times the job losses seen by any other industry. While some restaurants began reopening in May and June, most featured only takeout, delivery, or outdoor dining options due to local restrictions. As a result, the restaurant industry that emerges from the global pandemic will likely look fundamentally different from the one that existed in early March. However, the restaurant industry has been long marked by creativity and resiliency, intrinsic to restaurant operators’ DNA. Read here to learn about restaurateurs' shared challenges, how they are banding together to educate officials about the unique aspects of their industry that make it difficult to survive a global pandemic, and how they are uncovering solutions to solve the industry’s short-term pain and ensure longer-term survival.
6. Predicting Future Shocks to Help Keep Industrial Supply Chains Going
Now is the time for organizations to build resilience into their operating models so that they are better prepared for both minor and major disruptions in the future. There is an opportunity to build that resilience on three different fronts, if leaders are willing to take bold action and reimagine their value chain end to end. Opportunities include rethinking business models by shifting focus away from solely selling products and services, moving from a focus on vertical integration to securing control points, and building resilient and efficient industrial supply chains. For organizations that understand the vulnerabilities in industrial supply chains, there is an opportunity to prepare for future shocks and build resilience without hurting efficiency. To find out more check out the research done by McKinsey and Company
7. Economic and Market Trends in Forestry and Lumber Industries Under COVID-19
The forest and lumber economy have been a foundation for the U.S. since its beginnings and the issues, trends, and its connections to the economy as a whole is constantly evolving. The forest and lumber economy is highly influenced by a host of market, policy, and regional and global factors. It is no surprise therefore that it is also impacted and will continue to be impacted by COVID19. This article provides an overview of recent economic and market trends for forest and lumber industry sectors. Additionally, it examines data on the specific impacts of COVID-19 by looking at key market factors. The article ends with a few recommendations for professionals interested in business and economic development.
8.Does Your Company Use Aluminum Products?
Last week The U.S. re-imposed tariffs on aluminum coming from Canada, here is the latest on new tariffs imposed by the United States and an explanation of why the action was taken. Canada has a response to the action taken, and you can find out more on their response here. To learn more about the Aluminum Tariff business' leaders take on the tariffs and and its potential effects it will have on industries in the U.S. read more here.