Washtenaw County Health Department Issues Orders to Protect Essential Workers during COVID-19
The order states that critical service providers and businesses must use screening and social distancing to limit potential spread. 

The Washtenaw order takes effect March 26, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. and requires all essential services and businesses to take the following actions to protect their workers and the entire community.

  • Screen everyone. Check employees for fever or other symptoms if they will enter facilities or buildings. 
  • Maintain 6 feet of distance between people whenever possible.
  • Emphasize frequent and proper hand washing. Make sure sinks are well supplied. 
  • Work remotely whenever possible.
  • Do not share space or equipment. If this is not possible, have employees wash their hands before and after using shared equipment. Clean and sanitize equipment between uses.
  • Any employee with cold symptoms or underlying health conditions should stay home or work remotely.

The orders must be posted at facility entrances. There is an order for businesses and entities remaining open, as well as a separate order for childcare centers remaining open.


Ann Arbor Spark
Ann Arbor Spark is keeping an updated list of resources available to businesses during the COVID-19. Please continue to check back for updates and more information.  COVID-19  Business Resources and Information 

Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
The MEDC has compiled a list of resources for Michigan businesses for during COVID-19

Destination Ann Arbor
COVID-19 Business Toolkit:

U.S. Small Business Administration 


Save Small Business Fund
The Save Small Business Fund is a grantmaking initiative offering short-term relief for small employers in the United States and its territories. Each grant is for $5,000 and must be applied toward business expenses. To qualify you must: Employ between 3 and 20 people, be located in an economically vulnerable community, and have been harmed financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information and to apply:

Michigan Strategic Fund

The Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) approved the $2 million Northern Initiatives Program through MEDC’s Capital Access program to provide micro and small business loans to Michigan businesses that have been most impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, including restaurants, coffee houses, retail stores and service providers. These funds can be used to provide loans ranging from $5,000 to $250,000 for working capital, acquiring machinery and equipment and to support inventory needs during this public health crisis.
View details and apply.

Bars and Restaurants Receive Financial Relief Under New Executive Order
On April 13, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-46, tasking the Michigan Liquor Control Commission (MLCC) with initiating a spirits buy-back program to offer financial relief to bars and restaurants with on-premises liquor licenses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak in the state. The order empowers the MLCC to buy spirits remaining in inventory from bars and restaurants that purchased the spirits prior to March 16, 2020 for their full purchase price. Licensees must make their request to the MLCC no later than Friday, April 17, at 5 PM. 
Read the executive order

Unemployment Benefits Extended for Self-Employed Workers, Independent Contractors and Others
Michigan’s self-employed workers, gig workers, 1099-independent contractors and low-wage workers affected by COVID-19 can now apply for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance online at  Those workers who now qualify for unemployment benefits, but have previously applied and been denied, can log into their MiWAM account to complete the next steps for federal PUA benefits.

Restaurant Strong Grant Program

In March, Boston-based brewery Samuel Adams partnered with The Greg Hill Foundation to raise more than $500,000 for its Restaurant Strong grant program, which offered financial support to Massachusetts service industry workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, they have raised more than $2 million to give a little help to workers in 19 states, including Michigan. Beginning  April 3, Michigan service industry workers can apply for a one-time $1,000 grant to help during the shutdown.

To qualify for grant assistance, applicants must meet the following five requirements: 

  • Completed Application Form
  • Full-time employees (Minimum of 30 hours total per week, can be multiple restaurants)
  • Employed for 3 months or longer at the same location
  • Worked in a restaurant, bar, cafe or nightclub located in; (Arizona, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont)
  • Submit the last two full-time (30 hour) pay stubs

To apply, you can submit an application here. The application window runs from Friday, April 3 through Friday, April 24. 

The Michigan Hospitality Industry Employee Relief Fund
The Michigan Hospitality Industry Employee Relief Fund, supported by the Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association Educational Foundation, is designed to assist employees of Michigan's restaurant and lodging industry who are in need of support after the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds will be granted to individuals that can demonstrate need and proof of hospitality industry employment as of March 10, 2020. Awards in the amount of $500 will be granted to all approved applicants until resources are fully depleted.   Apply here.

The Michigan Paycheck Protection Program (MiPPP)
The Michigan Paycheck Protection Program (MiPPP) provides small businesses in Michigan COVID-19 relief, giving funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. Funds are provided in the form of loans that will be fully forgiven when used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll).  MiPP FACT SHEET

Facebook Small Business Grant Program
Faceook announced that they are offering $100M in cash grants and ad credit to help business during this challening time.  Thety understand that businesess may be experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19. Details are forthingcoming in the following weeks. For more information and to sign up for alerts visit the Facebook Small Business Grants Program page.

Washtenaw Small Business Resiliency Fund: Funding for Businesses Impacted by COVID-19
 To address the financial hardship due to the COVID-19 crisis, Ann Arbor SPARK, Washtenaw County’s Office of Community & Economic Development, WCC’s Entrepreneurship Center and SBDC have developed an emergency fund that provides working capital grants in amounts up to $2,500 to qualifying small businesses. 

Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved Gov. Whitmer's request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration, opening the opportunity to small businesses to access low-interest loans from the SBA.  More information about this program can be found here:

Main Street America is calling for Federal Support for Small Businesses and they need your help.
The National Main Street organization recognizes the need for immediate access to grants and simplified disaster loan processes. They are partnering with Small Business Majority to advocate for small businesses, micro-businesses, and entrepreneurs across the country. 

They are asking small business owners like you to "sign on and let your voices be heard to amplify the needfor immediate and direct support for Main Street-scale businesses."

SBA loans 
Information can be found here or by calling 1-800-659-2955 or emailing

Business Interruption Insurance
Oregon Main Street shared this article relating to business interruption insurance. We recommend contacting your insurance carrier for specific details on your policy.

Unemployment Benefits 
Information on expanded unemployment benefits can be found here


Navigating Your Commercial Lease in a Disaster
Watch this helpful recording of the webinar here.

Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC)
The SBDC is offering  a number of webinars that will help a business address cash flow with little to no revenue coming in. The webinars can be found here

Responding to Coronavirus (COVID-19): For Retail

From Facebook: We recognize this uncertain time can create unique challenges for retailers. That’s why we’re working to provide helpful information and support during this time, and have created this resource with examples of how businesses can adapt and respond. See Facebook's resources and ideas here.

Creative Ideas for Operating a Business During COVID-19
Our friends at Grand Haven Main Street and Whizbang provided a report for small businesses with creative ideas including delivery of product directly to the customer, drive by pick-up, personal clienteling , Facebook (or other social media) live selling events, and creating special bundles for people sheltering in place. The full report can be found here.

Milan Main Street Business Owners Group Facebook Page
The Milan Main Street Business Owners Group page is a place for downtown business owners to share ideas, ask questions, and to get news and information.

Survey to Re-Open Small Business
A bipartisan work group has been formed in the Michigan Senate to begin working on a plan on how to re-open the State once it is safe to do so. The work group is looking for input from small businesses. The website can be found here: