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Economic Development Newsletter
A Message from Estelle Bussa
Economic Development Manager
The City of Ventura's Economic Development Division is committed to serving you during these challenging times. We aim to bring you relevant, timely information. To our business community, we hear you, and are committed to helping you through the transition of re-opening safely, working within the industry-specific guidelines set forth by the State and County.   
We have new information we would like to share with you

  • Yesterday, the Ventura County Board of Supervisors approved and offered a letter of support for our attestation with the state to receive a variance to progress more quickly through the Stage 2 of reopening. The state revised their criteria on Monday, and Ventura County meets all of the criteria. The Ventura County attestation was submitted to the state today and we hope to hear back very soon. 
  • If and when the state approves this variance (we hope as soon as a day or two), then the County of Ventura will publish information about additional business sectors that can reopen. Most immediately, we anticipate In-store Retail shopping and Dine-in Restaurants could be opened. Just in time for Memorial Day Weekend! 
  • All businesses reopening need to register their business and complete a County Prevention Plan. Register at www.VCReopens.com 
  • There they will find guidance, checklists, Prevention Plan templates and a sample completed Prevention Plan. The process of reviewing the guidance and creating a written Prevention Plan will satisfy the state requirement of conducting a “risk assessment”. 
  • As of today, over 500 retail stores have registered and over 50 restaurants have registered. Please help us spread the word that both of these areas are likely to have loosened restrictions in the very near future and we want everyone to get ready now
  • The County continues to encourage restaurants to register and prepare. 
  • For our local restaurants, we are particularly interested in supporting them during the coming transition from takeout to dine-in. Please be aware that we have shared the state guidance for Dine-in Restaurants and that every restaurant is able to move forward with preparing and registering. We understand there may be many questions about the new guidance, possible outdoor dining, and other questions as restaurants strive to open while implementing social distancing. County Environmental Health Department has been working hard to prepare for this transition and answer questions. Additional information will be released as it becomes available. 
  • The COVID Compliance Hotline has been updated with a new phone number 844-VC-OPENS. The hotline flyer for this is found here in English and Spanish. Every business is required to post this number in a prominent place for employees and the public to see. This flyer was also emailed out to the over 2,000 business that have registered so far at www.VCReopens.com. Any business that has already posted the previous Hotline number does not have to change. The original Hotline number will automatically re-route to this new number. 
  • This number can be used for COVID compliance complaints/issues or questions about interpretations of our local order and how to register. 
  • Business owners with no internet access can call this number, schedule an appointment, and complete their registration over the phone. 
While there are no guarantees of when we will be able to move to this next phase, I encourage you all to be prepared. Please feel free to reach out to our office with any questions or contact the County directly via the hotline. 

For other City updates, visit  cityofventura.ca.gov/COVID-19. For Ventura County or Public Health information, visit VCEmergency.com

On behalf of the City of Ventura, thank you for your resiliency and willingness to adapt to new ways of doing business and helping support one other.

Stay safe and healthy Ventura, 

Economic Development Manager

Current Federal Programs & Benefits Available
3 Things to Know about the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

  1. The SBA has released a form and instructions to inform borrowers how to apply for forgiveness of their PPP loans, consistent with the CARES Act. For the Paycheck Protection Loan Forgiveness Application visit here.
  2. PPP is still open and accepting applications. We encourage all seeking additional capital to apply (see detailed information below).
  3. EDC SBDC advisors can assist businesses in the application process and provide financial consulting at no cost. CALL 805.409.9159 (ENGLISH) or 805.309.5874 (SPANISH) to schedule an appointment.

As indicated above, the SBA's PPP is still open and accepting new applications. This SBA loan program may be accessed through any bank that currently issues SBA 7a guarantee loans. To find an approved lender visit this  link .

This program will be available retroactive from Feb. 15, 2020, so employers can rehire their recently laid-off employees through June 30, 2020. NOTE: For more information please visit the  SBA website . For frequently asked questions please visit the  U.S. Department of Treasury .

Business owners seeking additional capital are urged to follow the recommendations of the Economic Development Collaborative  Federal Funding Preparation Guide

To learn more about these programs, see the following links, or contact the  Economic Development Collaborative (EDC)  for free business consulting. 

As a reminder, there are six federal programs available and administered by the Employment Development Department (EDD) or Small Business Administration (SBA).

*NOTE: The City’s Economic Development Division, in partnership with the EDC, will try to answer loans and disaster relief aid questions, however, we are not experts. 

Local Disaster Relief Options
The  EDC  serves Ventura and Santa Barbara counties and created the EDC Disaster Loan Fund, which offers applicants 4.25% interest loans from $5,000- $50, for 48 months, to give a cash flow boost to businesses impacted by reduced sales, supply chain disruption or other challenges related to COVID-19. 
In addition, EDC provides free business consultations on how to deal with COVID-19 disruptions. They’ve also created a  COVID-19 Business Resource Guide  that is applicable to employers, employees, and self-employed individuals. The EDC is also hosting weekly webinars on local, state and federal resources.   
WEV   has set up a  Quick Response Loan  program where applicants can have access to up to $10,000 at a 4.5% interest rate for 36 months, no fees, no payments for the first three months. WEV also provides  resources  and weekly webinars for navigating through the COVID crisis.  
The  Ventura County Community Foundation   (VCCF) has launched the Ventura County Rapid Response Fund to support  non-profit  organizations, addressing the needs of individuals and families with food and housing support, childcare, wage replacement, mental health care, and more.
County Information
The  County of Ventura  has created a one-stop shop for information relating to County issued ‘Stay Well at Home Orders’, COVID-19 updates from Ventura County Public Health, FAQ’s, information for seniors, homelessness and housing, and much more. 

Every 10 years the federal government conducts a survey of the number of people living in the country. The Census determines the important federal funding that California will receive, and in turn, the funding that will be distributed to Ventura County.

The 2020 Census is an opportunity for every resident of Ventura County to shape the future. Being counted in the Census ensure funding for mental health, education, Medicare, safe roads, and labor. Your responses to the Census are safe and secure and the information collected for the Census cannot be used against you or shared with any government agency.

If you haven't already completed your Census, please visit census.ventura.org to be counted!
Food, Beverage, & Retail Information
Looking for local information on what's open and ways to purchase food and beverages via delivery, pick-up, eCommerce (internet sales), and gift card purchases? Click below for a comprehensive list from our amazing Community Partners.
501 Poli St, Ventura, CA 93001
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