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COVID-19 RRC: Newsletter

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Resources for Communities

The following resources are available to assist communities and municipalities navigate the financial, operational, and social challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Municipal Assistance

Find resources for municipalities on topics such as continuity of operations, financing, open meeting law, remote meetings, and more.

Community Solutions

Resources are available on the following topics to assist communities and municipalities:

Municipal Planning Grants

Municipal Planning Grants help communities implement town plan recommendations and jump start initiatives like zoning updates to welcome new homes, plans for a state designated area, or economic recovery strategies. A total of approximately $450,000 will be awarded to municipalities through this program. Towns may apply for up to $22,000 and joint applications from several municipalities (a consortium) may apply for up to $35,000. Review the Program Description for eligibility requirements and use the new Application Guide.

Archived Q&A Webinars for Municipalities

Find previous question and answer webinars with Deputy Secretary Ted Brady that covered best practices, tools, and resources for municipalities. This event series was jointly hosted by the Vermont League of Cities and Towns (VLCT) and ACCD.

COVID-19 FAQs for Municipal Operations

The Vermont League of Cities and Towns offers updated FAQs for municipalities on recent guidance and its legal and practical effects on general municipal operations, as well as information related to municipal services such as dog licensing, access to public records, town office closures and re-openings, and processing zoning applications.

Essential Needs and Services

Find organizations that provide information and/or assistance related to food assistance, housing support, and more.

Signage for Businesses and Communities

ACCD has signage available for businesses and communities to help educate customers and visitors as to the guidance and restrictions in place. New signage has been added to reiterate specifically the need to quarantine for those returning to the state, or for those who are visiting the state.

Compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act

Consider how the re-opening process and operational changes might impact compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The health and safety guidance provided by ACCD does not negate any obligations as outlined by the ADA. Refer to A Primer for Small Business for additional information.

Municipal Emergency Property Tax Borrowing Program

This program, which went live on June 15, 2020, helps towns that need to borrow on a short-term basis to manage the cash flow effects of statewide education property tax deferrals, or delays in receiving such taxes as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The program authorizes the State Treasurer to pay the interest that municipalities incur between March 1, 2020 and December 30, 2020. The Vermont Legislature appropriated up to $2.7 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund for the program. Visit the State Treasurer's website for more information.

UVM Study with Vermont Futures Project

The Vermont Futures Project has partnered with the UVM Center for Research on a statewide survey of people taking refuge in Vermont during the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective is to learn what these temporary residents would need to make Vermont their permanent residence. The results will be shared with community and business leaders, policy makers, and others to help inform our next steps. Please share this survey with your networks.

SBA Announces $10 Billion for CDFIs to Participate in PPP

The Small Business Administration has announced that it is providing $10 billion of round two funding for the Paycheck Protection Program to be lent exclusively by Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). These funds will help to ensure that the Paycheck Protection Program reaches all communities in need of relief during COVID-19.

Public Right of Way Guidance

ACCD worked with VTrans to provide guidance on the use of public rights of way for restaurants and retail businesses. The guidance lays out considerations and steps to ensure social distancing to enable a wider restart of retail operations and restaurants, in a way that does not increase the risk of auto-related injuries, addresses pedestrian safety and accessibility, and shares items towns and businesses should consider when using the street during these times.

Resources for the Creative Sector

The Vermont Arts Council is working to enable artists and arts and culture organizations to respond effectively to the COVID-19 outbreak. Find information about special funding opportunities, recovery and response events, and more.

Visit ThinkVermont.com for more inspiration and information on living, working and doing business in Vermont.