Chamber Connections BLOG
Chamber Connections BLOG
Rhode Island is a national leader in COVID-19 testing, but we’re always working to improve our testing systems. The demand for testing is at an all-time high and we need to adapt to handle that level of activity. So, over the next few weeks, we’re making nine major changes to our testing system:
We’re always working to build a more comprehensive, faster testing network to ensure all Rhode Islanders can easily get a test and access their results. Please, keep getting tested regularly to protect yourself and your loved ones.
We're all in this together.
P.S.: Information is our greatest weapon in the fight against COVID-19. If you or someone you know wants to sign up to receive these emails, you can use this link.
Seven new measures that will take effect on Sunday. These measures are part of a regional approach in close coordination with Massachusetts and Connecticut. Over the next two weeks, we will be closely monitoring behavioral data to see if this approach is working or if we need to impose additional restrictions.
1. Effective Sunday, a stay-at-home advisory is in effect from 10pm-5am on weeknights, and 10:30pm-5am on Fridays and Saturdays. At that time, unless you’re going to and from work or running essential errands like getting food or going to the pharmacy, you should be in your own home. Not someone else’s home – your home. We know that late-night house parties are a major factor in this second wave. And if you’re at a restaurant or bar until that time, once it closes, drive straight home. We’re not going to take a heavy hand – as always, our approach calls for voluntary compliance. But if we do see big parties at any time of day, and particularly at night, we will break them up and fine you.
2. Also effective Sunday, all restaurants, bars, gyms, recreational facilities (such as casinos, bowling alleys, and museums), and personal services must close at 10pm on weeknights, and 10:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Restaurants can continue to offer takeout and drive-through after that time.
3. We’re lowering the capacity limit for indoor events and venues of assembly to 50%, with a maximum of 125 people. For outdoors, the limit will be 66%, with a maximum of 150 people. This applies to things like performing arts venues, movie theaters, and houses of worship. I’d ask everyone to consider switching to virtual worship for the next few weeks.
4. We’re reducing the limit for catered events to 25 indoors and 75 outdoors. If you already have a wedding planned in the next two weeks, we’re able to consider an exception if you contact the Department of Business Regulation.
5. We’re reducing the capacity limit at malls and big box stores – retailers with more than 30,000 sq. ft. of space – back to the Phase 2 limit of 1 person per 150 sq. ft. Over the last few weeks, we’ve started to see more crowding at these businesses, and we anticipate that will continue to increase as we head into a big shopping season.
6. In addition to working from home when possible, we’re asking businesses to postpone or cancel nonessential work-related travel. We’re also leading by example in this regard and have put a hiatus on work-related travel for state employees.
7. We’re updating our masking guidance to require masks at all times with anyone you don’t live with. That includes anytime you leave your home – including at the gym – and private gatherings if there’s anyone there you don’t live with.
Restaurants and bars will receive between $2,000 and $10,000 based upon how much business they typically do. These businesses will need to attest that they were affected by this early closure, and then they can expect their grant from the Division of Taxation within 30 days. We know these grants might not make up for what has been an extraordinarily difficult time, but we hope it will help as we make another round of temporary sacrifices to stop the second wave.
Relief for restaurants and bars that are subject to early-closing order
Division to issue grants of up to $10,000 to help make up for loss of business
PROVIDENCE — Rhode Island Governor Gina M. Raimondo today announced a relief program for
restaurants, bars, and other such businesses that have been ordered to close earlier than usual
because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Using federal Coronavirus Relief Funds, the
Governor authorized the payment of grants to these impacted businesses.
Under the program, the Rhode Island Department of Revenue’s Division of Taxation will provide grants to bars and restaurants adversely impacted by COVID-19.
Each such grant will range from a minimum of $2,000 to a maximum of $10,000.
Governor Raimondo developed the relief program to coincide with her Executive Order that will
mandate early shutdown for bars and restaurants: Effective on Sunday, November 8, 2020, all
restaurants, bars, and certain other facilities must end service at 10:00 p.m. on weeknights and 10:30
p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. (Restaurants may stay open after the new closing hours for take-out
and drive-in only.)
The new provisions involving closing hours will remain in effect for two weeks, she said. They are part of a range of measures aimed at limiting the spread of the coronavirus and reducing the rising number of coronavirus cases. “We’re not alone. Cases are spiking all over the world,” Governor Raimondo said.
The relief program will be paid for through federal funds that have been made available to the states for pandemic relief. The Division of Taxation will soon post an application form that the affected businesses must complete in order to apply for a grant, and will post other details on its website.
PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE DIVISION OF TAXATION REGARDING THIS PROGRAM. DEVELOPING INFORMATION WILL BE POSTED ON THE DIVISION’S WEBSITE: WWW.TAX.RI.GOV
SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available in Rhode Island Following Secretary of Agriculture Disaster Declaration for Drought Beginning Sept. 29
Disaster Field Operations Center East
Release Date: Oct. 22, 2020 Contact: Michael Lampton (404) 331-0333
SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available in Rhode Island Following Secretary of
Agriculture Disaster Declaration for Drought Beginning Sept. 29
The U.S. Small Business Administration announced today that Economic Injury Disaster
Loans are available to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in
aquaculture, and private nonprofit organizations in Providence County in Rhode Island as a result of
drought that began on Sept. 29, 2020.
“This county is eligible because it is contiguous to one or more primary counties in Massachusetts. The Small Business Administration recognizes that disasters do not usually stop at county or state lines. For that reason, counties adjacent to primary counties named in the declaration are included,” said Michael Lampton, acting director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East.
Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farmrelated and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster.
Except for aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers,
farmers and ranchers. Nurseries are eligible to apply for economic injury disaster loans for losses
caused by drought conditions.
The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 3 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations of all sizes, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity and its financial resources. Loan amounts
and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition. These working
capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.
Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at
DisasterLoan.sba.gov and should apply under SBA declaration # 16733, not for the COVID-19 incident.
Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer
Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov. Loan applications can be downloaded from sba.gov/disaster.
Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and
Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
Submit completed loan applications to SBA no later than June 15, 2021.
SIMPLE TIPS ON HOW TO SHARE SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS AND DRIVE TRAFFIC TO YOUR BUSINESS!
The East Bay Chamber is here to help promote your business. EVERYONE is in the business of MARKETING. To leverage the marketing we provide, you must do your part too - and that is to SHARE, COMMENT and TAG. It's easy!
This is how you get views and climb the ranks on Google, Facebook and Instagram.
Here is a "cheat sheet" from the Chamber:
1) Follow The East Bay Chamber of Commerce on Facebook and Instagram! When you see a post from the Chamber, LOVE and COMMENT - this helps the post be seen by a wider audience. (eg "Thanks for supporting us!" "Come check out our new specials", etc)
2) SHARE to your page and comment to your followers (eg "So excited to be a part of #FirstThursdays in the #EastBayRI! Support the #EastBayChamberRI and #ShopLocal . Then TAG your biggest supporters. They can then help you spread the word on their pages! ) To tag them, hit "@" followed by their name/business name.
3) Don't forget to Hashtag #! Why? The hashtag is how you are discovered thru searches. Imagine you are searching for something... what phrases would you use to search? (#eastbayrestaurants #warrenplumbers #Bristolcoffeeshops #EastBayEventsRI) How do you want your business to be found? Remember to "geo-tag" ie. #warrenRI #barringtonri #bristolri
Please use #threetownsonecommunity #Eastbaychamberri #EastBayFirstThursdaysRI #shoplocalRI and TAG @eastbaychamberri
Reach out to us for help - we want to support YOU.
2020 Rhode Island Jeffrey Butland Family-owned Small Business of the Year: Dan Shedd, Taylor Box Company
Rhode Island District Office - September 30, 2020
2020 Rhode Island Jeffrey Butland Family-owned Small Business of the Year
Taylor Box Company
The year is 1885, the Statue of Liberty arrives in New York harbor, Dr. Pepper is served for the first time, and Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is published. In Providence, Rhode Island, Clarence Taylor opens a small factory to produce fancy boxes for retail stores, and he names it: Taylor Box & Card Company. While much from that era has faded, 135 years later, with its fourth generation of family leadership now in place, Taylor Box continues to evolve and thrive.
Today, Taylor Box Company is a leading design-manufacturer in the premium and luxury paperboard packaging industry. It has a national customer base that features numerous leading brands spanning multiple business categories which has earned them the title of 2020 Rhode Island Jeffrey Butland Family-Owned Small Business of the Year.
The company provides design services from ideation through final prototyping and manufacturing, fulfillment and logistics. However, Taylor Box was not always the cutting edge “Best in Show” award-winning design/engineering production studio it has become. It began modestly, a handful of box makers in a one room rented space where the Dunkin Donuts Center now sits. Howard Scholes purchased the company just after World War I and was the first of now four generations to manage the company.
The company relocated from Providence to their current location in Warren in 1952. In 1980, with the retirement of his father, Dan Shedd took over as the third-generation president and began implementing his vision of modernizing the company.
First, Shedd refocused sales efforts on the high value-added segments, which meant expanding their investment in design and engineering services. This resulted in a doubling of their business, which in turn, required expanding their operational capacity. This required investing in modernizing each point of Taylor Box’s operation from design to manufacturing and introducing emerging computer technology. The design studio went from pencil, protractor and cutting mat to state-of-the-art CAD software while operational management went from back of an envelope doodles to comprehensive ERP systems.
The Taylor Box design and engineering studio has received national recognition, including being named “Best in Show” from the Paperboard Packaging Council and National Paperbox Association, and being awarded the Benjamin Franklin Award for “Best in Category” from the Printing Industries of America, and numerous other awards. While modernization has been the focus, it is the results of the modernization that are unquestionable; from 2009 to 2018, Taylor Box saw a sales increase of 371%.
“Dan is the quintessential small business owner,” said Melissa Travis, President of the Rhode Island Society of CPAs, and Dan’s award nominator. “Dan is not afraid of hard work, never backs down from a challenge and won’t let anything stand in the way of success -it’s a great lesson for all of us,” added Travis.
Shedd continues to grow his business expertise by leveraging the resources that are available to him including getting assistance from the SBA and its resource partners the Small Business Development Center, SCORE, and the Center for Women & Enterprise. “Rhode Island is blessed with a really active and engaged SBA leadership. Programs like the Center for Women and Enterprise have been invaluable to us as I bring my daughter, Marken, our 4th generation, into the business. The importance of having an SBA that is always reaching out to small business to listen to our concerns and then crafting ways to support us is critical to our success,” said Shedd.
When COVID-19 forced Taylor Box to halt operations, Shedd was able to secure a PPP loan from Bank RI. The funding allowed Taylor Box to keep its staff on payroll, negating any perspective layoffs and ensuring that the business could continue to operate.
Surely, Clarence Taylor could never have predicted the success the company he started in 1885 has had, but it is something Dan Shedd is looking to continue for the next 130 plus years. “First and most importantly, we never could have had this success without our amazing team; engaged, committed and hard working. It is said that what does not kill you makes you stronger, and that is certainly true in small business. I have learned from every challenge we faced over the past 40 plus years of my stewardship that resilience, enthusiasm, willingness to accept a measure of risk, partnerships and building engaged teams is at the core of our success. Family businesses have responsibilities that public companies wouldn’t begin to imagine and happily our family has been successful in meeting them.”
On behalf of Governor Gina Raimondo, we are pleased to offer PPE to our RI Small Businesses. This program will help supply procedural masks and disinfectant to area small businesses under 50 employees. The methodology of distribution is as follows:
• 5 cloth masks – 5/employee
• 1-gallon of disinfectant for businesses under 25 employees, and two, 1-gallon containers for businesses 25-50 employees.
We ask that you complete the below form for our records. Finally, please note that the company must complete the COVID Control Plan found at www.reopeningri.com confirming the business’ acknowledgement of their role in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID Control Plan in English: https://www.reopeningri.com/resource_pdfs/COVID-19-Control-Template-Final-5.6.20.pdf
COVID Control Plan in Spanish: https://www.reopeningri.com/resource_pdfs/SPANISH-Business-Guidance-COVID-19-Control-Plan-Template-%20Spanish.pdf
Company Name _____________________________________________________________________
Point of Contact/Name, email and telephone number ______________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________________
Business Type _______________________________________________________________________
Number of employees _______________
☐ Confirm your company has completed the “COVID-19” Control Plan found at reopeningri.com.
PLEASE CALL THE CHAMBER OFFICE FOR PICK UP TIMES 401-245-0750
Delight yourself with an night out with our area restaurants - participate in a raffle and win BIG!
FIRST PRIZE: $350 CASH!
SECOND PRIZE: Win a Discover Newport Getaway Package which includes a two-night stay at one of the many hotels, inns, or B&B's in Newport's classic coast destination.
THIRD PRIZE: Win a KEEL Cooler filled with goodies!
Win lots of raffle prizes!
1. Purchase your ticket for $20 at the Chamber www.eastbaychamberri.org or by calling the office 401-245-0750, Each ticket holder will receive a free dessert or other offering with the purchase of a meal from all participating restaurants.
2. Visit at least 4 of the restaurants during the Month of October
3. Have your ticket validated at each participating restaurant after your meal.
4. Return your validated ticket booklet to the Chamber office to be entered into our fabulous Raffle!
5. Every restaurant validation over the 4 you dine at, will get you another raffle ticket!
Participating Restaurants will be offering a special KEEL Vodka Cocktail!
Ask for the Chamber Cocktail!
Participating Restaurants (more will be added)
Spaghetti Lane, 8 Anoka Ave, Barrington, RI 02806 www.spaghettilane.com
Leon's Cate and Catering, 230 Waseca Ave, Barrington, RI 02806 www.leonscafecatering.com
Uptown Food & Spirits, 437 Main St, Warren, RI 02885 www.uptownfoodandspirits.com
Rhody Roots, 511 Main St, Warren, RI 02885 www.rhodyroots.com
Hometown Tavern, 623 Matacom Ave., Warren RI 02885 https://www.hometowntavernri.com/
The Revival Craft Kitchen and Bar, 50 Miller St, Warren, RI 02885 https://therevivalcraftkitchenandbar.com/
Bevvies Juice Bar, 436 Main St., Warren RI https://bevviesbar.square.site/s/order
BaBa Sushi, 205 Thames St. Bristol, RI 02809 https://babasushi.com/
The Casual Inn Restaurant, 170 Franklin St, Bristol, RI 02809 https://thecasualinnrestaurant.com/
The Lobster Pot, 119 Hope St, Bristol, RI 02809 www.lobsterpotri.com
Portside Tavern, 444 Thames St, Bristol, RI 02809 www.portsidetavern.com
The Beach House, 805 Hope St, Bristol, RI 02809 www.thebeachhouseri.com
Roberto's Restaurant, 450 Hope St, Bristol, RI 02809 https://robertosbristol.com/
Rivers & Rhodes, 382 Thames Street Bristol, RI 02809 www.riversandrhodesri.com
SS Dion Restaurant, 520 Thames St., Bristol, RI 02809
KC's Burger Bar, 1379 Fall River Ave., Seekonk, MA 02714 www.kcsburgerbar.com
Media Sponsor: i3 Broadband
Sponsored by: BANKFIVE
Keel Vodka, Parker Mills, Navagant Credit Union, Farmer & First, CPA's, Ramada Inn & Conference Center, The Bay
Call the Chamber office at 245-0750 for more info, or email email@example.com
Event Item NameExpiresPricingTicket / 1 per personNov 01, 2020$20.00
$500 SponsorshipNov 01, 2020$500.00
$300 SponsorshipNov 01, 2020$300.00
$100 SponsorshipNov 01, 2020$100.00