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Last Updated: February 17, 2021

COVID-19 Announcements

NVDA staff continue to work remotely. When staff are present in our offices they will follow VT Department of Health and CDC guidelines by wearing face covering and maintaining physical distancing. We will continue to keep you informed of updated COVID-19 news and announcements by posting information on our website and Facebook, and in NVDA's bi-monthly newsletters.


If there is an urgent need to communicate with NVDA, please contact:


H.681 contains temporary amendments to the open meeting law. Public bodies are authorized to continue to meet and do necessary business through remote means -- and without the physical meeting location. This will allow them to follow health and safety best practices during this pandemic and declared state of emergency. For more information, click here.

Vaccinations in the NEK

Read the latest information on Covid-19 Vaccines in VT - who can get the vaccine now and who will be eligible next. The webpage is updated regularly and the COVID-19 Dashboard is updated daily. More sites Make an appointment to get the Vaccine.

Mask Order In Effect at the Border

U.S. Customs & Border Protection is enforcing a new requirement that all travelers wear face masks when entering facilities at the ports of entry. It applies to anyone crossing the Canadian border in order to conduct essential business. Travelers are not required to wear a mask while in their vehicles when pulling up to a customs booth for primary inspection. The international border has been closed for nearly eleven months and the challenge to reopen during the pandemic continues to be both technical and political.

PPP Re-opened on January 11th

The Paycheck Protection Program is offering borrowers two applications: First Draw for new borrowers; Second Draw for any business that received a PPP in 2020. The Program continues to prioritize Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $284 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses (through March 31, 2021). Community lending Institutions (such as Credit Unions, Farm Credit System Institutions, VEDA, and Insured Depository Institutions) are taking more strides to improve the program. If you want to apply for a First Draw PPP and your local lending institution is not offering these loans, call the Vermont SBA office at (802) 828-4422. For more information about changes to the Program, visit the SBA website for guidance SBA PPP.

PPP Forgiveness Webinars

SBA's Vermont District Office has conducted ongoing weekly PPP Forgiveness Webinars. Access information is provided below - join on your computer or mobile app. Need help? Susan Mazza, Deputy District Director Susan.mazza@sba.gov
Tuesdays 11:30 am-1:00 pm Click here to join meeting Open TEAMS app / or Call in (audio only) 1-202-765-1264 Phone Conference ID 986 011 495#
Wednesdays 9:00 - 10:30 am Click here to join meeting Open TEAMS app / or Call in (audio only) 1-202-765-1264 Phone Conference ID 984 055 02#

EIDL Application Deadline Extended

As a result of the Dec. 27th COVID-19 Relief Bill, the deadline to apply for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) for working capital to small businesses, sole proprietors, independent contractors and non-profits from a wide array of business sectors has been extended to December 31, 2021. SBA Disaster Assistance - EIDL

Update: Unemployment Insurance Benefits Extended

The VT Department of Labor has extended unemployment insurance benefits as authorized by the December bipartisan Federal Relief Bill. The extension of unemployment programs, first authorized through the CARES Act in March 2020, includes relief for self-employed and independent contractors. Read a summary of the changes from VT Department of Labor, and a helpful explanation about Vermont's current benefits from Vermont Legal Aid. For DOL updates on the 1099 mailing and improper data release.


Resource Websites

Local Resources:

NVDA (www.nvda.net), NCIC (www.ncic.org), and the NEK Collaborative (www.nekcollaborative.org), are working to distribute information and guidance on the resources and opportunities available in the region. Reach out by phone, email or Zoom for information.

VT Department of Labor (DOL)

The DOL website contains important information for employees, employers, unemployment assistance, job openings and training opportunities. VDOL is available to assist businesses with virtual job fairs. For more information contact Kinsley Sicard at Kinsley.Sicard@vermont.gov.

VT Emergency Management

Connect to resources on the current COVID-19 emergency response in Vermont VEM website. Bruce Melendy is NVDA's Emergency Management Specialist and Regional Emergency Management Coordinator Bmelendy@nvda.net.

USDA Rural Development Resource Webpage

USDA Rural Development has taken a number of immediate steps to help rural residents, businesses and communities impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Visit the website for updates on utilities and housing services. .

VT Manufacturing Extension Center

Vermont's go-to resource for manufacturing has a VMEC COVID-19 Resource webpage.

VT Agency of Commerce & Community Development (ACCD)

Visit the website for Recovery Resources and information for businesses, communities, and individuals Here.



Business Webinars & Community Announcements

Webinar Series for Vermont Businesses

The VT Department of Health and the Agency of Commerce & Community Development hold a weekly webinar on Wednesdays from 3:00-4:00 pm, focused on health and pandemic updates for the business community. Participants are invited to submit questions ahead of time for officials to address. Businesses joining the webinar by phone must enter their questions using this Weblink as only those participating via the Microsoft Teams platform will be able to ask real-time questions. If participants wish to submit anonymous questions they can do so on the same link questionnaire. Call-In Information: +1 802-828-7667 / Conference ID: 477 481 46# For more information on upcoming webinars visit the ACCD website which also offers recordings of previous webinars in the series. ACCD

Dartmouth-Hitchcock Webinar Series for Employers & Leaders

Science & Practices to Keep People Safe and Businesses Productive as Covid-19 Continues" is the title of the 12-week series to be held every other Wednesday from 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm. Although the sessions started on January 27th, employers and organizational leaders can join any time. The webinar series will end June 30th. Visit the DH ECHO website for the session titles and to register.

New England Workforce Network (NEWN) Virtual Conference

Fast Forward: Innovative Workforce Development in Changing Times, May 7, 2021 The conference is a collaborative effort with workforce professionals from all over New England. The theme this year reflects the turbulent time and the value of working together to plan effectively and act in concert with stakeholders in workforce areas. Find out more about presentations and breakout sessions. Early registrations will receive a special gift. NEWN Conference

Webinar for VT Manufacturers

The Agency of Commerce & Community Development (ACCD) and the VT Dept. of Health will hold a manufacturer-focused webinar on Wednesday, February 17th from 3:00-4:00 pm. Watch the event live or join click here. To call in, use this number and ID: (802) 828-7667, ID 541 591 776#. To access recordings and materials from past webinars in the AIV (Associated Industries of VT) webinar series, visit Pandemic Information for VT Businesses.

Recovery Roadmap for Business Owners - VtSBDC

VtSBDC understands the challenging decisions business owners need to consider as they determine how and when to reopen. Flowcharts and resources have been designed to help navigate the process. Follow a step-by-step guide to reflect the current state of your business and create a plan for recovery, reinvention and reopening: Recovery Roadmap

VT Small Business Development Center

Experienced business advisors are available by email, phone or video conferencing. Do you need help constructing financial statements or application forms for disaster relief funding? VtSBDC will help you curate, decipher and disseminate information into manageable practical steps tailored specifically for your business - all at No cost. Contact: Ross Hart, VtSBDC Area Business Advisor Rhart@vtsbdc.org (802) 535-4240 (cell) or Heidi Krantz HKrantz@vtsbdc.org.



Funding Opportunities

Vermont's (Expanded) Emergency Economic Recovery Grant Program is Closed.

An updated post on the Agency of Commerce & Community Development website clarifies the time limit to spend funds. Previously ACCD's guidance stated that businesses receiving a VT Coronavirus Emergency Economic Recovery Grant must spend the grant money by December 30, 2020. Note: Those businesses do not need to fully expend the funds by that date. Businesses can retain the grant funds for expenses that occur in 2021 and beyond. In the foreseeable future, ACCD will not be offering pandemic relief grants for Vermont's small businesses until more federal relief funds become available to the states. Recovery grant assistance will now come primarily through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). SBA Recovery Hub

VT Farm Fund (VFF) Loan Programs

A straightforward low interest loan program for Covid-related needs or for regular Business Builder loans. The VFF offers no-hassle, friendly-term loans to local farmers and food producers for capital improvements, infrastructure projects, or business growth for food related businesses. Find out more www.vtfarmfund.org Questions? Contact Kate Stephenson (802) 560-3099.

Vermont Covid-19 Agriculture Assistance Program

The purpose of these grants is to stabilize ag businesses and organizations based on expenses and lost revenue related to the public health emergency. Eligible farmers, meat & poultry processors, commercial slaughterhouses, farmers' markets, value-added food product businesses, forest products businesses, producer associations, dairy producers & processors, and farm-to-school programs run by schools and child care providers are invited to apply. VCAAP Grant Program

Northern VT Recovery Loan Fund (NVRLF)

This new loan program, serving Northern Vermont businesses and organizations negatively impacted by COVIC-19, is designed to support business owners from Caledonia, Essex, Orleans, Franklin, Grand Isle, and Lamoille Counties. The fund provides flexible terms and low-to-no-cost debt financing, along with business coaching services. Loans are available to businesses across multiple sectors including manufacturing, tourism, agriculture, forestry & wood products, education & early care, nonprofits, and other drivers of rural economic development. For more information on NVRLF and other Vermont Community Loan Fund lending programs, visit the website.

NVDA Revolving Loan Program

The Northeastern Vermont Development Association has a limited amount of loan funds available for businesses in Caledonia, Essex, and Orleans Counties. Funds may be used for the purchase of real property & equipment, working capital, and feasibility studies. Normal lending guidelines and rules apply. For more information, contact Judith Butson at jbutson@nvda.net or (802) 748-1222.

NCIC Revolving Loan Program

Northern Community Investment Corporation has extensive revolving loan programs targeted for helping NEK employers. Contact Jon Freeman for more information: jfreeman@ncic.org | (802) 748-1888.