COVID-19 Resource Page

This page includes a collection of resources on the Coronavirus that was curated by the Astoria-Warrenton Area Chamber of Commerce to help our community and members stay informed.  Just as AWACC strives to be your number one business resource in the community, we also strive to be a top resource for the current circumstance surrounding COVID-19 where workplace safety and economic vitality are high priorities

COVID-19 REOPENING 

Click for a list with the status of our area restaurants offering dine-in, take out or delivery as a result of the industry guidelines for food and beverage businesses. (This list is updated regularly.)

Per statewide 2-week freeze, museums and entertainment activities will be closed November 18-December 2.  This list gives a brief overview of which attractions are open and what you may expect when visiting currently. 

Additional visitor information can be found at travelastoria.com 

Clatsop County was approved for Phase 2 which is in effect on Saturday, June 6. Phase 2 is expected to stay in place through the summer.

Update November 13:  A statewide two-week freeze will be enacted.

From November 18 to December 2, Oregon will be in a statewide Two-Week Freeze to stop the rapid spread of COVID-19 across Oregon. These risk reduction measures are critical in limiting the spread of COVID-19, reducing risk in communities more vulnerable to serious illness and death, and helping conserve hospital capacity so that all Oregonians can continue to have access to quality care.  Read more details and a list of the measures being taken on the Governor's COVID-19 website.

Update July 15: Face coverings are also required in outdoor public spaces where physical distance cannot be maintained. ** Starting July 24, children 5 and older are required to wear face covers in public (small children were previously exempt from face cover requirements).

Update June 30:  Masks Required  Oregon Governor announced on June 29 that face coverings are required when in indoor public spaces, beginning this Wednesday, July 1. The guidance applies to businesses and members of the public visiting indoor public spaces in all of Oregon. Read more details here

Update June 3: Clatsop County enters Phase 2 of reopening.  Assuming businesses and facilities can maintain physical distancing standards and other requirements: offices, restaurants, stores and other activities are allowed to open to the public. See full details of statewide and phase 2 guidance here.  We don’t yet know what guidance will look like under Phase 3, however, Gov. Brown has stated that counties likely will not be able to enter until a vaccine or treatment is developed. Phase 3 includes very large gatherings, like concerts, festivals and sporting events. 

Updates to sector-specific guidance will be made available at www.coronavirus.oregon.gov

Astoria and Warrenton Resources

Clatsop County Chambers Collaborate on Reopening Handbook 
The Seaside, Cannon Beach and Astoria-Warrenton Area Chambers of Commerce have been working with local business leaders through the COVID-19 pandemic and continue to be a part of the reopening process. Through a collaborative effort (led by Seaside Chamber) we prepared this toolkit for distribution to our members. This framework is a living document and will be continually updated as more guidance is received from the State of Oregon and our local governments around industry specific reopening guidelines, and rule changes that occur as we move through the Governor’s three phased reopening strategy. 

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Chamber Statement         (March 19, 2020) 

Clatsop Economic Development Resource / SBDC - Resource page 
Contact the Clatsop SBDC to be added to their email list or see their list of classes here.

Community Resources - Local relief grants are being offered by several organizations and others are fundraising to set up programs for the community.  Click to view this page collecting that information. Contact the organizations for more details and current status.

Northwest Regional Child Care Resource and Referral - Dial 211 for assistance finding emergency child care or visit their COVID-19 page with FAQ and tools for providers and families.

Local Chambers are distributing KN-95 non-medical masks to businesses in Astoria and Warrenton for employee use. These items came from the State of Oregon with coordination from the Clatsop County Emergency Manager. In an effort to provide these masks free of charge, it is necessary to complete the survey to request the supplies each week. Distribution will begin Wednesday (6/24) and continue while supplies last.

Link to COVID-19 Information at City of Astoria, City of WarrentonClatsop County and State of Oregon websites.

Clatsop County has established a COVID-19 information phone line to answer the public’s questions about the coronavirus outbreak and related issues. The phone line will be staffed by live personnel Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The number is (503) 325-8500. (Staff cannot answer medical questions.)

CARES Act Relief Funds through the SBA

Our nation's small businesses are facing an unprecedented economic disruption due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. On Friday, March 27, 2020, the President signed into law the CARES Act, which contains $376 billion in relief for American workers and small businesses.

In addition to traditional SBA funding programs, the CARES Act established several new temporary programs to address the COVID-19 outbreak:

  •   ·     Paycheck Protection Program
  •   ·     EIDL Loan Advance
  •   ·     SBA Express Bridge Loans
  •   ·     SBA Debt Relief

Click here to learn more directly from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Here’s a guide and checklist from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to help your small business through the Coronavirus Emergency Loans available and whether you are eligible and how much you can borrow. 

Independent Contractor’s Guide to CARES Act Relief - A guide provided by the US Chamber.

Business Resources (State/Federal)

Small Business Resource Navigator - Combined resource with support from several state agencies including the Oregon Employment Department, the Oregon Secretary of State, and the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. The Navigator includes sections for employers and employees with comprehensive information on key programs for small businesses and is available at oregon4biz.com.  As the state's economic development agency, Business Oregon post information on resources, best practices...anything that may help deal with the situation at hand. This agency provides financial resources and planning support primarily to businesses with fewer than 100 employees. They can also be reached by calling 844-469-5512 or call business.sos@oregon.gov     

This Supply Connector resource is Business Oregon’s collaborative project to connect businesses and communities with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) manufacturers and suppliers to fight the spread of COVID-19 and keep employees safe. This tool provides a searchable database of businesses we have identified that can help provide PPE. Can your business help provide finished goods, materials, manufacturing capability, and support services that are needed to combat COVID-19? Or do you need assistance finding and securing critical equipment?

Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association (ORLA) created checklists that provide safety strategies and protocols for restaurants and lodging properties. The suggestions could be helpful to any business operating under similar safety guidelines.

Travel Oregon offers a COVID-19 resource page especially aimed at businesses that provide visitor services like retail, recreation, restaurants, and lodging. They also manage a public-facing page with travel alerts to provide guests with current information to help them make their travel decisions.

Oregon Employment Department - The health and safety of workplaces is of utmost importance to the Oregon Employment Department. Their page provides a summary of general guidance to employers, workers, and job seekers who may be impacted by the COVID-19 coronavirus. The C.A.R.E.S. Act package extends Unemployment Insurance to provide more robust benefits to more people. 

Work Share Oregon - Employers are encouraged to check into Work Share Oregon, which can support businesses and workers to avoid mass layoffs and lost wages and benefits in times like these. Work Share can be reached at 800 436-6191 or email oed workshare@oregon.gov

Northwest Oregon Works --- Rapid Response is a task force specifically designed to promote economic recovery and vitality by planning with businesses to avert or respond to layoffs and dislocations to prevent or minimize the impact on workers, businesses and communities. Our team will work directly with businesses and their employees to assist in layoff aversion strategies, help affected worker apply for unemployment benefits, find access to health care resources and training so they can get back to work rapidly.

Oregon Employment Laws - If a business has questions about employment laws in the state of Oregon they can call the Technical Assistance hotline @  971 673-0824 or email bolita@boli.state.or.us  

The IRS posted this Q&A about federal filing and payment extension to July 15.  Read the release about paid leave for workers and tax credits for small and mid-size businesses.  The IRS is also posting related updates on a special coronavirus page.

Resilience in a Box - If your business needs help putting a plan in place, check out the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s toolkit created in partnership with the UPS foundation.

The Restaurant Employee Relief Fund was created to help restaurant industry employees experiencing hardship in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Through this Fund, grants will be made to restaurant industry employees who have demonstrated being
financially impacted by COVID-19, whether through a decrease in wages or loss of employment. Click to learn how to apply for or contribute to the fund.

COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide  USDA and its Federal partners have programs that can be used to provide immediate and long-term assistance to rural communities affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. These programs can support recovery efforts for rural residents, businesses and communities through:

• technical, training, and management assistance; 
• financial assistance; and 
• state and local assistance.

This resource matrix organizes funding opportunities identified in the CARES Act and other federal resources that can help support rural America. Opportunities are categorized by customer and assistance type.  For more information on the immediate actions USDA is taking to respond to COVID-19, visit usda.gov/coronavirus.

Oregon OSHA Technical Assistance PortalOregon OSHA is starting to do workplace inspections to ensure companies are complying with the Governor’s executive order regarding business closures and social distancing and may be issuing fines. The Oregon State Chamber of Commerce is lobbying for the state to provide guidance but not fines.  Meanwhile, Oregon OSHA has a technical assistance portal where companies can get guidance on this and other OSHA questions. OSHA promises that there is a firewall between the technical assistance group and enforcement so there should be no fear of self-incrimination. 

Healthcare Resources

Clatsop County Public Health Department- Clatsop County Health is hosting weekly conference calls with multiple stakeholders to ensure a coordinated effort to monitor for and respond to any potential cases of the coronavirus illness, known as COVID-19. County management is also communicating regularly with local city governments and other agencies. Their page provides the latest developments in our local area.  The Health Department is offering drive-through testing for COVID-19.

Columbia Memorial Hospital Safer Together - Medical facilities across the nation have seen a decrease in the use of clinics, urgent cares and emergency rooms since March for obvious reasons. But now it is time to get your health back on schedule, and it’s even more important to maintain healthy habits. At CMH, we want you to know that we are ready to keep you and your families safe. With your help, we can all be Safer Together.

Oregon Health Authority - The Oregon Health Authority is responding to an outbreak of respiratory illness, called COVID-19, caused by a novel (new) coronavirus. Health officials urge social distancing, good hand hygiene, covering coughs and staying home if you are sick. This page includes an overview of the situation in Oregon including Executive Orders and Guidance.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - CDC is one of the major operating components of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This page includes FAQs about the virus, its symptoms and how to take precautions. Resources are split into categories including travel, business, school and other organizations.

Cleaning Procedures - Community members can practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces (for example: tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks) with household cleaners and EPA-registered disinfectants.  Visit this CDC page for tips and suggestions for cleaning your home or business. 

AWACC Operations and Programs

The Visitor Center reopened to the public in early June. Our current hours of operation are Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Our staff is also available to answer phone (503-325-6311) and email inquiries during our current business hours   We have a small rack of brochures available outside to help visitors stopping by in person outside of these hours.  

Our in-person meetings and networking events are canceled for the foreseeable future including Business After Hours and Chamber Breakfast.  We are looking into ways to connect with you through virtual networking and other opportunities. Stay tuned!

Our event planning team has made the decision to only offer the Great Columbia Crossing 10K in a virtual format this year. We will not be hosting the physical event on Sunday, October 11, 2020.   Run or walk the Great Columbia Crossing on your own this fall – virtually. Compete in the 10K, or try our new 5K option. We will mail your race packet so you can run your favorite course in your hometown or neighborhood, anytime between October 11-17.

The Chamber's Lower Columbia Tourism Committee has adapted our tourism messaging to be proactive about COVID-19 impacts on visitation to our area. Read our current message about safe travel on travelastoria.com  

Request to our members - do you have info to share, need assistance from us?