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Call Recap | March 17

MACP hosted call for local Chamber Executives

Role of Chambers in a Disaster:
Chambers of commerce share a unique space in their communities to be at the center connecting resources between business, government, education, and residents. In the event of a disaster, chambers can be a leading source of information and a primary source for promotion and goodwill to keep the business community positive.

**there was mention of the MRLA call today at 10:30** 

Over 200 restaurants have already signed up for the MRLA call. We’re working on getting a recording or another round of calls set up later today or tomorrow. Thanks for your flexibility—we’re working on getting as many resources out as possible as they become available.

Tips/Messages from today’s call: 

Charlie, Cadillac: UIA thumbnails and ideas for restaurants

Scott, Cheboygan: MRLA webinar

Alaina, Rochester: Park Place shutting down on Friday; Networking opportunities for small chambers: Ring Central; looking for platforms (free conference call for board meetings with screen sharing), recording, webpage on COVID-19; starting now- look ahead and provide clear and concise steps for how to access resources

Dan West, Livonia: Wednesdays for 1-hour, host 10 people in the office, for small networking groups; have a member special every day; carry out orders; promote commerce; good dialogue with city leaders; moving forward—share assistance resources for small business to share with members; board meeting held at police station and emergency services 

Nikki, Petoskey: Facebook live events (restaurant) online platforms, Music bingo/trivia; taking over local radio station for 3 hours and bringing in local government, health department, doctors, schools, Traverse Connect to share information

Amber, Ann Arbor: Request for videos for social media/website to recognize small business promotion/impact and asks from the community

Lisa, Petoskey: Facebook page highlighting Petoskey restaurants and carry out specials

Jean, Auburn Hills: city sends out details and invites chamber to participate on conference calls; work from home

Erin: Google hangouts for board meetings

Tracy: Grayling; closed to walk-in traffic but otherwise working as normal

Petoskey: closed walk-in traffic; working remote with one person in the office

West Branch: open for phone calls; no foot traffic

Orion: in a government facility, so working remotely and forwarding to cell phone

Mackinaw City: office open in evenings until 8:00 p.m. instead of daytime to accommodate staffing during school closures

Rochester: CEO from local hospital: preparing for a surge and expect one in the next 6-9 days with an influx of patients; shortage of equipment; hospitals dealing with shortage of testing (125 per day); testing for the flu first, then COVID is negative; 

Rochester: looking at benchmarking financials against last year and anticipating changes to this year; reviewing sponsorships and securing support for canceled events


Call Recap |  March 16

Department of Licensing and Economic Opportunity (LEO) and the Michigan Chamber of Commerce:

As a follow-up to the March 16 call with the Department of Licensing and Economic Opportunity (LEO) and the Michigan Chamber, here are some resources that may be helpful in the coming days and week:

Work Share – The Governor’s Unemployment Insurance Executive Order (E.O. – attached) expands the State’s Work Share program. Employers are encouraged to implement the program that permits employers to maintain operational productivity during declines in regular business activity instead of laying off workers. More information about Work Share can be found here.  It’s important to note that the E.O. now allows all employers to take advantage of the program, regardless of whether the employer’s reserve in the employer’s experience account as of the most recent computation date preceding the date of the employer’s application is a positive number.

Unemployment Benefits – Eligible employees should apply for unemployment benefits online at  or 1-866-500-0017. A factsheet on how to apply for benefits can be found here.

Additional unemployment resources for employees can be found here and for workers here.

Small Business Loans – At our urging, Governor Whitmer is seeking additional solutions for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Earlier this month, Congress passed legislation that makes $1 billion available to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide low-interest loans to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and nonprofits that have suffered substantial economic losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The governor has informed SBA that she is seeking an Economic Injury Disaster Loan Declaration for the state and has initiated the process to receive the declaration from SBA. Once granted, small businesses in qualifying areas will be able to access low-interest loans through the SBA. In the interim, we are encouraging small businesses that could benefit from SBA loans to start collecting the information they’ll need to complete and submit their application. Examples of information needed can be found here. For additional information or to obtain help preparing the loan application in advance of the declaration, please contact the Michigan SBA offices in Detroit or Grand Rapids.

MEDC – The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s (MEDC) call center stands ready to support businesses looking for assistance through other available state programs. For more information, visit MEDC’s website: or call 888.522.0103.  The Michigan Small Business Development Center can also provide resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Visit their website for additional information.

FEMA Aid – The Governor has requested that President Trump issue a Major Disaster Declaration so that Individual Assistance and Disaster Unemployment Assistance through FEMA may be made available to additional Michiganders affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The latest information is available at and  For those who have questions about the state’s actions to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, please call the COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-535-6136 between 8AM – 5PM daily.

Please feel to reach out to anyone on on the Michigan Chamber team if you have any questions: