Edition for Monday, May 11, 2020
To view this Daily Impact online, click here.
your Daily Impact newsletter!
As a valued member of
the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, we plan to stay in touch with you every
afternoon, through emails like this one and on Facebook and Twitter, until the pandemic passes. We
intend to provide you with the latest state and federal information, as well
as highlighting the creativity and innovation that is occuring here in Maine
during this unpredictable and rapidly changing time. To assist you in
navigating the uncertainties ahead, we have created a diverse and
comprehensive collection of web-based resources to help you take care of yourself and your family, your employees, your business, and your community.
Do you have a question? ASK THE EXPERTS.
We are here to
help in any way we can!
Did You Miss the Conversation on "Maine Calling" Today?
hope you were able to tune in this afternoon, as Maine Calling host Jennifer Rooks discussed the reopening of Maine's economy with Dana
Connors, president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, and Heather
Johnson, commissioner of the Maine Department of Economic and Community
Development. If you missed it this afternoon, the segment will be rebroadcast at 7:00 p.m. tonight online
through Maine Public's website or on
one of their statewide stations, and
it's archived on the Chamber's YouTube channel.
More Than 20,000 Mainers Have
Filed Jobless Claims Under Expanded Eligibility Program
Today, the Portland Press Herald reported that more
than 20,000 Mainers have applied for jobless benefits under a federal
eligibility expansion that allows benefits to be paid to unemployed contractors,
self-employed workers and others normally ineligible. The state Department of
Labor issued a news release Monday saying that among the more than 20,000
Mainers who have been enrolled in Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
since the federal program was implemented May 1 in Maine, roughly
15,400 already have received a benefit payment. The program provides
benefits to those not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits, such
as workers who are self-employed or do not have sufficient earnings, the
"In Thursday, April 30, I made the announcement that we would begin accepting PUA applications the next day, and that PUA claimants whose claims did not require further review would begin receiving their benefits within seven days of filing their initial claim and first weekly certification," state Labor Commissioner Laura Fortman said in the release. "I am pleased that a week later, thousands of Mainers who were not eligible for traditional state unemployment are receiving these essential funds to help support themselves and their families."
Loan Forgiveness Under The
PPP And SBA EIDL Programs: 10 Things Small Businesses Need To Know
Today, an article in Forbes reported that, if you were one
of the lucky businesses to receive a Paycheck
Protection Program (PPP) loan as provided under the CARES (Coronavirus
Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act, you
currently have eight weeks to use the funds appropriately to meet the
criteria for loan forgiveness or face repayment. There is still some PPP
money available from Round 2 of Congressional relief, so if you haven't yet applied
and still need the money, do so
immediately. There was approximately $90 billion remaining as of May 6,
largely because most loans in this second round have been much smaller than
in Round 1 and many larger companies have returned their loans.
In addition, the regulations
around both the PPP loan program and the Economic
Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program have been changing constantly since
the CARES Act was passed and will likely continue to do so. It is important
to track these regulations closely. Already, leading trade associations
including the American Bankers Association, the Consumer Bankers Association,
and the Independent Community Bankers Association have written to Treasury
Secretary Steven Mnuchin asking for changes to the PPP, mainly around the
criteria for forgiveness.
Collins, King Announce
Nearly $5 Million to Expand COVID-19 Testing in Maine
U.S. Senators Susan Collins
and Angus King announced that 18
health centers throughout Maine have been awarded a total of $4,732,797
to purchase, administer, and expand capacity for COVID-19 testing. This
investment in Maine's health centers was included in the $480 billion
bipartisan agreement that was signed into law last month, which included $25
billion for COVID-19 testing efforts.
"Community health centers are the backbone of Maine's rural health care system, and they have been instrumental in helping to protect Mainers' health during the current public health crisis," said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement. "Expanded testing is crucial for our ability to ultimately reopen our society and to give Mainers the confidence to resume their daily lives. This important funding will be used to increase walk-up and drive-up testing as well as purchase the PPE necessary to help protect those on the front lines."
King, Colleagues Introduce
Bipartisan Bill to Provide States with Greater Flexibility with Coronavirus
U.S. Senator Angus King joined
a bipartisan group of Senators to introduce the Coronavirus Relief Fund
Flexibility Act, legislation that would allow the federal
relief funds provided to states and local governments in the Coronavirus
Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to be used to replace revenue
shortfalls resulting from the pandemic. The legislation would apply
retroactively to the enactment of the CARES Act, and addresses the fact that
the decline of economic activity also has had a negative effect on state tax
"As a former governor, I know just how vital state and local government services are to communities across the country, especially at this time: these are the people dealing directly with the pandemic's health threats or processing much-needed economic benefits," said Senator King. "The pandemic's economic fallout has drastically reduced tax revenue for state and local government, creating unexpected deficits and leaving these governments with the choice of raising taxes or firing essential personnel; neither of these options is acceptable. That is why the federal government must provide relief to ensure communities have the resources they need to weather this pandemic."
UMaine Team Has Created A
Statewide Production Hub For Making Critically Needed PPE
According to a recent Mainebiz article, a team put together
by the University of Maine System to address
the shortage of personal protective equipment for health care workers has
facilitated production of hospital-grade hand sanitizer, face shields and
intubation boxes. Assembled in late March, the team has called on
manufacturers, distilleries and breweries to help meet health care needs. As
of late April, production has included 2,800 gallons of hand sanitizer,
distributed to 51 hospitals and other health-related facilities; hundreds of
intubation boxes and hundreds of thousands of face shields.
The team operates under the
Maine Emergency Management Agency and includes UMaine, the Maine Department
of Economic and Community Development, Maine Manufacturing Extension
Partnership, MaineHealth, St. Joseph Hospital, Northern Light Health,
Manufacturers Association of Maine and Maine Procurement Technical Assistance
Center. Initially focusing on hospital-grade hand sanitizer, UMaine's Process
Development Center and chemical and biomedical engineering faculty used
existing supplies and Food and Drug Administration guidelines to produce 25
Use the Maine State Chamber's blog and Daily
Impact to tell your story!
Numerous Maine companies are stepping up or pivoting nimbly,
as Maine people resourcefully address the challenges of this pandemic. Share
your perspective and experience with us and with the rest of the business
community. How are you facing and overcoming the challenges posed by this
pandemic? What are you and your employees doing in this dramatically
different economy? Tell us about the innovations your company or employees
are making or ways you have adapted your company to meet your customers'
Each blog entry should
be 300 to 500 words. Join us in creating a written history of the business
community's resilience and innovation during this extraordinary time. Please submit your entries to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information
or questions, please contact Mark Ellis by emailing email@example.com or by calling (207)
623-4568, ext. 109.
Maine State Chamber Presents Free Wednesday Webinar Series
SERIES SPONSORS: Bangor Savings Bank,
Central Maine Power Company,
Registration or general
questions can be directed to Angela Arno, director of programs and events for
the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or
calling (207) 623-4568, ext. 104.
May 13 | Starting at 11:00 a.m.
RECENT STATE AND FEDERAL TAX CHANGES
This webinar will focus on
federal tax changes contained in the CARES Act and changes made at the state
level that provide support for businesses during this pandemic. Additional
topics also include a look at the ever-changing landscape at the federal level
for additional stimulus funds and what those changes might look like.
Register here | Sponsored by Pierce Atwood and WIPFLi,
A Virtual Update
Maine State Chamber of Commerce, together with local and regional chambers of
commerce, invites you to our Regional Breakfast Meetings, held virtually on
Zoom. As a local business leader, your valuable insight is instrumental to
this open dialogue about issues that affect your business, your community and
your state. We need your expertise and input to make recommendations and to
identify opportunities for moving Maine's economic future in a positive
attending one of our annual statewide breakfast series meetings is an ideal
way for you, the Maine business leader, to interact with business associates,
new and prospective Maine State Chamber members, and state representatives in
a relaxed setting. This year, due to the COVID-19 situation, we will be
hosting this event online as a coffee hour from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. - so
grab a cup of coffee and join the conversation from the relaxation of your
Monday, May 18
Tuesday, May 19
Thursday, May 21
with the Bangor Region
Chamber of Commerce
Thursday, May 28
UNSUBSCRIBE, CLICK HERE.
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