COVID-19 Weekly Update: July 28th, 2020
Pioneer Square Business Stakeholders-

The Alliance for Pioneer Square is working diligently to support the Pioneer Square community through the COVID-19 virus outbreak. This is part of a series of weekly messages outlining impacts and resources available. Find each weekly email to date on our website .

*Please see this week's new resources and opportunities highlighted in   RED *

What's Happening

  • *NEW* Gov. Jay Inslee and Secretary of Health John Wiesman have announced changes to “Safe Start,” Washington’s phased approach to reopening. The changes target activities that data have shown provide a higher risk of COVID-19 exposure. To combat the rising numbers, the governor and secretary are changing guidance and regulations around restaurants, bars, and fitness centers, as well as weddings and funerals. The changes will also affect family entertainment centers, movie theaters and card rooms. Find more information here.

  • *NEW* The city is now offering temporary free street closure permits for restaurants and businesses seeking to expand outdoor options. This adds to the city’s free permits for curb spacing and sidewalk cafes. Applications for the street closures open on July 29. Currently, the permits are available for up to six months, and Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is expediting permit review. For more information about the new permits types or to schedule an applicant coaching session, click here or e-mail

  • *NEW* The Seattle City Council has passed a law that prevents landlords from seizing personal property should a small business of 50 or fewer employees (or a nonprofit) default on a commercial lease. The law, sponsored by Seattle council member Andrew Lewis, will be in effect throughout the current state of emergency and remain the following six months after to help in small business recovery efforts. Read more about the new legislation here.

  • The Seattle City Council is in the midst of rebalancing the 2020 budget to account for a $300 million shortfall due to impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. In response to national calls placed on defunding police departments, Council is entertaining potential cuts of up to 50% of the Seattle Police Department (SPD) Budget, while investing money into other types of support services. Council is in early discussions pertaining to any cuts to SPD’s budget. The Alliance, along with other BIAs in the city, is calling for a robust and meaningful engagement process to determine the best path forward. You may read our letter to Council regarding cuts to the SPD budget here. Council Select Budget Committee will discuss the rebalancing the 2020 budget as it pertains to SPD on Wednesday, July 29th at 10am and 2pm. You may find the meeting agenda for Wednesday’s meeting here. Community members are encouraged to submit written comments prior to the meeting start, or sign up for verbal comments after 8a on the 29th here.

  • The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) has reinstated paid on-street parking and hourly time limited parking enforcement. Starting, Monday, July 13, parking will be charged at $0.50/hour in all paid areas; which is the lowest rate allowed according to the Seattle Municipal Code. Find more information here.

  • Gov. Inslee recently announced a statewide requirement for businesses to require face coverings of all employees and customers. Restaurants are now required to refuse service to those who don’t wear face coverings and under this proclamation, businesses may not serve any customer, services or goods, if they do not comply with the state-wide face covering order. Read more on the announcement here.

Reopening Resources

  • The City of Seattle is launching a series of Phase 2 reopening toolkits to help small businesses authorized to reopen under the Governor’s guidance to navigate public health requirements and financial considerations. The toolkits provide critical information for small business owners, including a reopening checklist, resources to access Personal Protective Equipment and financial assistance, testing information, and rent and commercial lease assistance. The City has toolkits for the following industries:Restaurants and taverns, Personal services, Professional services, In-store retail, Fitness and training, Domestic services. The toolkits are available on the City’s new reopening website.

  • The Alliance for Pioneer Square has introduced a section on our website to help provide businesses guidance and resources for best practices as they prepare to reopen their doors to customers.

Financial Resources

  • 4Culture's COVID-19 Reopen Fund application is now available. The Reopen Fund provides grants for cultural organizations and designated landmarks that are reopening, restarting, and continuing programming while adapting to COVID-19 related public health restrictions. The deadline to apply is August 17, 2020 at 5 pm PDT. Learn more and apply here.

  • Visa has extended its partnership with IFundWomen to support Black women-owned small businesses in through a new grant program and educational resources. These grants provide an opportunity for recipients to grow their businesses and continue to offer much needed services to their communities. Applications are being accepted from June 30, 2020 through July 31, 2020. Learn more and apply here.

  • On June 15 the SBA reopened the EIDL application for new applications from qualified businesses. Businesses that have not previously applied may now apply for the loan which can be used for debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact, and that are not already covered by a PPP loan. Read more and apply here.

  • SBA Offers Disaster Assistance to Washington Small Businesses Economically Impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • OED provides technical assistance to businesses applying for SBA loans and understanding the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aids, Relief & Security). This includes helping businesses navigate the application process and documentation. For general inquiries, please email or call 206-684-8090.
  • Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications here.
  • Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Note, the deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.
  • The City of Seattle’s Office of Economic development has compiled a summary of the CARES Act and a SBA FAQ.

Worker and Business Resources

  • *NEW* A partnership of the University of Washington Foster School of Business and School of Law is offering a series of free legal consultations and negotiation trainings to help small businesses that have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The series, funded by the UW Population Health Initiative, will kick off July 29 and run through November. Learn more about this initiative here.

  • *NEW* Facebook for Business, through Facebook BluePrint, provides resources to learn new marketing skills with free online courses. Explore self-paced and step-by-step tutorials that can help you build your digital marketing knowledge and bring your business online. Learn more here.

  • On July 1st, The Office of Economic Development hosted an informational webinar to discuss updates from Public Health – Seattle & King County, Phase 2 business reopening requirements, support for small businesses reopening and SDOT's temporary outdoor permits. Visit here for webinar recording and presentation slides.

  • OED has created a comprehensive resource page for workers and small businesses impacted by COVID-19 and is providing technical assistance to support small businesses. News and information about new policies and resources available from the City of Seattle, the State of Washington, the federal government, and philanthropic partners can be found on the OED's weekly Bottom Line blog.

  • The Office of the Mayor has created a page containing information and links for City of Seattle programs and services that may be helpful for residents significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The Federal Government has launched a comprehensive webpage for small business owners to research their options.

Neighborhood Advocacy

  • *NEW* The Alliance for Pioneer Square will host a virtual information session on Friday, August 21st from 1:30-2:30p where we will be presenting on the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on Pioneer Square, and the Alliance’s response to support our neighborhood. RSVP here to attend (note, a Zoom link will be provided on Thursday, August 20th to those who RSVP). Find previous meeting slides and webinar recordings here.

  • The Alliance for Pioneer Square, in collaboration with DEI Creative, has launched an online marketplace as a tool for member businesses to generate revenue through online sales during the Coronavirus pandemic. Read DEI Creative's full press release about Support Local here.To participate in the Pioneer Square Marketplace, register your business here.

Partner Efforts

  • On July 10, the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) launched an opportunity for community members to express what they need to move on and off the West Seattle peninsula and improve safety and traffic outcomes in communities along the detour routes resulting from the closure of the West Seattle Bridge. The Reconnect West Seattle Survey and Neighborhood Prioritization Ballots will help SDOT prioritize the right improvements in a highly resource constrained environment due to COVID-19 impacts. Visit the Reconnect West Seattle website for more information and to access all materials. The survey and ballots will be open from July 10 - July 31.

  • Mayor Durkan has launched “Seattle Protects”, an online marketplace to connect local manufacturers and businesses with organizations, communities, and individuals in need of cloth face coverings. Seattle Protects seeks to help local organizations, businesses, and nonprofits struggling to find face coverings at the scale necessary to serve their workforce. Learn more here.

Neighborhood Spotlight
In May the Pastry Project hosted a virtual fundraiser to raise money for baking and pastry businesses affected by by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The Seattle dessert community came together to support, with a weekend full of pastry demos streaming live on social media called A Pastry Party.

The business managed to raise over $8,000, enough to give grants to eight businesses. The grants will go towards expenses such as payroll, health insurance, vendor costs, rent, utilities, etc.
Additional Resources

Please let us know how we might best support you. Feel free to contact any of us with comments, questions, suggestions, or concerns.

The Alliance Team