What's Happening This Week in
Downtown Jamaica
Jamaica Avenue Falls in the Yellow Cluster: What this Means for Business

If you haven't heard, precautionary measures have been put into place to stop the spread of COVID in hot spots throughout NYC per Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio. Jamaica has been designated as a Yellow Zone — Precautionary Zone which means the following:

  • Businesses: All businesses may remain open but must follow COVID-19 requirements for their sector.

  • Food Service Establishments: Indoor and outdoor dining is allowed. There is a four-person maximum per table.  

  • Schools: All New York City public schools and nonpublic schools may remain open.

  • Houses of Worship: Houses of worship may remain open at 50% maximum capacity.  

  • Gatherings: Non-essential gatherings must be limited to 25 people maximum for both indoor and outdoor settings. Any individual who encourages, promotes or organizes mass gatherings may be fined up to $15,000/day 
We encourage all businesses to read up on the zones and the different guidelines you will have to follow if we are elevated to orange or red here. NOW is the time to prepare. Sign up for our BID’s emergency cell phone alert system JBID-Alerts! so that we can reach out to you if our zone or regulations change (see next article for more info). 

Next, enter NYC’s Department of Small Business Service’s business hotline into your phone—you can call them for assistance regarding closing, reopening and compliance guidelines: 888-SBS-4NYC (888-727-4692). You should also visit NYC’s Department of Small Business Service’s webpage for a variety of resources and news regarding coronavirus business support (PPE Marketplace, info on reopening rules and regulations, etc., list of financing resources, and so on.)
Sign up for BID Alerts

Local businesses, allow us to help you quicker in an emergency. Please sign up for our new emergency notification system, JBID-Alerts!

Whether it’s a steam pipe explosion, multi-block fire, water main break or another serious outbreak of Coronavirus, in times of emergency, our BID needs a rapid-fire way to communicate with businesses beyond email, store visits, or calls to store landlines. Enter our new emergency alert system, JBIDAlerts! When a business owner or key manager provides our organization their cell phone number, we can now send up-to-the-minute emergency blasts directly to their cell phone. As of last week, 80 of our local businesses had already positioned themselves to stay in the know about City assistance, emergency grants, or corridor-specific government emergency directives by providing us their cell numbers. If you’re a business owner within our BID boundaries that would like to be enrolled in this program, please contact Trey Jenkins at tjenkins@jamaicacenter.org. We will never share your cell information. We will only notify you with critical information that we feel is time sensitive and important to your business’s survival.

Property owners—we would also like to provide this emergency alert service to you, building supers and building managers who want to be alerted of downtown emergencies (water main break, fire, etc). Please reach out to Trey Jenkins if you or your building staff wish to enroll in these alerts.
Coro New York Neighborhood Leadership 2020

We would like to congratulate our Program Manager Jahnavi Aluri who just graduated from Coro New York's Neighborhood Leadership Program. This year's cohort had a unique experience as most of the program was completed virtually because of COVID-19 pandemic. Jahnavi was able to learn more about herself as a leader, how city government works in NYC and the impact of BIDs and non-profit organizations in neighborhood communities throughout the five boroughs. Jahnavi joins fellow colleague Trey Jenkins who is also a Coro Neighborhood Leadership graduate from 2016. Congratulations Jahnavi!
Jamaica Center BID Annual Meeting

Our 41st Annual Meeting will be taking place virtually on Thursday, 11/12 at 9 a.m. To RSVP for this meeting please email Jahnavi Aluri at jaluri@jamaicacenter.org.
Business News
Best Strategies for Complying with City Regulations During the COVID Crisis (OATH Building Bridges Webinar): Wednesday, 10/14 from 12 - 1 p.m.

Now is a terrible time for a business to receive a summons from the City, which may result in having to pay a fine. Join the Manhattan Chamber and the 5 Chamber Alliance for this workshop with the City's Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings, the Small Business Services Department and the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. You'll learn about resources available during the COVID-19 pandemic and what businesses should do if they receive a summons from the City. Register here.
Virtual Black Business Owners Event: Thursday, 10/15

LISC NYC is hosting a virtual Black Business Owners Forum, designed to create a network of Black-owned businesses to support each other, and learn how they can access capital for MWBE's.

It is taking place on Thursday, 10/15 and you can register for it online here.
Guidelines for Reopening Phase I, II, III and IV Businesses in NYC 

Join this webinar to learn about State requirements, recommendations and resources available to help Phase I, II, III businesses to reopen on Tuesday, 10/20 from 12 - 1 p.m. Register here.
SBA Veteran Small Business Resource Class

The United States Small Business Administration is hosting several virtual classes for veteran small businesses.

They will be going over what resources are available and the partners veterans can work with to start a businesses or grow the ones they have.

You can sign up for one of these here.
Virtual Compliance Consultations: Open Restaurants Program
The Department of Small Business Services offers one-on-one free virtual compliance consultations to help you understand how to comply with key City rules. Their virtual consultations will help you understand key City rules and common compliance challenges related to the Open Restaurants Program and they will not issue violations or fines. 

Business owners are encouraged to request a consultation if they:  

  1. have recently applied to Open Restaurants and are getting ready to provide food service 
  2. are actively participating in Open Restaurants but continue to have questions/concerns 
  3. are interested in applying to Open Restaurants but have not yet done so 

To request a consultation visit here
Business Grants & Loans
Queens Chamber PPE Funding Still Available 

Our friends at the Queens Chamber of Commerce have asked to to spread the word that there remain some funds available for their PPE & Infection Prevention Micro Grant Program and that applications will be accepted through next week. This grant provides funds to assist small businesses in purchasing PPE and other infection prevention and control (IPC) measures, including sanitizing services. Businesses in CB12 are especially encouraged to apply.  

To apply, please visit this link (password “Queens#1).  
LISC NYC Grants Now Available

LISC NYC recently announced a new round of Small Business Relief and Recovery Grants to New York City Minority-Owned Small Businesses. Applicants who have been affected by COVID-19 have the opportunity to receive up to $10,000, which can be used to meet payroll expenses, rent, marketing, and technology upgrades. 

  • Round 2 is open from Monday, October 19th at 9 a.m. EST through Friday, 11/6 at 11:59 p.m. 

To learn more about this opportunity visit LISC's website here
General Community News
Queens Underground October Virtual International Film Festival Fun

Join the Queens Underground from 10/15 - 1/17 live and interactive online or for the their 2nd 1st Ever Multi-Category Film Festival & Poetry Slam. You learn more and get tickets here.
Trunk or Treat Halloween Event

Join the 103 Precinct and Whip Finatic as they put on a Halloween event on 10/31 in the parking lot at 90-01 168th street. We'll be there along with many other community organizations. For FREE tickets visit here.
Request Your Absentee Ballot: Deadline 10/27/2020

The 2020 election is less than two-months away and if you have not already, make sure to request your absentee ballot. The deadline to do so is Thursday, 10/27 and it can be done either online, email, or fax. 

To learn more about how to request your ballot visit the NYC Board of Elections website here
Fill Out Your Census 

The U.S. Census is a once in a decade opportunity to make sure our communities receive the resources we need from the federal government, but that won't happen unless we all do our part and fill out the form. 

The census only takes five minutes to fill out and you can do so online here or mailing back the form that was sent to your house. The deadline to fill out your census has been extended to Saturday, 10/31.

If you have any questions you can call the Census Bureau, in the language that you are most comfortable speaking, with the numbers listed on their website here.  
COVID Guidance for New Yorkers

All New Yorkers can take some simple steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:  

  • Stay home: Stay home, especially if you are sick unless you are leaving for essential medical care or other essential errands. 

  • Physical distancing: Stay at least 6 feet away from other people. Do not attend large gatherings, especially indoor gatherings. Remember to keep a safe distance between you and others even when wearing a face covering.  

  • Wear a face covering: Protect those around you. You can be contagious without having symptoms and spread the disease when you cough, sneeze or talk. When worn correctly (covering both your nose and mouth), face coverings can help reduce the spread of COVID-19. 

  • Practice healthy hand hygiene: Wash your hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available; clean frequently touched surfaces regularly; avoid touching your face with unwashed hands; and cover coughs and sneezes with your arm, not your hands. 

  • Get tested. To find a COVID-19 testing site near you, visit nyc.gov/covidtest or call 212-COVID19 (212-268-4319). Testing is free at many sites, including all sites operated by Health + Hospitals and the NYC Health Department. 

For general information on COVID-19, visit nyc.gov/health/coronavirus or text “COVID” to 692-692. Message and data rates may apply.  
About Business and Event Promotions in this Newsletter: Businesses and organizations located in the Jamaica Avenue Commercial District between Sutphin Blvd and 169th Street are invited to submit promotional information for possible inclusion in our newsletter. Events happening near or immediately adjacent to the Jamaica Avenue Commercial District may also be considered for inclusion on a case-by-case basis. We reserve the right to reject or edit materials for length, style, timeliness, and appropriateness. This newsletter serves to inform our community about events, opportunities and commercial activity in Downtown Jamaica, within specifically the Jamaica Center BID boundaries.