COVID-19 Business Resources
Resources for Pittsburgh's small business community
The URA realizes the impact of this pandemic will deeply challenge the lives of our small business loan borrowers, neighborhood business districts, and economy, and will do everything we can to help.
New Federal Funding for Small Businesses
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 has created or restarted a variety of federal assistance programs for smal businesses, including the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), and the Shuttered Venue Grant Program. While the URA is not involved in submitting any of these grants or loans, we are happy to pass along information that we find helpful.
- General PPP Information for Applicants
- EIDL Information for Applicants
- Shuttered Venue Grant Program Information: You can find information about this program at the links below:
To promote access for smaller lenders and their customers, SBA is currently only accepting loan applications from participating community financial institutions (CFIs). Lender Match can help you find a participating CFI.
Tools for the Transition
This resource page is for businesses looking for information regarding funding, regulatory adjustments, innovations and other resources. Learn more about getting online, incentivizing gift card purchases, and utilizing outdoor spaces.
Paid Sick Days Act
Effective March 15, the City of Pittsburgh is requiring all businesses to provide employees with Paid Sick Time notice.
Green Phase Outdoor Operations
In order to support safe and robust economic activity with physical distancing, the City of Pittsburgh is developing a program to utilize the public rights of way for outdoor commercial operations. The Department is in the process of creating an application, permitting process, and guidelines to request modified sidewalk, parking lane, and street space.
If your business is interested in starting outdoor operations in the Green Phase, please submit as much information as you can provide in this "Street Modification for Outdoor Operations Interest Form."
Ready Pittsburgh: A Toolbox for Reopening
Ready Pittsburgh is a toolkit for organizations that contains best practice protocols and guides for various industries as the Pittsburgh region moves to the yellow phase of reopening.
URA Financial and Technical Assistance
Minority Business Recovery & Growth Loan Fund
Made possible by PNC and the City of Pittsburgh, The Minority Business Recovery & Growth Loan Fund provides access to capital for existing minority-owned businesses inside the City of Pittsburgh that are recovering from COVID-19 or growing.
- Loan Amount: Up to $100,000.00
- Interest Rate: 0% for first year, 2% for balance of loan term
- Deferral Period: 1 year
- Length of Loan: 7 years
- Fees: None
Get Online Grow Online (GOGO) Small Business Program
Learn how to market and sell your products and services online with up to 8 hours of free technical assistance while connecting with similar businesses!
The URA, in partnership with Neighborhood Allies, launched a program to aid businesses in implementing new, creative ways to reach their customers.
COVID-19: Strategies for Commercial Property Owners & Tenants to Avoid Rent Forbearance Disputes
NAIOP Pittsburgh and the URA developed a guide for property owners and tenants to help in avoiding commercial lease disputes during COVID-19.
- Allegheny Conference Response + Recovery Webinar Series
- RCI Boost Your Business Webinar Series
- Bridgeway Capital's Entrepreneurship Hub Webinars
- The Pittsburgh Foundation webinar series for nonprofits navigating COVID-19
Additional Resources and Programs
We will continue to update this list as resources become available.
Paycheck Protection Program
*This program closed August 8, 2020.
The Small Business Administration Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.
Economic Injury Disaster Loan
The Small Business Administration is providing low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans to qualified Pennsylvanian small businesses experiencing economic injury as a result of the coronavirus. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the COVID-19 impact.
Allegheny County Covid-19 Loan Program
Allegheny County is offering loans of up to $100,000 for 36 months at 0% interest rate. Businesses anywhere in Allegheny County (including the City of Pittsburgh) are eligible, with preference given to women- and minority-owned businesses. For more information, see the Program Application.
Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program
The SBA Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program provides up to $25,000 for survival and/or reopening of business during or immediately following COVID-19 crisis.
Coronavirus Financial Bridge Loan Program
Hebrew Free Loan Association of Pittsburgh has announced a Coronavirus Financial Bridge Loan Program to provide interest-free loans on a nonsectarian basis for up to $5,000 to residents of Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Westmoreland, Washington, and Armstrong counties who are facing financial challenges caused by the Coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak.
Honeycomb Relief Loan program
Honeycomb Credit is offering the Honeycomb Relief Loan program to small businesses affected by the coronavirus. These loans up to $50,000 will offer a 45-day payment free period and a six-month interest-only period. Honeycomb is also streamlining its diligence process, accelerating the speed that it launches campaigns onto its platform, and reducing fees across the board.
The Kiva Pittsburgh program at Riverside Center for Innovation (RCI) helps business owners to apply for and crowdfund 0% interest loans with Kiva.org. During the COVID-19 outbreak, loans can be as much as $15,000 with a 6-month grace period. Find links to more information, local assistance with your application, and the online application on the RCI website.
Emergency Action Fund
The Pittsburgh Foundation is providing funding to nonprofit organizations facing immediate and long-term impacts of COVID-19 through the Emergency Action Fund. You can find the grant criteria and application, opening April 1, 2020, here.
Save Small Business Fund
The Save Small Business Fund is a grantmaking initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation offering short-term relief for small employers in the United States and its territories. Apply here.
Facebook Small Business Grants Program
Facebook has a Small Business Grants Program that offers $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during the outbreak of COVID-19.
Guides and Resource Lists
- The CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and
Economic Security Act), signed into law March 27, 2020, allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the COVID-19 pandemic and economic downturn. Stifel Public Finance compiled this helpful summary.
- The American Industrial Hygiene Association developed science-backed guidelines for both businesses and consumers to safely re-open.
- Commonwealth of Pennsylvania response guide
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Resources
- National Endowment for the Arts: COVID-19 Resources for Artists and Arts Organizations
- The PA Department of Community and Economic Development has a list of contacts and resources that are available to assist affected businesses.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration Guide provides help to plan and respond to COVID-19.
- The Allegheny Conference and its affiliate organizations created the Pittsburgh Region Response to COVID-19 webpage, full of information and resources available across local government, corporate, philanthropic, university and non-profit communities.
- Bridgeway Capital developed a COVID-19 Relief and Resources page for access to its financing solutions and resources. Bridgeway’s Entrepreneurship Hub is also offering free technical assistance.
- The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University is offering services, including counseling sessions and technical assistance, by telephone.
- Google is offering guidance for small businesses, including how to communicate with your customers and employees, how to effectively work from home, and how to modify advertising, among other topics.
- Postmates offers information for using its platform to sell takeout, which may increase your customer reach and boost your digital presence.
- Yelp is offering $25 million in relief primarily to independent, local restaurant and nightlife businesses, in the form of waived advertising fees and free advertising, products, and services.
Have questions or concerns? Businesses can contact us at 412.255.6669.