Category Archives: Uncategorized

CV Update May 17, 2020

Welcome to the next CV19 update.  Glad many people have appreciated these updates. It keeps me focused on what is important too. This week I’m focusing health and safety in light of re-opening beginning.

We are at a point in our collective experience where the adrenaline is waning and emotion surfaces more strongly about what is happening and where we go from here.

In brief the real stats are very under-reported and vigilant cleaning and distancing practices are needed. People will have varying standards of what that means and should plan to act accordingly.

In this update you will find the following:

  1. Where is virus spreading
  2. Warm weather impact on virus spread
  3. Important info on keeping clean and safe
  4. Personal reflections on an epic disaster

Where is virus spreading

We designed a customized statistics dashboard to be informed where the most need exists by county for the entire U.S.  As I mentioned previously, I’m working on a project to help COVID front line workers by offering crowdsourced RVs. This tool will help us optimize resources offered thru RVMatchMaker.ORG.

You are getting this special view into what we are working on. I thought you would find this insight helpful. This is view of county stats in California last updated on 5/2/20.
This tool is in draft form.  We won’t be sharing facility specific data and in fact it is difficult to obtain nationwide, due to variations in reporting.

The crowdsourced RV project will help with vector control, because frontline workers carry the highest viral load. If you want to volunteer some time on this important COVID project, we would be delighted!  You can contact us here. (We would especially love help with press management, legal review, and guiding people to resources on social media that have questions.)

A unique US county map of COVID cases which was created for us in the same vein of reporting logic. There’s over 3,100 counties in the US, so that’s a heck of a lot of daily data to slice thru.

Warm weather impact on virus spread

With businesses re-opening and summer fast approaching, the question we are all asking is how safe are we to do so?

Notable institutions like Harvard and MIT created a collaborating working paper to answer the question. They examined 3,739 locations worldwide to determine the “relative covid-19 risk due to weather.” They found that average temperatures above 77 degrees are associated with a reduction in virus transmission.

Each additional 1.8-degree temperature increase above that level was associated with an additional 3.1 percent reduction in the virus’s reproduction number, called R0. (Pronounced “R naught”) That is the average number of new infections generated by each infected person. When the R0 drops below 1, an epidemic begins to wane, although it doesn’t happen overnight. Here’s the reference.

That correlated with data I saw almost 2 months ago. The CDC has been tracking virus seasonality by US Census for a long time. This shows you the variation by region of the country. Take a look at what happens when fall begins.

It is my opinion that the virus won’t stop spreading over the summer, but the viral load will decline.  When daily temperatures drop below 77 degrees we can expect a very fierce surge of this virus that will cripple the economy globally for 6 months. How do you think you are going to prepare for that? I’d sincerely like to know your thoughts. Please tell me your thoughts here.

Important info on keeping clean and safe

How long the virus persists on surfaces depends on what kind of surface it is. Studies found that the virus lived longest on stainless steel and polypropylene, which is a type of plastic used in everything from toys to car parts. Soft surfaces tended to be less hospital to the longevity of the virus.

Where the virus survives and how to clean surfaces is critical to know.  One issue I see people SCREWING UP CONSTANTLY is the length of time a disinfectant is left on the surface. — The surface should be wet for at least a minute, and with bleach even longer.  Read this very valuable article!!! And for more information here is CDC guidance for cleaning your environment.

Below is a video that demonstrates how easily the virus spreads and the opinion of WHO on the future transmission risks.

UV-C spectrum lights are very helpful for destroying the virus. There are 3 UV spectrums.  However UV-C is very dangerous to the skin and can cause eye cataracts. If you use this light, it works work great, but stay out of the room while it is in use.  UV-C is most effective on solid surfaces and not great on soft surfaces where particles can hide. This video explains how the lights work.

Beware of the fake LEDs on Amazon. Real UV-C bulbs are mercury vapor tubes. Real UV-C will cause bananas to brown very fast, so that’s a good test at home to know if it works.

An important note about masks, there are many kinds. It is thought to be the primary means of defense after face shields. Their efficacy varies widely, so read up and consider what is best for your situation. It is interesting to note that moist heat of rice cookers is a more effective way to decontaminate masks than dry heat.

Personal reflections on an epic disaster

Unlike the 5 years of fire storm recoveries I’ve witnessed in California, there is no neighboring community to escape to in this disaster. We have to find refuge from within ourselves, in gratitude and love.  — These are the most precious things we have when everything else is lost.

With practice it gets easier to “do disasters”, but it’s NEVER easy. Uncertainty creates anxiety, which in turn affects how we sleep and feel in our daily lives.

I personally hoped to use this forced time for sheltering to work on pet projects, develop skills or relationships, but instead I’ve been working on creating a crowdsourced RV platform to help front-line workers reduce COVID spread.

The EXTREME fatigue I feel now is because my mind won’t unwind and allow me to sleep properly for the past 2 weeks. I’m being denied a major surgery right now and I have to live with impaired lung function during this pandemic. There’s more challenges I face that I imagine would humble most people that are struggling with their new normal. I may share those with you later… or not.

…But I can share these words with you now and hope you find some strength in these thoughts I offer you.

Wishing you well ~ Kimberly

Back to main COVID page.

CV Update April 26, 2020

Welcome to the next C19 update. I find making a commitment to sharing with you what I learn helps me be disciplined in keeping current.

This week I’m focusing on the front-line COVID workers. Most Americans don’t see what they are experiencing; the impact on their work environment and their family lives.

What you will find in this update is

  1. What is my favorite news source and why? (Emergent data and a word from Bill Gates)
  2. What is the most inspiring thing I saw someone do for someone else? (The most inspiring thing this week can be from you!)
  3. What is the funniest COVID video, image or story I saw this week? (Keeping spirits up on the front lines.)

What is my favorite news source and why?

(Emergent data and a word from Bill Gates)

Staying ahead of the curve is VERY difficult! This is really important when allocating precious resources. If you have better ideas, PLEASE share them.

  1. Data from GitHub which is published in the NYT
  2. Raw Data from GitHub
  3. SalesForce is launching a tool to customize your own dashboard

I’m following Bill Gates because, aside from our government, he is one of the most active representative for the U.S. in funding and initiatives. He is breaking his foundation’s activities to focus on into five categories: treatments, vaccines, testing, contact tracing, and policies for opening up.

What is the most inspiring thing I saw someone do for someone else?

The most inspiring thing this week can be from you!

What is the funniest COVID video, image or story I saw this week?

Keeping spirits up on the front lines.


And to wrap up… the essential you need to know on this article about severe fatigue and trauma and how to cope is GRACE and COMPASSION:

At the essential core of coping and self-care during this time is simply remembering to focus on grace and self-compassion as you navigate this unprecedented time. Take a walk, take a bath, take a nap, take deep breaths, ask for help, help where you can, and know that whatever you are feeling is completely normal, and whatever you need to do to love on and care for you during this time is okay. No guilt, only grace, as we walk this uncharted territory together.

Wishing you well ~ Kimberly


Back to main COVID page.

CV Update April 19, 2020

Welcome to the next update. I find making a commitment to sharing with you what I learn helps me be disciplined in keeping current. I’m very involved in a volunteer COVID relief effort and don’t have time to watch the news every day. Maybe you find the same time challenge too.

What you will find in this update is

  1. What is my favorite news source and why? (FAQ in NYT, masks, contact tracing, additional financial resources, etc)
  2. What is the most inspiring thing I saw someone do for someone else?
  3. What is the funniest COVID video, image or story I saw this week?

What is my favorite news source and why?

The New York Times – I’m really busy. I enjoy their daily briefing digest on COVID for free. (LINK) Or subscribe at $4 a month (LINK)

I learn useful information here constantly. I don’t have time to summarize this week, but the biggest question we all have is the following:

What does the year ahead look like? (ARTICLE LINK)

There will be no quick return to normal American life, but there is hope for managing the outbreak now and in the long term. Our global health reporter Donald G. McNeil Jr. spoke to over 20 experts on what to expect in the coming months.

Some of their predictions:

  • The lockdowns will end haltingly. Putting safety first could mean reopening only after coronavirus cases declined for 14 days, 90 percent of contacts of infected people could be traced, infections of health care workers were eradicated, recuperation sites existed for mild cases — and many other hard-to-reach goals.
  • It is not clear whether recovery from the virus and antibodies confer immunity. If they do, or are believed to, America could be split into two classes: those protected (or thought to be) and those still vulnerable.
  • The virus can be kept in check, but only with expanded resources like widespread testing. And treatments are likely to arrive before a vaccine.
Other Helpful Reads:
  • This is a must read article. It covers answers to frequently asked questions from dealing with mortgages to health insurance. I’m pretty sure they will continue to expand answers when available. (LINK)
  • An article is on masks. Caring for them, making them and more. (LINK)
  • Massachusetts is the first state to implement a contact tracing program. Learn about how it works at this (LINK)
  • This piece of news is from our local news outlet in Butte County. If you are having trouble accessing your unemployment benefits, ask your employer if compensation is an option, under the “Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act”. Microsoft gave their employees 12 weeks paid leave under this option. (LINK) Here’s the (LINK) to the Department of Labor

What is the most inspiring thing I saw someone do for someone else?

A doctor has some interesting ideas to help increase oxygen levels for COVID patients. By sharing what hospitals are learning, it can help people self-treating too.

Here’s the back story: Obesity may be a bigger risk factor than asthma. Young adults with obesity appear to be at particular risk, even if they have no other health issues. It’s not yet known why, though doctors note that abdominal obesity can compress the diaphragm, lungs & chest capacity.

Some patients, by taking oxygen & rolling onto their sides or on their bellies, have quickly returned to normal oxygen levels. The tactic is called proning.

A doctor bought a special table for pregnant women which he found helpful for virus patients. Story here (LINK)

What is the funniest COVID video, image or story I saw this week?

For those binge watching on Netflix, check out Community. It’s a bunch of comedians riffing in a spoof about college students going no where and having fun getting there.

I really enjoy watching stuff that pulls me out of my current reality and is goofy. I pulled this skit out of Episode 3. It wasn’t written for the COVID pandemic, but it fit this context!!!

What are you watching? Would love to know. Email me or share below.

And to wrap up… the essential you need to know on this article about severe fatigue and trauma and how to cope is GRACE and COMPASSION:

At the essential core of coping and self-care during this time is simply remembering to focus on grace and self-compassion as you navigate this unprecedented time. Take a walk, take a bath, take a nap, take deep breaths, ask for help, help where you can, and know that whatever you are feeling is completely normal, and whatever you need to do to love on and care for you during this time is okay. No guilt, only grace, as we walk this uncharted territory together.

Wishing you well ~ Kimberly

Back to main COVID page.

CV Update April 11, 2020

Looking for previous updates? (click here)

Easter Sunday Concert from Bocelli in Milan

He broke YouTube! After reaching 2.5 million live stream viewers, the concert seems to have moved to multiple channels/networks mid-concert to disperse server load.

Here’s the link after the concert finished: (LINK) This concert is produced under difficult circumstance. To hear examples of how angelic his music is …here’s 2 samples (LINK) (LINK)

Here’s the highlights for this week ~ A suggestion for conversation starters at “family” dinners:

  1. What is the funniest COVID video, image or story you saw this week?
  2. What is your favorite news source and why?
  3. What is the most inspiring thing you saw someone do for someone else?

And here’s some responses I received.

What is the funniest COVID video, image or story you saw this week?


I’m not a fan of Cardi B, but this is funny. TikTok is a new social media thing that is like Vines.

What is your favorite news source and why?


I like the questions he asks and the way he asks them and he has really impressive guests. He’s also funny in a silly way. I’ve enjoyed every episode of this new show format. PS. Please avoid anything Trump or his pals at OAN say. What a joke. I still don’t understand why he was elected.

What is the most inspiring thing you saw someone do for someone else?

FDA approval is in process. An air ventilator can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $50,000 dollars. The group’s prototypes would cost $500. The team says it needs breast pump donations. If you or anyone you know would like to donate your pumps, you can email Breastpumpvent@gmail.com. There will probably be other groups attempting to copy this to expand capacity, so watch for efforts close to you that need support too.

These are the other pages I created to help us get thru the pandemic:

Back to main COVID page.

 

Individual Aid & Debt Management

Economic Impact Payments

If you’re eligible for a cash payment, most individuals earning less than $75,000 can expect a one-time cash payment of $1,200. Married couples would each receive a check and families would get $500 per child. That means a family of four earning less than $150,000 can expect $3,400. Distribution of economic impact payments will begin by the end of April and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. If you have not recently filed a tax return, file a return immediately, at least for 2018. “Those without 2018 tax filings on record could potentially affect mailings of stimulus checks,” the site says. If you’re worried about money that you owe that you cannot pay, the I.R.S. recommends consulting a tax professional who can help you request an alternative payment plan or some other resolution. Learn more at the IRS website.

Unemployment Insurance

If you or someone you know has lost a job, states will still continue to pay unemployment to people who qualify. This bill adds $600 per week from the federal government on top of whatever base amount a worker receives from the state. The extra $600 payment will last for up to four months, covering weeks of unemployment ending July 31. The bill also provides all eligible workers with an additional 13 weeks of unemployment. So participants in states with a 26 week maximum will now be eligible for a total of 39 weeks. The total amount cannot exceed 39 weeks, but it may be shorter in certain states.

If you’re unemployed, partly unemployed or cannot work – AND – If you’ve received a diagnosis, are experiencing symptoms or are seeking a diagnosis, you will be covered by Disaster Unemployment Assistance. The same goes if you must care for a member of your family or household who has received a diagnosis. The legislation also says that individuals who are unable to get to work because of a quarantine imposed as a result of the outbreak are eligible.

Let’s say your employer didn’t lay you off but you had to quit because of a quarantine recommended by a healthcare provider, or because your child’s day care closed and you’re the primary caregiver. Situations like that are covered. But this provision will not cover people who quit (or want to quit) because they fear that continuing to work puts them at risk of contracting coronavirus, according to congressional aides.

Visit this website for details (California Only) If you are 1099, please visit here.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

This includes the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act. There isn’t alot of coverage on this aid option, but you can learn more here.

Student Loan Deferment

If you have a student loan, and borrowed from the federal government, your payments will automatically stop from March 13, 2020, through Sept. 30, 2020. If you’ve borrowed money from the federal government — a so-called direct loan — in the past 10 years, you’re definitely eligible. According to the Institute for College Access & Success, 90 percent of loans (in dollar terms) will be eligible.

Older Federal Family Educational Loans (F.F.E.L.) that the U.S. Department of Education does not own are not eligible, nor are Perkins loans, loans from state agencies, or loans from private lenders like Discover, Sallie Mae and Wells Fargo. The holders of all those kinds of loans may be offering their own assistance programs.  Apparently, for those who find themselves in this circumstance, this new law suspends wage garnishing among those who have defaulted on their student loans. (Please confirm.)

If you’re trying to qualify for the public service loan forgiveness program by making 120 monthly payments, the legislation says that your payment count will still go up by one payment each month during the six-month suspension, even though you will not actually be making any payments. This is true for all forgiveness or loan-rehabilitation programs.

Since reaching loan servicers is difficult, check your account online and you should be able to see if the servicer has reset its billing systems so that you are showing no payment due. More details can be found here.

Moratorium on Rent Payments

In a nutshell there is no free lunch.  Rent will need to be paid and there are economic means being made available for the majority of Americans to be able to do so.  Also be careful about using PPP to pay rent.  For your loan to be forgiven, at least 75% of the debt needs to be payroll and employees need to stay on the payroll til June 30th.  For more explanation, click here.

CALIFORNIA RENT MORATORIUM

Please compare the federal and state moratoriums to understand how your unique situation applies. For more details on California visit here.

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, on 3/4/20, Governor Gavin Newsom declared a California-wide state of emergency, which (among other price controls) automatically placed a cap on rent increases.

Because of the extraordinary economic impacts of COVID-19, on 3/17/20 Governor Newsom next issued Executive Order N-28-20 specifically authorizing local governments to freeze evictions on tenants affected by COVID-19. As a result, over 70 counties and cities quickly enacted a patchwork of local commercial and/or residential “eviction moratoriums”.

To maintain consistency across California and to support shelter-in-place orders, on 3/27/20 Governor Newsom issued statewide limited protections for residential tenants. (Executive Order N-37-20), discussed below. The statewide moratorium runs through 5/31/20.

FEDERAL RENT MORATORIUM

Summary and Analysis of Federal CARES Act Eviction Moratorium based on Internet research.  Please use this as a guide, not the final word on how this complex issue will play out.

Passed into law on March 27, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes provision for an eviction moratorium on non-payment of rent for most federal housing programs. It limits owners from filing new evictions for non-payment of rent during the 120-day moratorium period and prohibits them from charging any fees, penalties or other charges related to non-payment during the same time period. The Act also prohibits owners from evicting tenants after the moratorium expires except with 30 days’ notice and further provides that any such notice cannot be given until after the moratorium ends.

Among the programs included in the Act are those covered by VAWA, which may have been the crafters’ simple way of extending the coverage to most federal housing programs. HUD programs subject to the provision are Public Housing, Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers, Section 8 project-based housing, Section 202 housing for the elderly, Section 811 housing for people with disabilities, Section 236 multifamily rental housing, Section 221(d)(3) Below Market Interest Rate (BMIR) housing, HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) and McKinney Vento Act homelessness programs. Also covered are housing programs of the USDA, including Section 515 Rural Rental Housing, Section 514 and 516 Farm Labor Housing, Section 533 Housing Preservation Grants and Section 538 multifamily rental housing. Additionally, the moratorium applies to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program administered by the Internal Revenue Service.

The Eviction Moratorium became effective on the same day the bill was signed into law, March 27, 2020, and remains effective until Friday, July 24, 2020. Keep in mind that many states have also issued their own eviction moratoriums that may be broader in scope than the CARE Act provisions, so all requirements must be taken into consideration when navigating and implementing these mandates.

Q&A on PPP and EIDL

Personal Protective Program (PPP)

Q: How does the Paycheck Protection Program differ from the Economic Disaster Relief Loan?

A: The Paycheck Protection Program is very similar. They’re both targeting operating expenses. The difference between the two is that the Paycheck Protection Program is really targeting payroll costs. The logic behind this is to try and keep businesses open. But as businesses look at their operating expenses, the easiest thing to cut is payroll. You have a lot of obligations that you can’t easily get out of, but you can lay off your employees. What the Paycheck Protection Program does is say, “We will subsidize you keeping your employees in place so that they don’t have to get laid off; so that they don’t file for unemployment.”

The maximum amount the loan can be is (average monthly payroll costs x 2.5). On the back end, the government will forgive up to 8 weeks of payroll costs plus some additional things such as rent, interest on mortgage obligations and utilities. So, that’s going to include your gas, water and internet. This is huge because, essentially, that makes 8 weeks free to keep your employees in place.

Q: When can I apply?

A: Starting April 3, 2020, small businesses and sole proprietorships can apply for and receive loans to cover their payroll and other certain expenses through existing SBA lenders. Starting April 10, 2020, independent contractors and self-employed individuals can apply for and receive loans to cover their payroll and other certain expenses through existing SBA lenders.

Q: Do I have to pay back the loan?

A: The biggest benefit is the government is trying to subsidize 8 weeks of payroll costs for employers. The number of full time employees for this period, as compared to 2019 will be taken into account. If a company employs 10% less full time employees, they will receive 10% less forgiveness for their PPP loan. If a company reduces any employee’s wage who makes under $100,000 by 25% or more, the amount of their forgiveness will be reduced by the amount that they reduced that employee’s wages.

Q: Why is PPP a better option than having people file for unemployment?

A: For most employees, they will receive more money receiving their salary than they will for unemployment benefits even though the CAREs act [increased] unemployment benefits by about $600. That’s still only up to $2,000. A lot of people will make more than that receiving their paycheck. This also keeps employees in place. Rather than being laid off and having to worry about when their employer will bring them back or what job comes next, this allows them to continue being paid by the same employer, receiving benefits from the same employer; it creates continuity during a crisis.

Q: Will everyone who applies be approved?

A: We’re concerned that not all businesses who apply will get covered. If the government runs out of money before they’re able to give loans to all of the businesses, some people might get left out. Our strong recommendation is to do this as quickly as you can.

Q: How many employees will it cover?

A: Payroll costs are capped at $100,000 per employee.

Q: Hypothetical: I’m a business who already laid off my employees. Can I qualify for the Paycheck Protection Loan?

A: You can bring those employees back. So long as you have them employed for the 8-week covered period, you should be able to qualify to have their payroll costs forgiven. The payroll costs are capped at $100,000 per employee.

Q: What is the application process like for this program?

A: It’s still a work in progress. We’ve seen some templates, which look relatively straight forward. But, while the application is relatively straight forward, the supporting documentation will be a little bit more complicated because companies will need to document all of their eligible payroll costs. That’s going to be salary and benefits. It’s going to be payroll taxes. It’s going to be all of that information in order to demonstrate the payroll costs for 2019.

Q: Whats the difference in the amount of funds available compared to the EIDL?

A: The PPP has a higher maximum amount, so it’s (average monthly payroll costs x 2.5) up to $10 million, whereas the EIDL is up to $2 million. That being said, from a practical point of view, this is a narrower slice of operating expenses, whereas EIDL says it will cover all operating expenses. PPP is just for the payroll costs portion of it, so functionally for most businesses that will be smaller.

The other piece here is to think about timeframe. EIDL is only constrained by the observed impact of COVID-19, PPP is for an 8-week period from the disbursement of the loan.

Q: How long will it be before I get my money?

A: We’re still figuring that out. It’s an SBA program, but will be administered by banks. These are the CT banks approved by the SBA to handle these loans:

Banks are working quickly to figure out the process but we don’t have a timeline right now. Hopefully PPP will be quicker because we’re able to leverage the logistics and infrastructure of the private banks.

Q: Can I apply for both the EIDL and PPP?

A: Apply for all of the loans. None of the loans require you accept them. In this situation of uncertainty, it doesn’t hurt to have options. All of these loans are made to work together. They also work with the CT Recovery Bridge Loan. Nothing disqualifies you from being able to accept the other. It’s important to make sure to carve out 8 weeks of payroll expenses for PPP so that you don’t duplicate your usage with the EIDL, but they all work and businesses need as much help as they can get.

A very important thing for companies is you cannot use both loans for the same thing. It will be very important to carve out that 8 weeks of payroll costs that you will use the PPP for and then you will apply for forgiveness to get reimbursed for those expenses—carve that out so that you use the PPP for that and then for every other operating expense, you use EIDL.

Q: What do I do, as a business owner, to try to keep my doors open while I am waiting for the money? The EIDL Advance is one way. What are others?

A: Businesses can talk with their creditors, try to get deferments, forbearances, try to reschedule payments. Reach out to your landlord. Reach out to your credit card company. Reach out to your bank. These organizations are trying to be very flexible. They can also reprioritize payments. There are things like utility bills and taxes that have been delayed or where those companies aren’t allowed to evict a business. The last piece is look for creative sources of revenue. A lot of restaurants have done a great job using delivery and takeout more than they did in the past. I’ve heard about the seafood market actually selling direct rather than trying to go through stores.

Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

Q: How does the EIDL work?

A: The businesses submit their financial information, their revenues, [and] their budgets for the previous year and the SBA determines the amount needed to cover the operating expenses given the losses that they are experiencing. It’s kind of paternalistic system. Most borrowers are used to saying, “I want this amount”. They don’t ask for a specific amount under the EIDL. They provide their financial information and the SBA comes back and says, “We believe this is the amount you need. We are going to offer it to you over this term.” That term is between 20 and 30 years for most for-profit businesses. It’s going to be 3.75% interest

Q: Is the EIDL guaranteed?

A: It’s not. SBA says defer on the side of applying. Get the application in. They’re going to be very flexible with who they accept and they relaxed some of the requirements since it initially came out. But, it is not automatic as compared to some of the other programs.

Q: Who is eligible to apply?

A: It is for most small businesses under 500 employees. That’s the same for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the EIDL Advance. There are some additional restrictions with PPP, but all of these are aimed at small and mid-sized businesses under 500 employees.
Credit: FOX61

Q: So, it’s like taking on a second mortgage?

A: It is and it’s very generous, especially considering the fact that it doesn’t require collateral under $200,000. It does require a personal guarantee, which is different than some business loans. So, you are personally on the hook for that loan. It’s not just your business. But, 3.75% at 20 to 30 years is nearly the inflation target, so it’s a great deal.

Q: Do I need to repay the loans? When?

A: You need to repay EIDL. It’s a 20 to 30 year term at 3.75% for for-profits and 2.75% for nonprofits. The SBA is releasing guidance saying they will delay payments until the end of 2020.

Q: There is also an EIDL grant for $10,000. Do I apply at the same time as the loan?

A: The new streamlined application that the SBA put online this week is the same application. You have an extra checkbox that you click for the EIDL advance. That’s the $10,000 grant that’s supposed to be dispersed in three days. I haven’t talked with anybody, yet, that’s had that amount dispersed. It’s possible that they contact you in three days in order to get your banking information to then disperse it, so we’ll keep you updated as we learn more. That $10,000 advance is a big deal because even if you were declined for EIDL, you are still going to get approved for the advance.

Q: What is the application process?

A: The new application process for EIDL has been improved. People say they are applying in as little as five minutes if they have all of their paperwork put together. The website says it could take up to 2.5 hours. The website is being generous. It’s a very simple loan so long as you know your budget, you know your expenses, and your revenues.

Q: Virtually everyone who applies will get the advance, then?

A: So long as you are a business or nonprofit with under 500 employees and you meet all of the requirements that they list on the first page of the application.

Q: If I am approved for an EIDL, is this $10,000 advance taken off of the loan?

A: The amount of the EIDL advance only comes into consideration when we start talking about the Paycheck Protection Program. It’s possible that the SBA will say because you got this advance you need $10,000 less for the EIDL, but they’re continuing to look at the macro picture of the business as far as the total amount of operating expenses that need to get covered.

Q: What business information should I expect to need to apply?

A: Businesses submit their financial information, their revenues, their budgets for the previous year, personal identification for any owners over 20% and you need to be able to explain the impact of COVID-19 on your business so that you don’t make the SBA guess. Help them understand how they need to calculate the impact so you get the right loan amount the first time.

Q: How long will it be before I am able to get the money?

A: The (SBA) should come back with that loan offer, which the company can then accept or decline. It’s expected to take another five days after that offer to get disbursed for a total time span of probably at least one month from the time of application. But, it’s over applied right now, so companies may see a longer time frame than one month.

Looking for nuts?

The CARES Act is a $2.2 trillion dollar stimulus and disaster relief package that provides funding to help deal with the unprecedented economic impact resulting from the COVID-19 virus. (Here’s all 852 pages if you are interested.)

Bill components include stimulus payments to individuals, expanded unemployment coverage, student loan changes, different retirement account rules and more.  Applications are required for some of the biggest programs to determine eligibility are as follows:

  • Paycheck Protection Program – $349 billion
  • Expanded Economic Injury Disaster Loans – $10 billion
  • USDA Corona Virus Response – $9.5 billion
  • Commodity Credit Corp. (USDA) – $14 billion

For individuals and families, the CARES Act:

  • Provides a direct cash rebate of up to $1,200 per taxpayer and $500 per child
  • Expands eligibility for Unemployment Compensation to those who are not usually eligible, including those who are self-employed and independent contractors
  • Provides an additional $600 per week to each recipient of Unemployment Compensation for 4 months and extends benefits for those whose benefits were scheduled to expire
  • Defers student loan payments on Federally-backed student loans and stops interest accrual for 6 months
  • Waives the tax on seniors who elect not to take the Required Minimum Distribution from their retirement accounts in 2020
  • Limits evictions for renters and foreclosures for homeowners with Federally-backed mortgages
  • Ensures COVID-19 testing is covered by all private insurance plans without cost sharing

The CARES Act also provides $376 billion in relief for small and medium-sized businesses and nonprofits through:

  • Paycheck Protection Program: Provides loans to employers to maintain payroll. If payroll is maintained, the loan is forgiven.
  • Emergency Economic Injury Grant: Provides an advance, which does not need to be repaid, of up to $10,000 within 3 days of applying for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan.
  • Small Business Debt Relief Program: Provides immediate relief with non-disaster loans and microloans.
  • Tax Provisions: Provides employee retention credit for employers subject to closure or economic hardship through a refundable payroll tax for 50% of wages and delays payment of employer payroll taxes.

Also please note the new income tax filing and payment deadline extension.  The federal tax return filing deadline is now July 15, 2020, including for tax payments of up to $10 million.

First Here’s the Big Picture

Next Individual Aid & Debt Management

More details here.

Then Business Aid & Debt Management

More details here.

Business Aid and Debt Management

UPDATE April 6, 2020

Today our local Chamber of Commerce published information to help businesses navigate this situation. Check your local chamber too! It will be helpful for you regardless of location (LINK)

Below is info prepared by a legal team to help you understand how to protect you from liability exposure during this pandemic. I wrote a summary below: (LINK)

Medical status is information that is statutorily protected and private. Supervisors in your business who possess information about Employees should handle the disclosure of necessary information to protect health of other Employees as needed.

The policy instructions below are required to interact with team members that have symptoms of COVID-19 or may have been exposed to the virus;

DO

  • DO: Observe vigilant personal hygiene practices, such as the importance of frequently washing hands and avoiding large gatherings.
  • DO: Contact Supervisors if you observe an Employee who has symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath). Do not gossip with other Employees, but rather take steps to sanitize and protect.

DO NOT

  • DON’T: Disclose the identity of Employees who are diagnosed with or have symptoms of COVID-19 to other team members.
  • DON’T: Disclose the identity of Employees who have been exposed or potentially exposed to an individual with COVID-19 and don’t have a diagnosis to other team members.
  • DON’T: Discuss a Employee’s private medical information with Employees, including their pre-existing conditions/vulnerability.
  • DON’T: Ask Employee about the medical condition of other Employee’s family. This information is also statutorily protected and private.

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

Authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans and is available to businesses – including nonprofits, veterans organizations, tribal business concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors – with 500 or fewer employees. The loan amounts will be forgiven as long as the loan proceeds are used to cover payroll costs, and most mortgage interest, rent, and utility costs over the 8 week period after the loan is made AND you maintain compensation levels. You should be able to apply through any existing SBA lender (bank) starting this Friday April 3, 2020. More details are here.

Work Sharing Program

The Department of Labor is also reminding businesses of its Shared Work Program that can provide an alternative to laying off employees during business downturns by allowing workers to work a reduced work schedule and collect partial unemployment insurance benefits for up to 26 weeks. Details can be found here.

Expanded Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)

Small businesses may apply directly to the federal Small Business Administration to receive an economic injury disaster grant of up to $10,000 that does not need to be paid back. The money is supposed to be paid out to business owners within three days of their application’s submission but we expect huge demand and challenges for SBA to implement it so plan on it taking longer. It can be used to maintain payroll, cover paid sick leave and service other debt obligations. More details are here.

Economic Injury Disaster Grants

Even if your business is denied a loan, you can still access this grant up to $10,000, which can be used to provide employee sick leave, maintain payroll or meet other needs like paying rent. You must apply for a loan first to be considered for this option.

Employee Retention Tax Credit

To help employers (including tax-exempt organizations) affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the CARES Act provides for an employer federal tax credit against the Social Security portion of payroll tax that the employer pays. The act applies to wages paid from March 13, 2020, through December 31, 2020, and is available to qualified employers, which are employers who carried on a trade or business during 2020 and whose (1) operations were fully or partially suspended due to a COVID-19-related shut-down order or (2) gross receipts declined by more than 50% compared to the same quarter in the prior year.

The amount of the tax credit is equal to 50% of the first $10,000 in qualified wages (including health benefits) paid to each employee, up to a maximum tax credit of $5,000 per employee. For eligible employers with greater than 100 full-time employees, qualified wages are wages paid to employees when they are not providing services. For eligible employers with 100 or fewer full-time employees, all employee wages qualify for the credit. Qualified wages do not include sick leave wages or family leave wages paid pursuant to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201). Contact your CPA or financial advisor to learn if you qualify for the Employee Retention Credit. The IRS has provided some basic info.

Bridge Loans

Cities and states across the nation are offering bridge loans, such as LA, SF, Chicago, etc as well as the state of Florida, Michigan etc. The terms vary wildly. Please go only to sites managed by the local government to avoid getting caught in CoronaVirus lending scams.

Check with your local Chamber of Commerce for local options near you.

Farmer Assistance

  • Funding was provided to USDA for disaster assistance in the CARES Act but Secretary Perdue has not yet announced how the funding will be provided to farmers. Follow the USDA corona virus disaster relief page to learn more: https://www.usda.gov/coronavirus
  • The U.S. State Department revised its restrictions on the processing of visa applications submitted by farm workers in Mexico after hearing concerns that the restrictions would lead to a farm worker shortage in the U.S. Consular officers can now waive the visa interview requirement for eligible first-time and returning H-2A and H-2B applicants, making more workers in the H-2 program available while prioritizing public health.
  • The CARES Act Expanded Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) do make farmer coops of up to 500 members eligible but farmers are not included at this time, but may change.

(Bonus Link) Defense Production Act

You know the phrase “It’s a good gig if you can get it.” That was probably in reference to government contracts. If you’d like to know more about that, click here.

Most people want to know the difference between PPP and EIDL. In a nutshell the PPP is for small businesses and the EIDL is for big businesses. This Q&A may be helpful for you.

Helpful links and ideas – Corona Virus

UPDATES

  • 5/17/20: Graphics you may have never seen before on how virus is spreading, warm weather impact on virus spread, important info on keeping clean and safe as well as my personal reflections on an epic disaster. (LINK HERE)
  • 4/26/20: Links to follow trending data and as well as how to offer support to our front line workers. (LINK HERE)
  • 4/19/20: Great news links, inspiring stories and something funny. (LINK HERE)
  • 4/12/20: Easter Sunday concert from Milan and other inspiration for you day specific to COVID-19. (LINK HERE)
  • 4/6/20: Financial options for individuals and business advice to adapt your business to the evolving landscape. (LINK HERE)

ABOUT THIS PAGE AND WHAT YOU WILL FIND:

I created this page because I am one of those people at risk due to impaired breathing. I hope what I learned so far helps you. This is a living document and will change as the situation evolves. Your suggestions are welcome by contacting here or commenting.

What you will find below:

  • National news
  • Butte County, California news
  • Outbreak status
  • Mega-dosing on vitamins will help (dose suggestions)
  • Useful links for your health and entertainment.
  • First hand account of the illness and recovery by a senior citizen who is diabetic that I found reassuring.
  • How to adapt financially

National news

  • The New York Times (LINK) – I recommend subscribing to their daily briefing digest on COVID
  • Washington Post (LINK)
  • The Atlantic (LINK)
  • Voice of America (LINK)
  • How to fight corona virus misinformation (LINK) Anxiety is viral. Be patient, kind, deliberate, and fact-based. More people will listen and be helpful.
  • If you need to drive across state lines, be aware that some states have CLOSED their borders. (LINK)

Butte County, California news

  • State of California Advisory Website (LINK) I definitely recommend a visit.
  • ActionNews regional TV news (LINK)
  • Enterprise Record local paper (LINK)
  • Butte County public health department (LINK)
  • If you lost your home in a fire storm, your insurer must now give you an extra 6 months of time to collect replacement cost and temporary rent benefits, because COVID-19 work shut downs and slow downs are circumstances beyond your control. And, no deadlines can be used to cut off your rights until 90 days after the state of emergency has been lifted. Construction professionals are officially considered “essential” and can continue working.
  • Free or discounted lodging to medical personnel working with COVID patients. Hotels interested in participating can contact covid19lodging@dgs.ca.gov. Priority areas are hotels located in counties with high population density or have high numbers of COVID-19 positive test results, including: Los Angeles, Santa Clara, Riverside, San Bernardino, Orange, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Diego and Fresno. (LINK)
  • $100 Million Released to Support Child Care Services for Essential Workers and Vulnerable Populations (LINK)

Outbreak status

  • Center for Disease Control (LINK)
  • Outbreak statistics (LINK) (LINK)

Mega-dosing on vitamins will help (dose suggestions)

I am mega-dosing on vitamins. I did this because I am medically sensitive with impaired breathing and need surgery which I can’t do now. It is very interesting to note that within 4 days of mega-dosing, my lung infection from the past 3 months went away.

UPDATE: Week 2… Lungs still very clear but getting a slight stomach irritation. Iron and zinc can be particularly upsetting to the stomach so I take those less frequently and it helped. Take vitamins with food. (LINK)

UPDATE: Week 3… Avoid ibuprofin during the virus outbreak! It will worsen symptoms (ie Advil) Here’s why (LINK) Also I highly recommend a nasal rinse. Even if you think you are clear, you’d be surprised how good it can make your breathing feel!

These are my doses in addition to a multi-vitamin. (LINK1) (LINK2)

  • Vitamin C: 3,000 milligrams in divided doses
  • Vitamin D3: 2,000 International Units daily
  • Magnesium: 400 milligrams daily
  • Zinc: 20 milligrams daily
  • Selenium: 100 micrograms daily

Useful links for your health and entertainment

  • Here’s a documentary on what happened at ground zero during the first month in China (LINK) And now some areas resuming normal life again (LINK)
  • You really want to watch this on disinfecting surfaces from China (LINK) Take a look at the efficacy of these cleaning agents provided by the EPA. Please note wet surface time required varies. (LINK) Note efficacy of bleach isn’t that great.
    (LINK) Favored disinfectants on this list are hydrogen peroxide and quaternary ammonium.
  • This is super helpful for home health treatment (LINK)
  • Breathing exercises will help you stay strong (LINK) (LINK)
  • News articles on masks. Caring for them, making them and more. (LINK) (LINK)
  • What does social distancing mean? Here’s many different contexts to consider. (LINK)
  • Sewer sanity. Don’t break it please! Destroying our sewers right now is a public health hazard. Wipes even if declared flush-able create problems. Things that CAN be flushed down the toilet: toilet paper, things that came out of your body, and hopes and dreams. Things that CAN’T be flushed: wipes of ANY kind (yes, even ‘flushable’ ones. They don’t actually break up like TP), paper towels, feminine products, and baby crocodiles.
  • What people will do for toilet paper (LINK)
  • If you get the virus and recover, please consider donating blood (LINK)
  • Coming changes are going to be huge. Here’s some tips from Oprah to strengthen your mind (LINK)
  • Here is the list of essential critical infrastructure workers published by California on May 22nd (LINK)
  • Emergency room doctors are using this as a reference on treatment, rate of spread, etc (LINK)
  • If you want to get nerdy on the epidemiology, pathophysiology and diagnostics (LINK)

This time off is a once in a lifetime opportunity to skill share and do things that you normally wouldn’t do for yourself or others. Try the SkillShare Network (A portion of profits is going to provide food for kids thru No Kid Hungry, a huge well-run national program.)

First hand account of the illness and recovery by a senior citizen who is diabetic that I found reassuring.

This fellow was helpful is calmly explaining his experience contracting the disease and healing from it. If this virus situation is giving you anxiety, I promise this video will help you feel a little better.


Some of his tips include temperature monitoring and knowing where the thermometer is designed to be used since calibrations are different. If your temperature goes above 37.5C or 99.5F, with a cough CALL your doctor for assessment. The disabling shortage of breath was unforeseen. He was unable to walk off the cruise ship. Eventually his oxygen level dropped to 93. He was offered a respirator, but his personal experience told him if he did, he would never get off it. He had breath work training and used it. Next day his oxygen level was 99. (See links below on lung strengthening.) In fighting the virus he said aside from exercise, you will need to stay super hydrated and mega-dose on vitamins. They believe based on their experience that 2 weeks quarantine is too short. They’ve been contagious for almost 4 weeks since acquiring the virus.

If you think you acquired a virus CALL your health care provider so they can help you safely and minimize exposing others. (fever, cough and shortness of breath)

How to adapt financially

  • Financial options for individuals and business advice to adapt your business to the evolving landscape. I wanted to spend some time on this. Here’s what I published.
  • FDIC: Advice to consumers (LINK) If you do a loan modification, ask your bank to send you a letter stating they did this. It’s likely there will be reporting mistakes to the credit bureau and this will save alot of time and hassle correcting that when it happens. Advice to banks (LINK) Its helpful to know what banks are being told in handling your account(s)
  • Lessons from preppers (LINK) This site teaches real skills to thrive within the community. Tell me if you find a better site.
  • Square foot gardening (LINK) This is best for people with limited space or underground rodents. This video is AWESOME! (LINK)

Bottom line is… Be careful and do your best to stay healthy physically and emotionally. Most people who get infected will survive and be fine. Some won’t. The more people that adopt safe practices, the better immuno-compromised people like myself can survive this.

Please think about sharing this link with people close to you.

Thanks for reading!
~ Kimberly

If you have any suggestions to add please contact me or comment below. (I want to offer hope and good cheer to everyone I know to offer comfort for us all.)

Recipes for Food That In Not Highly Perishable

These are a few recipes that I thought would not only utilize ingredients that could be stored more than 2 weeks, but I also thought they would be helpful for hydrating, if feeling a little under the weather.

Sweet Potato & Spinach Soup

Ingredients

  • spinach (2 cans or 1 frozen package)
  • 1 large sweet potato, cubed
  • 1 large white potato, cubed
  • 1 cup uncooked pasta (small)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup diced carrots
  • 3/4 cup diced celery
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. dried sage
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 8 cups vegetable broth

Instructions

In a large pot, heat 2 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, celery, carrots, salt, and garlic. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add potatoes, sage, oregano, cayenne pepper and another pinch salt/pepper. Cook for another ten minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the vegetable broth and reduce heat to low. Add pasta, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in spinach during last 10 minutes of cooking.


Hearty Lentil, Kale & Potato Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 1 cup dry lentils (not red), rinsed and picked over
  • 4 cups vegetables broth + 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp coriander
  • 1 large potato, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • spinach (2 cans or 1 frozen package)
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Add bacon for flavor, if desired

Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add onion, celery and carrots and sauté until softened, about ten minutes.
  • Add lentils, broth, water, salt, garlic, cumin and coriander. Stir together and bring to a boil.Once soup has reached a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 20 minutes.
  • Cook the bacon if included and add it to the pot, with a little of the fat if desired for more flavor.
  • Add chopped potatoes and simmer, covered for 15 more minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
  • Add spinach and simmer, covered for 5 more minutes, or until kale is wilted.
  • Remove from heat and stir in red wine vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

TORTILLA SOUP

Inspite of this soup being an enormous crowd pleaser, it does give me pause.  I’ve learned that flu comes from our interactions with birds, pigs, and other animals.  For some reason I thought it was other random factors like mold.  So this becomes yet ANOTHER reason to consider being vegetarian.  …But I’ll never stop making this soup.  It’s that good.

Ingredients for Soup

  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • whole onion, chopped
  • couple carrots, sliced
  • couple celery stalks, sliced
  • 2-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 or 2 Serrano or jalapeno chilies, cored, seeded & minced
  • crushed red pepper to taste

Ingredients for Garnish (Green onions and cilantro won’t keep more than a week or so)

  • freshly made tortilla chips
  • grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • green onions, chopped
  • cilantro, chopped

Instructions

  • In a large crock pot, combine everything for the soup and cook about 6 hours.
  • After a few hours remove chicken and tear into bite-sized pieces, then place back in the soup.
  • Simmer until you’re tired of cooking it.
  • To serve, ladle soup into bowls, then top with avocado pieces, chopped cilantro and green onions. Add cheese and put chips on last or add to your soup as you eat it to keep them crunchy.

Please share some recipes that you are planning during this time when meal planning is a valuable part of staying healthy and out of the stores as much as possible.