Federal, state, and local governments along with private corporations are moving quickly to provide financial assistance to small businesses in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is a summary of the public and private loans, grants, and support programs for small businesses and employees, along with how you can take action and advocate for dedicated funding for child care programs. We will update this article as more information becomes available.

Federal Assistance

  • The Federal Reserve announced that it is cutting interest rates to 0% and launching a $700 billion quantitative easing program.

  • The Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering $7 billion in low-interest federal loans to small businesses in designated states and territories impacted by COVID-19. Businesses can receive up to $2 million in assistance with interest rates of 3.75% and repayment terms up to 30 years. Check the SBA website to see if your area is eligible.

  • The U.S. Department of Labor issued guidance for state unemployment insurance programs to extend benefits to individuals whose employment status is impacted by COVID-19. Use this tool to find the agency that manages unemployment insurance in your state and visit their website for more information about eligibility and how to apply for benefits.

  • The federal government passed an economic relief bill to ensure that working people are able to access paid leave should they become infected or need to give care. It also strengthens existing unemployment insurance and food assistance programs, and will provide free diagnostic testing for the virus.

  • View this article for a breakdown of the CARES Act—including the top six things providers need to know about the $2.2 trillion stimulus package passed in late March. 

  • View this article to learn about the expanded Payment Protection Program passed by Congress on April 24, 2020.

State Programs

Many states are offering their own recommendations and relief programs for businesses in response to COVID-19. 

Here are some of the resources available by state. Note: this list is not exhaustive. View this comprehensive spreadsheet compiled by employer software platform Gusto to search for more your state’s available resources. 


  • Birmingham is providing $15 million to the COVID-19 response plan to fund police, fire, public works, and a stimulus program for small businesses affected by the crisis. 

  • Businesses in Bibb, Fayette, Greene, Hale, Lamar, Marengo, Pickens, Sumter, and Tuscaloosa who meet certain criteria can apply for small business relief funds.  


  • The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority will provide a loan guarantee up to $1,000,000 per borrower to enable Alaska’s banks and financial institutions to immediately provide additional capital to Alaska businesses.


  • Arizona enacted a cooperative agreement with the state’s banks to protect small businesses and families from eviction and foreclosure. Banks are now suspending evictions and foreclosures for at least 60 days, with the potential to extend that period for the duration of the state’s emergency declaration. 


  • Arkansas Community Foundation has established a statewide COVID-19 Relief Fund to provide rapid-response grants to nonprofit organizations working on the front lines. The fund will focus on addressing the ongoing economic needs of Arkansans affected by the pandemic and shoring up critical systems in the state, such as healthcare, emergency food distribution, and schools. 



  • The City of Denver launched an emergency relief fund to address the most immediate needs of the business community. This program provides up to $7,500 in cash grants to assist eligible small businesses that may have had to temporarily close, have difficulty with paying their rent and utilities, or have had to lay off staff.





  • The Decatur City Commission approved a framework for a loan program to help businesses affected by COVID-19 by creating a $500,000 business loan fund. Businesses could receive up to $25,000, with the average loan in the $10,000 to $15,000 range. The loans would have a low interest or be interest-free. The payback period would be 36 to 60 months. The loans would be limited to businesses with 25 or fewer full-time employees.


  • Hawaiian small businesses suffering financial losses due to the impact of COVID-19 can now file for low-interest working capital loans of up to $2 million from the SBA. The loans can be used to pay fixed debts, payroll and other bills that can’t be paid because of a disaster’s impact.


  • SBA is now offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to Idaho small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. Businesses in Cassia, Clearwater, Fremont, Owyhee, and Twin Falls may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses that could have been met if the disaster had not occurred.


  • The city of Chicago established a $100 million Chicago Small Business Resiliency Fund, which will help to provide small businesses with emergency cash flow during this immediate health crisis. Funds will be provided to eligible businesses as low-interest loans.


  • The Indiana Chamber of Commerce established the Rapid Response Loan Fund through the Indy Chamber's Business Ownership Initiative (BOI) and its partners to provide an affordable option for loans of $1,000-$25,000. These could be used to pay employee salaries, insurance premiums, or as a bridge loan until additional funding kicks in from your bank or from the SBA.







  • The Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Loan Fund provides a $75 million loan fund (for for-profit businesses only) with no interest or principal payments due for the first 12 months, then converts to a 36-month term loan of principal and interest payments, with an interest rate at 2% per annum. 


  • The $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund will provide emergency capital up to $75,000 to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits. Loans are immediately available to eligible businesses with no payments due for the first 6 months.



  • The Minnesota Small Business Loan Guarantee Program provides another option for financing to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19. DEED estimates that this will guarantee $20 million to $25 million in loans for Minnesota small businesses.



  • The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership and the St. Louis Development Corporation are offering a zero-loan program for small businesses in the city of St. Louis and St. Louis County. Businesses are eligible to apply for loans of up to $5,000 for working capital.  




New Hampshire 

  • The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is providing New Hampshire with loans of up to $2 million to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can't be paid because of the disaster's impact.

New Jersey

  • The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) Board is providing grant and loan programs of more than $75 million. The initiatives will support between 3,000 and 5,000 small and midsize enterprises and are meant to complement recently announced federal economic recovery initiatives.

New Mexico

  • New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD) has created a program to assist businesses seeking emergency loans or lines of credit to deal with negative economic impacts from COVID-19. NMEDD can guarantee a portion of a loan or line of credit up to 80% of principal or $50,000. Loan proceeds are flexible and can be used for working capital, inventory, payroll, and more.

New York

  • New York City will provide relief for small businesses across the City through zero interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate losses in profit. Small businesses with fewer than 5 employees a grant to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees.

North Carolina

North Dakota





Rhode Island

  • The Rhode Island Commerce and Goldman Sachs committed $10 million for loans to small businesses in Rhode Island.These Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans are for small businesses and nonprofits that have been unable to submit a PPP application through another lending institution.

  • The Providence Business Loan Fund (PBLF) is offering loans starting at $10,000 to provide working capital to support business-related expenses. New loan recipients will also receive closing costs capped at $500, zero interest for up to 12 months, and deferred loan payments for 6-12 months. 

South Carolina

South Dakota


  • The Tennessee Department of Human Services is funding a $10 million grant to licensed day cares impacted by COVID-19 to retain staff and operations. 



  • The Salt Lake City emergency loan program aims to provide financial relief to small businesses that will most likely see a downturn in business due to an unforeseen emergency. The program will fund loans up to $20,000 at 0% interest. The application will be open until Monday, March 23rd at midnight.

  • The Child Care Operations Grants are available for Utah-based child care providers whose operations have been affected by decreased enrollment due to COVID-19. Child care programs with (a) a license in good standing from Utah Child Care Licensing and (b) are open and (c) providing child care services may be eligible for a Child Care Operations Grant.


  • The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses impacted by COVID-19. 


  • The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering small businesses and non-profits located throughout the state a loan of up to $2 million to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other expenses.


West Virginia

  • The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses impacted by COVID-19. 


  • The Small Business 20/20 Program will provide grants of up to $20,000 to assist targeted businesses with cash-flow challenges resulting from COVID-19.


Governor Mark Gordon announced that Wyoming small businesses are now eligible to apply for up to $2 million per company in federal economic disaster loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

Private Corporation Relief

  • Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where they operate.

  • Amazon is creating a $5 million Neighborhood Small Business Relief Fund to provide cash grants to Seattle small businesses that need assistance.

  • Stimulus 2020 is a privately-funded stimulus program intended to support America’s local businesses. They are curating a $1000 stimulus package and offers designed to help American businesses stay afloat in this time of crisis.

  • Amex business cardholders can enroll into their working capital program to access funds for vendor payments between $500-150,000, offering repayment terms of 30, 60, or 90 days w/ a fixed rate between 0.6%-5.25%.

How to Take Action

  • Child Care Aware of America is rallying early education providers to send letters to Congress to urge them to provide significant and dedicated funding for child care programs during this public health crisis.

  • The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) has published a survey to collect stories of how early education programs have been impacted by COVID-19 in order to inform local and state policymakers.

Visit the
brightwheel Coronavirus Resource Center for more essential tips and resources on how to stay informed, keep your business running, and communicate with families during COVID-19. If you have any feedback or ideas on what else we should cover, email us at resources@mybrightwheel.com

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