The City of Seattle is further working to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 closures on small businesses and nonprofits.
The order is effective immediately for any action related to the non-payment of rent or due to the expiration of the lease’s term during the moratorium, and will be in effect for at least 60 days or until the termination of the civil emergency.
The City also rolled out a Small Business Recovery Package, which includes several assistance programs:
- Deferral of B&O Taxes. Effective immediately, the department of Finance and Administrative Services (FAS) will defer business and occupation (B&O) tax collections for eligible business owners, allowing small business owners increased flexibility during a period of financial duress caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
- Expansion of Small Business Stabilization Fund. OED is expanding their Small Business Stabilization Fund to support income-qualified microbusinesses.
- Assistance to Access SBA Loans. OED will provide direct technical assistance to local small businesses and nonprofits to ensure they can immediately access the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) federal loan program once it becomes available.
- Relief for Utility Payments. As announced earlier by Mayor Durkan, all SPU and SCL customers can set up deferred payment plans if their financial stability has been jeopardized by COVID-19.
- New Small Business Recovery Task Force. The Mayor has appointed former Governor Gary Locke and former Council President Bruce Harrell to lead the COVID-19 Small Business Recovery Task Force, which will advise on long-term policy recommendations and provide technical assistance and outreach.
“We are facing the challenge of our lifetime. We are taking unprecedented steps to protect both residents and employers from the impact of this crisis. The last several weeks have been devastating for our small businesses, and we know the crisis will be felt for months,” Mayor Durkan said in a statement. “With this step that builds on our Small Business Recovery Package, we’re doing everything we can to help keep small businesses afloat during this unprecedented, difficult time. We will continue to do all we can to support small businesses, workers, and their families. We can’t do it without more resources from the state and federal government, including a bold, long-term small business and economic recovery package from Congress.”
The City has also implemented an Arts Recovery Package to provide immediate financial relief to artists and cultural organizations that have been impacted by COVID-19.
For more information, the City has created a comprehensive resource page for residents and small businesses impacted by COVID-19.