March 23, 2020
"Viral" Updates - News, Resources re COVID-19
Breaking News - Governor Announces Loan and Grant Programs for Maryland Small Businesses

This morning, as Governor Hogan ordered all "non-essential" businesses closed, he also announced a $175 million economic relief package for small businesses and workers.
The order, which the Governor emphasized "is not a shelter in place order," takes effect at 5 p.m. today and does not include essential or critical industries as defined by the federal government . Here's a link to the Governor's guidance on "essential." 
To assist small businesses, the Governor authorized, through the Department of Commerce, a $125 million loan ($75 million) and grant($50 million) fund for small businesses (fewer than 50 full- and part-time) and manufacturers that have been negatively impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). This emergency assistance provides interim relief and proceeds that can be used to pay cash operating expenses including payroll, suppliers, rent, fixed debt payments and other mission critical cash operating costs. 

Loans will be available up to $50,000; grants will be available up to $10,000. The $75 million loan fund (for for-profit businesses only) offers no interest or principal payments due for the first 12 months, then converts to a 36-month term loan of principal and interest payments, with an interest rate at 2% per annum.   For more details go here
In addition, through the Department of Labor, a new $5 million COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund was created to help businesses prevent or minimize the duration of unemployment resulting from layoffs. The award (up to $50,000 per applicant), will be a quick deployable benefit and customizable to the specific needs of business to minimize the need for layoffs. This can provide funds to, for example, cover the costs of purchasing remote access equipment to allow employees to work remotely, cleaning and sanitization services to keep employees at work, supplementing employees' income and benefits. For more information, go here  

Small Businesses Eligible for SBA Disaster Assistance 

Montgomery County small businesses suffering losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic are eligible to apply for  low-interest federal disaster loans  from the  U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).  SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDLs) funds come directly from the U.S. Treasury.  Applicants do not go through a bank to apply. Instead apply directly to SBA's Disaster Assistance Program at: .  SBA has prepared a one-page fact sheet on the program that is linked here.

Tax Filing AND Payment Deadlines Extended

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced Friday that taxpayers (individuals and businesses) now have an additional 90 days, until July 15, 2020, to file their 2019 tax returns. This latest announcement sets both the filing and payment deadlines to the same day. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot announced that Maryland business and individual income taxpayers will be afforded the same relief. No interest or penalty for late payments will be imposed if 2019 tax payments are made by July 15, 2020.  The July 15th deadline is an automatic extension and no forms need to be filed.

For many taxpayers, it makes sense to stick to the original schedule, especially if there is no benefit from delaying. Consult your tax accountant for specific guidance.

Paid Sick Leave for Employees Affected by COVID-19

Last week, the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This bill provides, among other things, provisions to address Paid Sick Leave, Paid Family and Medical Leave, and Unemployment Insurance for workers displaced by the ongoing outbreak. Furthermore, it includes provisions to provide diagnostic testing for coronavirus, and bolsters Medicaid and nutrition programs for at risk populations. Thank you to the U.S. Chamber for providing this summary.

Business Owners - Please Tell Us About Your Needs

GSSCC wants to make sure that we are doing everything we can to help members maneuver through these extraordinary and challenging times. We've heard from many of our members and we want you to know that we are here to support all of you. Our goal is to understand and capture the current and future needs of our members can provide information about the resources that will help us all to maneuver through these times and be successful once things return to normal.  We also want to be able to advocate on or members' behalf for the kind of assistance that will be most meaningful now and in the coming months.
On Friday, we sent a survey to the main contact of all of our member organizations.  If you are the business owner, and did not receive that email, please take 5 to 10 minutes to complete the confidential survey.
Latest News
Join the Chamber for a Virtual Networking Breakfast!

Join the Chamber on Wednesday, April 1, at 8 a.m. for a Virtual Networking Breakfast. Reconnect remotely with your fellow members, learn how others are weathering the storm, share resources and support, and stay connected to the greater Silver Spring business community. Registration is required here
Members Open for Business....or Gift Card Purchase

We live in extraordinary times, as the challenges brought by the COVID- 19 pandemic alter the way we do business, indeed the way we live. And in these extraordinary times, we need to salute and support the businesses that work to protect the health of their employees, customers, and the community, and, at the same time, provide the goods and services that we all still require.
GSSCC has compiled a list of businesses that are still open for business - restaurants offering carry-out and delivery services, studios offering online exercise and fitness classes, hotels, retailers, and more. Now, more than ever, they need our support. Take advantage of their offerings, and pick up a gift card or two to share with a friend, or hold for a celebration when we are at the other end of these challenging times.

If your business is open and providing services but isn't on the list, please email Courtney at so she can add your information.  

NOTE:  This list is being regularly updated.  It was compiled before the Governor's announcement this morning.  Check back for changes.

As the COVID-19 pandemic develops, the Chamber continues to be committed to maintaining professional  connections,  expanding networks, and  providing support and value to our members. That is why it so  vital to share our members news with one another in this time of
distance and uncertainty. Please send us your news and announcements so we can all stay
engaged and connected. If your business is parenting with another member(s), please let us know so we can share!

* Nothing Bundt Cakes  will be donating Bundtlets and Bundtinis to hospitals, medical centers, and first-responders (police and fire fighters) to provide some welcome treats as the workload for these essential personnel ramps up. Watch this space for more details.

* Signarama Silver Spring is offering free 8x10 signs to help restaurants indicate that they are OPEN for carry-out, delivery, or gift cards.  Signarama is also offering deep discounts on outdoor promotional signage. C ontact Stacey Brown  for details. 

* Patient First is looking for vendors that can supply the following: face shields, hand sanitizer bottles, protective gowns for staff, face masks and respirators. If you can help, contact Brooke Waller.

* KID Museum has several "Make-It" activities to keep kids entertained. Read here for more. 
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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
Upcoming Committee/Network Meetings

As the COVID-19 pandemic has thrust many businesses into a world of teleworking and social distancing, maintaining  professional connections becomes more important than ever. While GSSCC has put our in-person meetings and events on hold, we are working to provide our members opportunities to come together virtually.   All April meetings will either be rescheduled or held virtually via Zoom. 

* Economic Development Committee - Discussion with Montgomery County Planning Board staff on update of the Silver Spring Master Plan -  RESCHEDULED FOR 9 a.m. ON APRIL 22.

* Small Business Owners Peer Network   - 12 noon on Thursday, April 2 - Network will meet virtually. Contact for details.

* Young Professionals Network - 4 p.m. on Thursday, April 2. Network will meet virtually. Contact for details.

* Non-Profit Team - 9 a.m. on Tuesday, April 14 - Team will meet virtually. Contact for details.
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
To reach the Chamber staff, call 301-565-3777.
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