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New York Forward & COVID-19 Resources for Business

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW (updated Nov 12, 2020)

  • Effective November 13 at 10 p.m., bars, restaurants and gyms, as well as any State Liquor Authority-licensed establishment, must close in-person service from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily.
  • Effective November 13 at 10 p.m., indoor and outdoor gatherings at private residences will be limited to no more than 10 people.
  • New travel guidelines are in effect that allow out-of-state travelers to “test out” of the mandatory 14-day quarantine.
  • A new cluster action initiative is addressing COVID-19 hot spots that have cropped up across the state.
  • Go to New York's COVID Report Card hosted by the Department of Health to find COVID-19 positive case data for every school district in the state.
  • Movie theaters outside of New York City can reopen starting October 23 at 25% capacity with no more than 50 people allowed in front of each screen. Theaters can only open outside of New York City in counties that have COVID-19 positivity rates of less than 2% on a 14-day average and do not have any cluster zones.
  • Ski resorts can reopen with 50 percent indoor capacity and with strict health and safety protocols under state-issued guidance starting Friday, November 6.

New York State Liquor Authority Guidance On COVID-Related Closing Times

New York State Liquor Authority Guidance On Requirement that Licensees With On-Premises Service Privileges Serve Food With Alcoholic Beverages

Governor Cuomo Announces Gyms and Fitness Centers Can Reopen Starting August 24

COVID -19 Travel Advisory

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced new guidelines allowing travelers to New York to “test out” of the mandatory 14-day quarantine. Travelers from states that are contiguous with New York are exempt from the travel advisory; however covered travelers must continue to fill out the Traveler Health Form. Essential workers will continue to be exempt as well. The guidance also applies to international travelers coming from any CDC Level 2 or Level 3 Health Notice country. The new protocol is effective Wednesday, November 4.

NYS Department of Health Emergency Rule Addresses Social distancing Enforcement Measures

The NYS Department of Health has issued an emergency rule, effective Thursday June 9, 2020 that addresses the enforcement of several “social distancing” measures.

The rule imposes strict requirements on businesses, employees, and customers regarding the wearing of face coverings:

  • Any person who is over age two and able to medically tolerate a face covering when in a public place and unable to maintain, or when not maintaining, social distance shall be required to cover their nose and mouth with a mask or face-covering.
  • Any employee who is present in the workplace shall be provided and shall wear a mask or face-covering when in direct contact with customers or members of the public, or when unable to maintain social distance. Businesses must provide, at their expense, such face coverings for their employees.
  • Business operators and building owners, and those authorized on their behalf shall deny admittance to any person who fails to comply with this section and shall require or compel such persons’ removal. Provided, however, that this regulation shall be applied in a manner consistent with the federal American with Disabilities Act, New York State or New York City Human Rights Law, and any other applicable provision of law.
  • The emergency rule requires all businesses and not-for-profit entities to utilize, to the maximum extent possible, any telecommuting or work from home procedures that they can safely utilize – except as may otherwise be permitted by any Executive Order.

A violation of any provision of this rule is subject to all civil and criminal penalties as provided for by law. Individuals who violate the rule are subject to a maximum fine of $1,000 for each violation. For purposes of civil penalties, each day that there is a non-essential gathering or that a business operates in a manner inconsistent with the rule shall constitute a separate violation.

Phase Four Guidelines:

Ulster County and the Mid-Hudson Region have entered into Phase Four. Social gatherings of up to 50 people will be allowed and indoor religious gatherings will be allowed at up to 33% of the indoor site's capacity.

The following industries included in Phase Four are:

  • Higher Education
  • Low-Risk Outdoor Arts & Entertainment
  • Low-Risk Indoor Arts & Entertainment
  • Media Production
  • Professional Sports Competitions With No Fans

Each reopening business must develop a written Safety Plan outlining how its workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. A business may fill out this template to fulfill the requirement, or may develop its own Safety Plan.

Your reopening plan does NOT need to be submitted to a state agency for approval. You DO need to retain a copy of your plan on the premises of the business and affirm with NYS that you have done so. The Plan must be made available to the New York State Department of Health (DOH) or local health or safety authorities in the event of an inspection.

Phase Two Guidelines:

Phase Two includes the following businesses:

  • Essential and Phase II In-Store Retail
  • Vehicle Sales, Leases, and Rentals
  • Retail Rental, Repair, and Cleaning
  • Hair Salons and Barbershops
  • Outdoor and Take-Out/Delivery Food Services
  • Real Estate Services
  • Offices
  • Commercial Building Management

Each reopening business must develop a written Safety Plan outlining how its workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. A business may fill out this template to fulfill the requirement, or may develop its own Safety Plan.

Your reopening plan does NOT need to be submitted to a state agency for approval. You DO need to retain a copy of your plan on the premises of the business and affirm with NYS that you have done so. The Plan must be made available to the New York State Department of Health (DOH) or local health or safety authorities in the event of an inspection.

Phase Three Guidelines:

New York State has issued updated guidelines. Businesses affected include:

  • Restaurants / Food Services
  • Personal Care

Each reopening business must develop a written Safety Plan outlining how its workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. A business may fill out this template to fulfill the requirement, or may develop its own Safety Plan.

Your reopening plan does NOT need to be submitted to a state agency for approval. You DO need to retain a copy of your plan on the premises of the business and affirm with NYS that you have done so. The Plan must be made available to the New York State Department of Health (DOH) or local health or safety authorities in the event of an inspection.

The Main Features of Phase Three are:

  • Limit indoor capacity of no more than 50% of maximum occupancy, exclusive of employees.
  • All indoor and outdoor tables with seating for customers must be separated by a minimum of 6 ft. in all directions.
  • Patrons must wear face coverings at all times, except while seated.
  • Ensure all staff wear face coverings at all times and that they practice hand hygiene and use bare hand barriers.
  • Affirm you have reviewed and understand the state issued industry guidelines, and that you will implement them (Phase Three)
  • Conspicuously post completed safety plans on site.

Personal Care
This guidance applies to non-hair-related personal care businesses and services, including tattoo and piercing facilities, appearance enhancement practitioners, massage therapy, spas, cosmetology, nail specialty, UV and non-UV tanning, or waxing.

New York State Liquor Authority Guidance on Outdoor Expansion of Licensed Premises in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak.

If a bar or restaurant does not currently have a license to serve alcohol outdoors, but wishes to begin outdoor service, they must submit an updated diagram and a short explanation of the proposed serving area to the SLA at temporaryalterations@sla.ny.gov. If a city, town, or village wishes to grant permission for a bar or restaurant within its jurisdiction to operate on municipal land adjacent to the business, they must complete this form.

Questions specific to Ulster County bar and restaurant reopening can be answered by visiting the State Liquor Authority website or by contacting Vincent Bradley, Commissioner of The New York State Liquor Authority at 518-474-3114 or emailing Licensing.Information@sla.ny.gov.

Phase One Guidelines:

  • Construction
  • Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting
  • Retail - (Limited to curbside or in-store pickup or drop off)
  • Manufacturing
  • Wholesale Trade

Each reopening business must develop a written Safety Plan outlining how its workplace will prevent the spread of COVID-19. A business may fill out this template to fulfill the requirement, or may develop its own Safety Plan.

Your reopening plan does NOT need to be submitted to a state agency for approval. You DO need to retain a copy of your plan on the premises of the business and affirm with NYS that you have done so. The Plan must be made available to the New York State Department of Health (DOH) or local health or safety authorities in the event of an inspection.

UPDATED Determination of Essential Businesses

An update to the Executive Order: NYS ESD continues to UPDATE new guidance outlines regarding businesses which are now considered essential. This guidance is subject to change as the State adapts its response to combating COVID-19.

Mayor Steven T. Noble is pleased to announce that the City of Kingston will be instituting a Dining and Retail Outdoor Expansion Program across the City. The program is intended to utilize public areas to create more physical space for outdoor dining and open-air shopping, and in some cases may temporarily close select streets to vehicular traffic.

A short survey for residents and participating business owners opened last week, and has helped to inform this program. To request specific areas for outdoor operations, businesses who wish to participate and will require use of parking stalls, street access or other common public space, must contact the Mayor’s office at rverspoor@kingston-ny.gov or 845-334-3902. Participating businesses will then be sent the City of Kingston’s guidelines and resources packet. This packet will be a step by step guide on how to quickly utilize the sidewalk, parklet or city street to assist your business.

After a review of the required documentation and proposed site plan, the City will provide approval to businesses to operate outdoors through the end of October, pursuant to permission granted from NYS and the State Liquor Authority. Approvals will be processed as received with the expectation that the new, expanded outdoor dining opportunities will be available by the end of next week.

“When we have a sense of how many restaurants and shops are going to participate, and how much space they will need, we will inform the public of potential parking restrictions, possible road closures along with days and times,” said Mayor Noble. “The City of Kingston’s Restaurant and Retail Outdoor Expansion program will help ensure businesses have every resource to operate successfully during the COVID-19 economic recovery. I also think it will be a fun experience and will create more ways to reengage with family, friends and our City this summer.”

The Mid-Hudson region is in Phase 2 of re-opening, which allows for outdoor dining while following COVID-19 guidelines issued by New York State. Any restaurant with a pre-existing permit to operate outdoor dining on its own property does not have to register with the Mayor’s office, as long as the establishment meets all of the guidelines from the New York State Department of Health and the Phase 2 re-opening guidelines.

County Executive Ryan Announces New Resilience Economic Initiative to Recover, Reopen, and Realign Ulster County’s Economy

County Executive Ryan’s Ulster County Resilience Economic initiative will support Ulster County businesses and workers through the crisis and ensure we emerge stronger on the other side. The initiative includes three main lines of effort: Recover, Reopen, and Realign.

Recover

  • Work with the Ulster County Recovery Taskforce to ensure a coordinated and compassionate response to the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 on all workers and families
  • Ulster County Office of Economic Development and the Ulster County Economic Development Alliance (UCEDA) to help businesses navigate federal and state recovery resources
  • Ulster County businesses have already received over $50 million in federal loans

Reopen

  • Industry-specific working groups tasked with helping businesses develop and implement reopen protocols by sector
  • Business mentors to help guide businesses through the process of reopening planning, provide technical assistance for business model adjustment, and deliver any other needed support
  • Ulster County Office of Employment and Training to lead effort to support job seekers and businesses looking to rebuild their workforce

Realign

  • Convene joint meetings of the UCEDA and Workforce Development Board to identify key workforce development needs
  • Ulster 2040 recommendations for county-led investments in targeted growth industries
  • Seek to work closely with the IDA to re-energize Ulster’s economy

As businesses across Ulster County and the Mid-Hudson Region are now re-opening, the NYS Health Department is mandating that businesses post appropriate signage, reminding personnel to adhere to proper hygiene, social distancing rules, appropriate use of PPE and cleaning and disinfecting protocols. Chamber Member FASTSIGNS is offering the signs posted below to any business in our region.

Businesses and Workplaces - Plan, Prepare and Respond

Guidance to plan, prepare, and respond to COVID-19 for businesses and in the workplace.

Governor Cuomo also announced the members of the regional control rooms that will monitor regional metrics during the reopening process. These regional control rooms will monitor the hospitalization rate, death rate, number of new hospitalizations, hospital bed capacity, ICU bed capacity, testing and contact tracing within its region during reopening and alert the state if the region's metrics no longer meet the reopening guidelines and adjust the reopening plan for that region accordingly. Members of the Hudson Valley Regional Council include:

HUDSON VALLEY

  • Regional Captain: Mike Hein, former Ulster County Executive
  • Jonathan Drapkin, President/CEO of Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress
  • Tom Carey, AFL-CIO Westchester-Putnam Central Labor President
  • Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro
  • Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan
  • Sullivan County Manager Joshua Potosek
  • Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell
  • Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus
  • Westchester County Executive George Latimer
  • Rockland County Executive Ed Day
  • City of Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano

Small Business Guidance Loan Resources

Health and government officials are working together to maintain the safety, security, and health of the American people. Small businesses are encouraged to do their part to keep their employees, customers, and themselves healthy.

COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Application

Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE)

Chambers and businesses need to prepare for the impacts of COVID-19 transmission in the United States. Learn more about implementing a series of actions that minimize impact on local communities and support the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) containment strategy.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

The U.S. Chamber has compiled CDC’s coronavirus recommendations for businesses and workers across the country. We continue to encourage American businesses to follow data-based guidance from the CDC and state and local officials.

Small Business Development Center (NYSBDC)

The impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) on society and business activities are difficult to assess and are changing daily. Small businesses need to be resilient and prepared to manage the challenges of the coming weeks and months. Click on the below button for guidance and resources to help business owners adapting to an unpredictable situation.

Central Hudson is pleased to offer our Back to Business funding program in coordination with our banking partners. We are committing up to $1 million in economic development support to provide local small businesses with grants to help pay down new working capital loans taken with participating local banks. In addition to the Back to Business program, we also have a new limited time commercial LED lighting and high-efficiency refrigeration program for small businesses, funding conversions up to $10,000 and most installation can be provided at no cost to the business.

Back to Business Funding Program

Energy Efficiency Program for Small Businesses

New York Forward Loan Fund

New York Forward Loan Fund (NYFLF) is a new economic recovery loan program aimed at supporting New York State small businesses, nonprofits and small landlords as they reopen after the COVID-19 outbreak and NYS on PAUSE.

NYFLF targets the state’s small businesses with 20 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees (90% of all businesses), nonprofits and small landlords that have seen sharp reduction in rental income. The NYFLF is specifically timed to support businesses and organizations as they proceed to reopen and have upfront expenses to comply with guidelines (e.g., inventory, marketing, refitting for new social distancing guidelines) under the New York Forward Plan.

IRS Information for Small Businesses

IRS FAQs for COVID-19 Related Tax Credits for Required Paid Leave Provided by Small and Midsize Businesses.

Requirement of Face Coverings

Interim Guidance on Executive Order 202.16 Requiring Face Coverings for Public and Private Employees Interacting with the Public During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Essential businesses, as well as state and local government agencies and authorities, must procure, fashion, or otherwise obtain face coverings and provide such coverings to employees who directly interact with the public during the course of their work at no-cost to the employee.

Ulster County Government

Get local information, news updates and community resources from the Ulster County Government.

From the Office of NYS Assemblyman Kevin A. Cahill

Click on the below buttons to access Resource Guides and Frequently Asked Questions regarding Health Insurance, Unemployment Insurance, Federal COVID-19 Stimulus Bill and Immigration Issues from the office of Assemblyman Kevin A. Cahill.

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