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BuildOUT California is honored to work in collaboration with California Governor Gavin Newsom’s Office of Business and Economic Development (Go-Biz) and in particular Ms. Isabel Guzman, Director of the Office of the Small Business Advocate and her Deputy Director, Ms. Esther Morales on the State’s response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Below is a comprehensive roster of information, resources and tutorials developed by Go-Biz and the Office of the Small Business Advocate. We encourage you to review and return frequently for current information as it relates to California’s ‘re-opening’ and important health protocols. Please share the link to this information with your colleagues in the LGBT, and allied, business community. Remember, we are all in this together and it is going to take a measured response over the long-term to recover from this historic pandemic.


Learn more about specific topics. Program Impact Videos provide a shorter and deeper dive into funding opportunities during the COVID-19 pandemic.



Connect with GO-Biz, and other agency leads, every Thursday as we explore resources and opportunities to meet this moment.

People with Masks Shop Safe Shop Local logo



Calling ALL Californians: #ShopSafeShopLocal Campaign Launches!


Local has taken on a new meaning and all California’s small businesses need our collective help now more than ever. Supporting nearby stores, business owners, and local employees, as they modify operations to slow the spread of COVID-19, is an essential commitment to our community.


BuildOUT California is proud to join Governor Gavin Newsom, our business colleagues throughout the Golden State and the LGBTQ/Allied Communities to support the California: Shop Safe and Shop Local Campaign.  #CallingALLCalifornians #ShopSafeShopLocal



CA Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank) Finance Programs


  • The State of California is allocating $50 million to the Small Business Finance Center at California’s IBank to mitigate barriers to capital for those small businesses (1-750 employees) that may not qualify for federal funds (including businesses in low-wealth and immigrant communities). The $50 million allocation will be used to recapitalize the IBank Small Business Loan Guarantee Program.

    Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program: This disaster program provides guarantees for loans of up to $50,000 for small business borrowers in declared disaster areas.

  • To contact IBank use email found HERE

California Capital Access Program (CalCAP) (1-500 employees)


CalOSBA - Small Business Assistance & Resources


  • California’s network of small business centers help businesses figure out which loans are best for them, develop resiliency strategies, and find other resources. CLICK HERE to find the center nearest you.

  • If you need to talk to a specialist in GO-Biz’s Office of the Small Business Advocate directly, please contact the team.

California Entrepreneurship Task Force

  • The California Entrepreneurship Task Force has launched a series of Rapid Response Virtual Sessions to engage with fellow small business owners and entrepreneurs across our state. More details HERE.

External Partner Resources


  • Connect with advisors in your local community through our partner centers.

  • Get started and determine which financial relief program you may be eligible for through the U.S. Digital Response free tool, here.

  • Find out about training and other inspirational resources at California Entrepreneurship Task Force member Nely Galán’s Becoming Self Made site.

  • Click here for a list of free or discounted technology tools for small businesses.

  • Hello Alice has a dedicated site of public, private, state and national resources at, including emergency $10,000 grants and a community to help you. For a growth and resiliency grant, click on Business For All here.

  • Explore crowd-funded 0% interest loans of up to $15,000, and access a grace period of up to 6 months for greater financial flexibility, check out Kiva.

  • Check to get Small Business Majority’s daily updates on funding opportunities, policy developments and educational webinars.

  • Visit a virtual office hour with California Small Enterprise Task Force (CASE Force) to access live support from lawyers and financial professionals to locate resources for small businesses.



On March 19, Governor Gavin Newsom issued a stay at home order to protect the health and well-being of all Californians and to establish consistency across the state in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. People can spread the virus even if they never have symptoms. Stay home except for essential needs. If you go out, stay 6 feet away from others and wear a cloth face covering.

Is my business considered essential or non-essential?


  • Please see the list of Essential Infrastructure Workers (PDF).
    —If your business is on the list of exempt sectors, it may still operate.
    —This list is subject to updates.

  • Your city or county may have additional guidance. Please check with your local government.

My business is not classified as essential. What should I do?


  • Contact GO-Biz with questions, the team can help you.

  • Follow the stay at home order issued by Governor Newsom.

  • Review the financial, technical, and workforce assistance resources on this page.

My business offers a product or service that can help during this crisis. Who should I contact?

  • Visit the Covid 19 Supplies website where you can describe your business, the product or service, and other important details.



Resources for employers and workers can be found at the California Department of Labor and Workforce Agency – Coronavirus Resources website.

Summary of programs for workers:

  • Paid Sick Leave

  • Disability and Unemployment Insurance

  • Paid Family Leave

  • Workers Compensation

Employer resources:

  • Workplace Health and Safety Guidelines

  • Reduced Work Hours

  • Potential Closure or Layoffs

  • California WARN

  • Tax Assistance

  • Guidance from the Alcoholic Beverage Control


State and federal tax filing deadlines have been extended. As shared by the State Franchise Tax Board, tax file and pay deadlines have been extended to July 15, 2020.



Resources are available throughout California for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

U.S. Small Business Administration Guidance and Resources


Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): The PPP is a loan program for small businesses, self-employed, independent contractors, and nonprofits with max 500 employees, and it is intended to keep workers paid and employed. The loan amount is calculated on payroll expense, max amount $10 million, and at a rate of 1% up to 2 years. The loan is forgivable if payroll is maintained and only on allowable expenses which include payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent, and utilities – and at least 75% has to be for payroll. You may rehire to apply, all before June 30, 2020; however, we encourage you to submit your application now. Apply directly through a lender. See details at, and find a lender to contact asap, HERE.

On May 17, the SBA and Treasury released the Paycheck Protection Program’s Loan Forgiveness Application. The form and instructions inform borrowers how to apply for forgiveness of their PPP loans. Once your business is ready to pursue loan forgiveness, after funds have been expended, please review the Loan Forgiveness Application and consult with one of our centers, or your accountant, for assistance.


Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and Advance: As of May 4, the U.S. SBA will accept new applications from U.S. agricultural businesses, and will continue to process EIDL Loan and Advance applications (from all businesses) that are already in the queue on a first come, first-served basis. Agricultural businesses are those “businesses engaged in the production of food and fiber, ranching, and raising of livestock, aquaculture, and all other farming and agricultural related industries.” If you are an agricultural business or believe your business qualifies under this definition, you are encouraged to apply. Read more HERE.

EIDL is a direct loan for up to $2 million at a rate of 3.75% for small businesses and 2.75% for nonprofits. Applicants can get an Advance of up to $10,000 upon request within days of a successful application – the advance does not have to be repaid. You must apply directly with the SBA, HERE. SBA Customer Service Line: 1-800-659-2955 / 1-800-877-8339 (TTY), or by email, HERE.

Small Business Debt Relief – if you are a current borrower under SBA 7(a), 504 loan program or a micro-loan, you are eligible for debt relief and SBA will cover all loan payments for 6 months. Click HERE for more information.


For helpful FAQs, click HERE.

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