We are going through unprecedented times right now and things are constantly influx with our world right now. The Chamber believes that we have an amazing community and each day there are businesses and people demonstrating simple ways we are supporting each other through this time of crisis.
When you can - please shop local! Support the people and businesses that were sponsors or donated to your child's team, school, or event. They need you the most now - together we will persevere and be that much stronger!
We have put together a list resources to assist our business community. Please check back often as we update our website.
The BEA has a website specifically designed to address business-related COVID-19 issues. Information addressed includes: layoffs, unemployment, insurance issues, potential shutdowns, the Governor's Executive Orders as well as up to date information from state and federal agencies.
The NH Department of Business and Economic Affairs website is continually updating to provide you with the most recent information and has now added a "Business Help" button if anyone has a business related question that needs answered in a timely manner.
NH UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS
Individuals who are unable to work or who have reduced hours due to the COVID-19 pandemic will have immediate access to unemployment benefits. Anyone in the following situations will now be eligible for state unemployment: If your employer temporarily closes due to COVID-19; Individuals that need to self-quarantine or are directed to quarantine at the instruction of a health care provider, employer or government official; Individuals that need to care for a family member that has COVID-19 or is under quarantine; Individuals that need to care for a dependent because of school closures, child care facility closures or other similar types of care programs; Self-employed individuals that are temporarily unable to operate their business because of any of the above listed situations will also be eligible .
Individuals will need to file for each week of temporary unemployment and all of this can and should be done online at http://www.nhes.nh.gov Or call 603-271-7700.
Layoffs and business closures: If your business faces a potential layoff, the State of New Hampshire offers services through its Rapid Response program. Rapid Response is a comprehensive, collaborative and immediate initiative to respond to and mitigate layoffs and closures. Rapid Response benefits both employers and employees through services to workers who are laid off, as well as layoff aversion information for businesses.
Employees experiencing layoffs: The State of New Hampshire offers a number of services for employees who have been laid off. New Hampshire Employment Security has a list of available services. Individuals will need to file for unemployment each week of temporary unemployment and this can and should be done online or by calling 603-271-7700.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced on March 24th its first round of published guidance to provide information to employees and employers about how each will be able to take advantage of the protections and relief offered by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) when it takes effect on April 1, 2020.
FFCRA will help the United States combat and defeat COVID-19 by giving all American businesses with fewer than 500 employees funds to provide employees with paid leave, either for the employee’s own health needs or to care for family members. The legislation will ensure that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus while at the same time reimbursing businesses.
The guidance – provided in a Fact Sheet for Employees, a Fact Sheet for Employers and a Questions and Answers document – addresses critical questions, such as how an employer must count the number of their employees to determine coverage; how small businesses can obtain an exemption; how to count hours for part-time employees; and how to calculate the wages employees are entitled to under this law.
The Department has released posters for the FFCRA, along with guidance notice requirements. Here are the direct links:
The Department has also recently released a Field Assistance Bulletin regarding a temporary non-enforcement period to the FFCRA: The Department will not bring enforcement actions against any public or private employer for violations of the Act occurring within 30 days of the enactment of the FFCRA, i.e. March 18 through April 17, 2020, provided that the employer has made reasonable, good faith efforts to comply with the Act.
For more information about the laws enforced by the WHD, call 866-4US-WAGE, or visit https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd.
*The above information is subject to change as things continue to evolve during this situation.
Stay safe and healthy!
Welcome New Members!