Please see below for COVID-19 Resources and Info relevant to Chestnut Hill businesses.  Content from CHBA member emails on this topic will be archived here.

  • Last updated 11/18/20
  • Reopening
    • City of Philadelphia Issues New Business, Personal Activity Restrictions to Combat COVID-19. At a 1pm press conference Tuesday, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and Health Commissioner Farley announced the following new restrictions, which will take effect this Friday, November 20 and are set to expire on January 1, 2021: Click HERE to view
    • INDUSTRY-SPECIFIC GUIDANCE: Recommendations for different types of businesses and activities are detailed in a separate set of industry-specific guidelines available HERE.”

FINANCIAL RESOURCES FOR BUSINESSES

  • NEW Funding Source: The PA 30 Day Fund is a new fund that is accepting applications for forgivable loans to small businesses. “Working with other business leaders throughout the Commonwealth, the Fund’s goal is to help save as many Pennsylvania jobs as possible while small businesses await recently approved federal funding.” Businesses owned by PA residents who have been operating for at least one year and who have between 3 and 30 employees are eligible to apply. Visit https://pa30dayfund.com/ to learn more and submit a request.
  • Business Security Camera Program Curtailed: The city’s Commerce Department announced that as a result of budget cuts, it would cease accepting new applications to this program, which provided a 50% reimbursement against the installation costs of qualifying exterior security cameras for small businesses.  We will inform merchants if this program reopens in the future.  If you are in need of exterior security cameras, please be aware that you can still apply to the Chestnut Hill Business Improvement District for its security camera rebate, which is for 12% of project costs.   Email koneill@chestnuthillpa.com for more information.
  • New Grant Program–Pay It Phorward: A local resident informed us about this “Philly-focused monthly grant for small businesses” that his company is now offering, and recommended that Chestnut Hill businesses consider applying.  “[A] grassroots, no-strings-attached, no-red-tape method of getting money into people’s hands as quickly as possible…Pay It Phorward is a monthly peer-to-peer program that aims to provide a small monetary lift to help individuals and businesses during the COVID-19 crisis.”  To complete the very simple application and be considered for a one-time award, visit https://www.payitphorward.org/.
  • UpWork Talent Grants Program: Thank you to CHBA member Adina Silberstein of Queenies Pets for sharing this resource.  Upwork is “giving $1 million in talent grants to support businesses working to counter the impact of COVID-19.  The Work Together Talent Grants Program is designed to support projects with missions directly tied to mitigating COVID-19’s devastating impact on individuals, communities, and economies everywhere.” Click HERE to learn more and apply.
  • Unemployment Tips: Senator Haywood’s office has shared the following tips for individuals applying for unemployment benefits: click HERE.
  • Apply NOW for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance: Visit HERE to read the instructions and begin your application.  According to the state “The application will be effective the week you were first unemployed and is not based on the day you submit your PUA application.”  However, as with all financial resources related to the pandemic, we advise that you submit your application as soon as you can.
  • Philadelphia Plastic Bag Ban Implementation Postponed: The City of Philadelphia announced yesterday that the effective date for the Plastic Bag Ban, which was due to begin on July 2, 2020, will be postponed to January 1, 2021. The Ban, which we shared with members earlier this year, will prohibit all retail establishments in the city from providing customers with single-use plastic bags and non-recycled content paper bags. The City has instituted the postponement in order to lessen the burden on shuttered businesses, some of whom may need to change vendors or pay more for recycled/paper bags in order to come into compliance.  The announcement and new implementation/enforcement schedule can be found HERE.
  • New Tax Guidance Issued on U&O, School Tax, Wage Tax by City’s Revenue Dept: Regarding U&O, if your business is closed by government order and is not being occupied, you will not be assessed for U&O Tax when you file. Landlords of such businesses who collect and remit these taxes for their tenants are required to refund the tenant for the applicable amount. We cannot offer tax advice, but visit https://www.phila.gov/documents/coronavirus-tax-guidance/ to read the City’s guidance on each tax.
  • Facebook and Yelp Grants/Credits: Facebook is planning its own grant program for small businesses, and while applications are not yet available, interested merchants can sign up for notification HERE. Yelp is also offering certain free advertising and credits to bars and restaurants as part of a $25 million business relief package, with info HERE.
  • The City’s Commerce Department would like to remind merchants to periodically check its official COVID-19 page for businesses HERE for a comprehensive list of available resources. 
  • SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans: “Philadelphia county is one of the locations which are now eligible to apply for the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs). If your Philadelphia business has been negatively affected by the COVID-19 global pandemic, the U.S. Small Business Administration may be able to help and you may be eligible to apply now. SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible.” Apply at: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
  • Federal Legislation Temporarily Expanding Paid Sick Leave and FMLA Now In Effect: The congressional relief package mentioned in the last couple of updates–now being informally called the Phase II relief package–was passed and signed into law. While the Families First Coronavirus Response Act does a number of things, the most important impact on small businesses is that it guarantees paid sick, family, and medical leave for reasons related to coronavirus to workers at companies with 500 employees or fewer. There is a waiver for the FMLA portion that businesses with under 50 employees can apply for. The costs to the employer for these forms of paid leave will be reimbursed directly and via tax credits. Here is a good summary of the final version of the bill that was signed, who/what is covered, and the requirements for small businesses: https://www.fisherphillips.com/resources-alerts-congress-finalizes-covid-19-coronavirus-response-act. Also remember that if you closed your business and temporarily laid off your employees, they can apply for special unemployment compensation.
  • KIVA (www.phila.gov/programs/kiva/) is a private crowdfunded loan platform which is an official City partner, that offers 0% interest loans to small business owners, and they have increased their maximum loan size to $15,000 as a result of the crisis. Because of the nature of the funding method, these loans can take some time to fully fund, but they are an affordable capital source that is worth considering alongside other options, especially if you have a strong social network who may support and share your lending request.
  • New Grant Program Opened for Childcare/Daycare Providers: The Reinvestment Fund is accepting applications for its new Philadelphia Emergency Fund for Stabilization of Early Education (PEFSEE), which will make grants of up to $20,000 to eligible daycare centers in Philadelphia.  For more information, and to apply, visit https://www.reinvestment.com/pefsee/.
  • American Express Stand For Small: American Express has launched its second small business campaign of the pandemic–Stand For Small.  Essentially, it is a collection of promoted offers from large companies which may be useful to small businesses or save them money.  Examples include discounts on shipping with UPS and FedEx, discounts on certain supplies, and discounts on certain online services.  Explore their offerings at https://www.standforsmall.com/.
  • The HartBeat of Main Street Grant Program will fund solutions that help small business owners respond and adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic, and also help to revitalize and strengthen older and historic downtown commercial districts.Grants of $5,000 to $15,000 will be awarded on a competitive and first-come, first-served basis. A minimum of 50 percent of grants will benefit diverse-owned businesses, as defined by the Small Business Administration as minority, woman, veteran, disabled, and/or LGBTQ-owned. Grant applicants are not required to be customers of The Hartford. Learn more and apply HERE
  • Grant Opportunities For Wellness Professionals:
  • lululemon’s social impact program
  • iFundWomen
  • Visa Partnership with iFundWomen
  • New Profit
  • Food Business Resources
    • Bailot Business Directory: Clover POS Systems Local Affiliate Fiserv has created a website HERE where local restaurants can list their online ordering options at no cost.  So far, it looks to be Manayunk and Roxborough restaurants, but they have invited Chestnut Hill to join as well.
    • Restaurant Regulations
      • Cocktails to Go: An update from our partners at the Commerce Department that is good news for restaurants with liquor licenses: “Governor Tom Wolf signed House Bill 327, now Act 21 of 2020, allowing the temporary sale of cocktails-to-go from bars, restaurants or hotels with a liquor license. The law takes effect immediately.  The law applies to bars, restaurants and hotels that have lost 25 percent of average monthly total sales during the COVID-19 emergency. The beverages must be sold in containers with a secure lid in quantities from 4 oz. to 64 oz. before 11 p.m. An additional seal is required on the straw opening of a lid. Within 60 days, bars and restaurants must use a transaction scan device to verify a consumer’s age if the person appears to be younger than 35 years of age. The temporary rule expires after the COVID-19 disaster emergency ends and a business reaches 60 percent capacity.” Click HERE for more details.
  • Reopening Safely | Helpful Tips For Small Business Owners: Our partners at Main Street America have assembled a short list of helpful tips for small business owners preparing for reopening.  Click HERE to review and begin planning ahead.
  • Restaurant Resource
    • CoastApp’s Takeout COVID Project: This group contacted us to share this project that they’ve started to drive customers to restaurants who are offering take-out food and alcohol.  “Takeout COVID helps list out open restaurants that are selling their wine, beer, and food. Restaurants can list themselves for free and the restaurants that we’ve talked to have told us they’ve seen an increase in online orders. Our only goal is to help them get more customers.”  Learn more and get listed at https://coastapp.com/takeoutcovid/phl/.
    • Funds for Outdoor Dining Supplies: The City of Philadelphia advises restaurants in need of funding to purchase outdoor dining supplies (cafe tables, chairs, etc.) to consider applying to the state’s $225 million small business grant program (https://pabusinessgrants.com/).  These grants are open to all eligible small businesses in the Commonwealth.

PENNSYLVANIA UPDATES

  • Pennsylvania Launches COVID-19 Job Hiring Portal: Per State Senator Art Haywood, the PA Department of Labor & Industry has launched a new COVID-19 Job Portal, which “is updated daily so businesses in need are spotlighted and people searching for employment have the latest job information.”  Visit HERE if you need to post a position for your business.
  • New Directory Listing Pennsylvania PPE Suppliers: The state’s Department of Community and Economic Development is hosting a Business-To-Business (B2B) Interchange Directory for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) suppliers, including purveyors of N95, surgical, and simple fabric masks.  Visit HERE to find a supplier or request to be added to the list.
  • *Important*–PA Issues New More Stringent Regulations for Essential Businesses: PA’s Secretary of Health issued new more stringent regulations that essential businesses who are still operating will be required to comply with. While this order does not change the types of businesses that may operate, it does implement new rules for employee safety, distancing, and protocols that must be followed if a probable or confirmed COVID-positive person enters your establishment. Among other requirements, employers must now provide all employees with approved masks and require that they be worn at all times on the premises. Businesses such as grocers who are still able to admit the general public in their buildings are now also required to enforce distancing, deter crowding, require that customers wear masks, and designate access periods for the elderly and high-risk populations. The full order can be read HERE, and is effective immediately with enforcement.
  • Be cautious of unscrupulous offers of assistance. Our statewide association has alerted member organizations that there are various schemes being perpetrated by unscrupulous consultants offering to help small business owners get access to funding under the CARES Act in exchange for significant upfront fees. Remember that there are a multitude of free technical assistance resources available to those in need of help, ranging from CHBD staff and the local COVID-19 task force to Small Business Development Centers like Temple’s, and free online webinars. If you’re concerned that someone may be trying to take advantage of you during this time of need, feel free to reach out to us for advice.

TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE AND EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES

  • Forbes Retail Store Reopening Checklist -Post Covid
  • SBA Phishing Warning. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is currently tracking an unknown malicious cyber actor who is spoofing the Small Business Administration (SBA) COVID-19 relief website by using phishing emails. These emails include a malicious link to a fake page used for malicious re-directs and credential stealing.Small business owners and organizations at all levels should review the alert and apply the recommended precautions to strengthen the security posture of their systems. We encourage you to share this alert with anyone who might be able to use it. Learn more HERE
  • 4 ways retailers can future-proof their businesses
  • Grow With Google Initiative: Thanks to CHBA Board member Yosma Luby for recommending this resource.  “The Grow with Google initiative helps people across the United States grow their skills, careers, and businesses by offering free tools, training, and events.Visit google.com/grow to learn more. Discover tools, tips and resources to help you manage your business remotely during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn how to update critical business information online to keep customers informed, host virtual meetings and events, and access documents from anywhere. We’ll also share the latest resources from Google and other partners to help support small business.  Register now for Grow with Google’s Manage Your Business Remotely in Times of Uncertainty livestream at https://events.withgoogle.com/gwg-livestream/!
  • Free Website Tool: If you don’t yet have an ecommerce presence, Locable is offering a Free “Engage Plan” that allows businesses to “sell products, services and gift cards online in minutes…with an existing website or by itself if you don’t have a website.”  Read more HERE.
  • An Argument for Business Interruption Insurance Coverage: Thank you to Jack Noonan for sharing the article found HERE on the topic of business interruption insurance.  This article suggests an argument that could be made to insurance companies: since a recent PA Supreme Court case explicitly ruled that COVID-19 must be considered a natural disaster for legal purposes, it would follow that it should be considered the same for insurance purposes.  If you have submitted or may submit a claim, this is a strategy that could be considered.  While we cannot provide legal advice, we can provide information about local law firms we are aware of who are taking up cases such as these upon request.
  • Temple SBDC Can Be A Resource for PPP Recipients: Temple Small Business Development Center reminded the city’s business districts today that they stand ready to assist not only merchants who are seeking funding, but also those who have been fortunate enough to be approved for PPP loans, which require careful administration and proper record-keeping in order to ensure the valuable forgiveness provision.  Visit HERE to see their services and make an appointment.
  • Technical Assistance Reminder: As a small business owner, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed during the ongoing crisis, but you don’t need to face these challenges alone.  Don’t forget that there is a full line-up of locally-based individuals with proven business expertise who are available to consult with your business one-on-one at no cost, providing valuable perspective and advice on difficult issues you may be confronting.  To find an advisor for your business, reach out to Phil Dawson (pdawson@chestnuthillpa.com) and we will gladly connect you.
  • Temple SBDC Virtual Office Hours: The Temple Small Business Development Center is now offering virtual office hours every weekday from 3:00-5:00PM to enable small business owners affected by COVID-19 to connect face-to-face electronically with qualified consultants. The service is free. Connect HERE.FREE
  • Website Development and Digital Assistance: This is potentially a very valuable resource if you’ve been struggling to adapt your business technologically during this time. Temple’s Institute for Business and Information Technology (IBIT) has announced that they are offering FREE services to digitize your business to cope with COVID-19. “Each project using a digital triage approach will quickly perform one or all of: needs analysis, identification of relevant resources, implementation, training, and remote operation.” Services can include creation or modification of a website for your business and an overall consultation of your digital needs. Click HERE for details about how to request assistance.
  • COVID-19 financial programs, from receiving new tax credits to meeting the record-keeping requirements of new government loans.  Click HERE to read more and contact their representative.
  • Other Business Resources–Signage: If your business is anticipating needing signage in advance of reopening, and you need a vendor, the CHBA has used Michael Feehan (mfeehan@comcast.net, 215-290-6929) as a one-stop shop for both printing and signage projects for many years.

WEBINARS and ARTICLES

  • COVID-19 Liability Waivers.   We received a question about COVID-19 liability waivers, and whether they are necessary or effective in limiting a business’ liability.  Law firm Goldberg Segalla released a paper on that very topic this week, entitled “Will COVID-19 Liability Releases Hold Up?” which can be read HERE.
  • eBook | Personalizing Your Customer Journey As Retail Returns: Via eMarketer.  Includes “guidance for efficiently personalizing important messaging at the moment of open, a quarter-by-quarter breakdown of messaging priorities for retail marketers through 2020, actionable ideas and inspiration for creating a supportive experience that instills confidence to return to shopping, [and] detailed examples retailers can use to shape their strategy and improve their workflows.” You can download this short eBook HERE
  • Article | Here’s what to do when your retail website becomes your primary storefront: By Google. Click HERE to read.
  • Marketing and design firm Studio X is interested in holding a Digital Marketing webinar exclusively for Chestnut Hill businesses. Having a strong digital presence is essential for continuing commerce during this crisis, and customers’ current experiences are predicted to have a lasting effect on their behaviors in the coming months. The group is looking to build the webinar content based on merchants’ stated needs, so please take this SURVEY to indicate your interest in the webinar and share your business’ needs.
  • SBA Disaster Loan Webinar: Last week, we sent out information about the new SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans. One of our CHBA member business owners who applied contacted us to say that she found the following webinar from the Women’s Business Enterprise Center very helpful for preparing her application: LINK. Remember, you can apply at http://disasterloan.sba.gov/.
  • Small Business Recovery Tips from Former SBA Chief Karen Mills.  Listen to tips in this 13-minute recorded interview HERE
  • Chestnut Hill Hospital Fall 2020 Wellness Programs:Join us from the comfort of your home for our online lecture series. Experts will focus on topics including pain management, minimally invasive surgery, genetic testing, physical therapy and more!

MARKETING

  • New Google Form for CHBA Member Social Media Requests: During Cache’s furlough, En Route Marketing staff are processing CHBA member business requests for social media posts on Facebook and Twitter.  Click HERE to submit your requests.  En Route will make their best efforts to fulfill all requests as soon as possible, but it is recommended that you submit your requests at least one week in advance to ensure optimal results.
  • En Route Monthly Report: Click HERE to read En Route Marketing’s July monthly report and learn about highlights and trends in promoting our district.
  • Shop Local Marketing Grant Program: Presented by the Chestnut Hill Local.  “The Chestnut Hill Local has established a $100,000 grant program to assist local businesses with marketing during these difficult times. We are committed to supporting our local partners and helping them reach customers and relaunch their businesses. The Shop Local Grant program will be in effect August 1 through October 31, 2020. Locally-owned small businesses can apply for a matching advertising grant. Through these grants, the Local will match up to $100,000 in advertising. The advertising match has a minimum monthly spend, and the match must occur in the same month as the cash spend.  Grants will be awarded monthly, but can renew the following month, through August, October,  for the same amount if the business chooses.”  Click HERE for more information and to apply.
  • “Zoom” from the Chestnut Hill Business District: En Route Marketing is offering these beautiful scenes of Chestnut Hill that you can install as custom Zoom backgrounds, perfect for checking in with colleagues during meetings or hosting virtual happy hours with loved ones and friends. Hold your next meeting outdoors at Pastorius Park or Morris Arboretum, or virtually meet along the Avenue and its boutique shops and restaurants. No matter which background you choose, you can still #KeepItOnTheHill even while you’re at home. View the series of Zoom-ready backgrounds at https://chestnuthillpa.com/media-gallery/chestnut-hill-zoom-backgrounds/. Click HERE for a Zoom tutorial on how to use a custom background.
  • Visit Philly Video: We worked with En Route Marketing on production of a Chestnut Hill destination feature for online release on Visit Philly and NBC10, which can be viewed HERE. The feature already has over 14,000 views, and highlights some of Chestnut Hill’s best attributes as a summertime destination.

GOVERNMENT MESSAGING

  • Federal Reserve Small Business Credit Survey: The Merchants Fund is partnering with the Federal Reserve on the 2020 Small Business Credit Survey. This survey reaches thousands of small businesses like yours and provides vital information to policymakers who are weighing decisions that affect small businesses. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete and is open to businesses currently in operation, those recently closed, and those about to launch. The questions ask about business conditions, financing needs, and the effects of the pandemic on your business. All responses are confidential. The survey highlights the experiences of small businesses and provides critical information that service providers, policymakers, and lenders use to improve programs for small business owners. Please click HERE to complete the survey.
  • Wage Equity Ordinance Enforcement Begins 9/1/20.  “The City of Philadelphia recently announced that as of September 1, 2020 the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations (PCHR) will begin enforcing the Wage Equity Ordinance, which prohibits employers from asking job applicants for their salary histories or using salary history to set their wages. The goal of the Ordinance is to help close the wage gap for women and people of color.”
  • New Business Tax Payment Plans:  “The City of Philadelphia’s Department of Revenue recently released a new payment plan to support businesses that were in tax compliance before the pandemic struck. Business owners can use this new plan if they: 1) Are struggling to pay business taxes due after March 1, 2020 and 2) Do not owe taxes before that date. The new payment agreement covers all business taxes. It does not require a down payment, and could excuse your business from paying ANY interest or penalties. If eligible, your business will have up to 12 months to pay. If you honor the agreement, you will not accrue any interest or penalties during that time. For more information, email revenue@phila.gov or call (215) 686-6600.If you’re already in a payment agreement, you may be able to renegotiate the terms of your agreement. The Department of Revenue will work with businesses on a case-by-case basis.”
  • Families First Act Posting Requirements: One of our attorneys alerted us that employers are now required to post a notice of rights under the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act in a place where it is conspicuous to employees in their business.  The poster can be accessed at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/posters under The Families First Coronavirus Response Act section. An FAQ specific to the notice is available at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-poster-questions.
  • Executive Order Update. Click HERE to view. Shared by Tony DePaul of AccuPay, ready to help CHBA members with their payroll needs.

COMMUNITY

  • Chestnut Hill Hospital Seeking Mask Donations: From Cathy Brzozowski at Chestnut Hill Hospital: “Chestnut Hill Hospital is accepting donated masks! If you have facial masks that are not currently being used, the Hospital will accept them. Any type of mask is acceptable including surgical, N95, construction, etc. In addition, if you have some skill and a sewing machine, surgical mask covers are also being used by clinical professionals. See this YouTube video for a pattern that would work well:https://www.cleveland.com/news/2020/03/how-to-help-sew-masks-for-hospital-in-coronavirus-crisis.htmlArrangements to drop off of items can be made by calling  at the number that follows or sending an email. A Hospital representative will meet you in front of the Hospital. Remain in your vehicle and we’ll remove the items. Thank you for your support!” 215-248-8727 | CatherineM.Brzozowski@towerhealth.org
  • Perishable Food Donations: If your food business has excess perishable or prepared food that you are unable to utilize due to decreased customer demand, the local nonprofit Today Is A Good Day has advised us that their partner the Ronald McDonald House is in need and willing to accept them. If you are interested, contact Chris Callanan at chris@philarmh.org or 267-969-6212.
  • Philadelphia Court Update: If you have any pending issues in the local court system, CHBA member Christine Benedum has prepared this Status Update about how proceedings are being impacted by the crisis, which you can review: https://www.benedumlaw.com/coronavirus-and-the-courts/
  • Go Fund Me Night Kitchen Staff Relief Fund HERE
  • Connecting the Front Line workers with food HERE
  • PPE Donation Form: The City of Philadelphia now has a form HERE which you can use to make donations of personal protective equipment (PPE) to healthcare workers. There is an option to have your donation conveniently picked up if you don’t want to venture out.

SPECIAL MESSAGING

  • Safety Tips: The City’s Commerce Department has asked commercial corridor management organizations to alert their business owners about the safety tips they’ve compiled HERE in order to keep your premises safe during closure.
  • Kilian’s Needs Packing Materials!  From Kilian’s Hardware owner Russ Goudy: “Our internet business is up but our incoming donations of packing materials are down. We are in desperate need of box filling materials such as styrofoam peanuts, bubble wrap, air filled cushion bags, crumpled paper, etc. We are ok on empty cardboard boxes.” Go green and donate your used packing materials to Kilian’s at their store at 8450 Germantown Avenue  M-F 8:30-5:30, Saturday 8:30-5:00, Sunday 10:00-3:00.
  • Cashier Protection Shield Resources: As businesses begin to plan for reopening in the coming weeks, some may be considering the temporary installation of plexiglass cashier protection shields, similar to those seen in many supermarkets.  While we cannot endorse any particular provider, we can share information about vendors who may be able to help with this need. First, CHBA member business Kilian’s Hardware has indicated that they can help with smaller requests, so walk-in or call them at 215-247-0945 to inquire.  For more extensive installations, Weavers Way Co-op has used Everything Plastic for 1/4″ clear plexiglass panels with rounded corners and beaded edges.  They can be reached at 215-238-9800
  • Printable Social Distancing Posters: The City’s Health Dept. released downloadable and printable social distancing reminders for use by businesses who are still operating. You can access different variations HERE and display them at your facility.
  • Need Help With Streaming? We can help you learn and promote: Even if it wasn’t part of your business strategy before COVID-19, many retailers who can’t have a physical presence at the moment are experimenting with streaming content. Live video streams can be a great way to engage with customers who are sitting at home on the Internet. Quality content can keep your business top of mind and even directly generate income, whether by demonstrating products that can be purchased online, or by charging people to tune in and watch a tutorial (e.g. cooking or crafting something). Our team at En Route Marketing has developed a custom how-to guide for Chestnut Hill businesses who are interested in exploring this potential business opportunity. Click HERE to view. If you are offering streaming, let us know by reaching out to Cache Hall at chall@chestnuthillpa.com. We can help promote on social media and add scheduled or archived streaming links from businesses to our COVID-19 webpage.
  • Free Small Business Legal Assistance: “In response to office closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Philadelphia VIP is offering eligible small businesses free one-hour remote legal consultations with a volunteer attorney.  Once your application is approved, VIP will search for an attorney to hear about your business’s legal needs and offer advice and counsel.  After the initial consultation, your business may be eligible to receive ongoing assistance with a discrete legal issue.” Apply HERE.
  • Business Interruption Insurance Claims: This is a topic that we haven’t yet covered in our member updates which some businesses may have already considered or may be wondering about. Nationwide, efforts by small business owners to file claims under their Business Interruption insurance policies for losses due to the pandemic have been largely unsuccessful, prompting various class action lawsuits and legislative efforts.  PA is one of several states in which lawmakers have introduced legislation which would require insurance companies to cover business interruption losses due to the pandemic for insureds who had such policies in place.  The insurance industry contends that such requirements would bankrupt insurers, and is generally opposing all of these efforts.  If you have a Business Interruption policy, you should review the language in it, and reach out to your attorney if you have questions about whether you may have the basis for a claim.
  • Did you miss the CHBA’s 2020 Annual Meeting? Click HERE to view the recording of the virtual meeting, including presentations and Q&A with CHBD Executive Director Philip Dawson and En Route Marketing CEO Bill Gehrman.