COVID-19 Small Business Relief Programs

Updated: May 26, 20203, 2020 @ 10:37 a.m.

We at the Old Town Chamber of Commerce are focused on offering you, our business members, support during these unique times. Our goal is to connect you to the resources you need as they become available.

Guide to Reopening


The State approved San Diego County to allow restaurants to have dine-in customers with modifications. Food businesses will need to review the guidance below and complete the San Diego Restaurant Operating Protocol before reopening.

San Diego Safe Onsite Dining Plan – Review guidance for implementing key prevention measures for COVID-19.

San Diego Restaurant Operating Protocol – Fill this form out, print and post at a public entrance. Implement all mandatory measures.

Guidance for Food Facility Re-Openings  – Guidance checklist to help you with re-opening.

San Diego Safe Dining Posters – Print and display these posters at all entrances to the facility.

State Guidance for Dine-in Restaurants – Review guidance for additional optional measures that can be implemented to protect against COVID-19.
Guidance for Reopening Buildings After Prolonged Shutdown or Reduced Operation

  • The temporary shutdown or reduced operation of a building and reductions in normal water use can create hazards for returning occupants. Two potential microbial hazards that should be considered prior to reopening after a period of building inactivity are mold and Legionella (the cause of Legionnaires’ disease). For information on recommended steps to minimize mold and Legionella risk during and after prolonged shutdown, click here.

Restoring Water Quality in Building for Reopening (PDF)

  • EPA recommends that building owners, building managers, and businesses take steps to flush the building’s plumbing before reopening

Cleaning and Disinfecting Areas

Are you planning to reopen?

Let us know!

Old Town Chamber of Commerce will be assisting with promoting the reopening of Old Town. If you are opening please let us know the details.

  • What are your hours?
  • Will you be offering dine-in or physical shopping?
  • Will you be offering take-out, delivery or curbside service?
  • Are you offering any specials?
  • Provide your social media handles and website for reference

There will be more information to follow on our Social Media plan as we gather information from you.

Email Us

Below is information that will help you apply for any and all of the Recovery Relief that is made available to help get your business up and running again.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

Be Prepared

What you will need to apply for assistance:

• Last Years’ Business’s Tax Returns (Have 3 Years Handy)
• Last Years’ Business Monthly Sales Data
• Last Years’ Monthly or Quarterly Payroll Details (+Payroll Taxes)
• List of Your Business Creditors and How Much You Owe
• List of Your Businesses Monthly Expenses
• Personal Financial Statement (Personal Assets & Liabilities)

Federal CARES Act Applications Open Today

California Relief Efforts Announced Yesterday (April 2nd)

  • California Department of Tax and Free Administration (CDTFA) will allow small business taxpayers to enter into 12-month interest-free payment plans for up to $50,000 of sales and use tax liability. This offers what is effectively an immediate interest-free loan to small businesses, providing a bridge until they can get relief from the SBA or their businesses can get back on their feet. This extends beyond the previous executive order that all small businesses will have an additional three months to file returns and pay taxes administered by the department. Additionally, all businesses will have an extra 60 days to file claims for refund from CDTFA or to appeal a CDTFA decision to the Office of Tax Appeals.

CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program
Applications open today, April 3rd! Applications are available through the SBA or your own bank. If you have not already done so please contact your lender today for more information and prepare your application or visit the SBA website The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. All businesses, including non-profits, Veterans organizations, Tribal concerns, sole proprietorship, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors, with 500 or fewer employees are eligible. This is a 100% guaranteed loan up to $10 million for employers who maintain payroll. You can hire back employees that have already been laid off.

LISC has launched an online process for small businesses to submit applications for grants Applications will be reviewed and then entered into a lottery.

Who is eligible?
LISC will use the Verizon funding to provide grants to businesses facing immediate financial pressure because of COVID-19—especially entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises in historically underserved communities who don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital.

What it can be used for?

  • Paying rent and utilities
  • Meeting payroll
  • Paying outstanding debt to vendors
  • Other immediate operational costs

How do I apply?
Because of the urgency of the crisis, the application process opens Wednesday, April 1, with the first round of applications closing Saturday, April 4 at 8:59pm (PST).

Click HERE to apply

Business Relief and Support

Economic Assistance for San Diego Businesses Affected by COVID-19

On Wednesday, March 25th, City Council Approved a Small Business Relief Fund to ensure the resiliency of local businesses and assist in job retention, the fund will provide grants and forgivable or low- to zero-interest-rate loans to eligible small businesses for working capital.

Applications will be available Tomorrow (Friday, March 27th) at 5:00pm.

Use the time until then to become familiar with the relief funds and have all of your documentation ready (see below).

Contact our Executive Director, Sunny Lee with any questions you may have. We are here to offer any assistance to get your business opened and thriving again.

Email Sunny or call 480-621-0507

The SDBC is available for business counseling at this time you can click HERE to sign up

Businesses are advised to reach out to their nearest Small Business Development Center (SBDC), which has developed the Small Business Survival Resources Guide to help business owners navigate through the chaos COVID-19 is having on our communities. Download it here.

SBDC can help with applying for relief, guiding you through available resources and assisting with cash flow concerns, supply-chain interruptions, workforce capacity, insurance coverage and more–all at no cost. To register for free SDBC one-on-one business counseling


  • U.S. Small Business Administration:
    • Disaster Loan Program: low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters.
    • Economic Injury Disaster Loans: The United States Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low interest loans up to $2 million for small businesses, nonprofits of any size, small agricultural cooperatives, and small aquaculture enterprises. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75%. Loan repayment terms can last as long as 30 years. The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.  The loan does not replace lost revenue, profits or fund expansions.
  • FEMA: Businesses can begin applying for FEMA Disaster Assistance while awaiting a disaster declaration to release the funds.


  • State Treasurer’s Office:
    • California Capital Access Program (CalCAP): The California Capital Access Program for Small Business encourages banks and other financial institutions to make loans to small businesses that have difficulty obtaining financing. If you own a small business and need a loan for start-up, expansion or working capital, you may receive more favorable loan terms from a lender if your loan is enrolled in the CalCAP Loan Loss Reserve Program. This program helps communities by providing financing to businesses that create jobs and improve the economy. CalCAP is a loan loss reserve program which may provide up to 100% coverage on losses as a result of certain loan defaults. With CalCAP portfolio support, a lender may be more comfortable underwriting small business loans.
  • Small Business Finance Center: The Small Business Finance Center (SBFC) partners with Financial Development Corporations to provide loan guarantees and direct loans for small businesses that experience capital access barriers.
  • The Franchise Tax Board has extended the state tax deadline. This relief includes moving the various tax filing and payment deadlines that occur on March 15, 2020, through June 15, 2020, to June 15, 2020. Partnerships and LLCs who are taxed as partnerships whose tax returns are due on March 15 now have a 90-day extension to file and pay by June 15. Individual filers whose tax returns are due on April 15 now have a 60-day extension to file and pay by June 15. Quarterly estimated tax payments due on April 15 now have a 60-day extension to pay by June 15.
  • Employment Development Department: providing rapid response services for businesses, offering help to avert potential layoffs and provide immediate on-site services to assist workers facing job losses.


  • Facebook:
    • Small Business Grants Program: Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time. Applications will be accepted in the coming weeks. In the meantime, you can sign up to receive more information when it becomes available.
  • Citi BankCiti Bank is providing assistance for Retail Bank Customers, waiving monthly service fees and penalties for early CD withdrawal. For Retail Bank Small Business Customers, fee waivers are being provided for monthly service fees and remote deposit capture; waived penalties for early CD withdrawal; Bankers available after hours and on weekends for support.

Forbes: has produced a list of banks offering relief to customers affected by COVID-19.

Back to top

Copyright 2013 Old Town San Diego Business Improvement District - Site powered by Page Mountain LLC