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4/28 - COVID-19 Highlights for the Business Community

A message from Chamber President and CEO on Governor Abbott's reopening of Texas Businesses: Dear Chamber member and members of the Abilene business community:

Yesterday, we all watched, listened to or read about Governor Greg Abbott’s plan to reopen the Texas economy. While as the chief advocate for your business we had hoped for further loosening, our experiences in talking face-to-face, by telephone and text messaging with our healthcare leaders helped to substantiate the “let’s take it slow” approach determined by the Governor. Although not completely satisfied, we are understanding. But it’s time to get back to work.

Click here to read more.

The following is our latest on coronavirus response and news:

  • MORE TEXAS BUSINESSES RECEIVED COVID-19 RELIEF THAN ANYWHERE ELSE: More small businesses in Texas were approved for money from the federal government's initial coronavirus emergency lending program than in any other state -- including harder-hit New York, California and Florida. Nearly 135,000 loans were approved for businesses in Texas in the first wave, totaling almost $28.5 billion, according to data released by the Small Business Administration. Click here to read more.

  • FRUSTRATED GOP LAWMAKERS WANT TO CURB EMERGENCY POWER OF TEXAS CITIES, COUNTIES: Local governments have gone too far in issuing emergency orders during the coronavirus pandemic and can expect to have those powers whittled down when the Texas Legislature meets again, key state lawmakers say. State laws give local leaders broad power during emergencies, but state Sen. Paul Bettencourt of Houston, a leading Republican in the Texas Senate, said too many local officials have taken it too far. Click here to read more.

  • WHAT SHAPE WILL THE ECONOMIC RECOVERY TAKE? Despite all the dour data, the economy will bounce back once the lockdowns are eased. The question will then become, what shape will the recovery take? Many analysts talk about how it will look like a letter. For instance, will it look like a “V,” a “U,” a “W,” an “L,” or a “reverse-J?” Click here to read more.

  • CHILDCARE IS ESSENTIAL FOR THE PANDEMIC RESPONSE AND THE PATH FORWARD: COVID-19 is decimating the childcare industry—a $47.2 billion industry primarily comprised of small businesses who collectively employ 1.5 million workers.The pandemic has made clear the essential nature of childcare in both the response and recovery phases. The country needs childcare programs operable now to support frontline and essential workers and will need this critical workforce support for every other industry when we begin to return to work. Click here to read more.

  • UPDATE YOUR BUSINESS HOURS: We've been keeping track of business hours on Help us share with the public of your changes by updating your hours of operation here.

Webinars for business

  • 4/28 LEADING THROUGH A CRISIS: Join us Tuesday, April 28 at 10:00 am as Doug McIntyre, Hardin-Simmons University, leads us in a discussion of ways to lead through a crisis. Register here.

  • 5/5 COMMUNICATING AND BUILDING A BRAND THROUGH A CRISIS: Whether you are an individual, executive, company, small business or firm – knowing how to communicate and build brand through this crisis is essential to thriving after this is over. Mila Grigg, CEO, MODA Image and Brand Consulting, is joining us for a live webinar. Her experience around personal brand branding, company brand building, marketing, communicating, sharing on social media and building executive and company brands will give you a plan to communicate through and beyond this crisis and how to share value on social media. There are things you can do RIGHT now that will allow you to share your story, grow your message and thrive. Register here.

  • 5/7 MANAGING YOUR FINANCES AND BUDGET THROUGH A CRISIS: Join the Chamber and Eide Bailly, LLP for an in-depth look at managing your finances and budget through a crisis. Topics will include an overview of IRS relief programs (maximizing loan forgiveness and the next round of payroll protection, employee retention credit), managing cash flows, tax saving opportunities and what information your bank or lender will want and be looking for. Register here.


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