Join Login COVID-19 Updates

Photo by Richard Hurd

COVID-19

Updated: 7/8/2021, 4:21 p.m.

The Chamber has a virtual portal for employers to submit questions relating to COVID-19 and its impact on business. Responses are posted at madisonbiz.com/covid19faq.

To submit or vote up questions, visit Slido.com and enter the event code #ASK4BIZ or simply click here to be directed to that page. Questions can also be submitted via email at ask@madisonbiz.com.

To view businesses’ reopening plans that have been shared through our portal, click here.

To participate in the #JustAsk campaign, print this flyer (English or Spanish) and display it in your business to encourage customers to #JustAsk about policies and procedures being implemented to reduce risks to their health and safety.

To learn more about resources available to small businesses, click here.

To view the Chamber’s agenda for reopening the economy and accelerating our recovery, click here.

To view the second video in the Chamber’s “For You. For Us. Forward.” series, click here.

To learn more about community resources that Greater Madison businesses are offering, click here.

Jump to topics:
#JUSTASK CAMPAIGN
ADVOCACY IN THE A.M. – MAYORAL PANEL
AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT
BUSINESS REOPENING BEST PRACTICES
CHAMBER TEAM RETURNS TO OFFICE
CHILD CARE SCHOLARSHIP FUND
COVID RELIEF CREDIT FOR DANE COUNTY BUSINESSES
COVID-19/RECOVERY UPDATE ARCHIVE
EIDL SUPPLEMENTAL TARGETED ADVANCES
HELPFUL RESOURCES
HOW TO SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES
LIABILITY PROTECTIONS
LUNCH(UP)DATE ARCHIVE
LUNCH(UP)DATE WITH JASON ILSTRUP
MAKING THE DIFFERENCE
OSHA GUIDANCE ON PREVENTING WORKPLACE SPREAD
OSHA GUIDANCE ON WORK-RELATED COVID EVENTS
PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS
PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM TAX DEDUCTIONS
PUBLIC HEALTH ORDERS END
PUBLIC POLICY RESPONSE PLAN
QUARANTINE RECOMMENDATIONS
RELIEF FOR LOCAL NONPROFITS
RESOURCES FOR FULL REOPENING
RESTAURANT REVITALIZATION FUND APPLICATIONS OPEN
SHARE YOUR STORY
SHUTTERED VENUE OPERATORS GRANT REOPENED
SMALL BUSINESS PANDEMIC SUPPORT GRANT PROGRAM EXPANSION
UNEMPLOYMENT NOTIFICATION REQUIREMENT
VACCINE GUIDELINES FOR BUSINESSES
VIRTUAL INDUSTRY MEETING RECAP
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
WEDC PPE PORTAL

CHAMBER TEAM RETURNS TO OFFICE
As of this week, the full (and fully vaccinated) Chamber team has returned to our space on the third floor of the U.S. Bank building at 1 S. Pinckney St., Suite 330.

Our return-to-office plan involves being in-person Mondays through Thursdays with Fridays being remote-optional, all during normal business hours. Even though our office is currently closed to the public, we look forward to being able to welcome you back soon.

After working remotely to serve you over the past 68 weeks, we are grateful for the opportunity to be together again in-person. We are excited about everything we have been able to accomplish and, with your help, we are ready to tackle the challenges still in front of us.

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VIRTUAL INDUSTRY MEETING RECAP
The Chamber recently hosted the latest in our Virtual Industry Meeting (VIM) series, as leaders from many of the region’s largest employers assessed their current needs and future projections.

Many participants said they are gradually reopening further in the coming weeks, with the final phases of their respective reopening plans coming in September. Most employers reported that a strong majority – some as high as 98 percent – of their teams have been vaccinated. For those who aren’t, they are encouraging, and in some cases requiring, them to wear masks. Most also reported an increase in remote or hybrid work.

For some attendees, business travel is starting to resume at their companies. Several leaders said they are also slowly resuming business events, though some are only conducting off-site events at the moment.

The Chamber has convened leaders in more than 20 industries as part of our Virtual Industry Meeting series to help inform our advocacy. Please continue to share with us any policy ideas and recommendations.

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LUNCH(UP)DATE WITH KALEEM CAIRE
One City Schools founder and CEO Kaleem Caire recently joined us for Lunch(UP)date, the Chamber program (presented by Perkins Coie, with support from Accelerate Sponsor Baker Tilly) where you can take a break and enjoy lunch while staying curious, connected and informed.

Caire says he came to a life devoted to social entrepreneurship partly from his own desire but also as the product of a socially active family. A Madison native, he has an extensive lineage in our region: It dates back to Samuel Pierce, his grandfather’s uncle, whose mother also happens to be the oldest person ever to die in Wisconsin, at 115 years old in 1944. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in education from UW–Madison, professional opportunity brought him to Washington, D.C. and elsewhere before he returned to the area to become President and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Madison.

While Caire says power, privilege and fear of change contributed to resistance to innovation in education, he believes our community is more open to change today. He says that is manifesting itself in widespread, generous support for One City and its mission, with donations coming from roughly 2,900 individuals, including American Girl founder and philanthropist Pleasant Rowland. As One City prepares to start welcoming students at a newly purchased building on the WPS Health Solutions campus, Caire says he takes pride in the fact that “when our kids walk into that building, they will never be able to say that Madison doesn’t care about them.”

View the full recording of Lunch(UP)date here.

Dane County Regional Airport Director Kim Jones will be our guest for the next scheduled Lunch(UP)date on Thursday, July 22. Register for that free program here.

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RESOURCES FOR FULL REOPENING
With all Dane County public health orders having expired June 2, Public Health Madison & Dane County has shared resources to help businesses finalize and implement their own policies for customers and staff going forward.

Some voluntary recommendations for businesses and workplaces include encouraging vaccination among staff, considering whether your business needs a masking policy, reviewing and implementing sector-specific guidance from the CDC, and retaining protocols for hygiene, employee illness and cleaning.

Find the full document here.

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RELIEF FOR LOCAL NONPROFITS
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi has announced that the county is partnering with the Madison Community Foundation (MCF) to distribute $5 million in grants to Dane County-based non-profits who experienced economic losses over the past year.

MCF will coordinate the grant application and review process and award dollars based on a series of criteria. Organizations will need to demonstrate loss of income due to the pandemic to successfully compete for a grant award.

All Dane County nonprofits will be able to apply once a resolution allocating the funds to MCF is adopted by the Dane County Board. Information about how to apply will be available on MCF’s website once the fund is officially created.

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PUBLIC HEALTH ORDERS END
As of June 2, Public Health Madison & Dane County (PHMDC) has ended all public health orders, including mask requirements and gathering and capacity limits.

In response, Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce President Zach Brandon released the following statement:

“This decision is an extraordinary step in the right direction and further evidence that vaccines are safe and effective against COVID-19. We appreciate Public Health following the science and the data and continuing to align these decisions with CDC guidance while also giving businesses time to prepare for full reopening.

“This is especially encouraging news for Dane County businesses, who have been doing their part through improved health and safety protocols, workspace upgrades and encouraging their employees to get vaccinated. Their efforts are a significant reason why Dane County is seeing its lowest case counts in months and becoming a state and national leader in vaccination rate.

“For businesses, employees and others who have worked so hard to protect themselves and others and mitigate the spread of COVID-19, today is a major milestone on the way to our ‘next normal.'”

If you have additional questions about the order or other issues impacting your business, please continue to submit them through our Q&A portal here and our staff and team of regional partners will work to get you an answer. All responses are posted on our website here.

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MAKING THE DIFFERENCE
In collaboration with local designers UnderBelly, the Chamber launched “Greater Madison: Making the Difference” to tell the stories of area businesses that have taken extraordinary steps to solve the challenges posed by COVID-19.

We are currently highlighting AkitaBox, a Madison-based company that created a software solution that allows facilities managers to create clear cleaning and sanitizing protocols that factor in CDC and EPA recommendations and communicates those protocols so employees, customers, students and patients feel safe and confident in those spaces.

We previously highlighted the efforts of EpicDelve, Midwest Prototyping, UW–MadisonTeel PlasticsAmerican Family InsuranceCatalent and Nordic as part of this series. Stay tuned to The BEAM and our FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn and Instagram pages for more stories about businesses that are Making the Difference.

We encourage you to share these stories and support local leadership. If you have your own story to share, send it to Director of Business Development Nikki Javurek.

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RESTAURANT REVITALIZATION FUND APPLICATIONS OPEN
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has opened applications for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), which was established by the American Rescue Plan Act to help restaurants, food stands, caterers, taverns, bakeries, breweries, wineries, distilleries and other eligible businesses stay open.

The RRF will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location. Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses by March 11, 2023.

For full program details and to apply, click here.

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ADVOCACY IN THE A.M. – MAYORAL PANEL
Dane County’s mayors – Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway, Middleton Mayor Gurdip Brar, Monona Mayor Mary O’Connor, Stoughton Mayor Tim Swadley, Sun Prairie Mayor Paul Esser and Verona Mayor Luke Diaz – joined us for a virtual Advocacy in the A.M. to address the biggest business challenges from the pandemic and economic opportunities as we accelerate toward Greater Madison’s recovery.

During the pandemic, the mayors said many businesses have pivoted and grown more optimistic over time, though certain industries – including in hospitality and retail – have experienced more challenges. When asked what advice they give to future mayors dealing with a similar situation, they emphasized the importance of frequent internal and public communication, taking care of employees and meeting frequently with key stakeholders in business and the broader community.

To accelerate recovery in their cities and our region, there was universal agreement that rebuilding confidence will be critical. The mayors said they have taken several steps to do that, including by setting a good example with their reopening strategies, encouraging vaccinations and expanding outdoor opportunities for businesses and residents. They also saw opportunities for collaboration post-pandemic, particularly on transit and affordable housing, which all believe will be needed to prepare for future growth and attracting and retaining talent.

Advocacy in the A.M. is part of In Tandem[ic], the new Chamber initiative to provide leadership for businesses, lighting the path forward through the pandemic and recovery. Thanks to our presenting sponsor, Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation, as well as supporting sponsors American Transmission Company (ATC), Monona Bank, Aberdean Consulting and EZ Office Products.

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EIDL SUPPLEMENTAL TARGETED ADVANCES
The U.S. Small Business Administration has launched a new round of Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) assistance called Supplemental Targeted Advances that will provide $5 billion in additional assistance to one million small businesses and nonprofits that have been most severely affected by pandemic. This is the latest SBA relief program to launch as part of the recently enacted American Rescue Plan Act.

The Supplemental Targeted Advance provides the smallest and hardest-hit eligible businesses with a supplemental payment of $5,000 that does not have to be repaid. Even if you have previously received the original EIDL Advance in the full amount of $10,000, you may be eligible for the Supplemental Targeted Advance if you meet eligibility criteria. The combined amount of the Supplemental Targeted Advance ($5,000) with any previously received EIDL Advance or Targeted EIDL Advance ($10,000) will not exceed $15,000.

The SBA has modified the Targeted EIDL Advance application process to determine if businesses also qualify for the additional Supplemental Targeted Advance. The SBA will contact eligible business entities to apply and applications will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis. To qualify for the Supplemental Targeted Advance, an eligible business entity must be in a low-income community (see shaded areas below for Dane County communities that qualify), have suffered greater than 50 percent economic loss and have 10 or fewer employees.

For more details about the Targeted EIDL Advance and Supplemental Targeted Advance program, visit here.

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SHUTTERED VENUE OPERATORS GRANT REOPENED
With previous technical issues now resolved, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has reopened the application portal for the $15 billion Shuttered Venue Operators (SVO) Grant program. The program focuses relief for operators of live venues, live performing arts organizations, movie theaters and others and was included in the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act signed into law on Dec. 27.

Eligible applicants may qualify for SVO Grants equal to 45 percent of their gross earned revenue, with $10 million as the maximum amount available for a single grant award. Two billion dollars is reserved for eligible applicants with up to 50 full-time employees.

Funds may be used to cover expenses including payroll and administrative costs, rent and utility payments, and state and local taxes and fees. To be eligible, applicants must have been in operation as of Feb. 29, 2020 and not have received a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan on or after Dec. 27, 2020.

For additional SVO program details, including how to apply and what documentation you will need, click here.

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COVID RELIEF CREDIT FOR DANE COUNTY BUSINESSES
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi and Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway have announced a new effort with Public Health Madison & Dane County to give licensed establishments including restaurants, hotels, and campgrounds a COVID-19 credit of more than $550,000 to help recover from the pandemic. This 30 percent credit will provide financial assistance to more than 3,500 qualifying establishments in Dane County.

Public Health sanitarians normally conduct annual inspections and provide ongoing consultation for these establishments, but sanitarians have been reassigned to support the COVID-19 pandemic response for much of the past year. They instead worked with businesses to prevent spread and help them implement safe practices for customers and employees.

Qualifying licenses are associated with food and drink establishments, tattoo and body piercing, hotels and tourist rooming houses, bed and breakfasts, swimming pools, campgrounds and recreational campgrounds. Operators in these categories must renew for the 2021-22 licensing year to receive the credit. School and temporary food establishment licenses are excluded from this funding.

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VACCINE GUIDELINES FOR BUSINESSES
With businesses playing a critical role in encouraging widespread vaccination from COVID-19, the state has released new resources to assist businesses in continuing to contribute to the vaccination campaign.

Among the resources are guidance for effectively encouraging vaccination among employees, information about how to set up a workplace vaccination clinic, and links to posters that can be downloaded or adapted for posting in workplaces.

You can find guidance to help promote vaccination among employees here, a customizable PowerPoint presentation through this page, and information on how employers can raise awareness and connect employees with vaccination options here.

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SMALL BUSINESS PANDEMIC SUPPORT GRANT PROGRAM EXPANSION
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi has announced an additional $15 million for the county’s Small Business Pandemic Support Grant Program, which launched last year and is being administered by Dane Buy Local. Funds for the new grants were made available through the recently adopted federal stimulus legislation.

Funds are still being awarded from the $4 million allocation the county announced in January, which prompted more than 2,800 applications with an average grant request approaching $18,000. To date, the program has received more than $14 million to assist Dane County small businesses throughout the pandemic.

Apply here.

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AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT
President Joe Biden has signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act, which includes several new measures intended to assist businesses and individuals impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Some key provisions include:

— $350 billion worth of direct assistance for state, local, tribal and territorial governments;

— Stimulus checks for individuals and families;

— Additional small business assistance of $50 billion, including $25 billion for a Restaurant Revitalization Fund;

— Nearly $47.8 billion for testing and tracing, $7.5 billion for vaccine distribution and administration, and $7.6 billion for the public health workforce;

— $128.6 billion for emergency and secondary school emergency relief;

— $40 billion for childcare block grants to states;

— Nearly $50 billion for emergency rental assistance, homeowner assistance, housing vouchers, utility assistance and funding to prevent and address homelessness;

— $30.5 billion for transit;

— $8 billion for airports;

— An expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the child tax credit; and

— An extension of subsidies for government and nonprofit entities; and an expansion of paid sick and family leave tax credits for employers.

For questions about the American Rescue Plan Act and what it means for you and your business, visit Slido.com and enter the event code #ASKBIZ (or simply click here to go directly to the page). You can also email questions to ask@madisonbiz.com.

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LIABILITY PROTECTIONS
Gov. Tony Evers recently signed into law Special Session Senate Bill 1, which includes COVID-19 liability protections – retroactive to March 1, 2020 – for businesses, individuals and schools, a provision the Chamber supported. The bill overwhelmingly passed the Senate and Assembly last month.

Under the law, businesses, individuals and schools are not liable for “the death of or injury to any individual or damages caused by an act or omission resulting in or relating to exposure, directly or indirectly, to the novel coronavirus identified as SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19 in the course of or through the performance or provision of the entity’s functions or services.” However, liability protections do not apply “if the act or omission involves reckless or wanton conduct or intentional misconduct,” such as intentional violation of public health orders.

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PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS
Thousands of Wisconsinites are being notified by the state Department of Workforce Development (DWD) about a new federal requirement that they must provide documentation to continue receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA). The requirement was included in the federal Continued Assistance Act passed in late December.

Under the new law, the federal government requires that people seeking PUA benefits send proof of employment or self-employment (or planned start of employment or self-employment) for the year before their PUA application date. Anyone who fails to provide proof will be required to repay PUA benefits received for the week of Dec. 27, 2020, or later.

Acceptable forms of documentation include:

— Employment: Paycheck stubs, earnings and leave statements showing the employer’s name and address, and W-2 forms.

— Self-employment: Business licenses, tax returns, business receipts and signed affidavits from persons verifying the individual’s self-employment.

— Peace Corps, AmeriCorps, and educational/religious organizations: Documentation provided by the organization and signed affidavits from persons verifying the individual’s attachment to such organizations.

— Proof of the planned commencement of employment: Letters offering employment, statements/ affidavits by individuals (with name and contact information) verifying an offer of employment.

— Proof of the planned commencement of self-employment: Business licenses, written business plans or a lease agreement.

To submit the required proof of employment, claimants may now upload their documentation directly to their portal here. Individuals unable to upload documents may mail or fax them, with instructions included in the notice letter they receive.

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PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM TAX DEDUCTIONS
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) awarded forgivable tax-free loans to businesses facing financial losses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Because that money was not taxed as income, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Revenue Ruling 2020-27, determining that expenditures paid with those funds are not tax deductible under current federal and state laws.

In January, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, which effectively reversed the IRS determination. The appropriations act includes the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020, which provides for the full deductibility of ordinary and necessary business expenses that were paid with a forgiven or forgivable PPP loan.

In Wisconsin, the Department of Revenue (DOR) decided to follow the original IRS determination that expenditures paid with PPP funds are non-deductible. Without legislative correction, the result would be an estimated $450 million in taxes on PPP recipients.

In response, legislative Republicans drafted an amendment to align the state with federal action, making PPP expenses tax-free. The final bill, Assembly Bill 2, passed both the Senate and Assembly and was signed into law by the Governor on Feb. 18.

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OSHA GUIDANCE ON PREVENTING WORKPLACE SPREAD
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently released guidance to employers on mitigating and preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. Separate guidance is applicable to healthcare and emergency response settings, and OSHA has additional industry-specific guidance.

This guidance contains recommendations, as well as descriptions of mandatory safety and health standards. Included are recommendations for implementation of workplace prevention programs in the workplace, as well as details relating to:

— Separating and sending home infected or potentially infected people;

— Implementing physical distancing;

— Installing barriers;

— Use of PPE; and

— Improving ventilation.

OSHA will update this guidance over time to reflect developments in science, best practices and standards. View the full guidance here.

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QUARANTINE RECOMMENDATIONS
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued updated quarantine recommendations that have also been adopted by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

This guidance clarifies that, while the safest option is for people to quarantine for 14 days after close contact with someone who has COVID-19, there are additional options available for those who have had close contact but do not have symptoms:

— Quarantine for 10 days, then continue to monitor symptoms for four additional days; or

— Quarantine for seven days and get tested on day six or seven of your quarantine. End quarantine once your test comes back negative and then continue to monitor symptoms until 14 days after your last exposure.

Additional information can be found here.

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OSHA GUIDANCE ON WORK-RELATED COVID EVENTS
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has released guidance to employers on how to report in-patient hospitalizations and deaths resulting from work-related cases of COVID-19, as well as the requirements for doing so.

Employers are only required to report in-patient hospitalizations to OSHA if the hospitalization “occurs within twenty-four (24) hours of the work-related incident.” Employers must report a fatality to OSHA “if the fatality occurs within thirty (30) days of the work-related incident,” and that fatality must be reported within eight hours of knowing both that the employee has died and that the cause of death was a work-related case of COVID-19.

Work-related COVID events can be reported by calling the nearest OSHA office, calling the OSHA 24-hour hotline at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) or by electronic submission.

See the full OSHA reporting guidance here.

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UNEMPLOYMENT NOTIFICATION REQUIREMENT
As of Nov. 2, 2020, Wisconsin employers must notify employees of the availability of Unemployment Insurance (UI) at the time of separation from employment (e.g., by email, text message, letter, providing printed poster in person or by mail). Providing this notice does not necessarily mean employees will meet the requirements of Wisconsin UI eligibility laws.

For more information about the requirement, including suggested language and resources to provide to employees, click here.

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CHILD CARE SCHOLARSHIP FUND
Following the announcement by the City of MadisonMadison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) and United Way of Dane County that they were creating a Child Care Scholarship Fund, we called for employers, foundations and the community to donate to the fund to support Greater Madison families and help close the childcare gap.

Just days after the announcement, several organizations stepped up to give back. We are thankful for the leadership of American Family InsuranceM3 InsuranceMGE FoundationMadison-Kipp Corp.6AM MarketingGroup Health Cooperative of South Central Wisconsin, UW–Madison and others who have contributed to date.

The Child Care Scholarship Fund has a goal of raising $400,000 to provide need-based scholarships for approximately 150 children to attend full-time childcare. This ambitious effort is an important foundation to build upon, but we will need more help to reach our collective goal.

To donate, click here.

Read Chamber President Zach Brandon’s column about the fund in the Wisconsin State Journal. Find additional coverage in the Cap Times here and an editorial from WISC-TV here.

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#JUSTASK CAMPAIGN
The Chamber recently released a Spanish-language version of the flyer for #JustAsk, a collaboration between the Chamber and Public Health encouraging people to feel comfortable inquiring about the steps businesses are taking to enhance their safety.

Along with balancing the needs of our health and the economy, bolstering public confidence is a critical component to reopening Greater Madison. In addition to participating in #JustAsk, businesses can also share reopening plans through this portal so we can aggregate best practices by industry type and socialize them with businesses and the broader community.

You can print and display the Spanish-language #JustAsk flyer here. The English version can be found here.

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SHARE YOUR STORY
We have long said that Greater Madison is a place that solves global challenges. Now we are actively collecting stories of businesses that have taken extraordinary steps to solve the global challenge posed by COVID-19.

If you have a story to share, please contact Director of Business Development Nikki Javurek.

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BUSINESS REOPENING BEST PRACTICES
As we reopen our economy, we are committed to helping businesses take the steps necessary to ensure the health and safety of their workers and customers. To that end, we are launching a portal to aggregate reopening best practices by industry type, socialize them with businesses and the broader community, advocate on your behalf with local government officials and bolster public confidence in this reopening phase.

Some resources you can consult for examples of reopening procedures and protocols include guidelines from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (general and industry-specific), Wisconsin Safety Council (Returning to Work) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Reopening Guidance and Business FAQ).

Share your reopening plans here.

With our economy on the cusp of reopening, your participation is important as we work to meet this unprecedented challenge. Please contact us with any questions.

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WEDC PPE PORTAL
As part of the Wisconsin Ready plan, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) is working to identify manufacturers to supply Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other materials to businesses as they reopen. 

Businesses looking for PPE can search for masks, gloves, hand sanitizer and shields. Manufacturers of PPE can list themselves as a supplier by filling out a profile on the site.

Learn more here.

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PUBLIC POLICY RESPONSE PLAN
The Chamber is continuing to advise all levels of government on the development of a public policy response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

We’re looking for immediate needs that will help employers and workers. Ideas have ranged from helping the newly unemployed with emergency unemployment insurance (UI) benefits; specific ways to help shuttered businesses; ways to help businesses with HR issues or health and safety concerns; or any additional challenges you are facing from COVID-19.

Ideas can be related to issues including funding, taxes, licensure, temporary loosening of some agency rules and more. Proposals will be shared with policymakers on an ongoing basis.

Fill out the form here.

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VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
United Way of Dane County has set up a webpage devoted to providing information about opportunities to volunteer safely during this time of need. Opportunities include food deliveries, child care, serving meals, transporting needed supplies and much more.

Check out a list of volunteer options here.

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HOW TO SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES
It is important that we continue to support local businesses to strengthen our economy and be there for our friends and neighbors. Here are just a few ways you can do so:

Tip well. Tip more if you are able to do so. Service workers make much of their living on tips, and your generosity can help make up for fewer people ordering food or buying services.

Keep those tickets. If you bought tickets for a local charitable or arts event that was later canceled, consider not asking for a refund, or tell the organization to keep the money you paid for your ticket as a donation.

Buy gift cards. Purchasing gift cards and gift certificates for yourself and others is a great way to support local businesses now while frequenting them at a later date.

Seek virtual options. You can browse and order items from local businesses, including many retailers, online as an alternative to in-person shopping.

Shop for friends, family and neighbors. When shopping, consider asking those who are vulnerable or less mobile if you can purchase anything for them.

Get delivery or takeout. Call restaurants directly or use an aggregated order and delivery service like Madison’s own EatStreet.

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HELPFUL RESOURCES
We strongly encourage you to consult these helpful, regularly updated resources as you implement your business’s infectious disease emergency response (IDER) plans:

CDC: COVID-19 Main Page
CDC: Situation Summary
CDC: Resources for Businesses and Employers
CDC: General Business Frequently Asked Questions
CDC: Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers
CDC: Preventing Spread in Communities
CDC: Print Resources
DHS: COVID-19 Information
PHMDC: COVID-19 Main Page
City of Madison Civil Rights: Mask FAQ

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LUNCH(UP)DATE ARCHIVE
July 29, 2021 – DMI President Jason Ilstrup
June 24, 2021 – One City Schools Founder and CEO Kaleem Caire
May 13, 2021 – Madison Common Council Leadership
May 5, 2021 – Public Health Madison & Dane County
April 22, 2021 – Deb Gilpin, Conor Caloia and Joel Plant
April 1, 2021 – Chancellors Rebecca Blank and Mark Mone
March 25, 2021 – Spring 2021 Business Survey
February 25, 2021 – MadREP President & CEO Jason Fields
February 11, 2021 – Public Health Madison & Dane County
January 21, 2021 – PHMDC Pandemic Operations Section Chief Doug Voegeli
January 7, 2021 – Madison College President Dr. Jack Daniels III
December 17, 2020 – Public Health Madison & Dane County
December 3, 2020 – United Way of Dane County President & CEO Renee Moe
November 19, 2020 – Destination Madison President & CEO Deb Archer and MadREP President Paul Jadin
November 12, 2020 – NAMI Dane County Executive Director Anna Moffit (presentation)
November 5, 2020 – UnityPoint Health – Meriter CEO Sue Erickson
October 8, 2020 – U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher
October 1, 2020 – 365Nation CEO Henry Sanders
September 16, 2020 – MMSD Superintendent Dr. Carlton Jenkins
August 27, 2020 – SSM Health Wisconsin Regional President Damond Boatwright
August 20, 2020 – WISC-TV & Madison Magazine Editorial Director Neil Heinen
August 13, 2020 – Gov. Tony Evers and WI Tech Council President Tom Still
August 6, 2020 – Black Chamber President Camille Carter and Latino Chamber President Jessica Cavazos
July 23, 2020 – DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman
July 16, 2020 – Chancellor Rebecca Blank
July 9, 2020 – Public Health Madison & Dane County
June 11, 2020 – U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan
May 19, 2020 – County Executive Joe Parisi and Public Health Director Janel Heinrich
May 6, 2020 – MMAC President Tim Sheehy
April 29, 2020 – WEDC Secretary Missy Hughes
April 24, 2020 – UW Health CEO Dr. Alan Kaplan
April 17, 2020 – U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin
April 9, 2020 – SBA Wisconsin Director Eric Ness
April 2, 2020 – Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway

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COVID-19/RECOVERY UPDATE ARCHIVE
June 1, 2021
May 24, 2021
May 17, 2021
May 3, 2021
April 26, 2021
April 19, 2021
April 12, 2021
April 5, 2021
March 22, 2021
March 15, 2021
March 1, 2021
February 22, 2021
February 15, 2021
February 8, 2021
February 1, 2021
January 11, 2021
December 14, 2020
December 7, 2020
November 30, 2020
November 16, 2020
November 9, 2020
November 2, 2020
October 26, 2020
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