Wednesday May 13, 2020
Hello Chamber Members and Partners,

Here are the latest updates and resources for businesses and employees during this uncertain time.

Send us any questions or updates you may have, we are here to help provide information, connect the dots and assure those in the North Country that we will get through this together.

Onward and Be Well!
Regional Dashboard for COVID-19 Related Data
Curious if the North Country has meet the 7 reopening health criteria?

The state has created a regional dashboard where you can monitor the situation. The dashboard is updated frequently and the full website features resources for businesses as they plan to reopen, including clarification on the 4 phases.

Update Clarifies Hotels are Already Essential Businesses 
Some recent lists of upcoming categories of business for reopening indicated Hotels would re-open in Phase III. Hotels have now been removed from Phase III lists, recognizing that Hotels have been approved as Essential Businesses allowed to operate from the beginning. We welcome this clarification.

Please note, if you are a hotel with a restaurant, your restaurant operation will need to follow the restaurant guidance in Phase III. Similarly, hotel gyms/health clubs will follow guidance for those operations. Clarification of which phase gyms/health clubs will fall under, along with related guidance, is promised soon.

THE NORTH COUNTRY CHAMBER WILL BE OFFERING FREE WEBINARS NEXT WEEK FOR RESTAURANTS & ACCOMMODATIONS, assisting in the preparation of required Health & Safety Plans for each business and compliance with guidelines. More information will be out very soon.
USDA to Host Webinar for Producers Interested in Applying for Direct Payments through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) and Farm Service Agency (FSA) will host a webinar on Thursday, for farmers, ranchers and other producers interested in applying for direct payments through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).

This webinar is an opportunity for producers to learn about the general application process and required documentation prior to the official beginning of signup. Producers who are new to participating in FSA programs are especially encouraged to join the webinar. More details about CFAP direct payments will be announced soon.

As part of President Trump and Secretary Perdue’s April 17 announcement of a $19 billion Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program, USDA will provide $16 billion in direct support based on losses for agricultural producers where prices and market supply chains have been impacted. Also, USDA will assist eligible producers facing additional adjustment and marketing costs resulting from lost demand and short-term oversupply for the 2020 marketing year caused by COVID-19.

A recording of the webinar, the answers to its questions, and other CFAP information can be found at   

  • Date: Thursday May 14th
  • Time: 1pm
  • Click Here to register
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. 
SUNY Canton SBDC is the fourth busiest office in the State
North Country entrepreneurs turned to their trusted Small Business Development Center (SBDC) during the pandemic making the SUNY Canton SBDC the fourth busiest office in the State.

In a typical year, the Canton office provides no-cost and confidential advising services to approximately 800 small business clients. “Over the past six weeks we received the volume of calls we normally see in six months”, says Assistant Director Angela Smith. This is good news for North Country businesses because having a strong “outside small business team” including a trusted lender, accountant, insurance agent, Chamber of Commerce and SBDC advisor often means getting information and disaster relief services faster that those who do not have a good network in place.

Its not too late to build your team, contact the SUNY Canton SBDC to learn more about how they can help.
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: The Strand Center for the Arts
The Strand and its artist community put together a killer concert last Saturday as part of their Stranded at Home Concert Series. They had a dozen Reggae, Hip Hop, Blue Grass and Funk artists from across New York, Vermont, Massachusetts and California doing their thing.
If you missed the show you can swatch on their Facebook page by clicking the link below .
Transport Canada Update!
TRANSPORT CANADA  has issued guidance on Personal Protective Equipment for commercial drivers in Canada The information and guidance is very helpful and informative and so we are pleased to share it here.
The home page of the Chamber's website is now your go to resource for all things Coronavirus related. From information to help your business, health insurance, employee guidelines, restaurant offerings and CDC resources, our website will hopefully make things a bit easier for you during this challenging time.
  • Looking for Supplies: If your business is looking for hard to find protective products, we have created a list of businesses offering hand sanitizer, gloves, wipes, masks and other items.

  • Now Hiring: Whether you are hiring or looking for work, we have a page dedicated to helping pair potential employees with employers.

  • Webinars: Did you miss one of our webinars, you can find them all here.

  • How to Help: If you are looking for a way to help the North Country, we have created an ever growing list of needs in our community. And if you are a non-profit, health care organization or a business helping those in need, email us with your needs, contact information and we will be happy to add you to our growing list.

  • SCORE: Visit Scores Coronavirus page for webinars and useful articles for small businesses.
Have Questions? We're here to help!

North Country Chamber of Commerce