October Events
New Date, New Time, Additional Opportunities!

Join the Chamber for a joint webinar event with the Greater Bethesda Chamber of Commerce!

Protecting employee health is paramount to ensuring your business' survival during the pandemic but what about the health of your company's sensitive data now being accessed remotely?

Economical cybersecurity begins with understanding what's at risk and what you need to protest. Join representatives from Digital Industry and learn how to identify and protect your vulnerable technology both at the office and in your home office. Attendee contact information will be shared following the event.

Wednesday, October 21
2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
It's a GSSCC Mask-erade After Hours Special
Masks are the order of the day during the pandemic, but a different kind of mask comes out this time of year and this is the year to celebrate both.

In the spirit of Halloween, join the Chamber for a Mask-erade After Hours complete with costumes, masks, spooky virtual backgrounds, and more! Costumed children and pets welcome!

Wednesday, October 28
4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

COVID-19 Business News
GSSCC Calls for Change in ReOpen Grant Process

Concerned that so many members have applied for, but not yet been selected to receive a Reopen Montgomery Small Business Grant, GSSCC has urged County officials to revamp the selection process. While using a lottery system to select grant recipients seemed to be more equitable than the first-come-first-served approach used for the previous County grant, the current system is just not working. Less than half of the applications submitted have been selected in the four lotteries held to date. Of those selected, only 42% responded to the email the County sent back seeking the necessary receipts and other documentation required to finalize the grant. Those who did not respond were placed back into the lottery. Some applicants (specifically those who did not respond) have been selected more than once; others have never been selected. This is why only about $1.5 million of the $14 million available has been awarded.

Because the $14 million is part of the federal CARES money the County has received, it must be spent by the end of this year.

GSSCC has recommended that the County move forward and process all of the applications submitted to date. Even if every one of the applications submitted to date would receive the average grant of $3,300, the County would still have money left over to do additional grants. Officials say that about 80% of the applications selected qualify to receive a grant.

GSSCC Members Should Continue to Apply

At the same time, GSSCC is encouraging members not to miss this opportunity to receive reimbursement of up to $5,000 for items needed to comply with State and local reopening requirements. This program is available for businesses that closed and reopened and for businesses that never closed, but had to make purchases to comply with state and county requirements. Details and an application can be found at this link - www.montgomerycountymd.gov/biz-resources/reopen/. If you have any questions, please contact jredicker@gsscc.org.

NOTE: If you have already applied for a grant, but have not heard anything from the county, check your email spam folder. And, make sure you whitelist montgomerycountymd.gov.
County Grant Provides Child-Care Assistance

Montgomery County is providing $5.6 million in tuition assistance for full-day, school-age child care services offered by licensed child care centers, registered family child care homes, or letter of compliance programs located in the County. Eligibility for this tuition assistance will be determined separately and differently from existing subsidy programs. The funds will be administered by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Children, Youth and Families and part of the COVID relief efforts.

To be eligible for these services, a child must:
  • live in the County,
  • be enrolled in MCPS, and
  • actively attend a full-day child care program.

In addition, their families must have:
  • income levels at or below 400 percent of the federal poverty level, and
  • applied for state and local child care subsidies.

See instructions for parents here. Find the application here.

Latest News
In Honor of National Chamber of Commerce Day
GSSCC Thanks Members for Sticking With the Chamber
This Wednesday, October 21, is National Chamber of Commerce Day, a day that recognizes the powerful leadership role chambers of commerce play in their communities, tirelessly advocating for and promoting members, while vigorously working to assure a robust economy where businesses can thrive.

We know that 2020 has been especially challenging for so many of our members, so GSSCC plans to use National Chamber of Commerce Day to recognize and say a special thanks to the businesses that have not only stayed in business, but have renewed their Chamber membership during these difficult times. Because our staff has been working remotely since the beginning of the pandemic, we have not been in the office to mail out the "Member" door clings (stickers) all members receive upon renewal.

Beginning on Wednesday, staff will begin hand-delivering these "stickers" to members (following mask and social distancing protocols, of course) to say "Thanks for sticking with GSSCC," and taking photos for social media shout outs. Look for an email from Courtney Jenkins to set up a time for us to deliver your Proud GSSCC Member sticker. And look for us on Facebook.
* Congratulations to NIH Federal Credit Union on receiving the 2019 National Institutes of Health (NIH) Good Neighbor Green Champion Award! The NIHFCU won this award for its active involvement in community planning and sustainability initiatives in support of NIH’s energy, water, pollution, and waste reduction targets. Read more here.

* Join Cornerstone Montgomery this Wednesday, October 21, for a live-streamed 2020 Champions & Legacies Celebration. 2020 Legacy Award Honoree Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford will be recognized for his advocacy on behalf of behavioral health. For more information, read here.

* One Montgomery Green has two job positions open for an Administrative Operations manager and a Climate Intern. Read here for more information.

* Starting Saturday, October 24, join Interfaith Works for Help the Homeless Virtual Move-A-Thon. Learn how to become a fundraiser for the event or how to donate here.

* T. Howard Foundation recently held its 27th Annual Diversity Awards which honors leaders devoted to diversity and inclusion in the media and entertainment industry. Special guests for this event included Tracee Ellis Ross, Trevor Noah, John Leguizamo, and Grant Hill. Watch the online celebration here.

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.
Find a Montgomery County Ballot Drop Box Near You
You can return your ballot by mail or you can drop off your completed, voted ballot at a drop box location in Montgomery County.

Simply place your completed ballot in the return envelope, sign the oath on the envelope, seal the return envelope and take it to a drop off box in the county. Ballot drop off boxes will be delivered at different times. The drop boxes will be available through Tuesday, November 3rd. Your ballot must be dropped off by 8 pm on Tuesday, November 3rd.

For location up dates, go to elections.maryland.gov/2020This list is subject to change.
Does Your Business Need PPE?

As businesses re-open and employers are tasked with providing PPE for their returning employees, 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 jpawlikowski@gsscc.org.
Upcoming Committee/Network Meetings

* Membership Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Tuesday, October 27.

* Economic Development Committee Virtual Meeting - 9 a.m. on Wednesday, October 28. Councilmember Tom Hucker and Councilmember Gabe Albornoz will discuss how the recent appropriation to expand the county's crisis response services will be used in Silver Spring. Members interested in attending should contact Jane Redicker.
OUR MISSION:
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
301-565-3777
info@gsscc.org