Our team at the City of MercedGreater Merced Chamber of Commerce,
Merced County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and
Merced Small Business Development Center
is here to help your business
survive the COVID-19 pandemic. 



Your business is our priority. Our team is working with all relevant local, state and federal partners to provide new resources as they become available. Watch here for regular updates.



City of Merced, Office of Economic Development

Frank Quintero, Director of Economic Development

Phone: (209) 385-6827 / Email:

Merced Small Business Development Center

Phone: (209) 228-3506 / Email:

Greater Merced Chamber of Commerce

Phone: (209) 384-7092 / Email:

Merced County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Phone: (209) 384-9537 / Email:

Government Guidance


GOVERNOR'S EXECUTIVE ORDERS — Summary of Gov. Newsom's 
11 Executive orders (Sacramento Bee). 

STATE OF CALIFORNIA — COVID19 clearinghouse webpage.

DEPT. OF HOMELAND SECURITY — Guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce definition.

'Essential Business'

A key question many have been asking about the Governor’s stay-at-home order and what is an essential business? Find information here>> 


  • Finance 209-385-6841

  • Planning 209-385-6858

  • Inspection Services 209-723-2489

  • Public Works (covering water, sewer, and refuse) 209-385-6800

  • Fire (Admin Office/Non-Emergency) 209-385-6830

  • Police (Admin Office/Non-Emergency) 209-385-8880

  • City Manager's Office 209-385-6834


Business Assistance




U.S. Small Business Ad​​ministration, Guidance and Loans


Search for eligible lenders:

DISASTER LOANS are available to small businesses and nonprofits that have been impacted by COVID-19, with working capital loans of up to $2M. Live agents are available by phone: 1-800-659-2955.

SBA PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM (PPP) was passed in the Stimulus Bill, with loans for businesses employing under 500 that continue to operate during the crisis. Please call your local banker, tax advisor or Small Business Development Center: 209-228-3506.

Direct link to SBA for further information:

Program details:

Additional PPP lenders:

For businesses trying to find a last-minute PPP lender, SBA approved the following fintech lenders: Intuit, PayPal, Square, Kabbage, On Deck, Funding Circle. Others may be approved soon. A complete list of PPP eligible lenders is available here: 

Note: SBA has announced that June 30, 2020 is the last day applications will be accepted.

California Grants Portal

Search for grants by category, type of applicant, timeframe.​ Sign up for newsletter.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance

Applications open April 28, 2020, for business owners, self-employed, independent contractors, etc.

Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) 

Information and support to employers and employees who are susceptible to the virus’s disruption.


California Treasurer

Small Business Resource List (JPG):

Treasurer Fiona Ma put out a helpful guide with links for small business to find COVID-19 assistance. 

California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBANK)

Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program (DRLGP), Jump Start Loan Program, $500 to $10,000 and 90% guarantee on a bank loan.

Central California SBDC Regional

Kurt Clark: 209-228-3506,

Business assistance for companies at risk of closing or impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, including assistance for SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).

Valley Small Business Development Corporation


Loan guarantees and direct loans.   


California SBDC

COVID-19 small business survival guide.


Financial Regulatory Agencies

The federal financial institution regulatory agencies and the state banking regulators issued an interagency statement encouraging financial institutions to work constructively with borrowers affected by COVID-19 and providing additional information regarding loan modifications.


Save Small Business Fund (U.S. Chamber Foundation)

$5,000 grants to employers in economically disadvantaged areas (Merced qualifies). Applications open April 20, 2020.


Facebook Business Program

$100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries.


Open for Business Hub

Tech companies that are helping small businesses remote work during the outbreak.


Worknet Merced County

Business Service Team: 209-724-2100

Assistance to workers, rapid response team for layoffs, HR hotline for businesses: 888-906-0041.


California Employment Development Department


RAPID RESPONSE SERVICES FOR BUSINESSES — Employers planning a closure or major layoffs as a result of the coronavirus can get help through the Rapid Response program. Rapid Response teams will meet with you to discuss your needs, help avert potential layoffs, and provide immediate on-site services to assist workers facing job losses. Explore other alternatives from​ California EDD to laying off employees.
Fact sheet (PDF):


REDUCED WORK HOURS - WORK SHARING — Unemployment Insurance Work Sharing Program — alternative to layoffs. Employer Info  This program allows employers to seek an alternative to layoffs – retaining their trained employees by reducing their hours and wages that can be partially offset with UI benefits. Workers of employers who are approved to participate in the Work Sharing Program receive the percentage of their weekly Unemployment Insurance benefit amount based on the percentage of hours and wages reduced, not to exceed 60 percent.Visit the Work Sharing Program to learn more about its benefits for employers and employees, and how to apply.

TAX ASSISTANCE — EDD Tax Assistance - request a 60 day extension to file payroll and more. Call the EDD Taxpayer Assistance Center 1-888-745-3886 (toll-free). More from EDD>>>

Department of Industrial Relations



Guidance on requirements to protect workers from coronavirus. Aerosol Transmissible Diseases (ATD) and required protection. FAQ on laws enforced by the California Labor Commissioner's Office.

California Chamber of Commerce

COVID-19 Survival Guide for Employers (April 9 news post)

U.S. Department of Labor - OSHA

Guidance on preparing workplaces for COVID-19 (PDF).

NEW RULES FOR PAID LEAVE. New actions announced on April 1, 2020 to protect workers.

Employee Rights Fact Sheet (PDF)  




California Manufacturing & Technology Association (CMTA)

CMTA is surveying manufacturers on their capacity, needs and repurposing. They will relayconcerns to Gov. Gavin Newsom and his agency heads.

Updated employee poster for manufacturing breakrooms and facilities:



California Restaurant Association, Restaurant Relief

Guidelines and resources specific to the restaurant industry affected by the coronavirus.​

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation

Relief for individual workers and zero-interest loans for restaurants

James Beard Foundation (food and beverage)

Launched a fund to provide micro-grants to independent food and beverage businesses in need.

Yelp (restaurants and nightlife)

$25M in relief, primarily focused on supporting independent local restaurant and nightlife businesses, in the form of waived advertising fees, and free advertising, products and services. These relief efforts are primarily available only to small, independently owned restaurant and nightlife. 


Kabbage (small businesses)

Spearheading an initiative that allows small businesses to offer online gift certificates and connects them with consumers across the country. Through Kabbage Payments™, any business can sign up to sell gift certificates online, and anyone can purchase them to support participating small businesses.  


Employee Assistance

California Employment Development Department


DISABILITY — Individuals unable to work due to having or being exposed to COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Disability Insurance (DI) claim.


CAREGIVING — Californians who are unable to work because they are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Paid Family Leave (PFL) claim.


UNEMPLOYMENT — If you have been laid off, the Governor’s Executive Order waives the one-week unpaid waiting period, so you can collect UI benefits for the first week you are out of work. If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.


CHILDCARE — If your child’s school is closed, and you have to miss work to be there for them, you may be eligible for Unemployment Insurance benefits. Eligibility considerations include if you have no other care options and if you are unable to continue working your normal hours remotely.

Federal Paid Leave

Treasury, IRS and Labor announced plan to implement coronavirus-related paid leave for workers and tax credits for small and midsize businesses to swiftly recover the cost of providing Coronavirus-related: 

Worknet Merced County

Assistance to workers and job hunters.





You now have an additional three months to file and pay your taxes. The deadline to file and pay your state and federal taxes without interest or penalty has been changed from April 15 to July 15

California Treasurer’s Office (Tax Relief Summary Sheet)

Summary of state, federal and local tax relief measures (Google Sheet).

Franchise Tax Board (State Tax Relief)


U.S. International Revenue Service (Federal Tax Relief)

Resources to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. Affected self-employed taxpayers have been granted an extension to file 2019 federal tax returns and make certain payments until July 15, 2020.

Employee Retention Tax Credit:


California Employment Development Department (EDD) (Payroll Tax/Reports Extension)

Toll-free from the U.S. or Canada: 1-888-745-3886

Hearing-impaired (TTY): 1-800-547-9565

Outside the U.S. or Canada: 1-916-464-3502

Employers experiencing a hardship as a result of COVID-19 may request up to a 60-day extension to file their state payroll reports and/or deposit state payroll taxes without penalty or interest. A written request for an extension must be received within 60 days from the original delinquent date of the payment or return. 


Health Resources



Merced County Department of Public Health

California Department of Public Health

Latest updates on COVID-19 Facts.  

Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Guidance


Covered California Special Enrollment Period

Effectively immediately, anyone who is uninsured and meets eligibility requirements for health care coverage through Covered California can sign up through June 30, 2020. This is an important step to ensure Californians who lose coverage through an employer, or who are otherwise uninsured, have the opportunity to enroll in coverage. 



Merced Irrigation District — MID has said it will take no action to shut off electricity for non-payment at this time. However, customers are ultimately responsible for their bills. Those facing difficulty paying are encouraged to contact MID Customer Service to discuss payment options. 
Water: 209-722-2720 | Electric: 209-722-3041

Pacific Gas and Electric Company — PG&E has implemented a moratorium on service disconnections for non-payment. The suspension applies to commercial and residential customers and is in effect until further notice. Agents are available to assist with payment options at 1-877-704-8470.​

AT&T — All late fees will be waived and service disconnections for non-payment has been suspended. All broadband usage caps for home internet customers has been suspended and no overage fees will be applied. This applies to small business and residential customers and is in effect until further notice.

Sprint — All current customers have been provided with unlimited data and free mobile hotspot until May 2020.

T-Mobile — All current customers have been provided with unlimited smartphone data until May 2020.

Verizon — All late fees will be waived and service disconnections for non-payment has been suspended. This applies to small business and residential customers and is in effect until May 2020.