North Dakota coronavirus news, April 24: Project aims to help small business

North Dakota coronavirus news, April 24: Project aims to help small business

From the North Dakota coronavirus news series
Coronavirus need to know

The latest North Dakota coronavirus news: Small businesses, farm aid and more.

Help for small business

North Dakota Small Business Development Centers have launched an effort to help small businesses statewide weather the coronavirus pandemic. 

The goal of the 4R Project -- Recover, Reopen, Reinvent, (be) Resilient -- is to help small businesses get “back to business,” the University of North Dakota-based organization said.

The project will provide business advising, training and education resources.

“Small businesses really are the heart of each of our communities, they make up the majority of business entities in our state, and they are the foundation of our state’s economy,” Interim State Director Tiffany Ford said. “Our communities will not survive and thrive if we do not support the small businesses that have built our main streets and continue to offer necessary products, services and employment.”

For more information go to: https://ndsbdc.org/business_continuity.html.

Aid for farm businesses

Congress has amended the CARES Act economic rescue package to enable agricultural businesses with 500 or fewer employees to participate in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.

The bill includes an additional $60 billion for the program, according to the North Dakota Department of Agriculture.

“Despite economic setbacks, our farmers and ranchers are continuing to produce food and feed during this health crisis,” state Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said. “Allowing small agricultural businesses to access EIDL grants and loans is one way to help support them and sustain their businesses.”

The program will provide low-interest loans and $10,000 emergency grants administered by SBA. Agriculture businesses will need to show they have been affected by the economic downturn caused by COVID-19. They should go to the SBA website at https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/coronavirus-relief-options/economic-injury-disaster-loan-emergency-advance to find out how to apply.

Health website updates

The North Dakota Department of Health has updated its coronavirus website to improve navigation and provide new resources. 

The website is at: https://www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus.

The Feeling Unwell? section previously linked directly to the state’s Risk Assessment but is now directed to a page focused on resources for people who are ill or suspect they might be ill.

The Protect Yourself & Others page content is focused solely on prevention. Essential worker exposure guidance and travel requirements are now located on this page.

The Health Care Provider page now includes licensure, employment and volunteer opportunities, lab resources and a link to a new page on the state’s medical cache.

The State Health Officer Orders section is now on the site’s homepage.

A new Communications Resources section includes links to a Glossary of Terms, alternate language resources and daily press conference recordings. 

North Dakota virus numbers

North Dakota has 748 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 68 in Burleigh County and 23 in Morton County. There have been 285 recoveries and 15 deaths. A total of 67 people have been hospitalized; 17 remain so. State and private labs have conducted 17,449 tests, with 16,701 coming back negative.

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