JEDE COVID-19 Weekly Update - February 9 Edition

MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • California COVID-19 Update:   Below is the most current CalOES status update.  www.covid19.ca.gov

  • Federal Government Covers 100% of Certain Disaster Response Costs:  Governor Newsom issued a statement commending the Biden-Harris Administration for extending the federal cost share to now fully reimburse (100%) California and other states for emergency relief programs and National Guard personnel deployments dating back to the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2021/02/05/governor-newsom-statement-on-increased-federal-support-from-biden-harris-administration-for-covid-19-relief-programs-in-california/  According to the announcement, the following programs are now eligible for full reimbursement under this new policy: “sheltering to protect unhoused Californians, including Project Roomkey; the purchase of personal protective equipment; Great Plates Delivered, which provides meals to seniors; National Guard deployments to support vaccination efforts and food banks; the California Healthcare Workers Program, which provides hotel rooms to doctors, nurses and other critical front-line health care workers for free or at a discount; Housing for the Harvest, which provides safe, temporary isolation spaces for agricultural and farmworkers who test positive or were exposed to the virus; and Project Hope, which provides hotel accommodations to people released from state prison who have a need to quarantine or isolate due to COVID-19 exposure or positive status.”

  • Open Access PPP Loans:  The California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CHCC) in partnership with Prestamos CDFI is accepting Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) applications.  This is great news, as a number of the PPP lenders require the applicant to have a pre-existing relationship with the lender.  https://www.prestamosloans.org/cahcc-ppp/#top  According to the announcement, applying cannot be easier.  Small businesses just complete contact form and a member of the Prestamos/CHCC team will contact them with further instructions to guide the small business through the application process.

  • Governor Holds Small Business Roundtable:  Governor Newsom holds an online roundtable discussion with small businesses and a selection of Assemblymembers and State Senators, including Budget Sub 4 Chair Carrillo and Senate Budget Sub 4 Chair Caballero.  https://www.gov.ca.gov/2021/02/04/governor-newsom-meets-virtually-with-small-business-owners-receiving-support-through-the-first-round-of-californias-small-business-covid-19-relief-grant-program/ In addition to the Governor, other members of the Newsom Administration who participated include Isabel Guzman, Director of California’s Office of the Small Business Advocate, and GO-Biz Director, Dee Dee Myers.  Among other topics, the group discussed California’s Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program, which has awarded approximately $237.5 million in the first round of funding to just over 21,000 small businesses.  

  • Money Market Fund Reforms:  The Securities and Exchange Commission published a request for public comment on potential reform measures to improve the resilience of money market funds as highlighted in a report of the President's Working Group on Financial Markets issued in December 2020.  https://www.sec.gov/news/press-release/2021-25?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery  The public comment period will remain open for 60 days following publication of the comment request in the Federal Register.  Comment can be submitted through this portal:  https://www.sec.gov/cgi-bin/ruling-comments

  • CRA Public Comment Deadline Nears:  The Federal Reserve open a public review period, which closes of February 16, on proposed changes to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). https://www.federalreserve.gov/consumerscommunities/community-reinvestment-act-proposed-rulemaking.htm  According to the announcement, the proposed changes are intended to update the 25-year-old regulation to reflect the current banking landscape.   Fact Sheet:  https://www.federalreserve.gov/newsevents/pressreleases/files/bcreg20200921a1.pdf

  • The Fed Speaks on Racial Disparity:  The US Treasurer Yellen spoke at a roundtable with Vice President Harris regarding the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people of color.  https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy0022   Key participants of the roundtable included members of local Black chambers of commerce from across the US.  An excerpt from the speech: “I’ve been an economist for a long time, and one of the areas where I’ve focused my attention is on the racial disparity in economic outcomes. It was probably because I started studying economics during the Civil Rights Movement. I took my first course around 1963. I was a freshman in college. And if you looked at the economic data back then, the average Black family possessed roughly 15% the wealth of the average white family.  That is more than a 6-to-1 difference, and it is stark. But perhaps it isn’t surprising. Jim Crow laws were still in effect in many places.  What is surprising, however, is that it is now more than half a century later, and that 6-to-1 number has barely budged.  Today, African Americans remain unemployed at roughly twice the rate of white Americans. And that number hasn’t really changed in fifty years either. It’s as close to a constant as you come in economic data.  Indeed, if you somehow transported my freshman economics professor to 2021 – and you only showed him the employment and the wealth numbers – he would have a hard time guessing that the country has passed the Civil Rights Act… or that we’d elected our first Black president… or our first Black Vice President.”

  • Assistance for Transitioning Military Spouses:  The US Department of Labor launched a series of free career workshops to provide employment assistance to transitioning military spouses. https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/vets/vets20210208 According to the announcement, the workshops are intended to help military spouses plan and prepare for their job search in pursuit of their employment goals. Registration is now open:  https://www.veterans.gov/milspouses/events/

  • COVID-19 Deduction for Teachers:  The Internal Revenue Service issued guidance on how eligible educators can calculate their tax deduction for unreimbursed expenses related to COVID-19 protective items, which were purchased to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the classroom. https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/rp-21-15.pdf These items include, but are not limited to, these expenses:  face masks; disinfectant for use against COVID-19; hand soap; hand sanitizer; disposable gloves; tape, paint or chalk to guide social distancing; physical barriers (for example, clear plexiglass); air purifiers; and other items recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to be used for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19.  This deduction was enacted at part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which was signed in December 2020.

California Budget Update

LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD PEOPLE

  • The Governor’s Office of Business & Economic Development is seeking a Regional Business Development Specialist for the Central Coast region. For full position details including Duty Statement and How to Apply, visit: https://calcareers.ca.gov/CalHrPublic/Jobs/JobPosting.aspx?JobControlId=232847

  • The Governor’s Office of Business & Economic Development is seeking a Place-Based Business Development Specialist to be located in Sacramento. For full position details including Duty Statement and How to Apply, visit: https://calcareers.ca.gov/CalHrPublic/Jobs/JobPosting.aspx?JobControlId=232586

  • California Forward is seeking a Director of Public Policy who is excited by the mission of CA FWD, and is thorough, articulate and knowledgeable on a variety of topics including housing, workforce development, energy sustainability, state and local finance policy and other areas. The Director of Policy for CA FWD is a senior position that leads a team of professionals in representing the organization as a vehicle for change in California.  For full position details including Duty Statement and How to Apply, visit:  https://cafwd.org/about-us/jobs/

DATA, SURVEYS, AND ANALYSES

  • January US Employment Data:  US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released national-level employment data for January 2020.  https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm   According to the report, total US nonfarm payroll employment increased by 49,000 jobs in January, reflecting a 6.3% unemployment rate.  In releasing the data, the BLS stated: “In January, notable job gains in professional and business services and in both public and private education were offset by losses in leisure and hospitality, in retail trade, in health care, and in transportation and warehousing.” Unemployment among selected worker groups:  14.8% for Teenagers, 9.2% for Blacks, 8.6% for Hispanics, 6.6% for Asians, 5.7% for Whites.

  • December California Employment Data (most recent):  The Employment Development Department released state-level data for December 2020.  https://www.edd.ca.gov/newsroom/unemployment-december2-2020.htm   California’s unemployment rate was 9.0% in December. Nonfarm payrolls contracted by -52,200 jobs.  According to the announcement, California has regained more than 44% of the 2,615,800 nonfarm jobs that were lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March and April.  Unemployment among Blacks and Latinx were up from the 11% of the prior month, 12.2% and 11.7% respectively.  https://www.labormarketinfo.edd.ca.gov/Publications/Labor-Market-Analysis/calmr.pdf

  • Goods and Services:  The US Census Bureau and the US Bureau of Economic Analysis released that the goods and services deficit was $66.6 billion in December, down $2.4 billion from $69.0 billion in November, revised.   https://www.bea.gov/news/2021/us-international-trade-goods-and-services-december-2020  According to the report, December exports were $190.0 billion, reflecting a $6.2 billion over the prior month.  December imports were up by $3.8 billion from the prior month for a total of $256.6 billion.  For 2020, the goods and services deficit increased $101.9 billion (17.7%) from 2019.

  • Federal Grant Funds in CA:  The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research released its annual report, Summary of Federal Grant Funding to the State of Californiahttps://opr.ca.gov/docs/20210201-2020_Summary_of_Federal_Grant_Funding.pdf  In federal fiscal year 2019, California received over $87 billion in federal grants, including funds to state agencies, tribes, local governments, nonprofits, higher education, and others.

  • California Climate Change Challenge:  Hoyu Chong, Beacon Economics, released a blog, Congrats California! We’ve Met Climate Change Goals Early But Can We Rise To The Challenges Ahead?https://beaconecon.com/blog/environment/congrats-california-climate-change-goals-met-early-but-challenges-ahead/   After walking through several data-backed issues, Chong ends with “In 2021, California policymakers can build on the accomplishments of the past and move even faster towards reaching the state’s GHG emissions goals. Indeed, several opportunities are on the horizon. Governor Newsom’s recently released economic recovery plan includes $1.5 billion over ten years for constructing electric charging stations and subsidizing purchases of zero-emissions vehicles for low-income communities. If California policymakers can approve and expand this funding, it could move the needle towards reaching SB32’s goals and provide the crucial climate, environmental justice, and economic stimulus the state needs.”

  • California Population is Declining:  The Pew Research Institute released a blog which provides a preliminary analysis of 2020 census data. https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2021/01/21/census-estimates-show-population-decline-in-16-states?utm_campaign=governing_stl________&utm_source=twitter_states&utm_medium=social&utm_content=statelinearticle_general____map_&utm_term=___datapoint   Among other findings and analysis, the blog discusses the 16 states that lost populations between 2019 and 2020, including California, which lost a little more than 69,500 residents.  “Some states such as California and Florida have their own estimates with higher numbers—California estimates its population at more than 400,000 higher than the new Census Bureau estimates, putting it much closer to the 500,000 it would need to keep the jeopardized congressional seat.”

  • UC Economic Contributions:  Beacon Economic released a report, commissioned by the University of California, which assesses the economic impact of the UC system in 2018-19.  https://universityofcalifornia.edu/sites/default/files/economic-impact-report-2021.pdf  Research found that the UC contributes $82 billion annually to the state’s economic output. “In addition … the study found that the university provides one out of every 45 jobs in the state, and for every dollar invested in the university, the state earns $21 in economic output and $10 in labor income.” UC employs over 500,000 California residents, making it the largest employer in the state.”

  • Small Business Credit Survey:  The Fed Small Business issued a report, 2021 Report on Employer Firms.  https://www.fedsmallbusiness.org/survey/2021/report-on-employer-firms  Key findings include:  Small businesses continue to face significant challenges amid the COVID-19 pandemic, including weak demand, heightened expenses, and limited credit availability. Nearly one-third of firms say they’re unlikely to survive without additional government aid until sales recover.  The Fed Small Business is a source of small business research and analysis by the 12 Reserve Banks of the Federal Reserve System.

  • Great Plates Delivered:  The Great Plates Delivered program provides three meals a day to qualifying seniors.  FEMA granted a 30-day extension to allow the program to continue to March 8, 2021.  Interested restaurants and food providers are encouraged to fill out this form: https://state-of-california-agency.forms.fm/great-plates-delivered-food-provider-interest-form/forms/7917   

Great Plates Delivered (2/08)
Meals served as of 2/04
25,075,757
Individuals Served This Week
38,995
Food Providers Contracted
643
Data received from Great Plates Data Portal updated on Sundays.
 
 
 

 

 

 

GRANTS

  • California Farm to School Incubator Grant Program:  The California Department of Food and Agriculture’s (CDFA) 2021 California Farm to School Incubator Grant Program will award competitive grants to support innovative local and regional farm to school projects. https://www.grants.ca.gov/grants/2021-california-farm-to-school-incubator-grant-program/  CDFA is looking to support programs that promote innovation in nutrition education, sustainable production and procurement, and high-quality student experience. Track 1: The California Farm to School Innovation Grant offers $20,000 - $500,000 per project. Track 2: The California Farm to School Regional Partnerships Grant offers $10,000 - $250,000 per project.  Deadline:  February 16, 2021.

  • Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Safety Training Program – Vet Focus:  The US Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced the availability of 10 awards of $200,000 each under its Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Safety Training (CMVOST) Program .  https://www.grantsolutions.gov/gs/preaward/previewPublicAnnouncement.do?id=91862  Eligible applicants include: state governments, small businesses, special district governments, Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized), nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, county governments, profit organizations, public and public and private institutions of higher education, city or township governments, among others.  All applications must support the purpose of the CMVOST Program, which is i) to help reduce the severity and number of crashes involving commercial motor vehicles on US roads by expanding the number of commercial drivers possessing enhanced operator safety training, and ii) to assist current or former members of the US Armed Forces and family members to obtain commercial driver licenses. The deadline for applicants is March 15 at 2:00pm.

CURRENT GUIDANCE ON STATE COVID-19 AND RECOVERY ACTIONS

[This is a “quick-source” section that includes new and previously provided information.]

GUIDANCE ON PUA AND ECONOMIC IMPACT PAYMENTS

  • State Unemployment Benefit Data:  The Employment Development Department (EDD) released new unemployment insurance data for California during the week ending January 30, 2021.  https://www.edd.ca.gov/newsroom.htm   Among other information, EDD reports the following:

    • 51,777 initial Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PAU) claims were filed during the report period.

    • Over 10.7 million initial unemployment benefit claims have been filed with EDD between March 14 and the close of the report period.

    • $118 billion has been paid to out-of-work Californians since the start of the pandemic. 

  • Tracking UI Benefits:  The California Employment Development Department (EDD) launched identity verification technology to help address the backlog of unprocessed unemployment benefit applications, including the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. On February 4, 2021, EDD released this report on the status of addressing the backlog:  https://www.edd.ca.gov/About_EDD/pdf/CUIC_337_Legislative_Report_020521.pdf  Progress in eliminating the backlog are also tracked through these two data dashboards:

    • Unemployment Initial Claims Backlog Dashboard:  As of February 3, 2021, 985, 169 individuals have been waiting more than 21 days for an initial payment or to be notified that they do not qualify for benefits.

    • Unemployment Continued Claims Backlog Dashboard:  As of February 2, 2021, 43, 515 individuals received at least one payment and are now waiting more than 21 days for further processing of payment or disqualification in this week-by-week eligibility-based program.

  • Update on Phase 2 of Extended PUA/PEUC Benefits:  The California Employment Development Department (EDD) announced their intention to begin notifying impacted individuals that phase two of the Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) extension is coming and to look for the chance to start certifying for benefits by March 7, 2021. https://edd.ca.gov/About_EDD/pdf/news-21-08.pdf This announcement applies to PUA and PEUC recipients who exhausted their benefits prior to the end of the CARES Act on December 26, 2020.  Notices will be provided through emails, texts, and mailed and will include specifies of how they can apply for the new additional up to 11 weeks of benefits.

  • Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation:  The US Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration issued new and updated guidance to states on the implementation of the unemployment insurance programs included contained in the Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act of 2020, which is part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021:

    • Initial overarching guidance is issued to states regarding a range of unemployment insurance programs, including the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, which provides UI benefits to individuals who are not generally eligible for traditional unemployment benefits, including gig workers.    https://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/corr_doc.cfm?DOCN=3831

    • Updated guidance is released for the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) and Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC) programshttps://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/eta/eta20210105 The initial FPUC program provided $600 a week in supplemental compensation and expired July 31, 2020. The FPUC reauthorization provides $300 per week beginning after December 26, 2020, and ending on or before March 14, 2021. According to the announcement, the FPUC is not payable during the gap in authorization, that is, weeks of unemployment ending after July 31, 2020, through weeks of unemployment ending on or before December 26, 2020.   Guidance:  https://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/corr_doc.cfm?docn=6122

    • California’s Implementation of these New Federal Guidelineshttps://www.edd.ca.gov/About_EDD/pdf/news-20-70.pdf

  • Look for Economic Impact Payments in the Mail:  The IRS began issuing the second round of EIPs through direct deposit on December 29, followed by the mailing of paper checks. According to the January 7 announcement, individuals who do not receive a direct deposit should watch their mail for either a paper check or a prepaid debit card.  https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/treasury-issues-millions-of-second-economic-impact-payments-by-debit-card

STATUS REPORTS ON SMALL BUSINESS ACCESS TO CAPITAL 

[This is a “quick-source” section that includes new and previously provided information.]
 
PPP Applicant
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Applicant
COVID-19 EIDL Applicant
PPP Recipient
First Draw PPP borrowers may be eligible to apply for Second Draw PPP loans
May apply for SVOG if received a PPP loan prior to 12/27/20
May apply for EIDL; PPP and EIDL can’t be used for the same purpose/costs
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Recipient
Not eligible to apply for PPP loan
May be eligible to receive a supplemental SVOG award
May apply for EIDL; SVOG and EIDL can’t be used for the same purpose/costs
COVID -19 EIDL Recipient
May apply for PPP; EIDL and PPP can’t be used for the same purpose/costs
May apply for SVOG; EIDL and SVOG can’t be used for the same purpose/costs
The same business cannot apply for more than one EIDL
(4558-DR-CA) Wildfire - SBA Disaster Assistance (2/08)
CA Loans (EIDL) Approved
55
Dollar Amount of CA Loans (EIDL) Approved      
$4,792,200
CA Home Loans Approved
451
Dollar Amount of CA Home Loans Approved
$54,100,400
Total Dollars Approved
$58,892,600

 

(4569-DR-CA) Wildfire - SBA Disaster Assistance (2/08)
CA Loans (EIDL) Approved
9
Dollar Amount of CA Loans (EIDL) Approved      
$711,900
CA Home Loans Approved
138
Dollar Amount of CA Home Loans Approved
$16,190,100
Total Dollars Approved

$16,902,000

  • Small Business Disaster Loan Guarantee Program:  The Small Business Finance Center at the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank administers a credit enhancement (loan guarantee) as a way to encourage traditional and mission-driven lenders to loan money to small businesses who have been impacted by a disaster.  https://ibank.ca.gov/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/JLBC-1.29.2021-Website.pdf    Below is the most recent program activity.

State Small Business Disaster Loan Guarantee Program (January 29, 2021)
 
Conditionally Approved
Loan Amount
Guarantee Amount
Amount Encumbered
Employees
Total
1178  
$46,629,998   
$44,130,482
$22,065,241
5986
The IBank provides the Joint Legislative Budget Committee an update monthly.

FREE WEBINARS

JEDE maintains a list of upcoming and on-demand webinars on our website.  Upcoming webinars are listed here (https://ajed.assembly.ca.gov/content/free-webinars) and on-demand webinars can be found at https://ajed.assembly.ca.gov/content/demand-webinars-available-24-7.  These webinars cover a range of topics, including federal disaster programs, marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic, and accessing international markets.

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