As relief rolls out for individuals and businesses, it can be a little daunting to navigate all of the online and other resources.
Locally, chambers of commerce have done a first-rate job of getting information out as best they can to their members. At the federal level, the Small Business Administration – SBA.gov – has a ton of stuff and is beefing up its website capacity due to a surge in demand.
The state of Missouri also has resources. The Department of Economic Development says it has “activated a statewide network of more than 400 local economic development groups to answer questions and offer assistance to employers impacted by coronavirus.”
At ded.mo.gov/coronavirus, the department has a wide range of resources, including COVID-19 testing sites, state testing criteria, guidance from OSHA on reducing employees’ risks of exposure, the latest situation reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a small-business owner’s guide to the CARES – Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security – Act passed last week, SBA disaster loans, and a good deal more. It’s a good starting point.
More businesses closing due to COVID-19 and/or the slowing economy:
• Gaming Partners International, which makes cards, dice and other goods for the gambling industry, has closed its Blue Springs plant. In a letter last week to the state of Missouri, the company said it “intends to cease permanently all production activities effective immediately and to permanently close the facility …” It said 112 people were employed there. It said they are getting pay and benefits through May 26 and are being offered severance.
• The Adam’s Mark Hotel & Conference Center at I-70 and Blue Ridge Cutoff near the stadiums closed two weeks ago, with 138 layoffs, and in a letter to the Missouri Department of Economic Development said “if and when we are able, we may reopen the Adams Mark Hotel.”
• Barnes & Noble lists its Independence store as “temporarily closed” but lists its other four metro area locations as still open.
• Cargo Largo in Independence, which sells both food and hardware among other lines, has closed. A sign on the front door says employees are getting four weeks pay.
Jeff Fox is The Examiner’s editor. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.