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COVID-19 Resources for Businesses

It’s vitally important to support local businesses when times are tough. In Lafayette, not only are we facing the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, we are facing a new oil crunch just as the region is emerging from the 2014 downturn. We all have a role to play in supporting our local businesses and their employees—who are our friends, families and neighbors. We encourage you to support your favorite local retailer, service provider, or other business over the coming weeks and months.

Here are resources available to businesses and their employees. We will continue to update this list as we learn more.

<<Click here for Resources for Employees>>

What's New

Lafayette Business Recovery Program

In response to economic hardships experienced by small businesses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) and Lafayette Economic Development Authority (LEDA) have launched the Lafayette Business Recovery Program to stabilize local businesses and retain/create jobs. LCG is accepting pre-applications in anticipation of receiving HUD funds.

Businesses may apply for a forgivable loan or grant of up to $10,000 to assist with up to three months of costs associated with qualifying business expenses incurred not prior to March 27, 2020—including but not limited to rent, payroll, insurance, benefits, and utilities.

Begin your application here.


Louisiana Main Street Recovery Program

At this time, the Main Street Recovery Program has obligated all available funds. The program stopped taking applications at 12 p.m. on September 29, 2020. The Treasurer's Office will continue to process applications and award grants daily until the Program has paid all available funds.

Louisiana Returns to Modified Phase 2

On November 24, Governor Edwards announced Louisiana will return to a modified Phase 2 until December 23. View the current order here.

View highlights from the order here.

Lafayette Parish Bars Cease Indoor Service

In accordance with Governor Edwards’s announcement of returning to a modified Phase 2,  a parish which previously opted into but subsequently exceeded 5% positivity rate for two consecutive weeks would be required to cease all indoor on-premise consumption at bars.

According to the Louisiana Department of Health, Lafayette Parish exceeded 5% positivity rate for two consecutive weeks, therefore bars are now to cease all indoor, on-premise consumption.

Bars may continue to offer curbside and drive-thru services and may also offer outdoor tableside services only. Get details here.

Statewide Mask Mandate Issued

Effective July 13, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced a mandatory mask requirement for Louisiana.

Mask Up Lafayette

Download an easy-to-print sign to post at your business' entrance. Let's work together to keep our businesses open and our friends and family members employed.

Open Safely

This site allows you to register your business to receive updated communication, notifications, and helpful guidance via email from the State Fire Marshal’s Office specific to your business type. These notifications will answer the important questions:

  • When can I partially or fully open my business?
  • What are the steps to open my business?
  • What changes can be expected for businesses that have been operating, but with restrictions?
  • What restrictions are my business subject to, if any?
  • Are there any new sanitation requirements for my business?
  • Are there any personal protective requirements (masks, gloves, etc.) for my employees?

To begin receiving notifications and guidance for safely opening or operating your business, click here to register.

Download documents related to Phase 1/2/3 opening for specific business types.

Resources for Business

Please consult with your banking, accounting, legal or tax professional to determine how these programs may impact your business and employees. Information is subject to change as rules are developed and finalized.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (Cares) Act

The CARES Act provides economic assistance to workers, families, and small businesses and preserves jobs for American industries.

Employee Retention Credit under the CARES Act

The Employee Retention Credit under the CARES Act encourages businesses to keep employees on their payroll. The refundable tax credit is 50% of up to $10,000 in wages paid by an eligible employer whose business has been financially impacted by COVID-19.

SBA Coronavirus Relief Options
In addition to traditional SBA funding programs, the CARES act established several new temporary programs to address the COVID-19 outbreak including: Paycheck Protection Program, EIDL Loan Advance, SBA Express Bridge Loans, and SBA Debt Relief.

Paycheck Protection Program

The CARES Act includes a key provision—the Paycheck Protection Programthat expands the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) existing 7(a) loan program. SBA is no longer accepting PPP applications from participating lenders.

Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)

The EIDL program is designed to provide low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to six months of working capital. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.

USDA Business and Industry Loan Program
The U.S. Department of Agriculture will soon offer guaranteed loans to help businesses hurt by COVID19. The loans are for:

  • Businesses, public bodies, cooperatives, and nonprofits in rural areas
  • Rural areas include towns and cities with 50,000 or fewer population
  • Approved loan uses include acquisitions, equipment purchases, debt refinancing, job creation
  • Lenders include federal and state banks, farm credit banks, and credit unions
  • Interest and principal payments are deferred for three years
Louisiana Loan Portfolio Guaranty Program

Louisiana Loan Portfolio Guaranty Program will offer loans of up to $100,000 to Louisiana small businesses of fewer than 100 employees that are impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. To help Main Street and rural businesses sustain operations, the loans will require no payments for 180 days and carry below-market interest rates of no more than 3.5 percent. The Loan Portfolio Guaranty Program, or LPGP, is a partnership of Louisiana Economic Development, which will provide a loan guaranty fund; the Louisiana Bankers Association, whose membership will provide the loans; and the Louisiana Public Facilities Authority, which will administer the program. A total loan pool of $50 million will be quickly dispersed to eligible small businesses across Louisiana.

COVID-19 Help Wanted

LEDA launched to identify businesses hiring additional workers to meet customer demand during the COVID-19 public health emergency. If your business is hiring, let us know the details by emailing our Workforce Development team.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers to provide employees with paid sick or family leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The act went into effect on April 1, 2020 and provides for paid leave under the Emergency Paid Leave Act and the Emergency Family Medical Leave Expansion Act. 

COVID-19-Related Tax Credits for Required Paid Leave

The FFCRA provides businesses with tax credits to cover certain costs of providing employees with required paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for reasons related to COVID-19, from April 1, 2020, through December 31, 2020.

Louisiana Workforce Commission  |  LWC FAQs 4/10/20   |  FAQs for Employers

Q: How do I make the State aware I am bringing an employee back from a lay off or work reduction?
A: Complete the New Hire Form for rehires on the Department of Children and Family Services website. This helps identify those who continue drawing benefits after returning to work.

Q: How do I make the State aware that I attempted to bring an employee back, but they refused?
A: Refusal of work issues should be reported through the File a Separation Notice on a Former Employee (Form 77). Select “File Employee Separation Notice” under Employer Services. You may indicate "quit-refusal of work" for each employee who does not return to work.

Q: What do I do if I find out that one of my workers is continuing to file for unemployment benefits although they have returned to work or I am paying them from a PPP loan?
A: If someone is drawing benefits while being paid and not reporting those wages to LWC, this should be reported here

Louisiana Department of Revenue

The Louisiana Department of Revenue have made extensions to several required filings. The latest information on extensions and deadlines can be found here.

Acadiana Business Resource Webinars

To support Acadiana's business community – particularly our small businesses – LEDA and our partners will host a series of webinars on timely and relevant topics related to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Click here to see recorded webinars.

Resources for Employees

Get the latest information on various programs in place to assist employees impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Additional Resources and Information





Do you have questions or something to add? Email us.