JEDE COVID-19 Weekend Update - September 25 Edition

MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Authorization for Local Governments to Put Commercial Evictions on Hold:  Governor Newsom signed an executive order (EO-N-80-20) to extend authorization for local governments to halt evictions for commercial renters impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic through March 31, 2021, and address a variety of issues in response to the pandemic.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/09/23/governor-newsom-signs-executive-order-in-response-to-covid-19-9-23-20/  The executive order also authorizes local health officers and certain other public health officials to participate in the Secretary of State’s address-confidentiality program. The order also extends provisions allowing certain posting, filing and notice requirements under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to be fulfilled electronically.

  • Independent Contractors Under Federal Law:  The US Department of Labor announced a proposed rule clarifying the definition of employee under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as it relates to independent contractors.  https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/whd/whd20200922  Details on the proposed rule available at: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/flsa/2020-independent-contractor-nprm.

  • Growing Concerns about Cross-Border Restrictions:  The San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce raised concerns over the extension to October 21, 2020, of the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel across shared ports of entry between Canada, the US, and Mexico.  The Chamber reports that it recently met with US Ambassador to Mexico Christopher Landau to discuss the impact border restrictions and fluctuating border wait times have on our cross-border economy. According to the Chamber’s report, the impacts extend beyond economic as increased border wait-times pose a risk to public health through increased air pollution and now during the pandemic, create a scenario of increased risk of exposure.  The Chamber is recommending a coordinated binational effort around social distancing and mask wearing as an effective way to mitigate the spread of this disease across international borders.  https://sdchamber.org/2020/09/growing-concerns-about-cross-border-restrictions/

  • Rebuilding the Small Business Economy in California:   Former Director of the California Employment Development Department Michael Bernick had another in a series of articles published in the Fox and Hound, Rebuilding the Small Business Economy in California.  Among other issues, the article highlights a 4-prong approach for assisting small businesses which he describes as being advanced by NFIB and other small business groups, including access to capital; assistance to small businesses in negotiating with landlords and creditors; assistance to small businesses in compliance with the numerous COVID-19 return-to-work protocols; and participation of small business on the state and regional recovery task forces.  NFIB is reported to be part of the Small Business Working Group, which is associated with the Governor’s Recovery Task Force.  https://www.foxandhoundsdaily.com/2020/09/31330/

  • California Fire Update:  The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services released the update below regarding the California Fire situation.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM US CLIMATE WEEK

  • California Climate Action Day:  Governor Newsom hosted California Climate Action Day on September 24, 2020, described as a convening of world, state, tribal and local leaders, business executives and other experts to discuss innovative solutions to a wide array of climate challenges facing the state.  Here is a link to the recap:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEZ1AUjQfos

  • Climate Action Executive Order:  Governor Newsom issued an executive order (EO N-79-20) to take a number of carbon emission-reduction actions.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/09/23/governor-newsom-announces-california-will-phase-out-gasoline-powered-cars-drastically-reduce-demand-for-fossil-fuel-in-californias-fight-against-climate-change/  Several of the actions include, but are not limited to, requiring:

    • Sales of all new passenger vehicles to be zero-emission by 2035 and medium- and heavy-duty vehicles by 2045 for all operations where feasible and by 2035 for drayage trucks.

    • The development of a Just Transition Roadmap by July 15, 2021, and expeditious implementation of the Just Transition Roadmap, consistent with the recommendations in the “Putting California on the High Road: A Jobs and Climate Action Plan for 2030” report pursuant to Assembly Bill 398 (Chapter 135, Statutes of 2017).

    • The identification of near term actions and investment strategies by July 15, 2021, to improve clean transportation, sustainable freight and transit options, while continuing a “fix-it-first” approach to the state’s transportation system.

    • The development of strategies and recommendations by July 15, 2021, to manage and expedite the responsible closure and remediation of former oil extraction sites as the State transitions to a carbon-neutral economy.

    • Regulatory processes be expedited that result in repurposing and transitioning upstream and downstream oil production facilities.  A progress report and action plan is due by July 15, 2021.  

    • The development of strategies to continue the State’s current efforts to reduce the carbon intensity of fuels beyond 2030 with consideration of the full life cycle of carbon.

  • California Climate Investment Framework:  Governor Newsom announced that the Department of Finance has released the California Climate Investment Framework.  According to the announcement, the Framework integrates the climate risk strategies of the state’s three largest pension funds into a statewide approach to sustainable investment going forward.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/09/24/governor-newsom-releases-california-climate-investment-framework/   Among other recommendations, the framework calls for (1) the Governor to create a working group to explore the development of a practical and comprehensive climate-risk disclosure standard; (2) the state to become a signatory to the Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment; and (3) the state pension funds to increase their usage of low-carbon strategies. file:///S:/ajed/Climate%20Change/1%20-%202020%20CLiamte%20Action%20Plan/Climate_Investment_Framework_Final_v9-21-20-600pm%20with%20Highlights.pdf

  • California Climate Action Corps:  Governor Newsom announced the launch of California Climate Action Corps (www.ClimateActionCorps.ca.gov), the country’s first statewide corps of its kind with the mission of empowering Californians to take meaningful action to protect their homes, health and communities against the harshest impacts of climate change.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/09/24/on-california-climate-action-day-governor-newsom-launches-nations-first-statewide-climate-corps/ 

  • Highlights from Climate Week:  Climate Week 2020 runs from September 21 to 25 and nearly all events can be viewed online.  Below are highlights.

    • Walmart Commits to being 100% Carbon Free:  Walmart, the largest retailer in the world, announced during the Opening Ceremony that Walmart will be 100% carbon neutral across its global operations by 2040 – without relying on offsets.  In addition, the company said that it had set a goal to protect, manage or restore at least 50 million acres of land and one million square miles of ocean by 2030.  https://theenergymix.com/2020/09/24/walmart-pledges-offset-free-net-zero-by-2040/

    • Prince of Wales Calls for Marshall-like Plan:  His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales delivered a keynote address at the Opening Ceremony, saying that climate change “is now rapidly becoming a comprehensive catastrophe that will dwarf the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. At this late stage I can see no other way forward but to call for a Marshall-like plan for nature, people and planet.” He went on to add: “we must now put ourselves on a warlike footing, approaching our action from the perspective of a military-style campaign.”  [HRH Prince Charles has long been deeply engaged on sustainable development issues, including Sustainable Markets Initiative and Council, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, in September 2019.]

    • COP26 Calls for 100% Renewable Business Goal:  Alok Sharma, COP26 President and UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, called for businesses to commit to using 100% renewable electricity and to switching corporate fleets to electric through the Climate Group’s RE100 and EV100 initiatives. https://www.there100.org/about-us

    • GE Halts Production of Coal Facilities:  General Electric announced that it will stop building coal-fired power plants so it can focus on renewable energy and other types of power generation. Reporters noted that this is a drastic reversal for a company that acquired the coal-fired turbine manufacturer Alstom for a little less than $10 billion in 2015.  https://www.ge.com/news/press-releases/ge-pursue-exit-new-build-coal-power-market

    • PepsiCo Goes 100% Renewable:  PepsiCo announced it will transition to 100% renewable energy by 2030 across all of its company-owned and -controlled operations.  https://retailleader.com/pepsico-sets-100-renewable-energy-goal

    • 100% Zero Emission Cars and Vans:  Tesco joined a group of now 27 big corporations calling on the UK Government to set a target of 100% zero emission car and van sales by 2030.  https://www.theclimategroup.org/news/tesco-joins-call-uk-government-fast-track-move-zero-emission-cars-and-vans-2030  In addition, Tesco announced that it will be joining the EV100 initiative, which now includes 86 businesses, committed to switching over 4.8 million vehicles across the world to zero emissions and annually reporting on their progress.

    • New Energy Reduction Commitments from Business:  Ten major companies made commitments on smarter energy use, including China’s Changzhou New Wide, a textile manufacturer and supplier to major international brands such as Adidas, Anta, Decathlon, Lululemon, PVH, and Walmart.  These companies are joining 100+ companies who have already made energy reduction/efficiency commitments through the Climate Group’s global EP100 initiative.

    • Divesting from Fossil Fuels, Investing in a Sustainable Future Declaration:  Twelve cities pledged to divest from fossil fuel companies and advocate for greater sustainable investment, as part of their commitment to accelerating a green and just recovery from COVID-19.  These cities include:  Berlin, Bristol, Cape Town, Durban, London, Los Angeles, Milan, New Orleans, New York City, Oslo, Pittsburgh and Vancouver.  http://www.climateaction.org/news/12-major-cities-commit-to-divest-from-fossil-fuel-companies?utm_source=ActiveCampaign&utm_medium=email&utm_content=12+major+cities+commit+to+divest+from+fossil+fuel+companies+-+Climate+Action+News&utm_campaign=CA+%7C+2020+%7C+25+September+%7C+Newsletter&vgo_ee=Yexh4NgoEgSseZnuK%2BeIU5c4a2fxIdruC%2Fpwf3ma%2BGc%3D 

    • Net-Zero Financing:  Morgan Stanley commits to reach Net-Zero financed emissions by 2050.  In addition, Morgan Stanley announced a commitment to taking a leadership role in developing the tools and methodologies needed to measure and manage our carbon-related activities.  Among other actions, Morgan Stanley reported that the firm joined the Steering Committee of the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF).  https://www.morganstanley.com/press-releases/morgan-stanley-announces-commitment-to-reach-net-zero-financed-e

CURRENT GUIDANCE ON COVID-19 AND FIRE RESPONSE AND RECOVERY ACTIONS

  • Blueprint for a Safer Economy:  Businesses can check out the status of the reopening of their county through the Blueprint for a Safer Economy (https://covid19.ca.gov/safer-economy/). This is the state’s four tier reopening plan.  Tier 4 (purple) has the most restrictions and Tier 1 (yellow) has the fewest. 

  • Safely Making Web Platform:  California manufacturers who produce PPE, including face masks and gloves, can advertise their wares on https://www.safelymakingca.org/.  The website is a joint effort by the California Manufacturers and Technology Association (CMTA) and the State of California.  A manufacturer does not have to be a member of CMTA to participate.  To apply, manufacturers should complete this form.  At his September 9, 2020, press conference, Governor Newsom announced that the web platform currently includes 450 California manufacturers.  

  • Individuals and Businesses Impacted by Fires:  The Employment Development Department is accepting Federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance applications for workers, business owners and self-employed individuals who lost their jobs or businesses or had their work hours substantially reduced as a result of the wildfires that began in several California counties on August 14, 2020.  https://www.edd.ca.gov/About_EDD/pdf/news-20-43.pdf   Individuals can receive up to $450 per week in benefits for a maximum period of 27 weeks.  Applications can be submitted through this webpage:  https://www.edd.ca.gov/unemployment/UI_Online.htm

  • SBA Fire Disaster Assistance:  The US Small Business Administration has opened a virtual Business Recovery Center and virtual Disaster Loan Outreach Center.  The centers are available Mondays – Fridays from 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. and can be accessed through this email (FOCWAssistance@sba.gov) or (916) 735-1500.  These services are only available for the California disaster declaration as a result of the wildfires that began Aug. 14, 2020, and not for COVID-19-related assistance.

FEDERAL AND STATE LEGISLATION RELATED TO COVID-19, MARCHES FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE, AND ECONOMIC RECOVERY

DATA, SURVEYS, AND ANALYSES

  • CA Completing US Census:  The US Census Bureau maintains a website displaying information on each state’s progress in completing the 2020 census.  According to the website, as of September 23, California has completed Census forms from 97.5% of all households, with 28.8% of those households reporting through follow-up house-to-house canvassing by official census takers.  California ranked 18th among 50 states in the percentage of households who had responded.  https://2020census.gov/en/response-rates/nrfu.html?utm_campaign=20200920msc20s1ccallnl&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery   The 2020 Census will conclude data collection operations on September 30, 2020. 

  • Small Business Credit Survey:  The Federal Reserve System is conducting its annual Small Business Credit Survey to identify the current challenges small business owners face accessing credit. The survey is for businesses currently in operation, those recently closed, and those about to launch.  All responses are confidential.   www.sffed.us/sbcs2020   In addition to sharing this link within your network, the Federal Reserve System is looking for organizations to become regular survey partners, who will receive opportunities to gain access to data-driven reports about their network.

  • State Unemployment Benefit Numbers Released:  EDD released unemployment insurance data for California for the week ending September 19.  https://www.edd.ca.gov/About_EDD/pdf/news-20-47.pdf Unemployment Benefits include Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PAU).  Among other information, the weekly Unemployment Benefits report stated:

    • 137,016 initial Unemployment Benefit claims were filed for the week ending September 19.

    • Between March 14 and September 19, EDD received 11 million Unemployment Benefit claims.

    • $90 billion has been paid to out-of-work Californians since the start of the pandemic.

  • National Unemployment Data Released:  The US Bureau of Labor Statistics released national unemployment figures for August 2020, showing total US nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.4 million and the unemployment rate fell to 8.4%.  These numbers reflect 13.6 million unemployed people in the US with a labor participation rate of 61.7%.  The largest increase in employment was in the government sector, which accounted for one-fourth of the over-the-month gain in total nonfarm employment.  Among other data, August shows a significant drop in the number of individuals temporarily laid off (decrease of 3.1 million for a total of 6.2 million).  However, the number of individuals who permanently lost jobs increased by 534,000 for a total of 3.4 million.  For comparison, the number of individuals who have permanently lost jobs has risen by 2.1 million since February 2020.  California unemployment for August 2020 was 11.4%, down 2.1% from July 2020.  For yearly comparison, in August 2019, California unemployment was reported as 3.9%.   National data for September 2020 will be released Friday, October 2, 2020, and state-level data for September 2020 will be available on or after October 15.

  • PPP Analysis:  Brookings Institute released its analysis of the federal Paycheck Protection Program.   The analysis is comprised of a series of reports.  Among other findings, their analysis stated:

  • Household Pulse:  The US Census Bureau released information from its Household Pulse Survey based on responses collected September 2 through September 14.  Among other findings, the Household Pulse Survey found:

    • 25.2% of American adults expect someone in their household to experience a loss in employment income in the next 4 weeks

    • 36.4% of adults live in households where at least one adult substituted some or all in-person work for telework because of the COVID-19 pandemic

    • 10.5% of American adults lived in households where there was either sometimes or often not enough to eat in the previous 7 days

    • 7.3% of adults are either not current on their rent or mortgage payment, or have slight or no confidence in making their next payment on time

    • Of adults living in households not current on rent or mortgage, 33.5% report eviction or foreclosure in the next two months is either somewhat or very likely

    • 32.7% of adults live in households where it has been somewhat or very difficult to pay usual household expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic

    • 80.9% of adults in households with post-secondary educational plans had those plans cancelled or changed significantly this fall

  • COVID-19 at 6 Months: Unemployment Remains High for Women and Californians of Color:  The California Budget Project released a report, COVID-19 at 6 Months: Unemployment Remains High for Women and Californians of Color.  Among other findings, the report states:

    • California is still down more jobs than were lost in the Great Recession

    • As of August 2020, about two-thirds of the jobs Californians lost in March and April have not returned

    • All major industry sectors still have fewer jobs than before the COVID-19 recession

    • Unemployment reached 20% or more for Asian, Black, Latinx, and other Californians of color

    • Unemployment remains high at 14% for California women

    • Unemployment rose higher for immigrants in California and remains extremely high

    • Federal policymakers should provide more economic relief (report includes a full list)

GRANTS

  • Veteran Employment Challenge Award:  The US Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) has selected Eightfold.ai, a Mountain View, California-based software solution provider, as the grand prize recipient of its competition to build an application to better match transitioning military service members’ skills with employers’ needs.   https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/vets/vets20200918 

  • Grants Awarded to Combat Human Trafficking:  The US Department of Justice awarded nearly $101 million in funding to combat human trafficking and provide services to trafficking victims in the US.  Over $97.4 million was awarded to state, local, and tribal jurisdictions, service providers and task forces with the remaining $3.5 million being awarded to support research and evaluation on human trafficking.  https://www.ojp.gov/sites/g/files/xyckuh241/files/media/document/ovchumantraffickingfactsheet.pdf

  • Workforce Training Funding Available:  The US Department of Labor announced the availability of $150 million through the H-1B One Workforce Grant Program.  Money can be used for workforce training in middle- to high-skilled H-1B occupations, including information technology, cybersecurity, advanced manufacturing and transportation.  https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/eta/eta20200924-0

FALL IS CONFERENCE TIME

GOOD NEWS ABOUT SMALL BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT FRIENDS

UPDATES ON COVID-19 RESPONSE AND RECOVERY PROGRAMS

  • New UI and PUA Claim Processing is on Hold:  The Employment Development Department (EDD) announced a two-week reset period (September 20 to October 4, 2020) on the processing of new unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, including the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance payments for independent contractors.  The processing hold comes as a result of a report released by a Strike Team deployed in July 2020 to review the EDD’s processes and identify improvements to address the historic claim volumes experienced during the pandemic.  This two-week reset will also allow EDD to reduce UI claim backlog.  The reset does not impact existing claimants from managing their UI Online account.  https://www.edd.ca.gov/Jobs_and_Training/pubs/wsin20-13.pdf

  • COVID-19 Main Street Lending Program

  • The Main Street Lending Program is now accepting submissions of eligible loans to nonprofit organizations, submitted by registered lenders. The Federal Reserve has released a new FAQ for nonprofits:  https://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/mainstreetlending.htm

  • COVID-19 PPP Aggregate-Level Data Update:  The US Small Business Administration released program utilization information for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).  As of August 8, 5.2 million PPP loans have been approved in the US for a total of $525 billion.  In California, 623,360 PPP loans have been approved for a total of $68.6 billion.  This program is closed to new applicants.

  • SBA Weekly Lending Reports:  The US Small Business Administration (SBA) released its weekly lending report for the week ending September 18, 2020.   Information includes race, ethnicity, gender, and veteran participation in the SBA 7(a), 504, and Advantage Loan Programs.  https://www.sba.gov/document/report-2020-weekly-lending-reports

  • COVID-19 EIDL Aggregate-Level Data Update:  The US Small Business Administration released program utilization information for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).  As of September 14, 3.5 million EIDL loans have been approved in the US for a total of $190 billion.  In California, 546,783 EIDL loans have been approved for a total of $33.9 billion.  Link to a PowerPoint displaying data for loan activity through 09/14/2020:  https://www.sba.gov/document/report-covid-19-eidl-loans-report-9-14-20   A new FAQ was issued on September 24, 2020 (https://www.sba.gov/document/support-faq-covid-19-economic-injury-disaster-loan-eidl).

  • CA Small Business Loans:  The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services received updates from the US Small Business Administration on small businesses that are utilizing the two federal disaster loan programs, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan and Paycheck Protection Program (closed to new applicants).

Wildfire - SBA Disaster Assistance
CA Loans (EIDL) Approved (as of 9/25)
9
Dollar Amount of CA Loans (EIDL) Approved (as of 9/25)
$675,000
CA Home Loans Approved (as of 9/25)
98
Dollar Amount of  CA Home Loans Approved (as of 9/25)
$11,476,700
Total Dollars Approved (as of 9/25)
$12,151,700

 

COVID - SBA Disaster Assistance
CA Loans (EIDL) Approved (as of 8/15)
533,876
Dollar Amount of CA Loans (EIDL) Approved (as of 8/15)
$33,022,133,987
CA Loan Advances (EIDL) Approved (as of 7/15)
809,792
Dollar Amount of CA Loan Advances (EIDL) Approved (as of 7/15)
$2,666,662,000
Payment Protection Plan (as of 8/8)
5,212,128
Payment Protection Plan Approved (total) (as of 7/31)
$525,012,201,124
Great Plates Delivered
Meals served as of 9/21
10,722,176
Individuals Served This Week as of 9/21*
48,160
Food Providers Contracted as of 9/21*
755
*Data received from Great Plates Data Portal updated twice per week. 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

FREE WEBINARS

Copyright © 2011 State of California