As Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted continue to provide updates during their daily press conference with Director Amy Acton, M.D. of the Ohio Department of Health on the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lt. Governor has taken the lead on providing updates on the programs and law changes the state and federal governments are putting in place to help workers and businesses alike. While the Governor continues to put measures in place, the following programs are in place or in the process of being implemented for Ohio businesses and employees:
- The Ohio Development Services Agency (DSA) has requested all Ohio businesses complete this Economic Damage Assessment Survey, designed to help determine economic impacts caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. State government leaders will use the feedback as they develop response plans.
SharedWork Ohio is a program that provides employers with an alternative to layoffs. The program allows workers to remain employed and employers to retain trained staff during times of reduced business activity. The participating employee works the reduced hours each week, and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) provides eligible individuals an unemployment insurance benefit proportionate to their reduced hours.
- Ohio has submitted a request to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for access to Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million for small businesses. The SBA has published general guidance for employers regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, including information on the loan program.
- The Department of Job and Family Services (JFS) also has a page dedicated to the new unemployment compensation benefits available under the Governor’s recent order. Employers with questions are directed to contact the JFS Business Line at: (614) 466-2319, though state officials are strongly encouraging employers to reference the webpage before calling in order to keep call hold times down.
- JFS also asked Ohio employers planning layoffs or shutdowns as a result of the coronavirus pandemic to share the following mass lay-off number with their employees to speed the processing of unemployment benefits: 2000180.
We wanted to provide these to you as you work through your business planning for COVID-19. Calfee continues to closely monitor the state’s response to COVID-19 and remains ready to work with you as we move through the pandemic and its aftermath.