Covid-19 resources 

Who can assist?

We know that it’s not easy to dig through all the resources, figure out what is legitimate, and get the assistance you need. We are spending time vetting information so you don’t have to. Check back often for up-to-date information that can help you and your business.

If you need assistance, the best way to reach us is via email: anne@developvermilion.org.

You can also reach us by calling (337) 418-9849.

Use the directory to the right to reach the most commonly requested resources.

The SBA is currently unable to accept new applications for the  Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), a COVID-19 related assistance program, based on available appropriations funding. Applicants who have already submitted their applications will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-served basis.

**Latest Information**
  • 9.14 – Resources to Grow Your Small Business (in Webinar section below)
  • 9.14 – Governor Edwards’ Phase 3 Proclamations (details below)
  • 9.11 – Phase 3 Re-opening Guidelines (details below)
  • 9.3 – Shopify webinar follow-up  (in Webinar section below)
  • 8.3 – Business Webinar Slide Decks & Click to STARTup Videos (details below)
  • 7.28 – LA Main Street Recovery (Grant) Program Applications Now Open!
  • 7.14 – Statewide Mask Wearing Mandate (details below)
  • 7.14 – Additional Phase 2 Mitigation Measures (details below)
  • 7.13 – Updated LA Main Street Recovery Program info (details below)

We are encouraging business owners to register at opensafely.la.gov to receive guidance and updates from the State Fire Marshal’s office and the Louisiana Department of Health

For Businesses

Proclamation Number 117 JBE 2020, issued September 11, 2020, allows for Louisiana to move to Phase 3 of reopening.

Vermilion Economic Development Alliance is partnering with local, regional, and state organizations to host an ongoing series of COVID-19 webinars to help businesses navigate the crisis. Please check back regularly for updated resources and information.

Click to STARTup! A video series prepared by Opportunity Machine.  They took their most frequently asked questions from startup founders and small business owners and answered them in quick and easy how-to videos. Get the assistance you need when you need it!

Resources to Grow Your Small Business

Wednesday 9/22/20 (9:30-11:00 a.m.)

Looking to grow you small business? This webinar will provide an overview of programs offered through Louisiana Economic Development (LED) to cultivate small business opportunities.

Presenters: Darrell Johnson, Louisiana Economic Development & Heidi Melancon, LSBDC at UL Lafayette

Louisiana Economic Development offers a comprehensive array of programs and resources that help small businesses to build capacity, increase opportunities, and accelerate growth. Learn more about the small business support programs available through LED and the training, counseling, and assistance available through the Louisiana Small Business Development Center (LSBDC) at UL Lafayette to help you sustain and grow your business.

USING SHOPIFY TO LAUNCH YOUR E-COMMERCE BUSINESS

Wednesday 9/2/20 (9:30-11:00 a.m.)

This interactive webinar gives small business owners the tactical tools to set up an e-commerce website through Shopify, which has partnered with Louisiana Economic Development on the LASmallBizOnline.com e-commerce initiative.

COVID-19 RECOVERY & 2020 LEGISLATIVE SESSIONS

Wednesday 7/22/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

A panel of State Representatives from the Acadiana region recap some of the major outcomes from the Regular and Special Sessions and discuss Louisiana’s economic recovery from COVID-19.

Main Street Recovery Program

Tuesday, 7/7/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

State Treasurer John Schroder presented on the new Louisiana Main Street Recovery Program, which will provide grants of up to $15,000 to eligible Louisiana small businesses to cover eligible expenses related to COVID-19 that have not been covered by the PPP or other federal assistance programs.

For the first 21 days of the program, grants will be given to businesses who didn’t receive a Payment Protection Program loan, insurance payment, or an Economic Injury Disaster loan.  During the first 60 days, $40 million will go to businesses owned by women, minorities, and veterans.

Download the slide deck

GETTING THE MOST OUT OF PPP

Wednesday 6/10/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Heidi Melancon of the Louisiana Small Business Development Center (LSBDC) at UL Lafayette and Eddie Buttross of IBERIABANK provided information on the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the PPP changes recently passed by Congress – the PPP Flexibility Act. The Act, which President Trump signed into law on June 5, provides greater flexibility for loan forgiveness and spending. Heidi and Eddie also walked through the current PPP Loan Forgiveness Application and took questions from the audience.

Download the slide deck

NEW SKILLS, NEW OPPORTUNITIES: A CONVERSATION WITH HIGHER ED LEADERS

Tuesday 5/19/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Dr. Nancee Sorenson of LSUE, Dr. Claire Arabie, of UL Lafayette, and Jermaine Ford of SLCC cover the Acadiana Opportunity initiative, and education and training opportunities available through Acadiana’s higher education institutions.

Acadiana Opportunity Web Portal – Regional partners are helping connect people like you with training programs and job opportunities. Explore this website to learn more about education & training options and search for available jobs.

Webinar Slide Deck

Getting Back to Work Safely

Tuesday 5/12/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Chad Abell of ACSW, Tessa Brown of CCI Piping Systems, Neil Davis of Acadian Companies, and Brent Hebert of Dupre Logistics share what getting back to work safely means to them and their companies. 1A shared a set of resources for businesses to consider when developing reopening plans, including official guidance and examples of new workplace protocols.

Rethinking Business: Forging a New Path in the Wake of COVID-19

Tuesday 4/28/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Business and marketing experts – Cherie Hebert (BBR), Destin Ortego (Opportunity Machine), Cian Robinson (Lafayette General Health), Missy Rogers (Noble Plastics) – discussed how businesses can embrace innovation and creativity to sustain their operations and support economic recovery. Businesses are having to get creative and think outside of the box to sustain their operations in the wake of COVID-19. How might you think outside of the box for your business? Hear about practical examples of businesses pivoting their operations. This conversational webinar aims to spark creativity and problem-solving to ensure business sustainability and support our community’s economic recovery.

Louisiana’s Tourism Economy Post-COVID-19

4/21/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Tourism and hospitality leaders – Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser, Ben Berthelot (Lafayette Convention & Visitors Commission), Randy Daniel (La Pizzeria Lafayette), and Jimmy Thackston (DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Lafayette) – presented affects of Louisiana’s stay-at-home order on the tourism industry. Limiting the ability to travel and cancellation of many festivals and other events for the remainder of the year, is causing the state’s tourism economy is taking a big hit from COVID-19. How are the restaurants and hotels that depend on tourism handling these impacts? What are the biggest challenges our tourism officials see for the future of the industry, and what are the opportunities? Watch the video to hear their input.

Download the slide deck

COVID-19 issues facing landlords & tenants

4/14/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Landlord & Tenant Issues

Attorneys from Jones Walker’s real estate team discussed some of the different issues facing landlords and tenants as a result of COVID-19, including rent deferment and abatement, force majeure, and remote notary services. They also covered additional changes that can be expected, such as changes to how contracts will be written going forward.

Download the slide deck

COVID-19 Impacts on the Oil & Gas Industry

4/7/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Oil & Gas Industry Impacts

Gifford Briggs of LOGA gave a presentation on COVID-19’s impacts on the oil & gas industry, including projected job losses and broader economic consequences. Rep. Jean-Paul Coussan, Chairman of the House Natural Resources and Environment Committee, joined Gifford to discuss policy steps that can be taken at the local, state, and federal level to support the industry’s recovery.

Download the slide deck

Managing Your Workforce in Response to COVID-19

3/31/20 (9:00-10:00 a.m.)

Labor Law Updates

NeunerPate presented a summary of the employment law implications of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and other COVID-19 related federal legislation, including paid sick leave and family and medical leave requirements.

Download the slide deck
Questions & Answers

ASSISTANCE FOR SELF-EMPLOYED INDIVIDUALS & OTHERS

3/31/20 (10:30-11:30 a.m.)

Issues Facing Sole Proprietors and Similar Companies/Workers 

Susheel Kumar of the Small Business Administration presented an overview of federal assistance available to sole proprietors, individual contractors, and other self-employed individuals as a result of COVID-19.

Download the slide deck
Questions & Answers

COVID 19 FEDERAL RESPONSE AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

3/27/20 (1:30-2:30 p.m.)

Federal Response & What It Means for Small Business

The Picard Group joined us for an update on the recently negotiated federal stimulus package and other policy measures in response to COVID-19.

Download the slide deck
Questions & Answers
Paycheck Protection Program Quick Guide

DISASTER LOANS AND OTHER SBA RESOURCES & GETTING YOUR BUSINESS READY TO SELL ONLINE

3/24/20

Part 1: Disaster Loans and Other SBA Resources (9:30-10:00 a.m.)
Part 2: Getting Your Business Ready to Sell Online (10:00-11:00 a.m.)

This two-part webinar focused on disaster loans and other resources provided by the Small Business Association. Participants also heard from local small business leaders who shared tips and best practices on how to pivot to online sales.

Download the presentation
Additional SBA Loan information

The statewide face covering order, as detailed in Proclamation Number 89 JBE 2020, applies in the following ways:

  • All customers as well as business owners and employees, non-essential and essential, are to wear face coverings
    inside a commercial establishment or any other building or space open to the public, whether indoor or outdoor, as well as when utilizing public or commercial modes of transportation. This includes when individuals are engaged in exercise indoors or when a physical activity outdoors involves being within six feet of others. *Stay informed of the status of your local government in regard to the ability to opt-out of the statewide face covering order per Proclamation 89 JBE 2020.
  • Face coverings must be worn over the nose and mouth.
  • It is a business’ responsibility to ensure all employees AND customers are wearing face coverings when on the
    premises.

    • Businesses are recommended to, first, ask any patron not wearing a face covering to put one on.
    • If a customer refuses a business’ request to wear a face covering while on the premises, the business is
      recommended to request that the individual leave the building. If the individual refuses to leave, a trespass violation may be enforced.
    • Businesses that fail to remedy concerns raised over the wearing of face coverings per Proclamation 89 JBE
      2020 are subject to citation and/or applicable licensure revocation.
  • A business shall make exception for customers with regard to the wearing of face coverings if the following
    stipulations are applicable:

    • A child under the age of 8, though it is strongly recommended that children ages 2 and older wear face
      coverings.
    • An individual with a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering.
    • An individual communicating with someone who is hearing impaired.
  • Exceptions can also be made for:
    • Individuals who can remain six feet away from others, particularly when outdoors.
    • Individuals who are eating and/or drinking.
    • Individuals giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience.
    • Individuals temporarily removing their face covering for identification purpose

Further Face Covering Guidance:
Refer to Louisiana Department of Health guidance here
Download OpenSafely guidelines

 

Gov. Edwards Orders Statewide Mask Mandate, Closes Bars to On Premises Consumption as COVID-19 Continues to Spread Across Louisiana.

Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced a mandatory mask requirement for Louisiana and ordered bars in the state closed to on-premises consumption, as the state experiences increasing spread of COVID-19. The Governor also limited indoor social gatherings like wedding receptions, class reunions and parties to 50 total people. With these additional restrictions, Louisiana remains in Phase Two of the Roadmap for a Resilient Louisiana.

The statewide mask mandate, which will allow for parishes without high COVID-19 incidence to opt out if they choose, and bar closures go into effect Monday, July 13 at 12:01 a.m., per a revised Phase Two proclamation signed today. The order will also limit the size of gatherings to 50. The new order is set to expire July 24, 2020, but could be extended.

“Cases in Louisiana continue to increase, including setting a record-high number of new cases reported in one day, today and yesterday. More than two thousand new COVID infections reported each of these days and increased hospitalizations are signs that we continue to go in the wrong direction in our work to control COVID-19 in our state. While I had hoped to avoid going backwards on restrictions, it is obvious that it is necessary to slow the spread of infection in our state, as COVID-19 has spread to every corner, at a level higher than we have previously seen. This is why I am now mandating face coverings statewide and also closing all bars in Louisiana to on-premises consumption, in addition to putting in limits on the size of indoor gatherings,” Gov. Edwards said. “Right now, all Louisianans need to work together to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by wearing their face masks, keeping social distance, washing their hands frequently and staying at home when they are feeling sick. These are reasonable expectations while we fight to reduce the spread of the illness in our state. This approach also gives us the best possible chance to again flatten the curve without moving back to Phase One.”

MASK MANDATE
The statewide mask mandate applies to all 64 parishes in Louisiana. However, parishes with a COVID-19 incidence of fewer than 100 cases per 100,000 people for the most recent two-week period for which data is available could choose to opt out of the mandate. Parish presidents do not have to opt out and may choose to keep a mask mandate in place. Currently, only three parishes in Louisiana do not exceed this standard, which will be updated every other week by the Louisiana Department of Health: Grant, Red River and West Feliciana.

The order requires face coverings for everyone ages 8 and older except for the following:

  • Anyone who has a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering
  • Anyone who is consuming a drink or food
  • Anyone who is trying to communicate with a person who is hearing impaired
  • Anyone who is giving a speech for broadcast or to an audience
  • Anyone temporarily removing his or her face covering for identification purposes
  • Anyone who is a resident of a parish without a high COVID incidence that has opted out of the masking mandate

Masks are strongly recommended for children ages 2 to 7.

CLOSURE OF BARS TO ALL ON PREMISES CONSUMPTION
All bars, including those with food permits from the Louisiana Department of Health, will be closed to on-premises consumption. They can operate for curbside takeout or delivery service only.

Since the start of the crisis, Louisiana has identified at least 36 outbreaks, impacting at least 405 people, involving bars, which were actually closed under the Governor’s original Stay at Home order. Public health officials believe going to bars is a higher public health risk than visiting other types of businesses because people are socializing and cannot wear masks when they drink. In addition, young people under the age of 30 make up the largest percentage of new COVID cases in Louisiana.

GATHERING SIZE
The new order also limits the size of social gatherings to 50 people indoors. Outdoor social gatherings are also limited to 50 people if individuals cannot avoid being within six feet of one another.

This crowd size limitation shall not apply to those businesses deemed essential as defined by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency or any businesses and organizations operating at 50% capacity pursuant to Paragraphs (1) through (6) of Subsection (G) of Section 2 of 83 JBE 2020, including churches and other faith-based organizations.

The 50-person limit will apply to indoor gatherings, like receptions, weddings and others. The changes are based on the advice of public health officials.

Download the proclamation 

Main Street Recovery Program

Louisiana’s State Treasurer Schroder has announced some small businesses harmed by the coronavirus pandemic will have access to grants from a $300 million federally financed program starting July 28th. The money is part of $1.8 billion in direct congressional relief that Louisiana received to respond to COVID-19. $40 million of the aid is guaranteed to be spent on grants to assist minority-owned, women-owned and veteran-owned businesses.

Apply online at www.louisianamainstreet.com

  • The grants are aimed at helping businesses that had to stop operating or otherwise incurred costs because of the virus outbreak. Businesses that qualify may receive up to $15,000 each.
  • Grants for the first 21 days only will be available to businesses that didn’t receive other federal aid through the Paycheck Protection Program or through a U.S. Small Business Administration disaster loan, and that didn’t receive insurance for interruptions to their business.
  • To be eligible, businesses have to be located in Louisiana. They can’t have had more than 50 full-time workers as of March 1, before Louisiana saw its first confirmed case of COVID-19. And they can’t be a subsidiary of or owned by a larger company with more than 50 full-time employees.
  • Treasurer’s Office has set up a general email to receive inquiries on the Main Street Recovery Program

Treasury Office Fact Sheet

VEDA Grant Basics, Eligibility & Application Info Downloadable Form

On June 1st, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that following continued improvement in Louisiana’s COVID-19 outlook and a significant increase in testing capacity and contact tracing, Louisiana is ready to move to Phase 2 of the White House’s reopening strategy on June 5.

Gov. Edwards will sign the official order for Phase 2 of a Resilient Louisiana by Thursday evening, with guidance being issued to individual industries and businesses via the OpenSafely.la.gov website throughout the week. In Phase 2, churches, places of worship and many more businesses will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity with social distancing, masks for public-facing employees and increased sanitation. In addition, the state strongly recommends that businesses consider offering temperature checks before a person can enter and posting the symptoms of COVID-19 outside with a request that symptomatic individuals not enter.

The Governor was advised by public health experts that Louisiana has seen decreasing reports of COVID-like illness, decreasing new case counts especially as a percentage of tests administered, and decreasing hospitalizations in almost every area of the state. A few areas of concern still exist, but through contact tracing and frequent testing, the state is able to quickly track increases and work to prevent large outbreaks.

  • Click here to view the data from the Office of Public Health used to make the re-opening decision.

Phase 2 in Louisiana will last at least 21 days. Because more businesses will be open to more patrons and because the CDC has clarified that the illness is most likely to spread through the air and not on surfaces, the order will strongly encourage individuals to wear masks whenever they are in public and will recommend that people who enter businesses that are not taking proper precautions consider the risk to their health and their family in doing so.

“The people of Louisiana have done an incredible job flattening the curve here, and I’m thankful for their compliance and hard work. Likewise, the state has matched their efforts by ramping up both testing and contact tracing. All of this has allowed us to get to a place where we can move into Phase 2 on Friday,” Gov. Edwards said. “However, as more people are out and about and occupancy increases and even more businesses operate, members of the public should be cautious as they enter businesses and leave any place that is not taking precautions against the spread of COVID-19, especially if employees interacting with the public are not wearing masks and customers are not being encouraged to do so as well. We know most business owners want to go above and beyond to make their patrons feel safe. I hope the people of Louisiana will support these businesses that are doing the right thing to protect their customers and employees.”

“In addition, people who are at high risk for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19, including those over 65 and those with underlying health conditions, should still Stay at Home unless they are completing essential tasks, such as doctor visits or going to purchase medications, food or other necessary items. Everyone should consider their own risk and the risk of those in their households as they plan their public outings. There are still thousands of active COVID-19 cases in Louisiana and public health experts have increased warnings about asymptomatic people being able to spread the illness unknowingly.”

OVERVIEW OF BUSINESSES THAT CAN OPEN:

Businesses that will be able to open at 50 percent occupancy include:

  • Restaurants, cafes and coffee shops
  • Shopping malls (including food courts, following restaurant guidance)
  • Gyms and fitness centers
  • Barber and beauty shops and nail salons
  • Movie theaters
  • Racetracks (not open to spectators)
  • Museums (including children’s museums), zoos, aquariums (no tactile exhibits)
  • Bars and breweries with LDH food permits
  • Massage establishments, spas, and tattoo establishments (under strict guidance from LDH), esthetician services (under strict guidance from the Cosmetology Board)
  • Pool halls, bowling alleys and skating rinks (children must be accompanied by an adult)
  • Event Centers and wedding venues
  • Outdoor playgrounds and play centers (children must be accompanied by an adult)

Casinos and video poker establishments may open at 50 percent occupancy, but limited to 75 percent of their gaming positions, with spacing to allow for social distancing and with enhanced sanitation. Plans must be submitted to the Gaming Control Board which will issue guidance to these facilities.

Bars and breweries that do not have LDH food permits will be able to open with strict social distancing requirements and patrons seated at 25 percent occupancy.

Arcades and trampoline parks may open under approved plans by the State Fire Marshal, with minors accompanied by parents.

Summer camps were allowed to open with restrictions in Phase One, and additional guidance will be issued. Sleep-away camps are not allowed in Phase Two.

The following businesses remain closed: carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, fairs, contact sports, children’s indoor play centers, theme parks, concert and music halls, and other similar businesses. Live entertainment is not permitted inside any building or indoor function.

The Governor encourages businesses that can allow employees to work remotely to consider doing so, especially if an employee is at high risk for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 or shares a household with a high risk person.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                                                

  • Business and faith leaders can visit OpenSafely.la.gov to receive guidance and updates from the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Louisiana Department of Health. Businesses that require approval of reopening plans will be notified by the State Fire Marshal’s Office or the Louisiana Department of Health.
  • For a guide listing businesses that can be open at any given time, visit gov.louisiana.gov/page/can-this-business-open.
  • Members of the public can continue to get information from the Governor’s office by visiting Coronavirus.la.gov and by texting LACOVID to 67283.
  • Members of the public can continue to get information from the Department of Health by visiting ldh.la.gov/coronavirus.
  • People with general questions about COVID-19 in Louisiana can call 211.

As our region starts to stabilize from the pandemic and restrictions begin to lift, it’s critical that businesses have a plan in place to bring employees back into the physical workplace.

One Acadiana’s “Workplace Readiness Playbook” outlines some of the best thinking and practices on strategies to protect your employees, your workspace, and your community.

In accordance with federal & state guidance, the following are guidelines to return to work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to others by infected persons who have few or no symptoms. Because of the hidden nature of this threat, everyone should rigorously follow the guidelines specified in this plan. The virus that causes COVID-19 is still circulating in our communities. We should continue to observe practices that protect everyone.

  1. General Health Instruction – All employees should be educated by their supervisor on appropriate health practices. The education should include the following:

Signs/symptoms of COVID-19 to include:

    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
    • Fever
    • Chills
    • Muscle Pain
    • Sore throat
    • New loss of taste or smell

Stay home if you are sick or showing symptoms.

Wash hands often with soap & water for at least 20 seconds especially after touching frequently used items or surfaces. Utilize an alcohol-based hand sanitizer often between washings.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.

Sneeze or cough into a tissue or the inside of your elbow.

Avoid shaking hands.

Discourage sharing desks, offices, or phones. If not feasible, disinfect after each use.

Stay away from others who are sick.

Clean & disinfect, frequently used equipment & surfaces. (Follow manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning & disinfecting electronics. If no manufacturer’s instructions, wipe with an alcohol-based disinfectant or spray with Lysol or equivalent.)

Practice social distancing & limit gatherings. Maintain a distance of at least 6 ft or be separated by a barrier. If not possible, wear a face covering. Face coverings can be homemade & must cover the mouth & nose area.
If a sick employee is suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19, clean workstation with soap & water, then disinfect using a disinfectant approved to kill COVID-19 (Lysol, bleach/alcohol wipes or other approved cleaner).

2. All employees should have access to hand soap, tissues, paper towels, & trash bins.

3. Alcohol based hand sanitizer should be available throughout each building.

4. HVAC systems should be outfitted with the highest efficiency rating filter allowed by the
manufacturer (MERV rating).

5. Any office with a gym must provide Lysol, bleach/alcohol wipes or other approved cleaner to
disinfect equipment. Equipment must be wiped before & after use. Signage must be posted
stating requirements to clean.

6. All locations should post signage throughout buildings to raise awareness.

7. The highest level of management at each location is responsible for implementing the listed
measures.

8. Department heads are responsible for enforcing all measures.

Phases of Return to Work – Return to work will be done in conjunction with the federal proposed phased approach. Each  location will follow the phases of their respective state or local jurisdiction.

Phase 1

  • Remote work still encouraged if feasible.
  • Can allow up to 25% of normal personnel back into offices.
  • All offices & hubs should utilize temperature/symptoms screening template at their
    entrances. If screen is positive for temperature/symptoms, isolate employee & notify
    department head for guidance. Local leadership should ensure this is outlined &
    completed.
  • All personnel in offices & hubs should maintain a distance of at least 6 ft or be separated
    by a barrier. If this is not possible, face coverings shall be worn.
  • Enhanced cleaning should happen at least 3 times per day/night (beginning, middle &
    end of each shift). Frequently clean common touch points, such as tables, counter tops,
    doorknobs/handles, handrails, light switches, desks, phones, keyboards, touch screens,
    toilets, faucets & sinks, etc. Local leadership should ensure this is outlined & completed.
  • Reduce common touch points by opening internal doors where possible & removing lids
    on disposal receptacles, unless doing so creates an unsanitary environment.

    • Common areas & break rooms should be restricted to allow at least 6 ft social
      distancing. A guide is one person for every 40 square ft. of available space. Remember
      to include furniture/appliances in calculations.
    • Adjust lunch/break times to limit contact between employees.
    • Seating should be arranged to allow proper distancing. Removal of some chairs may be required.
    • Outdoor areas are preferred for lunch & other breaks if feasible.
    • Use disposable cups, plates, & utensils.
    • Disinfect high touch point areas frequently (coffee pot, refrigerator, microwave,
      faucets, etc.)
  • No more than 2 people allowed in elevators at one time.
  • Avoid in person or face/face meetings when possible. Utilize video conferences as a
    substitute.
  • Deliveries should be limited to one entrance at each building. Deliveries should be left
    in the entrance/lobby of the building.
  • Visitors are not allowed. If contract services are needed, they should be screened.
  • Business travel should be limited.

Phase 2 (Guidance is 14 days after Phase 1 – In conjunction with state) Follow all Phase 1 guidelines except as follows:

  • Can allow up to 50% of normal personnel back into offices.
  • Necessary business travel can resume.

Phase 3 (Guidance is 14 days after Phase 2 – In conjunction with state)

  • Offices can allow 100% of personnel back into offices.
  • Discontinue temperature/symptoms screening.
  • Social distancing requirements removed. Continue to practice good hygiene & space
    awareness.
  • Clean & disinfect surfaces as normal.
  • Open common areas & break rooms as normal.
  • Face/face meetings allowed.
  • Visitors & deliveries as normal.
  • Business travel as normal.

Refer to https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html for the most current
list of COVID-19 symptoms

*This sample was created for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be
taken as a substitute for professional legal or medical advice and is not guaranteed to be
correct, complete, or up to date. Always seek the advice of a qualified lawyer or health provider
with any questions you may have regarding your particular circumstances. Never disregard
professional advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this form.

5/21/20 Update: SBA Applications & Information Regarding Loan Forgiveness is now available!

Last week, the SBA issued much-awaited guidance outlining how business owners can apply for forgiveness on Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and which payroll and nonpayroll expenses are eligible for forgiveness.

Loan Forgiveness Application

  • Funded by the CARES Act.
  • Small businesses under 500 employees will receive FORGIVABLE small business loans (up to $10 million) to keep making payroll while workers (or independent contractors) have to stay home.
  • These SBA-guaranteed loans provide eight weeks of cash-flow assistance for costs such as utilities, mortgage interest and rent. Borrower does not need to provide a guarantee.
  • The size of these loans will be subject to a formula that is the equivalent of 2.5 times an employer’s average monthly payroll.
  • Loan payments are deferred for six months, interest is accrued during deferment.
  • Any loan amount not forgiven will have a loan term of two years, with an interest rate of 1%.
  • Loans will be available immediately through existing SBA-certified lenders.
  • Vermilion Parish participating lenders:
    • Bank of Abbeville
    • Bank of Erath
    • Capital One
    • Chase Bank
    • First Guaranty Bank
    • Gulf Coast Bank
    • IBERIABANK
    • Pedestal Bank
    • Vermilion Bank
  • To search for additional lenders, you can use this tool: https://www.sba.gov/paycheckprotection/find

To further combat the spread of COVID-19 in Louisiana, Gov. Edwards issued a Stay at Home Order on March 22, directing all Louisiana residents to shelter at home and limit movements outside of their homes beyond essential needs.

Click here for the governor’s official order.

On April 27, Gov. Edwards extended his stay at home order until May 15.

Click here for a list of essential infrastructure.

YOU CAN

  • Go to the grocery, convenience or warehouse store
  • Go to the pharmacy to pick up medications and other healthcare necessities
  • Go to medical appointments (check with your doctor or provider first)
  • Go to a restaurant for take-out, delivery or drive-thru
  • Care for or support a friend or family member
  • Take a walk, ride your bike, hike, jog and be in nature for exercise — just keep at least six feet between you and others.
  • Walk your pets and take them to the veterinarian if necessary
  • Help someone to get necessary supplies
  • Receive deliveries from any business which delivers

YOU SHOULD NOT

  • Go to work unless you are providing essential services as defined by this Order
  • Visit friends and family if there is no urgent need
  • Maintain less than 6 feet of distance from others when you go out
  • Visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility or other residential care facility, except for limited exceptions as provided on the facility websites.

For businesses, the new Stay at Home order has limits on the following:

  • All places of public amusement, whether indoors or outdoors, including but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, trampoline parks, aquariums, zoos, museums, arcades, fairs, pool halls, children’s play centers, playgrounds, theme parks, any theaters, concert and music halls, adult entertainment venues, racetracks, and other similar businesses.
  • All personal care and grooming businesses, including but not limited to, barber shops, beauty salons, nail salons, spas, massage parlors, tattoo parlors, and other similar businesses.
  • All malls, except for stores in a mall that have a direct outdoor entrance and exit that provide essential services and products as provided by the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) guidelines.
  • Businesses closed to the public as listed in the order can conduct necessary activities such as payroll, cleaning services, maintenance or upkeep as necessary.
  • Any business not covered by the guidance from the CISA discussed in Section 3 of the order and not ordered to temporarily close must reduce operations to continue with minimum contact with members of the public and essential employees, while requiring proper social distancing, adhering to the 10-person limitation on gathering size.
  • Early learning centers and child care facilities adhering to the guidance issued by the Louisiana Department of Education and Office of Public Health may continue to operate.

Examples of Essential Worker Functions under the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) guidelines include:

  • Healthcare workers and caregivers
  • Mental health and Social Service workers
  • Pharmacy employees
  • Workers supporting groceries, pharmacies and other retail sales of food and beverage products
  • Restaurant carryout and quick-serve food operations and food delivery employees
  • Farmworkers
  • Electricity and Utility Industry Employees
  • Critical Manufacturing Employees (medical supply chains, energy, transportation, food, chemicals)
  • Petroleum, Natural and Propane Gas Workers
  • Transportation and Logistics Workers
  • Communications and Information Technology Employees

What is the difference between “Safer at Home” and “social distancing”?

Safer at home is a stricter form of social distancing. Safer at home means:

  • Stay home (stay unexposed and do not expose others)
  • Only go out for essential services
  • Stay six feet or more away from others
  • Don’t gather in groups

What is a Stay at Home order?
A Stay at Home order is the Governor directing people to avoid going out in public unless it is absolutely necessary.

Why is this Stay at Home order necessary?
Right now, COVID-19 is spreading rapidly throughout our state and some of our communities and, without taking additional measures, Louisiana’s health care system will have more sick people than it can care for. The state is working to increase its health care capacity, but people also need to take measures to prevent the spread of this illness. Our medical community is working overtime to take care of people who are sick, but it needs help from the public to keep even more people from needing care.

When is it okay for me to leave my home?
People can leave their homes to do things like buy groceries or food, pick up medicine or go to work if their job is essential. If you have to go out, make sure you practice social distancing measures and keep 6 feet between you and the people around you. Also: people are encouraged to go outside and to stay active during this time, as long as they practice social distancing when they are around their neighbors.

What if I need to get tested for coronavirus or to go to the doctor?
People can leave their homes for medical treatment or to get testing, but they should call their health care provider or doctor before doing so for advice. Your doctor may be able to help you via telemedicine or decide if you need to be tested by asking you questions on the phone. Do not show up to a testing site without consulting a medical professional first, because you may need a doctor’s order to qualify for a test. Unless it is an emergency, do not go to a health care facility without calling first, because you may put yourself at risk of being exposed to COVID-19.

What businesses and jobs are considered essential?
Health care workers, public safety employees, some government workers, staff of grocery stores and restaurants and employees of some business are generally considered essential workers. Businesses like manufacturers and utilities have to continue operations to support our communities.

In general, the state of Louisiana follows guidance from the federal Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) about what infrastructure and businesses are “critical” during the COVID-19 outbreak. For more detailed information from CISA, visit this site: https://www.cisa.gov/identifying-critical-infrastructure-during-covid-19

How will this order be enforced?
The state is working with local law enforcement to support the order. There have been rumors about military control or martial law being declared. These rumors are false.

Why is this order statewide? There are not a lot of cases confirmed in my area.
COVID-19 is rapidly spreading throughout the state and we know that some people do not show symptoms for 14 days, even if they are sick. Just because no one has tested positive in your community doesn’t mean that no one is sick. By enacting this Stay at Home order statewide, Gov. Edwards is working to slow the spread of COVID-19 and flatten the curve.

Is the Governor closing Louisiana’s borders and declaring martial law?
No. This is a rumor and is not based in fact. Members of Louisiana’s National Guard are deployed in Louisiana to help support local testing sites, so you may see members of the military in your community. Martial law has not been declared. Louisiana’s borders are not closed.

When is the Stay at Home order going to be lifted?
The Stay at Home order is in place until the morning of Monday, April 13, which is when schools are scheduled to re-open. Governor Edwards will re-evaluate the order before it expires to make sure that it doesn’t need to be restricted.

Where can people get more information about what the State of Louisiana is doing in response to the COVID-19 Outbreak?
The Governor’s office is constantly updating its website at gov.louisiana.gov, as is the Louisiana Department of Health at ldh.la.gov/Coronavirus. You can also call 211 for general information about COVID-19 and to get connected to help and resources.

In accordance with Governor John Bel Edwards’ COVID-19 Proclamation JBE to be released May 1, 2020, all restaurants that provide outdoor patio venues must adhere to strict mitigation standards preventing the spread of COVID-19. The general operating matrix will require spacing of groups, limiting concentration of people, strict use of PPE, and frequent sanitizing.

Outdoor Restaurant Guidance from Louisiana Fire Marshal

As Governor Edwards prepares to announce what to expect once the state’s current stay-at-home order expires on April 30, One Acadiana (1A) released a user-friendly guide to the Louisiana business community’s “Safe at Work” framework – a starting point for businesses and elected officials to consider in developing reopening plans.

Going forward, 1A will be meeting with the organization’s leadership and business leaders across the region to discuss next steps for returning to work and adapting to a new normal.

SafeatWorkGuide

The SBA is currently unable to accept new applications for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), a COVID-19 related assistance program, based on available appropriations funding. Applicants who have already submitted their applications will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-served basis.

Economic Recovery Toolkit

Contact Info:

  • Governor Edwards has received commitments from banks and credit unions across the state that have agreed to help Louisiana’s small businesses recover from the COVID-19 crisis.
  • The program is designed to help business owners maintain the continuation of operations as a result of COVID-19. Suggested uses for the loan are to maintain employee payroll for an 8-week period at minimum payroll levels at the time of application for the loan, as well as to maintain continuance of operations within COVID-19 executive orders, proclamations, and relevant state agency guidance. The need for the loan and use of proceeds must be directly related to the economic injury caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Eligible small business owners may apply to one of the local banks and credit unions that have agreed to participate in this program. You may reach out to a participating bank or credit union of your choice and apply. Each bank will utilize its own application and underwriting process.
  • Program Details
    • Deadline = May 29, 2020
    • Eligibility = All small businesses employing under 100 workers are eligible, including restaurants, day cares, farmers and fishermen. Ineligible businesses are those solely engaged in gaming, non-profit organizations, real estate developers, pawn shops, pay-day loans, lending and investment concerns, or speculative activities
    • Non-Revolving Lines of Credit, Term Loans
    • No program fees
    • Loan size = $10,000-$100,000
    • Loan can range from 1 to 5 years
    • Guidance from the SBA indicates that participation in this program will not exclude you from eligibility for the PPP or EIDL program as long as loan funds are not used for the same expenditures
  • Applications open April 20th for $5,000 grants for small business
  • An initiative of the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, funded by corporate and philanthropic partners, the Save Small Business Fund of the US Chamber of Commerce is a collective effort to provide grants to as many small employers as possible
  • To qualify you must:
    • Employ between 3 and 20 people
    • Be located in an economically vulnerable community
    • Have been harmed financially by the COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Program Details
    • The application is short. It will take about 10 minutes to complete
    • All you will need is your business’s W-9 form.
    • Grants will be awarded on a weekly basis, but you only need to apply one time to be eligible for funding

The SBA is currently unable to accept new applications for tEconomic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), a COVID-19 related assistance program, based on available appropriations funding. Applicants who have already submitted their applications will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-served basis. 

  • Companies that already have SBA-backed loans through other programs can ask to delay their payments for six months, though the lender will make the final decision is our understanding.
  • NOTE:  Unlike other disaster responses, there are no “on site” application locations at Small Business Development Centers.  All applications are by phone or on-line.
  • Funded by the CARES Act.
  • Most small businesses open since 1/31/20 with 500 or fewer employees and most private non-profits of any size are eligible. This includes Sole Proprietorships, with or without employees, Independent contractors, Cooperatives and employee owned businesses, and Tribal small businesses.
  • These are low interest loans (2.75% for non-profit, 3.75% for private) of up to $2 million, with principal and interest deferred for 6-12 months, that are available to pay for expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occurred, including payroll and other operating expenses.
  • Applicants that apply can request an advance of up to $10,000, which the SBA must distribute within 3 days. The advance is a grant and does not need to be repaid under any circumstance. It may be used to keep employees on payroll, to pay for sick leave, meet increased production costs due to supply chain disruptions, or pay business obligations, including debts, rent and mortgage payments.
  • The Louisiana Small Business Development Center – UL Lafayette is a great resource for businesses that need direct assistance with their application. They can be reached by calling (337) 482-6312 or emailing lsbdc.ull@lsbdc.org.
  • Louisiana businesses may apply as follows:
  • Companies that already have SBA-backed loans through other programs can ask to delay their payments for six months, though the lender will make the final decision is our understanding.
  • NOTE:  Unlike other disaster responses, there are no “on site” application locations at Small Business Development Centers.  All applications are by phone or on-line.

First thing we need to know is how YOUR BUSINESS is doing. This way we can help the State and other partners understand what you need and build programming to match. We have developed the attached survey with partners from around the region. We believe it will capture information that will describe what is happening in Acadiana and can be used by multiple entities. Feel free to pass it along to other businesses.

COVID-19 Business Survey:
http://bit.ly/Acadiana-Biz-Survey

  • Louisiana Economic Development (LED) is currently monitoring the impact of the novel coronavirus COVID-19.
  • LED is focusing on business continuity aimed at safeguarding economic, as well as physical, health.  This information is in addition to that found on the Governor’s website; it will focus on useful resources and information for businesses and individuals.
  • Website
  • Business Hotline: LED has established a phone number, 225-342-4321, that businesses may use for help with questions regarding: how the stay home proclamation applies to businesses, federal loan resources available to businesses (SBA economic injury disaster loans), and information on how to donate personal protective equipment (PPE). Businesses can also visit https://www.opportunitylouisiana.com/covid-19-assistance for additional information.  The number is staffed from 8 am to 8pm, however, depending on call volume they may roll over to a voicemail and be prompted to leave a message, which will be returned. Outside of the 8am-8pm hours customers will also be able to leave a message.

With the purpose to avoid the spread of coronavirus, the LSU AgCenter and LA Sea Grant developed a guidance document for seafood processors in keeping their workers safe. In addition, in collaboration with the LDWF a guidance document was developed for fishermen.

These fact sheets and other COVID-19 response resources are available online at  “>https://www.lafisheriesforward.org/dealers-processors/

  • Webiste
  • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home:
    • Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [38.0° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants). Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
    • Ensure that your sick leave policies are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and that employees are aware of these policies.
    • Talk with companies that provide your business with contract or temporary employees about the importance of sick employees staying home and encourage them to develop non-punitive leave policies.
    • Do not require a healthcare provider’s note for employees who are sick with acute respiratory illness to validate their illness or to return to work, as healthcare provider offices and medical facilities may be extremely busy and not able to provide such documentation in a timely way.
    • Employers should maintain flexible policies that permit employees to stay home to care for a sick family member. Employers should be aware that more employees may need to stay at home to care for sick children or other sick family members than is usual.
  • Separate sick employees:
    • CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately. Sick employees should cover their noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or an elbow or shoulder if no tissue is available).
  • Emphasize staying home when sick, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene by all employees:
    • Place posters that encourage staying home when sickcough and sneeze etiquette, and hand hygiene at the entrance to your workplace and in other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen.
    • Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
    • Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
    • Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene.
    • Visit the coughing and sneezing etiquette and clean hands webpage for more information.
  • Perform routine environmental cleaning:
    • Routinely clean all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops, and doorknobs. Use the cleaning agents that are usually used in these areas and follow the directions on the label.
    • No additional disinfection beyond routine cleaning is recommended at this time.
    • Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.
  • Advise employees before traveling to take certain steps:
    • Check the CDC’s Traveler’s Health Notices for the latest guidance and recommendations for each country to which you will travel. Specific travel information for travelers going to and returning from China, and information for aircrew, can be found at on the CDC website.
    • Advise employees to check themselves for symptoms of acute respiratory illness before starting travel and notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
    • Ensure employees who become sick while traveling or on temporary assignment understand that they should notify their supervisor and should promptly call a healthcare provider for advice if needed.
    • If outside the United States, sick employees should follow your company’s policy for obtaining medical care or contact a healthcare provider or overseas medical assistance company to assist them with finding an appropriate healthcare provider in that country. A U.S. consular officer can help locate healthcare services. However, U.S. embassies, consulates, and military facilities do not have the legal authority, capability, and resources to evacuate or give medicines, vaccines, or medical care to private U.S. citizens overseas.
  • Additional Measures in Response to Currently Occurring Sporadic Importations of the COVID-19:
    • Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor and refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.
    • If an employee is confirmed to have COVID-19, employers should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace but maintain confidentiality as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Employees exposed to a co-worker with confirmed COVID-19 should refer to CDC guidance for how to conduct a risk assessment of their potential exposure.
  • If you are temporarily closing or reducing your hours of operations due to COVID-19, please contact the LWC to discuss how we can provide assistance and answer your questions about unemployment insurance and other programs and resources available.
  • Contact EmployerServices@lwc.la.gov with your unemployment insurance questions. Be sure to provide your company’s name, a point of contact, telephone number and email address, as well as
    specifics on the assistance you are requesting. The Employer Call Center, 225-326-6999, is also available.
  • For other programs and assistance, contact the American Job Center in in Abbeville: 1301 Clover Street Abbeville 337-893-1986
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: As per the Governor’s proclamation, reimbursable employers impacted due to COVID-19: Non-charges may be granted

Registration – By registering (approximately 10 to 15 minutes), you agree to allow business information you provide to be accessed and utilized by LA BEOC participants (including government agencies, academic partners and industry trade organizations) in the State’s disaster response and recovery efforts. Register online here

  • If you aren’t familiar with the Town Planner community web pages @ www.townplanner.com.  Enter in your zip code or community name.
  • Town Planner can add some promotional events for you and also a few featured events.  For example, a children’s boutique who has closed down store shopping but offering online shopping has been added.  Also, restaurants, you can promote a promotional event and offer.
  • This will be available on community web pages and the e-newsletter that goes out on Thursday afternoons.  This is part of your advertising package with Town Planner.  Typically, this platform is for events but under the circumstances there are no events and we can utilize this platform to keep your business upfront in our communities. Just let us know (info@developvermilion.org) and we’ll send in the update.
  • If your employment has been impacted for reasons related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease), please review the following information about assistance available. The Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) will do all that we can to ensure impacted workers receive the benefits for which they are eligible.
  • Do any of these situations apply to you?
    1. Your work hours have been reduced because of lack of work due to Coronavirus.
    2. Your workplace closes temporarily, and you are not being compensated.
    3. You have been instructed not to go to work, and you are not being paid while at home.
  •  You MAY be eligible for unemployment insurance. You can file a claim at www.louisianaworks.net/hire or by calling our Claim Center at 866-783-5567. Effective March 17, 2020, we have extended our Claim Center hours to 8 a.m.- 7 p.m.
  • Be sure to answer “yes” to the question, “Are you filing for Unemployment Insurance benefits for reasons related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)?” This will provide needed information to the LWC to
    help process your claim.
  • If your work hours have been reduced, partial benefits could be available to you up to a maximum of $247 a week. You must report any earnings for the week that you work, even if you’ve not yet been paid. Report the gross amount before deductions. These earnings would be factored into the amount of unemployment benefits paid to you for that week.
  • A number of factors determine eligibility for benefits. The LWC reviews each case separately.
  • The maximum number of weeks that unemployment benefits can be paid per claim is 26 weeks in a 12-month period.
  • Wages and vacation pay (received or will receive) MUST be reported when you file your unemployment claim. Sick leave and PTO do not need to be reported.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: As per the Governor’s proclamation, for individuals whose employment has been impacted due to COVID-19:
    Work search requirements are waived and Week of waiting is waived

A School Board  employee will be available at Central Office to complete work permits on Wednesday mornings from 9:00 – 11:30 and Thursday afternoons 1:00 – 3:00 (March 25th & 26th, April 1st & 2nd, and April 8th & 9th). Students are to bring their school ID, state ID, form from employer completed and signed by parent. The parent does not have to be present. Students will not come into the building, they will remain outside and greeted at the entrance to the Vermilion Parish School Board Office building located at

220 S. Jefferson Street, Abbeville LA

For Individuals, Donors & Workers

  • Louisiana 211 is partnering with the Louisiana Department of Health to ensure citizens can access to the most current information available for Coronavirus
  • Dial 211 or text LACOVID to 898-211 for more information
  • This website has all the information on the virus that is currently available
  • COVID-19 Freelance Artist Resources: an aggregated list of FREE resources, opportunities, and financial relief options available to artists of all disciplines.National for Resources for Artists:

    National Resources For Entertainers:

    Funding Opportunities:

    • American Guild of Musical Artists Relief Fund: Any AGMA member in good standing is invited to apply for financial assistance under the AGMA Relief Fund, which has temporarily doubled the amount of assistance available to those in need during the coronavirus pandemic.
    • Artist Relief Tree: Anyone who is an artist can request funds from the Artist Relief Tree, which plans to fulfill every request with a flat $250 on a first-come-first-serve basis. The fund is currently not accepting new requests until it can secure more funding, but to be informed if and when the opportunity becomes available again, click here.
    • Baton Rouge Gallery – Flat Curve Gallery: BRG is proud to announce the formation of The Flat Curve Gallery, an online gallery with works created during the COVID-19 pandemic from artists of all experience levels and all ages. And we want you and your art to be a part of it! Learn more at batonrougegallery.org/flat-curve-gallery.
    • Blues Foundation HART Fund: The HART Fund helps underinsured or uninsured blues musicians and their families in financial need due to a range of health concerns.
    • Convertkit Creative FundThe fund covers up to $500 per creator to help cover medical, childcare, housing or grocery needs.
    • COVID-19 Music Production Response Group: A Facebook group “open forum for constructive debate about the effects of COVID-19 on music production industry professionals,” according to administrators who are sharing news updates, suggested actions, job opportunities and other resources.
    • Creative Capital: Creative Capital has always been anchored by a rich spirit of community and mutual generosity, and we believe that continuing communication and exchange are crucial for all of us. As COVID-19 continues to spread across the United States, we have created a list of resources for artists working in all disciplines, as well as arts philanthropists, and arts professionals.
    • Culturalyst – Live Streaming for Musicians: Culturalyst has created a digital platform for musicians to be able to play live and receive tips through Venmo and other partners. More information at https://culturalyst.com/
    • Freelance Coop Emergency Fund: The Freelance Coop, which connects creative freelancers with business resources, created an emergency fund for freelancers adversely affected by the pandemic. Examples of funding usage are unexpected childcare costs due to school closures, client cancellations, and medical expenses due to the virus itself.
    • Foundation for Contemporary Arts: COVID-19 Relief fund is available for those seeking relief for a canceled performance or exhibition.
    • MusiCares Coronavirus Relief Fund: MusiCares-eligible music professionals — those who have had at least five years of employment in the music industry, or six commercially released recordings or videos — can apply for funds on the MusiCares websiteMore Info Here
    • Music Maker Relief Foundation: The foundation, which provides ongoing support to American artists 55 and older who live in chronic poverty, also gives out emergency grants to artists in crisis. It is now soliciting donations to ensure the stability of vulnerable elderly musicians during the pandemic.
    • Pinetop Perkins Foundation’s Assistance League: PAL provides financial assistance to elderly musicians for medical and living expenses. Preference is given to blues artists, though musicians in other genres may be eligible depending on available funds.
    • Rauschenberg Foundation – Medical Grants: The Rauschenberg Emergency Grants—expected to be rolled out in late May or early June—will provide visual artists, media artists, and choreographers up to $5,000 worth of assistance for medical emergencies. Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents. Check It Out Here
    • Rep Cap – Weekly Facebook Live Series: Rep Cap founder and CEO Mary Ellen Slayter is launching a weekly Facebook Live series in which the marketing company will pay musicians to perform virtual concerts. Facebook Page
    • SAG-AFTRA COVID-19 Disaster Fund: SAG-AFTRA members who are in an emergency financial crisis related to coronavirus may request assistance to cover basic expenses like rent, mortgage, utilities and medical bills. To apply to the fund, members must have paid their dues through October 2019.
    • Sound Royalties: Music finance firm Sound Royalties is allocating $20 million to offer a no-cost royalty advance funding option through April 16. Songwriters, performing artists, producers and other creators with royalty income can apply for cash advances on a one-year repayment schedule, cost-free.
    • Sweet Relief COVID-19 Fund: Sweet Relief has established a donor-directed fund to be used specifically for musicians and music industry workers affected by the coronavirus. Funds will go towards medical expenses, lodging, clothing, food and other vital living expenses for those who get sick or lose work due to the pandemic.

Contact Tracing is a Key Part of Louisiana’s Strategy to Fight COVID-19

Contact tracing is a method of tracking a disease that uses interviewers to speak to people who may have been exposed to a virus. It is an essential part of the fight against COVID-19. Contact tracers may contact you by phone from the number 877-766-2130.

  • Updates from the Louisiana Restaurant Association
  • Another Round Another RallyAnother Round Another Rally is offering $500 relief grants for hospitality workers who lost their jobs or had their hours slashed in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Children of Restaurant Employees: If a family qualifies for CORE support, they can receive a grant to cover medical bills for children, gas cards, groceries, clothing, medical supplies and therapies, utilities, rent and mortgage, and other essential needs a family might need to navigate their specific circumstance.
  • One Fair Wage Emergency Fund: OFW Emergency Fund is providing cash assistance to restaurant workers, car service drivers, delivery workers, personal service workers and more.
  • Restaurant Opportunities Centers UnitedThe National Restaurant Worker Relief Fund is a pool of money raised by members and donors of the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United. $500 relief grants are available for hospitality workers who lost their jobs or had their hours slashed in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak
  • Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation: The RWCF COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund has been created and is collecting donations to provide relief to individual workers affected by the coronavirus and to create zero-interest loans to businesses.
  • Southern Smoke: The Southern Smoke Emergency Relief Program will provide emergency funding to those employed by or own restaurants or bars or are employed by a restaurant or bar supplier that are faced unforeseen expenses that cannot or will not be covered by insurance.
  • SupportRestaurants.org: The Dining Bonds Initiative is open to any restaurant/bar/eatery across the globe. There is no fee to any restaurant to participate in the initiative. According to the site “Essentially, they are gift certificates that are sold at a suggested price of 25% less than face value, but redeemable at face value upon dining at the restaurant. The goal is to sell them for the next 30 days to bring needed income to the restaurants and have them redeemable typically 30-60 days after purchase.”
  • USBG National Charity Foundation: The USBG National Charity Foundation has launched the Bartender Emergency Assistance Program. Those in the bar industry can apply for assistance and they do not need to be a USBG member to apply for a grant.
  • Second Harvest Food Bank has relationships with food banks across the parish:
    • Monetary donations: Even if the health impacts of this outbreak are minimal, we are anticipating possibly major impacts to seniors, children, and low-income workers in our service industry. Click HERE to make a secure online monetary donation to help support our emergency response and readiness.
    • Donations of fresh produce and non-perishable food items Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Elmwood location – 700 Edwards Avenue, or at 215 E. Pinhook Rd in Lafayette
    • If you need food assistance, call us toll-free Monday- through Friday, 8am to 7pm:
      1-855-392-9338
      We provide application assistance and case management over the phone and in person.
      Get assistance with the following services:

      • Food pantry referrals
      • SNAP (Food Stamps)
      • FITAP – Family Independence Temporary Assistance (Formerly TANF)
      • KCSP – Kinship Care Subsidy Program
      • Child Support
      • Access to community support counselors
  • St. Mary Magdalen Christian Service Center
    701 Chevis St., Abbeville, LA 70510
    Open 8 AM – 12 PM.
    Serving lunch 11 AM – 12 PM.
    (337) 893-9756
    Donations can be dropped off from 8 AM -12 PM Monday – Friday

United Way is a key partner in the fundraising efforts of several organizations, and has established its own fund to collect donations for food and economic insecurity. You can donate here.

  • Beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020, the Vermilion Parish School Board will be offering grab-and-go meals from 11 am to 1 pm on weekdays.
  • Each child will receive a lunch meal and a breakfast meal for the next morning. There is no registration required. No ID needed. No cost.
  • Any child age 18 and under may come to get the meals. This does include students, siblings, friends, family members, toddlers, and those who attend private or parochial schools.
  • Children must be present to receive the meal, no exceptions.
  • Meals will be provided with drive-thru service. Walk-up service should only be used if the child/children have no other way to get to the school sites. The meals will be brought to the student and/or cars.
  • School sites:
    • Rene Rost, Kaplan
    • JH Williams, Abbeville
    • Eaton Park Elementary, Abbeville
    • Dozier Elementary, Erath
    • Cecil Picard, Maurice
    • Gueydan High School, Gueydan
    • Forked Island/E Broussard Elementary, Forked Island

The Vermilion Parish Police Jury is limiting Public Access to the Vermilion Parish Courthouse to limit the exposure to the employees in the Courthouse to COVID-19.  We hope by limiting access we will be available to provide needed services if the spread of the virus causes more disruptions.  The Courthouse will be open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday – Friday with the following restrictions. These restrictions are effective Wednesday, March 18, 2020 to April 13, 2020 for all offices in the Courthouse except for the 15th Judicial Court Offices and Clerk of Court. The restricted access for their offices will expire on March 27, 2020.

Below are the Limits of Access for each office in the Courthouse;

  1. Access to the Vermilion Parish Police Jury Office will be limited to residents needing a building permit. Those residents needing a permit will need to call 337-898-4300 and speak to Melissa White, Permit Specialist to make an appointment.  All permits will be issued by appointment only.  Any other members of the public, who feel they have a legitimate need to visit the Police Jury Office need to call the number above to determine if your business can be handled electronically.
  2. The District Attorney Office for the 15th Judicial Court is closed to the public and is asked all members of the public to call the office at 337-898-4320 for assistance.
  3. Access to the Vermilion Parish Tax Assessor Office is limited to only those situations deemed absolutely necessary by the Assessor’s Office. Please call 337-893-2837 for further guidance.  You may also accomplish most tasks by going to their website at www.vermilionassessor.org, emailing them at  vpao@vermilionassessor.org or by mail to 100 N. State St., Suite 110, Abbeville, La 70510.
  4. The Vermilion Parish Registrar of Voters Office is asking for the public to use the Louisiana Secretary of State website to register or make changes to voter registration.  For any other matter please call 337-898-4324 before coming to the Courthouse, so they can try to resolve your need without risk to the public or their staff.
  5. Access to the Vermilion Parish 911 Office requires an appointment by calling 337-898-4350.
  6. Access to the Vermilion Parish Police Jury Office will be limited to residents needing a building permit. Those residents needing a permit will need to call 337-898-4300 and speak to Melissa White, Permit Specialist to make an appointment.  All permits will be issued by appointment only.  Any other members of the public, who feel they have a legitimate need to visit the Police Jury Office need to call the number above to determine if your business can be handled electronically.
  7. The District Attorney Office for the 15th Judicial Court is closed to the public and is asked all members of the public to call the office at 337-898-4320 for assistance.
  8. Access to the Vermilion Parish Tax Assessor Office is limited to only those situations deemed absolutely necessary by the Assessor’s Office. Please call 337-893-2837 for further guidance.  You may also accomplish most tasks by going to their website at www.vermilionassessor.org, emailing them at  vpao@vermilionassessor.org or by mail to 100 N. State St., Suite 110, Abbeville, La 70510.
  9. The Vermilion Parish Registrar of Voters Office is asking for the public to use the Louisiana Secretary of State website to register or make changes to voter registration.  For any other matter please call 337-898-4324 before coming to the Courthouse, so they can try to resolve your need without risk to the public or their staff.
  10. Access to the Vermilion Parish 911 Office requires an appointment by calling 337-898-4350.
  11. Access to the 15th Judicial Court Offices and the Clerk of Court Offices will be limited to the public for the following;
  • Anyone set to appear in criminal court in Vermilion Parish between March 16 and March 27, 2020, are to report to the courthouse on their scheduled court dates to be served with a new court date.  The clerk will be located at a temporary outdoor office on the east porch of the courthouse facing Charity Street to provide service to all defendants.
  • Civil protective orders, emergency child custody matters pursuant to Louisiana Children’s Code Article 3945, proceedings for children removed from their home by emergency court order and emergency commitment hearings will proceed.
  • Criminal initial appearances for adults and juveniles, arraignments for incarcerated individuals, and bond hearings will proceed.  Adult proceedings will be conducted with the use of video appearance.
  • All jurors summoned for service between March 16 and March 23, 2020, will be reset for a future court date.  These jurors do not need to report to the courthouse. They will receive notification from the clerk in the future.
  • The clerk of court remains open to receive necessary criminal and civil filings and recordings.
  • The public is asked to avoid coming to the courthouse except as required by absolute necessity.

These limitations are approved by the Vermilion Parish Police Jury in coordination with all agencies/departments who are housed in the Vermilion Parish Courthouse.

  • Update 03/16/2020 12:15 PM- The City of Abbeville will not disconnect utilities today. Decisions about future disconnections will be posted as they become available.
  • The Regular City Council meeting scheduled for Tuesday, March 17, 2020 is canceled.
  • If you need information or need to report a problem or city service, please call City Hall at 893-8550.
  • Effective immediately, Gueydan will wave late fees for delinquent utility bills for the month of March and will also suspend termination of of services for unpaid bills for the month of March
  • All public spaces will be limited to city employees only.
  • The drive through window at city hall is open and all business can be conducted through it
  • Reach out to city hall with concerns our questions
  • Kaplan has been given the directive to cancel the city council meeting that is scheduled for 3/17/20. The State Attorney General will be issuing guidance soon as to how our State requirements/laws will be affected by this ruling with regards to open meeting rules and regulations.
  • We are following all of the state mandated directives which includes closing access to Kaplan City Hall as well as all other city buildings effective immediately.
  • City employees are not allowed inside anyone’s home or dwelling for any purpose beginning immediately.
  • City employees will still be performing their job duties. If you are paying a bill it will need to be done through the drive-thru, the night deposit, the kiosk, the internet or by mail. This begins immediately.
    All meetings of City Hall employees and the mayor will be handled by phone for now. Should you need anything please call the Mayor at city hall 643-7118.
  • The Village of Maurice General Meeting scheduled for April 20, 2020 was cancelled.  The Village of Maurice will hold the next General Meeting on May 20, 2020.
  • The Village of Maurice Mayor’s Court scheduled for April 14, 2020 has been rescheduled for May 12, 2020.
  • The Maurice Police Department will be distributing Hanes masks that were donated. Distribution to senior citizens will be the first phase, then they will be made available to others.  If you care to pick one up, please call city hall at 337-893-6406 to arrange a pickup time.  It is recommended that everyone wear a mask when out in public.
  • Beginning Monday May 4, 2020 Maurice City Hall will return to regular operating hours.  Building permits will be issued utilizing a different process so please call city Hall for information.   Payment of utility bills must still be made by utilizing the drop box in the front of the building. Access to the lobby will still be restricted for the time being.
  • Options for payment of traffic citations only are the online service at www.mauricepayments.com or by calling 877-793-7141.
  • The office will be available to answer any questions or assist you over the phone, 337-893-6406.
  • Under the advice of DHHS, the courts at Maurice Park will be locked during the duration of this health situation.
  • The playgrounds and other areas will remain open.  If you utilize these areas please practice social distancing and take precautions as recommended.
  • Curfew: Lifted as of 4.29.20
  • At this time, there is no option for emergency or disaster SNAP. However, if you are not already a SNAP recipient and have a food need, we encourage you to apply for benefits online.
  • There’s no need to visit a DCFS office! You can apply online or by mail/fax. For more information, text GETSNAP (no spaces) to 898211, visit the DCFS website at www.dcfs.la.gov/getSNAP, email LAHelpU.DCFS@la.gov or call 1-888-LA-HELP-U (1-888-524-3578) Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • You’ll need to have this information on hand for applying: Names, Social Security Numbers and Dates of Birth for each household member; Address and Parish where you currently live; Monthly income for each household member; All liquid resources for each household member (cash on hand, checking, savings)

Acadiana business resource partners are proud to relaunch AcadianaOpportunity.com, a web portal that helps connect individuals seeking training or employment with resources. Learn more about this initiative, and hear from a panel of regional higher ed leaders about education and training opportunities that are available through their institutions.

  • If your employment has been impacted for reasons related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease), please review the following information about assistance available. The Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) will do all that it can to ensure impacted workers receive the benefits for which they are eligible.
  • Do any of these situations apply to you?
    • Your work hours have been reduced because of lack of work due to Coronavirus.
    • Your workplace closes temporarily, and you are not being compensated.
    • You have been instructed not to go to work, and you are not being paid while at home.
  • You MAY be eligible for unemployment insurance. You can file a claim at www.louisianaworks.net/hire or by calling our Claim Center at 866-783-5567. The Claim Center hours to 8 a.m.- 7 p.m. You will need some sort of record of pay. If not pay stubs, federal taxes can help justify pay.
  • Be sure to answer “yes” to the question, “Are you filing for Unemployment Insurance benefits for reasons related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)?” This will provide needed information to the LWC to help process your claim.
  • If your work hours have been reduced, partial benefits could be available to you up to a maximum of $247 a week. You must report any earnings for the week that you work, even if you’ve not yet been paid. Report the gross amount before deductions. These earnings would be factored into the amount of unemployment benefits paid to you for that week.
  • A number of factors determine eligibility for benefits. The LWC reviews each case separately.
  • The maximum number of weeks that unemployment benefits can be paid per claim is 26 weeks in a 12-month period.
  • Wages and vacation pay (received or will receive) MUST be reported when you file your unemployment claim. Sick leave and PTO do not need to be reported.
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: As per the Governor’s proclamation, for individuals whose employment has been impacted due to COVID-19: Work search requirements are waived and week of waiting is waived.
  • Local unemployment office (Abbeville) (337) 893-1986.

United Way is working with many of our agency partners in VOAD (Volunteer Organizations  Active in Disaster) to help them safely deploy volunteers during this time. You can fill out the volunteer form by clicking here.

COVID-19 Screening Hotline
(337) 892-6999  

Screening Times: 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Calls are taken Mon-Fri. 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Abbeville General will open the first public testing site for COVID-19 in Vermilion Parish on from 10:00 AM until noon at Erath/Delcambre Community Care Clinic (220 North Rd. Erath). The complete process should take about 30 minutes.

  • This testing site will be open daily until further notice
  • Only high risk people will be screened, as determined by questions asked by nurses and providers
  • Persons not meeting criteria will be asked to exit the line.
  • Stay in your vehicle for safety
  • Have your ID and insurance card (if available)
  • No bathrooms are available to public
  • Maximum 2 people per vehicle can be screened
  • Please leave all pets at home

If you have a grocery business that is making accommodations for customers during the outbreak, we’d love to hear about it. We would love as many local businesses as possible on the list. If you are one of these businesses, and are seeking labor to assist, we’d love to know that too! Please email details to info@developvermilion.org 

Take-out Food Safety (LSU AgCenter)

Champagne’s Supermarket (Erath)

  • 202 S. Kibbe, Erath, LA 70533
  • Call ahead + Curbside – (337) 937-8163

Hebert’s Specialty Meats (Maurice)

  • 8212 US 167, Maurice, LA 70555
  • Call ahead + Curbside – (337) 893-5062
  • Online ordering + Pickup – https://hebertsmaurice.com/shop/
  • Questions? Email sales@hebertsmaurice.com – request an order form
  • Fulfilling orders Monday thru Friday 8 to 5

Larry’s Superfoods (Kaplan)

  • 1313 W Veterans Meml Dr, Kaplan, LA 70548
  • Elderly Shopping Hour: The 1st hour of shopping on Tuesday & Thursdays (6:00am – 7:00am); The store will be cleaned & sanitized & our staff will be ready to assist them; Only elderly customers or customers with high risk health conditions will be allowed in the store during that time.

Le Marche’ (Maurice)

  • 5884 HWY 167, Maurice, LA 70555
  • Call ahead + Curbside – (337) 893-4311
    • Call in your order
    • Callback when it is ready for pickup
    • Stay in your vehicle, clerk will bring out your order and collect payment. Credit cards, checks or cash will be accepted for curbside service!
  • Call in order + Delivery – (337) 893-4311
    • Orders must be $50 or more
    • Address must be within 10 miles of location
    • Call in your order, must provide cc/debit card info upon ordering. CANNOT accept payment upon delivery. Address and phone number must also be provided.
    • Delivery time frame will be provided
    • Notification when your order has been delivered. Your order will be placed at your doorstep.

Robie’s Food Center (Abbeville)

  • 604 S State St, Abbeville, LA 70510
  • Robie’s is open daily from 6:30 am to 7:30 pm. Seniors, special needs individuals, and moms-to-be, are encouraged to shop early when there’s very little activity in the store.

Super 1 Foods (Abbeville)

Vermilion Oaks Ranch (Abbeville)

  • 18002 W. LA Hwy 330, Abbeville, LA 70510
  • Premium grass-fed beef products
  • Call ahead + Curbside – Randall @ (337) 344-8832
  • Online ordering + Curbside – https://vermilionoaksranch.myshopify.com/
  • Delivery can be arranged

EMERGENCY CONTACTS

FOOD PICK-UP & DELIVERY

If you have a food-oriented business that is making accommodations for customers during the outbreak, we’d love to hear about it. We would love as many local businesses as possible on the list. If you are one of these businesses, and are seeking labor to assist, we’d love to know that too! Please email details to info@developvermilion.org 

Access the listing here: www.developvermilion.org/eat