The Jones County Chamber of Commerce is committed to providing our local community and future visitors with the most current and relevant information available during the COVID-19 crisis. If you have questions about the resources listed below or suggestions for new information to add, please reach out to our Chamber team. We hope you all stay safe!
(601) 335-4828 or email@example.com
Governor Tate Reeves has extended the executive orders pertaining to social distancing measures under the Safe Return order until Wednesday, September 30 at 5:00 PM. Notable amendments included in Executive Order 1522, in full HERE, to the existing orders include:
Executive Order 1509
View the social distancing and sanitation protocols below for the following industries as they are now being allowed to reopen:
Salons & barbershops (EO1480)
Gyms (EO 1522)
Restaurants (EO1478) and Amended Orders for Restaurants & Bars (EO 1522)
Executive Order 1478 | Executive Order 1480 – Safer at Home – Salons & Gym
The Chamber hosted an interactive webinar on May 6 with Dr. Thomas Dobbs, Mississippi’s State Health Officer, and Dr. Mark Horne, Chief Medical Officer at South Central Regional Medical Center. The panelists provided updates on the local COVID-19 numbers and response, and then took questions from Chamber members pertaining to steps to take to safely reopen their doors to employees and customers. The webinar may be viewed HERE. password: 8h%&9^^@
National Guides & Resources
On May 20, Governor Tate Reeves signed SB2772 into law, establishing the Back to Business Mississippi Grant Program. The grants will be used to help businesses in Mississippi with 50 or fewer employees recover from the economic impact of COVID-19. Companies that meet eligibility requirements could qualify for up to $25,000 based on the number of employees. The Mississippi Development Authority soon will begin accepting applications on this site from small businesses. Please check back frequently for updates or sign up below for email notifications.
The Mississippi 30 Day Fund provides forgivable loans for Mississippi-based small businesses that meet the requirements below:
– For-profit businesses that employ three to 30 people;
– Based in Mississippi and have been operating for at least one year;
– Owned and operated by a Mississippi resident.
The forgivable loan is intended to provide immediate financial assistance, as small business owners reopen and navigate a new social and economic reality. These loans can be critical in preventing the shutdowns of small businesses whose profits have dwindled over the past trying months. The MS 30 Day Fund is designed to be quick, easy, and free of red tape, as small business owners work to keep employees on board and operations running in the near term.
Small Business Administration Assistance Program Governor Tate Reeves’s request for an Economic Disaster Declaration by the U.S. Small Business Administration was approved on March 20.The entire state of Mississippi has been declared a disaster for COVID-19 which opens up disaster loan assistance for small businesses and eligible non-profits for economic injury relief. All Mississippi businesses and non-profits that are severely impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19) may apply for up to $2 million in working capital that can provide vital economic support to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing,
Advance on EIDL Loans
On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the CARES Act, which includes the opportunity to get up to a $10,000 Advance on an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). This advance may be available even if your EIDL application was declined or is still pending, and will be forgiven.
If you wish to apply for the Advance on your EIDL, please visit www.SBA.gov/Disaster as soon as possible to fill out a NEW, streamlined application. In order to qualify for the Advance, you need to submit this new application even if you previously submitted an EIDL application. Applying for the Advance will not impact the status or slow your existing application.
The SBA has reported scams about the EIDLs, and as of now, there are no immediate deadlines to apply, there are no fees to apply and no credit card information is required.
(source U.S. Small Business Administration)
Hotels for Hope: Government agencies and public health officials across the country are seeking hoteliers who are willing to enter into temporary leases for certain types of lodging properties at this time. The American Hotel & Lodging Association is creating a database of willing properties in order to meet the demand for housing capacity during the pandemic.
Details | Sign Up Form
The National Restaurant Association Educational Fund set up the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund to help restaurant industry employees experiencing hardship in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. Through this fund, $500 grants will be made to industry employees on a first-come-first served bases.
MHRA relief fund | Apply for the NRAEF Grant
$2 Trillion CARES Act Signed by President Trump: Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act
What Small Businesses Need to Know – New Details On:
>>Small Business “Paycheck Protection Program”
>>Changes to SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans
>>Paid Leave Changes
The CARES Act includes a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll by providing each small business a loan up to $10 million for payroll and certain other expenses. The PPP prioritizes millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $349 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses.
Under this program:
Borrowers may apply for different SBA loans – PPP loans, EIDL loans, non-disaster SBA 7(a), 504 and microloans, and also receive investment capital from Small Business Investment Corporations (SBICs). However, you cannot use your PPP loan for the same purpose as your other SBA loan(s). If you accept the EIDL loan, and you subsequently qualify for the PPP loan, you can re-finance the EIDL loan with the PPP loan.
PPP Guidelines for Applicants & Lenders
Starting April 3, 2020, small businesses and sole proprietorships can apply. Starting April 10, 2020, independent contractors and self-employed individuals can apply. We encourage you to apply as quickly as you can because there is a funding cap. Additional information available, https://home.treasury.gov/cares.
Governor Tate Reeves signed Executive Order 1502 on June 26, 2020. This new Executive Order replaces Executive Order 1481 that was signed by the Governor on May 11, 2020.
ReStart MS provides employers with information on employees presently filing or who have previously filed for Unemployment Insurance benefits. Utilizing this system will aid in the prevention of improper unemployment payments and assist in getting the workforce back to work sooner.
ReStart MS allows employers to report:
Mississippi Department of Employment Security: How to file unemployment claims
MDES announced that Mississippi workers who are not able to work due to COVID-19 are eligible to file for unemployment benefits. Based on guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor and Governor Tate Reeves, MDES is modifying existing unemployment compensation rules to include:
U.S. Department Of Labor Announces Additional Guidance Explaining Paid Sick Leave and Expanded Family and Medical Leave Under The Families First Coronavirus Response Act
News Release w/ Links | Employee Rights Poster | Employer Requirements | Guide from the US Chamber
Attraction Updates (as of 8/3/20)
Please be advised that Jones County buildings are now closed to any walk-in traffic due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Please call the Board of Supervisors at (601) 428-3139 during normal business hours for assistance. We encourage all business to be conducted by e-mail, mail or telephone. The courts will remain open.
Comcast has been coordinating with emergency management, health officials and other government leaders to support the collective effort to mitigate the impact of COVID-19. Recently, Comcast announced the implementation of the following new policies for the next 60 days to Keep America Connected:
Friday, March 13, 2020
On behalf of the Jones County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, we want to share with you that the health and safety of our members and entire community remain our top priorities. Due to the concern and precautionary measures already being taken to control the spread of COVID-19, the Chamber is suspending all of our meetings and events through the end of March. We will continue to monitor this unprecedented situation and reference the advice of our government agencies and elected officials as decisions are made about Chamber meetings and events scheduled for April and beyond.
Our staff will continue to be available to serve you, and we encourage you to call, 601-649-3031 or 601-335-4828, or e-mail our team, firstname.lastname@example.org, with any questions, issues or inquiries.
As employers, no matter your size, we understand that there will be an added burden on your businesses due to the impact of COVID-19. There are many resources available to assist you in developing strategies to protect your workforce while ensuring continuity of operations. Please review the links below provided by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, which are based on information provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We also will continue to share relevant resources with you as they become available.
Thank you for your ongoing support of the Chamber, and if there is anything that we can do to support you during this time, please let us know.
Message to Chamber Members on March 24, 2020
The Chamber continues to diligently monitor the COVID-19 crisis, and there are multiple updates that we wanted to share with our membership. First, on behalf of the Chamber Board, we are thinking of you, all of you, during this unprecedented time. Please do not hesitate to reach out to the Chamber team if you have any questions about the information we are sharing, requests for resources or issues that we need to address. Please call 601-649-3031 or 601-335-4828, or e-mail our team, email@example.com.
The Chamber Board voted this week to suspend all Chamber programs and in-person meetings for the month of April. This unfortunately includes the April 24 Member Golf Tournament. We are working on options for this event and others, and please continue to check this weekly update and our social pages, @jonescountychamber on Facebook and Instagram. Events in May and beyond will be evaluated on a monthly basis.
Thank you to our healthcare, pharmacy, grocery, restaurant and other members who are serving Jones County on the front lines. You are our heroes right now, and your efforts are truly making an impact on our community.
May 19, 2020
The Jones County Chamber of Commerce is offering Disaster Relief Micro Grants for Chamber members. Members must be in good standing, have 25 or fewer employees and meet additional requirements, as noted on the application form. Applications will be accepted online beginning Wednesday, May 20 at 12:00 PM through May 29 at 5:00 PM. Grants will be awarded between $300-500, as funds are available. The Disaster Relief Micro Grant program is made possible by Mississippi Power and Dixie Electric.