COVID-19 Business News
PPP Opens to All Lenders Effective Today

The Small Business Administration (SBA) today reopened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to allow all lenders to submit applications on behalf of eligible businesses applying to the program for the first time. The program had previously opened to only Community Development Financial Institutions, minority depository institutions, certified development companies and microloan intermediaries, as the agency’s sought to reach underserved and minority-owned small businesses. SBA’s website has details about “first draw” PPP loans here.

The program opened for “second draw’ loans last week. The deadline is for these applications is March 31. Find more details here.

Members are advised to reach out to financial institutions where they currently have accounts, as most advise GSSCC that they are serving existing customers first. Some banks require opening a new account in order to assist with a PPP application.
BGE Launching Small Business Grants Program

If you are a BGE customer, you may be eligible for its Energizing Small Business Grants Program, which opens tomorrow, January 20. Through the program, eligible businesses located in BGE's service area will have three opportunities to apply for grants of up to $20,000: Round 1: January 20 - March 3, 2021. Round 2: May 5 - June 16, 2021. Round 3: September 1 - October 13, 2021. To be eligible, a business must have between two and 25 employees, less than $7 million in annual revenue, a demonstrated need for support, a strong plan for moving forward and be in good standing with the state of Maryland. Find more details here.
Governor Hogan Announces $1 Billion Emergency Stimulus and Tax Relief Package

Last week, Governor Larry Hogan introduced the RELIEF Act of 2021, an emergency legislative package that plans to provide over $1 billion in stimulus and tax relief to MD families, businesses and those rendered unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This package is in addition to the $700 million in relief that the governor has previously announced. Hogan has also implored both houses of the legislature to act on it immediately so he can sign it into law as soon as possible. The General Assembly session began last week.

The RELIEF Package (Recovery for the Economy, Livelihoods, Industries, Entrepreneurs, and Families Act) includes the following:

  • Direct stimulus payments for low to moderate-income Marylanders. Benefits up to $750 will go out to families and benefits up to $450 will go out to individuals. Immediate payments of $500 (families) and $300 (individuals) who filed the Earned Income Tax Credit will go out with an additional $250 (families) and $150 (individuals) going out in a second-round stimulus
  • A repeal of all state and local income taxes on unemployment benefits 
  • Further support for small businesses with sales tax credits of up to $3000 per month for 4 months (up to $12000)
  • An extension on unemployment tax relief for small businesses
  • A safeguard for MD businesses against any tax increase caused by use of state loans/grant funds

The package is funded by the remaining surplus at the end of the 2020 Fiscal Year, budget reductions and a small portion of MD’s Rainy Day Fund.
Governor Expands Vaccine Eligibility

Last Thursday, Governor Hogan announced that Maryland will move into the next subphase (1B) of its coronavirus vaccination plan beginning this week. As of yesterday, residents 75 and older and people of any age living in assisted living, developmental disability, or behavioral health group homes were able to register to receive the vaccine. Montgomery County officials have indicated that they have not yet received enough vaccine from the Maryland Department of Health to finish those in Priority Group 1A. They will begin vaccinating those in group 1B as soon as possible, while continuing to vaccinate those in group 1A. See more details, including a link for those over 75 years of age to register here.
Chamber Seeks Successful Pivot Stories

Did you see last week's feature on how SpeedPro Silver Spring pivoted its business to succeed during the pandemic with an online store to purchase safety signage and the launch of a new product, InfoLnkX, which allows people to use their phones to receive information in restaurants, museums, and buildings?

Want to highlight how your business successfully pivoted? Share your story with the Chamber by emailing Jane here.
January Events
After 2020, we could all use a break. Take yours with the Young Professionals Network for a Virtual Beach Party Business After Hours, sponsored by CCI Health & Wellness Services!

Join the Chamber to:
  • Learn how to make poke with Corcoran Caterers
  • Network in breakout rooms
  • Learn how to make a "Hurricane Marilyn" cocktail with All Set Restaurant & Bar
  • Test your knowledge with a beach-themed trivia competition

Don't miss the first Chamber networking event of 2021!

Thursday, January 28
5 p.m. - 6:15 p.m.
Latest News
Nothing Bundt Cakes Celebrates Second Anniversary

Nothing Bundt Cakes is celebrating its Second Anniversary in Silver Spring and the Chamber recently presented owner Katheryn Hoerster and staff with a plaque presentation to commemorate the event.

Nothing Bundt Cakes wants to thank as many community members as possible with several benefit days, giveaways, prizes, more starting Wednesday, January 27, to Saturday, January 30! See the flyer here for more information.
* T. Howard Foundation is currently hiring for an Associate Manager, Internship Program ; Senior Training and Recruitment Specialist, Career & Alumni Services ; and an Executive Administrative Assistant. Read for more information here.

* A Wider Circle has job openings for a Manager, Recruitment & Human Resources, found here and a Neighbor-to-Neighbor Program Associate found here.

* Join Easterseals DC | MD | VA on Tuesday, January 19, at 2 p.m. for Candid Conversations: Remote learning and the impact its having on our society and our kids. For more information, read here.

* Join Improbable Comedy for Stand Up Silver Spring: Stay at Home Edition on Thursday, January 21, at 8:30 p.m. Read here for more information.

See your company's news here! Send us your news releases and news items by noon on Friday for publication in the following Monday's edition. Click here for guidelines on submitting Member News.
Does Your Business Need PPE?

To help employers tasked with providing PPE to keep their employees safe, GSSCC launched a “Back to Business Products” page on our website for members looking to purchase PPE products, signage, and more. If your business is selling PPEs and you would like to be on this page, please complete this form and send it to Julie at
Upcoming Committee/Network Meetings

* Membership Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Tuesday, January 26.

* Economic Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Wednesday, January 27. United Therapeutics to discuss its latest expansion project on Spring Street.
Working to enhance the economic prosperity of greater Silver Spring through robust promotion of 
our member businesses and unrelenting advocacy 
on their behalf.
Thank you to our 2019-2020 GSSCC Partners

Corporate Partners - Downtown Silver Spring; Lee Development Group; Montgomery College; Joseph W. McCartin Insurance;
Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center

 Business Partners - Andalman & Flynn, AFI Silver Theatre; Apex Home 
Loans; Atlantech Online; Digital Industry; EagleBank; Holy Cross Hospital; The Fillmore Silver Spring; Lerch, Early & Brewer Chtd.; Linowes and Blocher, LLP; Revere Bank; The Tower Companies (The Blairs); United Therapeutics Corporation; Washington Property Company.

 Partners - Adam Lowe Creative; Bell Flowers; EBA Ernest Bland Associates; Image360.
Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce
8601 Georgia Avenue Suite 203