SUPPORTING SMALL RESIDENTS, BUSINESSES AND ARTISTS DURING COVID-19 
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Brighton Main Streets is collecting updates from both the City of Boston and State of Massachusetts.  Our intention is to provide guidance for both businesses and residents in response to COVID-19.  This is a constantly changing situation, with new announcements issued on a daily basis in many cases.  We are committed to do our best in keeping the information here up to date.

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Announced on March 14th 2019, both Mayor Marty Walsh and Gov. Charlie Baker have set restrictions and limitations as to how restaurants can operate during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Many of the businesses in the Brighton Main Streets' community are restaurants or bars, so our neighborhood will be directly impacted. Brighton Main Streets understands and recognizes that the actions taken by the governor and the mayor are to slow the spread of the virus and to make public health a top priority during these times.  

As a our mission states, Brighton Main Streets works to support and promote the neighborhood businesses. While we encourage neighbors to continue following the guidelines set by public health officials such as social isolation and diligent sanitation and hygiene practices, Brighton Main Streets is creating this as a tips and resources page as to how you can continue to shop & support local businesses!

For Residents

There are a few important ways you can support our local businesses:

  1. Purchase Gift Cards: While Boston Public Health officials are calling for social distancing and practicing diligent sanitation and hygiene skills, for those who are feeling well, you can swing by, pick-up a gift card and use it at a later date.
  2. Order Take-Out: It may sound simple in practice.  The city and the state have placed restrictions for businesses that serve food, while also easing licensing regulations so that such businesses can serve take-out and delivery options more easily. Stay home.  Order take-out.
  3. Wear a Mask:  Please keep others safe by respecting the orders for wearing a face covering in public and in all stores.

For Businesses

There are opportunities for economic relief being discussed at city, state and federal levels. Additionally, there are guidelines on maintaining safety and cleanliness at your establishment. 

  • The Complete Guide and Resources to ReOpening from the StateAnnounced on May 18, MA shared information to help businesses meet the self-certification requirement to reopen.  All businesses must meet these requirements to reopen.  Links to downloadable signage provided here:
  • Business Closures. Starting March 24th, only essential business can remain open.  All non-essential businesses are required to close and follow the states phased reopening plan
  • COVID-19 Small Business SurveyBusiness owners are encouraged to fill out the City of Boston's Office of Economic Development's (OED)  COVID-19 Small Business Survey (updated 6/3/20). 
    • This will allow the City of Boston's Office of Economic Development team to monitor how business owners are being impacted, and inform legislation or policies in support.
  • Boston's Office of Economic Development.  Starting April 3rd, the OED will be virtual, holding web-based office hours 9-11am OR 2-4pm daily.  
    • Join on Google Hangouts, or  you can call 661-543-0141‬; PIN: ‪116 952 328#‬.
  • Delivery Guide.  The Office of Small Businesses Development is working to help any restaurant & bar establishments get signed up on mobile ordering platforms. 
    • Companies like GrubHub are even waiving commission fees, see here
    • Contact the Office of Small Business Development for assistance, click here
    • List your restaurant's menu online, or your business is not on a food delivery app, the City of Boston has created a Small Business Take-Out & Delivery Guide.
  • The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) is constantly providing new information on their website. 
  • The Boston Business Journal has created an additional resource guide for small business owners across the state.
    • Links to Federal, state and local help is here
  • Unemployment assistance.  If you have to make the hard decision and lay off workers, the governor's office and the state's House of Representatives have made filing for unemployment and receiving benefits easier. 
    • You can find the information for that here.
  • Financial Assistance for businesses. 
    • The Small Business Adminstration's (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Relief Loan Program can support businesses who qualify.
      • You can fill out the downloadable form here.
    • Nonprofit aid.  Nonprofits that serve communities who are being directly impacted by COVID-19 are able to receive funding assistance.  
    • Governor Charlie Baker has announced a $10 million fund to support small businesses being impacted by COVID-19. Business owners can complete applications at www.empoweringsmallbusiness.org and can email applications to mgcc@masgcc.com with the subject line, "2020 Small Business Recovery Loan Fund." NO LONGER ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS 
    • Facebook Grant. Facebook announced that it will be creating a $100 million grant program to support small businesses during COVID-19.
      • Read up on this charitable fund, here.
    • LISC Small Business Recovery Grant Program for Massachusetts.  The Local Initiatives Support Coalition has announced their which will provide grants to hard-hit small businesses to weather the immediate financial impact of closures and social distancing measures required to slow the spread of the coronavirus. 
    • Financial Planning. Business owners are having to face many tough decisions during COVID-19, and may have considered closing but are worried about what getting back on their feet may look like after this. The firm Bowditch and Dewey have created this "checklist" for small business owners considering shutting down and how they can set themselves up for a successful reopen, see here.

    For Artists and Musicians

    Many have had to cancel upcoming performances or exhibits. The city and other organizations are working to create support funds for our city's creatives.

    • The Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture, in partnership with the Boch Center for the Arts, has modified their Opportunity Fund to be a  Boston Artists Relief Fund.
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    If you know of any additional assistance in funding or other opportunities to support small businesses and artists during COVID-19, you can email our Executive Director, Aidan McDonough, directly. Also, if you have updated Take Out and Delivery options be sure to add them to our list.

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Get involved by signing up for our mailing list or filling out our volunteer form. Every little bit counts towards making Brighton an amazing community.

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