In this time of uncertainty, the chamber sends our heartfelt thoughts to you, your family, your businesses, and employees. We consistently monitor the situation and its impacts on the Twin Ports’ business community. As of this morning, Governor Walz has not announced a stay in place order.
We have has members reach out regarding Wisconsin residents and the ability to work for their employer based in Minnesota. Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is ordering the closure of all non-essential businesses starting today.
From what we know, WI Gov. Evers will release details answering many of these questions later today. The CISA standards can be found
, providing a good idea if your company is considered an essential business in the event of a mandate.
Read on for additional updates.
DEED Small Business Emergency Loans
Another financial security option is now available to Minnesotan businesses. Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) has established a loan program to assist small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Small businesses are a vital part of Minnesota’s economy and this program will provide a source of working capital to help businesses sustain operations during this challenging time. Locate details and application on the DEED website:
Chamber President David Ross has been in contact with Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken. We have encouraged DPD to utilize our chamber as a resource for safety communications that need disseminating to the business community. Conversations are taking place regarding the security of your business in the event of a stay in place order. Be assured, we will notify you with safety messages as they are received.
Bag Fee Delayed
The Chamber has championed to the Duluth City Council the motion to
delay the pending plastic carry out bag fee
ed for implementation by April 1. Last night, city councilors voted on the motion. The vote was unanimous in support of delaying the ordinance until January 1, 2021. This delay alleviates grocers and other retailers whose immediate focus is on this global health and economic emergency.
Beware of Scams
We have received notice that scammers are attempting to gain sensitive information through false associations to available loans. If you have a question about someone contacting you, keep some things in mind:
- Don't release any private information (especially Social Security numbers, credit card information, or banking information) in response to an unsolicited call, letter, or email.
- Contact the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for more information on a company before you commit to anything.
- Contact your state's Attorney General's office.
- Do a reverse search of the phone number on the internet--you'll often find that several people have listed the number as belonging to scammers. Ask for the number if you don't have caller ID.
Here are some tips that should help.
- Legitimate government entities will have websites and emails that end with .gov such as http://www.sba.gov.
- Search "scam" or "scams" on http://www.sba.gov. You'll find many of the scams that we already know exist.
- Report scams. Report to the BBB and to the Attorney General. If someone purports to be affiliated with the SBA, contact your SBA office.
- Contact your SBA office if you're not sure how to apply for small business certification programs or have other questions pertaining to your small business.
The Duluth Area Chamber is here to serve you. Our staff stands ready for conversations, concerns, and questions. We are a steadfast resource and will provide additional information as it is received. Please visit our Business Resources and Supporting Local Businesses pages (links below). I invite you to connect with me; how can we help? What messages do you hope to hear?