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State, federal programs offer help to businesses

During the coronavirus outbreak, programs may help operations stricken by closure or employee illnesses. The state is also offering expedited unemployment compensation for working Ohioans who are displaced.
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During a Monday media briefing on the new coronavirus’ impact in the state, Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted pointed state business owners seeking financial assistance to the Ohio Development Services Agency at development.ohio.gov.

The state is also offering expedited unemployment compensation for working Ohioans who are displaced. And demand has sharply risen alongside the virus’ spread, Husted said. On Sunday, March 8, there were 562 unemployment applications. On last Sunday, there were about 12,000, he said, leading to phone call wait times of about an hour and forty minutes.

State officials are urging out-of-work Ohioans to apply online at unemployment.ohio.gov, to lessen the burden on the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services phone lines.

The registration hotline is at 877-644-6562. More information about the requirements can be found on the ODJFS website.[http://jfs.ohio.gov/ouio/telephoneregister.pdf]

At the federal level, the U.S. Small Business Administration has issued "Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019" on its website.

"Small businesses are encouraged to do their part to keep their employees, customers, and themselves healthy," the site reads, while listing updates on these topics:

• Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
• Guidance for Businesses and Employers
• SBA Products and Resources
• Government Contracting
• Local Assistance

"The SBA will work directly with state governors to provide targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)," according to the site.





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