City developing broad program to give businesses COVID-19 relief
The City of Bellevue today announced it would defer Q1 and Q2 local Business & Occupation tax payments for certain small businesses to October in an effort to help businesses weather the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A declaration was issued by Mayor Lynne Robinson relieving the obligation of small businesses with gross receipts under $5M of paying 1Q and 2Q taxes until October 31, 2020. Larger businesses may also have an option upon request to defer tax payments for up to 90 days. A city flyer further outlines the details.
“Our local businesses are key to our vitality as a city and we do not intend to lose them,” said Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson. “We know they are hurting as a result of the necessary actions taken to slow the spread of COVID-19, and we are exploring ways to help at the local level.”
This action is one of many taken by the city to provide relief to local small business owners, artists, sole-proprietors, and nonprofits. City departments including Cultural and Economic Development, Transportation and Utilities are offering targeted support to local businesses and nonprofits as part of a broader program of relief:
- A detailed list of business and nonprofit resources is available on the city’s website, including information on utilities, taxes, workforce, marketing, and economic resilience. This information is updated frequently with new resources. Additionally, residents and businesses can subscribe to a newsletter for a weekly view of the actions the city is taking to support the local economy.
- The city is collaborating with Greater Seattle Partners, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, and other regional partners to assess and quantify the economic impact of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.
- The Bellevue Utilities Department has suspended water shutoffs for nonpayment for residential and commercial customers during the crisis, and will not assess additional fees or penalties for past-due payments. Financially-impacted customers can set up payment plans by contacting 425-452-6973 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The city’s Transportation Department has established new, temporary curbside pick-up zones offering free, three-minute parking for customers picking up their food from local restaurants. So far, four curbside pick-up zones have been established––three in Old Bellevue and one on 108th Ave NE downtown.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration has officially opened applications for its Economic Injury Disaster Loans for businesses which have experienced a significant impact from COVID-19. These loans generally provide low-interest working capital for small businesses.
- The Cultural and Economic Development team can offer one-on-one advising and assistance to businesses and nonprofits, including on questions related to SBA loans, financial options, marketing assistance, actions from the State of Washington, and other questions. We are conducting these appointments by phone or video call. Reach out via our contact form.
“We recognize that this situation is challenging for local small businesses and nonprofits, but we are heartened by the ways that businesses have adapted to the circumstances and stayed resilient by their adaptability,” said Robinson. “The city council and staff will continue to monitor the situation and add new programs and services as able in the coming days and weeks.”
To keep up to date on all city actions and impacts from COVID-19, visit the city’s main COVID-19 information page.