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Recovery & Job Availability


Table of Contents

  • Job Opportunities
  • Chamber Recovery Pages
  • Chamber Chats
  • Financial Assistance
  • Mental Health Resources
  • Restaurants - Classic City Love
  • FAQ
  • Additional Resources

Job Opportunities

We believe that one of the pillars of economic recovery is get people re-employed as quickly and efficiently as possible. Many businesses are hiring people – right now at competitive wages and benefits. Our expectation is to have an online database with a listing of all jobs in the Athens area. That database is going through some changes to make it more easily used. In the meantime, we will post Featured Jobs each week. If you would like your company’s jobs to be noted within this database, please respond to David Bradley at

Chamber Recovery Pages

Reopening Athens, Is Your Business Prepared?
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Upcoming Chamber Chats

Recurrring Chamber Chats

Mayor Kelly


Every Wednesday at 6:00 PM

Athens Clarke County Response & Reopening Conversation

Mayor Kelly Girtz, ACC Government and Community Members

Financial Assistance

1. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan

The Small Business Association has a loan specifically for businesses that have suffered as a direct result of the COVID-19 outbreak. This loan falls solely under the Economic Injury Disaster Loan. Please follow the resources and see if this loan opportunity is a program that could benefit your business.

Navigating the EIDL can be challenging. Businesses can contact a number of Small Business Development Centers that would be more than happy to assist. Click the following for assistance: SBDC Contact Information & Locations

1a. Up to $10,000 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Advance (Grant, $1,000 per employee)

Just for filling out the SBA loan application your business could have access to a $10,000 grant for your business to cover its expenses. April 8th stipulations dictate a $1,000/employee (9 employees=$9,000). This "loan advance" does not have to be repaid and businesses can be eligible even if they do not qualify for the EDIL loan. Also if you receive the "advance" and are approved for the loan, you can decline the loan and still keep the $10,000 "advance". Whether you want the grant or not is a question on the EDIL loan application itself. This is a very easy access to funds and we are recommending everyone take the time to fill out the application and request the funds. Once again, if your application is successful, you may decline the loan itself and not have to repay the $10,000.

1b. Express Bridge Loan

Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing and can be a term loans or used to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster loan. If a small business has an urgent need for cash while waiting for decision and disbursement on Economic Injury Disaster Loan, they may qualify for an SBA Express Disaster Bridge Loan.

2. Coronavirus Aid, Relief & Economics Security Act (C.A.R.E)

The C.A.R.E Act is a 880 page, 2.2 Trillion dollar stimulus bill designed to provide relief to individuals and businesses with economic stress due to the coronavirus. It is the umbrella document that houses a number of Programs and Acts that deal with specific issues.

2a. Paycheck Protection Program (last updated April 20th)

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed for companies impacted by the virus. Any loan funds used to help cover rent, payroll, utilities and mortgage interest do not have to be repayed. This Program is accessable through SBA 7(a) lenders only. Please contact your bank about Paycheck Protection options and applications. As of April 3rd some approved SBA lenders are accepting PPP applications while need more time to get ready for the applications.


The Paycheck Protection Program reached its $349 billion spending limit on April 16th for small businesses. The SBA is currently not accepting new applications for the PPP, however banks are still processing applications in anticipating of additional PPP funding.

Featured SBA 7(a) Lenders: First American Bank & Trust, Synovus, Bank South, Regions Bank, Pinnacle Bank, South State Bank.                       For more SBA 7(a) Lenders view here
3. Unemployment

The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) has adopted an emergency Rule 300-2-4-0.5 Partial Claims, effective March 16, 2020. The rule mandates all Georgia employers to file partial claims online on behalf of their employees for any week during which an employee (full-time/part-time) works less than full-time due to a partial or total company shutdown caused by the COVID-19 public health emergency. Any employer found to be in violation of this rule will be required to reimburse GDOL for the full amount of unemployment insurance benefits paid to the employee. Download the How Employers File Partial Claims Desk-Aid found on the GDOL Alert Page and follow the step-by-step instructions. Filing partial claims results in your employees receiving unemployment insurance (UI) benefit payments faster, usually within 48 hours for claims filed electronically. Employees for whom you file a partial claim are NOT required to report to a Georgia Department of Labor career center, register for employment services, or look for other work.

4. IRS Tax Relief

The IRS has moved tax dates due to staffing and financial stress. Please view the IRS website to view updated developments.

5. Georgia Department of Human Services

The DHS has issued a release that outlines a few of their social resources for individuals and families that are facing financial stress.

6. Grant Watch

Grant Watch is a non-profit organization that compiles grant opportunities throughout the state of Georgia.

Coronavirus COVID-19 grants, loans, funding opportunities and financial assistance to respond to the corona pandemic crisis that has impacted individuals, artists, communities, nonprofit organizations and businesses.

Mental Health Resources

Owning a small business is one of the most stressful occupations, even in the best of times when we aren't in the midst of a global pandemic. COVID-19 has brought huge health challenges to our communities and has a direct impact on our businesses, particularly small businesses. Now, more than ever, is the time to take care and manage excessive stress. Feeling stressed is a normal response to an abnormal situation, but getting overwhelmed by stress can be toxic, physically and emotionally, and at its darkest can lead to thoughts and even acts of suicide. It is important to act now and find ways to cope with stress.

With the help of the School of Social Work at the University of Georgia, we are providing support around stress and mental health to small businesses. Please check out all of the great resources below if Covid-19 has caused you excessive stress or negatively affected your mental health.

Tasks for Managers in Responding to Mental Health Needs during Social Distancing or Quarantine

Georgia Crisis & Access Line (GCAL) is staffed by licensed mental health professionals and is available 24/7 toll-free at 1-800-715-4225. Language assistance is available.

Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health: Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak by SAMHSA

Resources from SAMHSA that can be used to virtually support recovery from mental/substance use disorders. It also provides resources to help local recovery programs create virtual meetings.

The Georgia Covid-19 Emotional Support Line provides 24/7 free and confidential assistance to callers needing emotional support or resource information as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

How to Cope with a Disaster or Traumatic Event by the CDC

Small Business Covid-19 Resource List by the Atlanta Wealth Building Initiative 

Covid-19 Resources in Different Languages by the Latino Community Fund Georgia

Kid's Guide to Stay Safe and Healthy during Covid-19 by Mental Health America of Georgia

This resource by Dr. Kate Castle aims to provide evidence-based, self-help information and tips for getting through the coronavirus pandemic, based on psychology, neuroscience, resilience research and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT).

Restaurant/Retail Operations

The Athens community is developing a one stop website that has the unique terms for restaurant operations. Your favorite spots may be more accessible than you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

Athens Clarke County Government

If you have questions related to Covid-19 concerns for your business or seeking help with business / workforce / non-profit resources and opportunities, send an email to and have your questions answered by ACC Economic Development or a local partner organization. The Athens Clarke County Government has compiled a list of responses to some of the top questions regarding recent developments. Click HERE for responses to common questions such as:

United States Chamber of Commerce

The US Chamber has compiled resolutions to issues businesses have been facing. Click HERE to view their assessment of common issues such as:

Additional Resources

Consideration for Events and Gatherings- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Social Media Toolkit- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Economic Relief for Small Business Owners- Athens Downtown Development Authority

Activities for Children

Classic City Love- Kaptiv8

Garrie Vereen Memorial Emergency Relief Fund (Support for the Athens Entertainment Industry)

Covid-19 Community Response Fund- Athens Area Community Foundation

List of Essential Businesses- Athens-Clarke County Unified Government

Preparing and Responding to Coronavirus- Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives

Covid-19 Updates- Athens-Clarke County Unified Government

Covid-19 Daily Status Report- GA Department of Public Health

Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers- CDC

Coronavirus Disease 2019 Presentation- GA Department of Public Health

How to Work With Kids From Home- BELAY Solutions

10 Ways to Love Athens in Troubling Times - Envision Athens

Athens Restaurants Offering Delivery and Curbside Pickup- Online Athens

Coronavirus Related Updates and Travel Resources- Athens Convention & Visitors Bureau


Disclaimer: The Athens Area Chamber of Commerce wants to deliver pertinent, up to date information to the community but is not a banking or legal institution. On all documents presented and opinions expressed please consult a qualified professional before making any decisions for yourself or your business. Thank you for your support.

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