December 22, 2020
Dear Business Representatives,
There is a sense of hope now as the first of many vaccine distributions has reached Santa Clara County to help protect frontline workers, and thousands more will be distributed throughout the community in the weeks and months to come. In addition, Congress has passed a federal relief package to extend assistance to families and businesses into 2021.
Stimulus Package Highlights
Late Sunday evening, Congress reached an agreement on a $900 billion coronavirus relief package
, which then passed on Monday. The package will provide much-needed assistance to small businesses and families as public health restrictions continue to affect the livelihood of struggling businesses. Some of the highlights are listed below.
Relief for Small Businesses
The bill adds $325 billion to help small businesses, including $284 billion for small businesses to apply for a second Paycheck Protection Program loan. $12 billion is designated specifically for minority and small businesses, and another $15 billion is allocated for live event venues, cultural institutions, and movie theaters. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan will be expanded by another $20 billion as well.
Employee Retention Tax Credit
This program has been extended through July 1, 2021 and is now able to be used in conjunction with Paycheck Protection Program funds. The credit has increased from 50% to 70% of qualifying wages each quarter, up to $10,000 per quarter.
Based on 2019 income, qualified individuals will be eligible to receive $600 each, plus $600 for each dependent. Stimulus checks are anticipated to be distributed as soon as next week.
The bill will help fund vaccine distribution so that anyone who needs it can get vaccinated for free.
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance
For employees who remain unemployed, the bill provides an additional $300 unemployment benefits per week for 11 weeks through March 14, 2021. Gig workers, freelancers, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals are eligible to receive Pandemic Unemployment Assistance benefits. Self-employed individuals with at least $5,000 in income may be eligible for an additional $100 per week benefit to compensate for a lower unemployment insurance base payment.
The full text of the bill can be found here
The County of Santa Clara created a business engagement landing page on its COVID-19 website with valuable resources and information. Information can be found here
or by calling the new COVID-19 Business Call Center at (408) 961-5500.
If you have any questions or need business assistance during COVID-19, please visit our website
and do not hesitate to contact the Office of Economic Development team by sending an email
. Assistance is available in English, Chinese, Spanish, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and other languages. We will continue to send out pertinent updates as they are made available to keep you informed.
In community spirit,
Economic Development Director
Phone: (408) 586-3046
455 E. Calaveras Blvd., Milpitas CA 95035