Struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic?

If you’re an individual, a small business or a nonprofit that’s been negatively impacted by the COVID19 pandemic — there is relief for you. We’ve compiled the most comprehensive list of resources to help Miami-Dade and Broward residents weather the coronavirus crisis and emerge from it with stability and strength. Take the first step below.

Facebook Business Grant Program

Facebook says it has put aside $150,000 in cash grants and ad credits to help Miami-Dade County businesses during the pandemic. A spokeswoman says the grants will be distributed to 38 eligible small businesses, with additional grant opportunities expected in the coming days.To be eligible for the grant, the business must:

▪ Be a for-profit company

▪ Have between 2 and 50 employees

▪ Have been operating for more than a year

▪ Have experienced challenges caused by COVID-19

▪ Be in or near a location where Facebook operates (Miami-Dade County qualifies)

Business Continuity & Recovery Virtual Town Hall Meeting

The C.A.R.E.S. Act and Miami Dade Town Hall.

The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce and the Beacon Council hosted a follow up town hall to communicate information on the C.A.R.E.S. Act that was recently approved in Congress and how it can help our South Florida Community. Speakers included

  • Marco Rubio, US Senator
  • Mayor Carlos Gimenez, Miami-Dade County Mayor
  • Victoria Guerrero, South Florida District Director, U.S. Small Business Administration
  • Rick Beasley, Executive Director CareerSource South Florida
  • Michael Finney, President & CEO, Miami-Dade Beacon Council
  • Alfred Sanchez President & CEO, Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce

View Recording of Digital Town Hall

Virtual Town Hall

In partnership with the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce,The Beacon Council hosted a Virtual Town Hall meant to facilitate information and assistance available to support businesses impacted by COVID-19.  Speakers included:

  • Mayor Carlos Gimenez, Miami-Dade County
  • Ken Lawson, Executive Director, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
  • Michael Di Napoli, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
  • Brian Van Hook, Regional Director, Florida Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) at Florida International University College of Business
  • Victoria Guerrero, South Florida District Director, U.S. Small Business Administration
  • Althea Harris, Assistant Director for Marketing and Outreach Area 1 (Miami), U.S Small Business Administration
  • Alfred Sanchez President & CEO, Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce
  • Michael Finney, President & CEO, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

View Recording of Digital Town Hall

Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program

Governor DeSantis has announced an emergency bridge loan program to provide support to our small businesses affected by the closures made necessary due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is being managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and will provide short-term, interest free loans to small businesses that experience economic loss from COVID-19

The application period opens Tuesday, March 17, and runs through May 8.

This is an emergency 0% interest one year bridge loan. It is not a term loan, at the completion of the due date the entire loan is due. This loan is meant to address immediate needs, the SBA disaster loan program can help your business address more long term financial needs.

Please see the eligibility requirements here

Download Application (PDF)

DEO Instructional PDF on How to Complete Bridge Loan Application

Please include the following documents with your application:

  • Government issued personal identification of all individual applicants (driver’s license, state or federal ID, or passport).
  • Federal Business tax returns for the last 2 completed years for all individual applicants, if available.
  • Employer tax documentation.
  • Personal tax returns for the last 2 completed years with attached Schedule C for all individual applicants, if available and where appropriate.
  • Additional information that the applicant believes would assist the Loan Review Committee in making its decision (such as a loan summary).

To submit completed applications and required documents, send by mail or courier to:

Florida SBDC Network Headquarters,

C/O Florida Emergency Bridge Loan Process,

220 West Garden Street, Suite 301

Pensacola, Florida 32502


Applicants may also submit applications and required documents via email to or by fax at (850) 696-2693

U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Loan Assistance

The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) offer up to $2 million in assistance for eligible small businesses. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue driven by COVID-19’s impact.

These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be
paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest
rate for non-profits is 2.75%.

SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a
maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s
ability to repay.

For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center.
Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail

Visit for more information.

Disaster Loan Applications are now live for the State of Florida (Disaster #FL-00152).

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
The Paycheck Protection Program is designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll by providing each small business a loan up to $10 million for payroll and certain other expenses. If all employees are kept on payroll for eight weeks, SBA will forgive the portion of the loans used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. Up to 100 percent of the loan is forgivable. You can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) at any lending institution that is approved to participate in the program through the existing U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) lending program and additional lenders approved by the Department of Treasury. You can call your bank or find SBA-approved lenders in your area through SBA’s online Lender Match tool. You can call your local Small Business Development Center or Women’s Business Center and they will provide free assistance and guide you to lenders.

Links and Resources for Employers

Florida Department of Economic Opportunity links

Damage Assessment

Managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), the Business Damage Assessment Survey evaluates businesses affected by COVID-19 and the impacts the virus is having on the local economy. The information gathered allows State Government to fully assess the comprehensive impact COVID-19 is having on Florida businesses and industries, then mobilize the appropriate resources to help alleviate those pressures.

Short Term Compensation Program

The Short Time Compensation Program is a voluntary employer program designed to help employers maintain their staff by reducing the weekly working hours during temporary slowdowns instead of temporarily laying off employees. If an employer establishes a Short Time Compensation Plan, and an employee meets the qualifications to file a re-employment assistance claim in the state of Florida, the employee will receive a partial re-employment check to supplement their reduced paycheck

U.S. Chamber of Commerce links

Temporary Layoff
A temporary layoff occurs when the employee is separated from their job due to lack of work, and the employee has a return-to-work date within eight weeks of the separation. An employee that is temporarily laid off from work may be eligible for Reemployment Assistance benefits.

Reemployment Assistance
Reemployment Assistance provides temporary wage replacement benefits to eligible individuals who are out of work through no fault of their own. If you have a history of wages in the state of Florida, you are actively able and available to seek and accept new employment, and you are currently unemployed or work reduced hours through no fault of your own, you may be eligible to receive Reemployment Assistance benefits.

Florida Extends Property Tax Deadline
Florida Department of Revenue Executive Director Jim Zinagle issued an emergency order Thursday that extends the usual real estate property tax deadline from March 31 to April 15. Property taxes paid on railroad, railroad terminal, private car and freight line and equipment company property are also now due April 15.


Meal Distribution for Students and Families
Beginning March 30, grab-and-go meals will continue to be distributed at 31 schools across the district, Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. Click here for meal distribution list.

CareerSource South Florida Employment Assistance
CareerSource South Florida continues to monitor the Coronavirus pandemic and timely disseminate critical information. Click here for links for accessing virtual job search assistance.

Additional Links


Q- Can an s corps apply for the Bridge Loan and for the SBA Loan?

  • Yes, all types are eligible.

Q- How are small businesses going to get through this quickly without red tape slowing it down.

  • We’ve received a tremendous amount of app,10k. We’ve staffed up, to answer phone calls to enter data. We are being given the resources to address any bottlenecks, our goal is to close loans withing two weeks. Please make sure you fill the application out correctly and carefully.

Q- What are the plans to support the nonprofits sector

  • We are continuing to fund our CBOs nonprofits with Miami Dade county contracts

Q- Are 1099s equal to a full-time employee for eligibility purpose?

  • 1099s are eligible for employee counts.

Q- If a business is approved for $200k but only wants $50k and come back later?

  • Yes, SBA dispatches money in tranches. And after you receive funds you can request additional funds or even reduce the loan amount.

Q- What is your average turnaround time?

  • For bridge loan from DEO we avg 14 days. We are experiencing and influx of apps but please make sure to turn in a completed application to avoid issues.

Q- Has anyone seen anything coming down the pipeline from the federal govt.

  • We haven’t received guidance yet re the legislation. We won’t have that until its passed. I know there’s a lot of provisions for funds but until loans are approved, we wont know. I’ve heard about provisions to forgive portions of the loans used for payroll which is to encourage to retain employees.

Q- Key aspect is speed to market – how long does the SBA from app time to receive funds in number of days after submission?

  • Once we receive complete application 18-21 days to approve in normal circumstances, after that 5 days to close and disburse. Were in a shifting scenario so that is subject to change. We are looking to be responsive to the applications we are getting, we are hiring more and focusing on these loans. Officially, up to 3 weeks. Put your systems in place now as the legislation in the pipeline enables banks to make loans.

Q- Any relief for property taxes

  • Asked the governor to extend for a month have not gotten a response will ask him again. Update* Property Tax Deadline extended to April 15.

Q-With Desantis stay at home order, does that change anything we are doing or Business as usual

  • no, both are consistent with each other.

Q-Applied for SBA loans, emergency bridge loan, will the apps conflict with cares act loan program?

  • You can apply to all.

Q-Turnaround time on PPP program?

  • No time frame yet, this is a brand new program.

Q- We own a food truck business I split 50/50 with my partner no employees. Can we apply for ppp assistance

  • Yes as long as payroll is involved and have all the documentation requested.

Q-Are  US businesses owned by foreign nationals living abroad eligible?

  • Don’t know yet. Normally to qualify for SBA loans you must be a US citizen or resident.

Q-Just started a Business, maxed out credit card. Will low credit score disqualify me.

  • Not necessarily, please apply anyway. Criteria is being altered very quickly. Don’t talk yourself out of applying.

Q-Are mom and pop grants available to small businesses?

  • Yes they are available.

Q-How can employers aid employees in filing for unemployment?

  • We are considering using libraries to help people come in and fill out unemployment forms. We are hoping to leverage our partners at the beacon council and career source to help out.

Q-Do all employees need to be kept on for PPP or is 75% of staff is enough?

  • More employees you keep the bigger the forgiveness of the debt. The point is to keep as many employed as possible.

Q-How are banks handling people applying while respecting social distancing guidelines?

  • All financial institutions are open currently, and have to follow municipal and state guidelines on distancing and capacity.

Q-Do these federal loan programs become taxable income?

  • No, it does not.

Q-Do these loans work for businesses that were getting ready to open?

  • If you had payroll, yes.

Q-If app is incomplete will it be rejected?

  • You will be notified as to why your app is incomplete and given the opportunity to resubmit. Our goal is to make the eligibility requirements very broad for these programs.

Q-If employees already applied for unemployment, are we eligible for PPP?

  • Yes

Q-Turnaround for PPP program?

  • This is a new program so we’re not sure but it should be very quick.