BOSTON (CBS) – Mayor Marty Walsh announced on Wednesday that the City of Boston is providing several new resources for small businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Small businesses that are considered essential and able to remain operating after Gov. Charlie Baker’s order earlier in the week are encouraged to register online to be included in the Office of Economic Development’s database.
Under Baker’s emergency order, all non-essential businesses must close their physical workplaces until April 7.
The city’s plan also issues resources for restaurants in Boston.
In a Restaurant Support section of the city’s website, businesses can provide information on hours they’re still open, details on gift cards, and what delivery or takeout services they use.
“Boston is a city that looks out for one another, and during this challenging time, we are doing everything we can to support the small businesses that are the lifeblood of our communities,” said Walsh. “I encourage Boston residents to continue patronizing the businesses most impacted by this pandemic — purchase a gift card, order take out, or support your local businesses in whatever way you are able to.”
Walsh’s announcement came hours after the White House and the Senate agreed on a $2 trillion package of financial aid to jump start the economy.
The stimulus package includes a one-time payment for most working Americans, up to $1,200 per individual and $3,000 for the average family.
It expands unemployment insurance from 26 weeks to 39 in most states, boosting benefits by $600 a week. The bill provides $500 billion in loans for big businesses, and nearly $400 billion in grants and loans for small businesses.
“We have to recognize that our small businesses and our consumers have a liquidity problem,” said Jon Hurst of the Retailers Association of Massachusetts. “There’s also a job crisis, a small business liquidity crisis, an economic crisis. And that, going forward, has to be at least an equal discussion, an equal priority, to make sure we get out of this collectively in good shape.”