March 9, 2020
Breaking News: Gov. Hogan Orders More Shutdowns

As we were completing this edition of the GSSCC Weekly Update, we heard news that, in an effort to contain the spread of the COVID-10 virus, Governor Hogan has ordered  the closure of bars, restaurants, movie theaters, and gyms across the state, effective at 5 p.m. today. At his morning press conference, he said that drive through, carry-out, and food delivery services may continue.

In addition, the Governor banned all s ocial, community, religious, recreation, or sports events drawing more than 50 people.

At the same time, the Governor prohibited utilities, including electric, gas, water, phone, and cable companies from shutting off any residential service, charging any late fees during the duration of the state of emergency in Maryland. In addition, the order prohibits all evictions during the state of emergency.  GSSCC is looking into whether this will be extended to commercial tenants.

GSSCC will continue to monitor developments in connection with the COVID-19 outbreak and the government response and provide updates as possible to members.

The Side-Effects of Doing the Right Thing:
Business Concerns in the Wake of Anti-Covid-19 Measures


  The COVID-19-related suggestions, advice, and now, orders, continue to pour in from County, State, and Federal officials, the most recent from Governor Hogan just a short time ago (details above).

During this trying and frightening time, GSSCC thanks and salutes all of our member businesses that are doing their utmost to protect the safety and health of their customers and clients, employees, and the greater Silver Spring community.

We are quickly learning, however, that businesses doing the right thing need more than our thanks and admiration. They need help, patience, understanding and even more - not only from the County, State, and Federal officials promulgating COVID-19 policies, but also from other businesses having significant influence on their ability to navigate through all of this: think banks, landlords, suppliers, and others.

GSSCC is joining with our fellow chambers to approach County and State officials to ensure businesses are provided with the protections, safety net, time, and flexibility during and following this extraordinary, unprecedented response to a public health threat.

To do so, we ask that you please email Jane Redicker ASAP - and not later than this Wednesday, March 18 - your situation and specific, COVID-19 response-related business concerns. In your email, please answer this two-part question:

(1) What specific steps have you taken (or do you plan to take) in response to government-issued, coronavirus-related policies, regulations and orders?

(2) As you take these actions, what financial ramifications do you foresee or anticipate, with respect to regulators (government), lenders (bank), place of business (landlord), suppliers (vendor), or others?

As you send us your information, please know we will respect you and your business' identity and confidentiality as we collect your concerns, turn those concerns into specific policy "asks," take them to County and State authorities, and get you the help you need and deserve.

Here are examples of GSSCC members' concerns we've already heard:

* I'm in a business that has been ordered to close as of tonight. I don't know how long this will be. I understand that my employees who are paid hourly will be able to apply for unemployment. Because of this,  I fear that my unemployment insurance costs are going to go through the roof, absent any action from the State of Maryland.

* The Governor ordered that utilities cannot shut off service to residents during this time. What about my business?  And, if I can't be open for customers, how will I pay my rent?  Is the Governor going to extend those protections to me?

GSSCC members - we want to do everything we can to help make your concerns known to our government officials in the wake of the extraordinary situation in which we find ourselves. Help us help you by sharing what you fear will be the financial ramifications of these decisions, and how you believe policymakers and regulators can help blunt those effects.

Thanks for sharing your story - confidentiality assured - to jredicker@gsscc.org by Wednesday, March 18.
Latest News
Congratulations to Athony Stahl, new President of Adventist HealthCare White Oak Medical Center! Read the news release here.
 
* Congratulations to  The Jane Fairweather Team of Long and Foster Real Estate for being named a Top Producer in 2020 by Bethesda Magazine! See here for more.
 
* A Fool for Learning, LLC, which specializes in corporate learning solutions, can now be found on Spotify! Joseph Barone (CEO) shares his thoughts on learning, leadership, management and networking. For more information, read here.
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GSSCC members are awesome!  We're beginning to hear stories about how our members are going above and beyond to support their employees and the community as we all struggle with managing through the COVID-19 situation.  We'd love to share what you are doing for your employees, your customers, and the community.  Please email your stories to jpawlikowski@gsscc.org.
Upcoming Committee/Network Meetings

* Member Development Meeting - 9 a.m. on Wednesday, March 18 - Committee will meet virtually. Contact Cjenkins@gsscc.org for details.

* Economic Development Meeting - Discussion with Montgomery County Planning Board staff on update of the Silver Spring Master Plan -  RESCHEDULED FOR 9 a.m. ON APRIL 22.
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; Eggspectation; 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; HiTouch Business Services
Image360.
 
To reach the Chamber staff, call 301-565-3777.
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