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COVID 19 Update 22

IRS Provides New Guidance on Family Leave and Tax Credits

Yesterday afternoon the IRS released new guidance on tax credits authorized in the “phase two” COVID-19 bill to help small businesses offset the cost of new paid leave requirements.

Click here to learn more about how to implement these policies. 

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Audio from Tuesday’s Webinar with SBA Branch Manager Robert Piechota is Available

This audio was recorded from the webinar presented on March 31st. 

(Note: Due to a recording error the audio begins several minutes into the presentation – the essential content of the webinar, however, is in the recorded)

Robert Piechota SBA Branch Manager discusses key elements of the CARES Act as well as other related programs such as the Disaster Relief loans. Mr. Piechota also explained the key features of the Paycheck Protection Program.

Piechota joined the SBA in 2019 after six years directing the New York City College of Technology Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Brooklyn. Piechota also previously ran his own consulting business and is a U.S. Army Veteran where he served in the Military Police Corps. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

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The National Association of Manufacturers and Business Roundtable Announce They Will Combine COVID-19 Responses to address the critical health care supply shortage

The partnership unifies the business community’s efforts to help those on the front lines of the pandemic.

Central to the effort is this new, detailed survey for businesses to identify the specific ways they can provide or produce the supplies that are in high demand. Whether you have filled out similar previous surveys or not, they are asking everyone to complete this detailed form. The data will capture existing supplies, including personal protective equipment and test kits, and will identify where new manufacturing capacity can be tapped to address shortages nationwide. We worked closely with federal agencies, including FEMA, to ensure that the survey captures the supply information they currently need.

Complete the Survey

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State Department Creates Government-Wide Contact for Global Supply Chain Issues

The State Department has created a central point of contact for companies facing issues overseas that affect the import of goods critical to addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. The State Department plans to coordinate among offices and agencies and with overseas missions to provide an initial response within one business day. If your company is facing these global supply chain challenges you can contact the State Department at this email address:

USBusiness@state.gov

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Jackson Lewis P.C. Will Host a Daily Briefing on Legal Developments and Guidance Related to COVID-19

Our Friends and Associate member Jackson Lewis intends to keep clients informed on workplace implications of the ongoing crisis by providing a short daily briefing and Q&A session.  The briefings will be held all next week beginning at 4:00.

You can Register Here

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The Council of Industry is Offering FREE Job Postings to ALL Hudson Valley Manufacturers During the Month of April

While many Council Members and Hudson Valley Manufacturers are being forced to reduce their workforce, others are finding it increasingly difficult to find enough people in key positions.  To assist you few that are facing this challenge we are offering free posts on our job board www.HVMfgJobs.com.

All jobs are distributed to over 100 job boards including: Google Jobs, Zip Recruiter, College Job Boards, Hot Jobs, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, etc.

To learn more and to post your job email Johnnieanne Hansen at jhansen@councilofindustry.org

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Hudson Valley Firms Regeneron and Pfizer Stepping Up to Help The New York

Governor Cuomo announced that Regeneron Pharmaceuticals is creating 500,000 test kits for the State at no charge amid a nationwide shortage of test kits and swabs.  The first batch of test kits was delivered to the State on Monday and the State will receive an ongoing delivery of 25,000 kits per day. To date, the State has tested 220,880 individuals, with 15,694 new people tested just yesterday.

Pfizer has created a new Global COVID-19 Medical Service Program that empowers medical colleagues (employees) to provide diagnostic, treatment, and public health support in the battle against COVID-19. Licensed medical professionals who feel duty-bound to provide their services during this crisis will now have a way to engage in the fight against COVID-19. Colleagues will continue to receive their full pay, benefits, and be able to return to their position upon completion of service.

Read More in the Albany Times Union

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COVID 19 Update 21.1

There is More for Manufacturing in the CARES ACT

In addition to the emergency funding provisions of the CARES Act are more items related to manufacturing.  We have been in touch with Senator Gillibrand’s office on this topic.

  • Directs the National Academies to study the manufacturing supply chain of drugs and medical devices and provide Congress with recommendations to strengthen the U.S. manufacturing supply chain.
  • $50 million is provided for the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP’s) to help small- and medium-sized manufacturers recover by finding value within the supply chain and expanding markets. For every one dollar of federal investment, MEP generates $27.20 in new sales growth for manufacturers.
  • The bill also includes an additional $10 million for the National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals to support the development and manufacture of new medical countermeasures and biomedical supplies to combat the coronavirus.

There is much more in the link below

Key Highlights for Manufacturing in the CARES ACT

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US Treasury & SBA Release Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Information for Lenders & Borrowers

The Paycheck Protection Program prioritizes millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $349 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses.

Small businesses and eligible nonprofit organizations, Veterans organizations, and Tribal businesses described in the Small Business Act, as well as individuals who are self-employed or are independent contractors, are eligible if they also meet program size standards.

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The Corona Virus Pandemic: Analysis of Force Majeure

The invocation of force majeure is an extreme measure, the last time the United States faced large scale force majeure disputes was the terrorist attacks on September 11th, 2001 and Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Contractors will notice that many of the force majeure clauses in their respective contracts contain a “terrorist attack” provision, before 9/11, this was not the status quo. The Pandemic is an event that has such a large scale impact on New York, the United States and the World, that force majeure law will likely change, throughout the World, forever.

Read More at WB&G

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US Manufacturing Employment, New Orders Indexes Fall to Decade Lows

The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing PMI for March was 49.1%, one percentage point lower than it was in February. But that number belies the bigger picture of an industry wracked by the coronavirus pandemic. New orders, production, employment, prices, exports and imports all contracted, according to the Manufacturing ISM Report On Business.

The index measuring employment in the sector contracted for the eighth month in a row, to 43.8% from 46.9%, and at a faster rate this month than before. 43.8% represents the employment index’s worst reading since May 2009. Only 3 of 18 industry sectors surveyed reported an increase in employment: printing and related support activities, food and beverage companies, and electronics.

Read More in Industry Week

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Manufacturers Are Already Fighting Coronavirus

WSJ Op-Ed by Rick Kline president of Gardner Business Media Inc.

As Covid-19 has swept the U.S., the response has been one of the most incredible flurries of ingenuity and sacrifice that my company has witnessed in more than 90 years covering the manufacturing industry. Companies of all sizes are coming together to produce ventilators, N95 masks, components of testing kits, and other lifesaving products. And none of it took government force.

Under the Defense Production Act, president can force businesses to make products in short supply during times of national emergency. Many legislators and members of the media have called on President Trump to invoke these powers to their full extent.

Read More at WSJ

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COVID 19 Update 21

New York State Fails to Pass a Budget by Midnight Deadline, Though Leaders are Reportedly Near a Deal

ALBANY — As the clock ticked closer to midnight on Tuesday, all signs suggested that lawmakers would not complete the budget by April 1, the start of the new fiscal year.

But officials remained optimistic that the end product would be “timely,” an ambiguous word that’s perennially applied to budgets that are technically late, but not so late as to significantly derail the way government functions. Several individuals involved in talks said there had not yet been any discussions of an extender that would be necessary if the process went too late.

Read More in Politico

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Federal Paid Leave Requirements go into Effect Today, April 1

Starting today April 1, businesses with fewer than 500 employees will need to provide employees with paid time off for a variety of reasons relating to COVID-19. Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, eligible employers will need to provide two weeks of paid leave for workers who are quarantined (due to federal, state or local government order or advice of a health care provider) and/or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and seeking a medical diagnosis. Eligible employers will also need to provide up to 10 weeks of paid leave for workers who need to care for children whose school or child care facilities are closed. Read more about the Department of Labor’s employer requirements here. Employers will have to post notice of these changes in a similar manner to other poster requirements.

A recording of the Council of Industry/Geenwald Doherty webinar on the Employment Law Issues Related to the virus can be found here (54 minutes)

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Logistics Industry Hurt by Virus-Related Supply Issues

Trucking companies, railroads, air freight carriers and other logistics businesses face losses because of coronavirus-related stress on supply chains. Truckers are also at heightened risk of contracting the virus because of their overall health and the nature of their work, says economist Michael Belzer of Wayne State University.

Read or Listen to the Full Story at National Public Radio

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Harris Beach offers an Excellent Summary of the CARES Act

When you open it the top link takes you to a broad overview of the Key Provisions of the COVID-19 stimulus bill. There are also a links to their dedicated COVID-19 resource page for all of our advisories and two additional advisories provide more detail on the Paycheck Protection Program and Emergency Disaster Loans.

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New Treasury Guidance on Small Business Loan Program, Employee Retention Credit

Yesterday afternoon, the Treasury Department issued new guidance on the CARES Act’s $350 billion loan fund for small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Small businesses and sole proprietorships can apply for loans through the “Paycheck Protection Program” starting April 3, while self-employed individuals and independent contractors can apply starting April 10. More detailed information for borrowers can be found here and an application can be found here.

The Treasury Department also launched the Employee Retention Credit today, which you can learn more about here. The Senate Finance Committee released an FAQ document on the credit here.

 

 

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COVID 19 Update 20.1

McKinsey: Manufacturers Can Follow 5 Stages to Handle the Pandemic

Automakers and other manufacturers should follow the process of resolve, resilience, return, re-imagination and reform, according to this McKinsey analysis. “In addition to dealing with the significant societal changes coming in the next few months, industrial companies may want to consider strategies for addressing some of the persistent issues affecting the sector to avoid the next crisis,” the authors write.

Read the Full Story at McKinsey

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From Today’s Webinar and ESD – Updates Related to the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

  • EIDL Applications– the EIDL application process has been simplified and a new application portal is live on the SBA website right now: sba.gov/disaster. Businesses that successfully submitted an application or uploaded documents late last week via the temporary document upload portal do not have to take additional action as their applications have been received for processing. Anyone that was unable to complete an application on the prior application portal AND/OR did not upload their application to the document upload portal, should restart their application via the new portal.
  • EIDL Advances­- also available now are advances of up to $10,000 on EIDL loans. The form is part of the new EIDL application process above. If approved, these funds can be used for payroll and other operating expenses and will be forgiven. All applicants who successfully submitted an application prior to yesterday received an email notifying them of this.

This Advance may be available even if your EIDL application was declined or is still pending, and will be forgiven.

Small Business Development Centers can help you navigate the system and complete the application. Find your nearest SBDC here 

If you wish to apply for the Advance on your EIDL, please visit www.SBA.gov/Disaster as soon as possible to fill out a new, streamlined application. In order to qualify for the Advance, you need to submit this new application even if you previously submitted an EIDL application. Applying for the Advance will not impact the status or slow your existing application.

Paycheck Protection Program/Stimulus questions:

  • PPP and stimulus related changes will be available in the coming days as SBA completes the rulemaking process, updates procedures/systems, and then onboards lenders. You should complete the EIDL application in the interim. Businesses may benefit from both, so long as they don’t use them for the same purposes/time periods. No duplication of the use of proceeds, in other words.

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Employers Seek Clarity for H-1B Compliance During COVID-19

Employers of H-1B workers are subject to U.S. Department of Labor regulations designed to protect the jobs of U.S. workers. Those regulations require that the H-1B worker perform his or her duties at one or more specific locations at which he or she must be paid at least the same wages as other similarly qualified U.S. workers. In addition, H-1B workers go out of status if their employment is terminated for any reason, subject to grace periods of between 10 and 60 days.

Read More at Our Friend and Associate Member Harris Beach 

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Survey Reveals Top Employer Concerns During COVID-19

Trying to decide whether to pay employees during absences related to COVID-19, was a top concern ( 89%) of respondents to a survey conducted by Littler, an employment law practice.

The report, COVID-19 Flash Survey Report was completed by more than 900 employers based in North America and with operations around the world.  

Read More at Industry Week

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COVID 19 Update 20

CARES Act Includes Payroll Tax Deferral and Employee Retention Credit

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), enacted on March 27, 2020, contains provisions related to taxation of employee benefits, compensation and wages. This article addresses the payroll tax provisions, specifically the payroll tax deferral and the employee retention credits.

Our Friends and Associate Members at PKF O’Connor Davies, LLP provide a summary

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Whole Foods Workers Planning Strike Today

(This article is offered as a cautionary tale to encourage you to be sure you are doing everything you can to keep your employees safe)

Whole Foods workers are set to strike on Tuesday to protest what they say is a lack of employee protections amid the spread of the coronavirus.

Workers at the national grocery chain will call out sick to demand guaranteed sick leave to employees who self-isolate, reinstatement of health care coverage for part-time workers, double hazard pay, a commitment to ensuring workplaces stay clean and the closure of any store where a worker tests positive.

Read More at The Hill

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Manufacturers Push for Clarity, Consistency to Protect Workforce

Safely continuing operations amid evolving state and local restrictions is an ongoing challenge for many of our members, so the NAM, Council of Industry and other partners, will continue to push for clarity and consistency while updating you on the latest developments. NAM CEO Jay Timmons sent a letter to attorneys general, police chiefs and sheriffs calling on them to help manufacturers to operate safely and efficiently. This follows his letter to the nation’s governors.

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China Shows Strong Factory Activity in March

An official gauge of China’s manufacturing activity rebounded strongly in March as factory production resumed after the coronavirus epidemic was largely put under control in the country.

The official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index rose to 52.0 in March from a record low of 35.7 in February, the National Bureau of Statistics said Tuesday. The 50 mark separates expansion of activity from contraction.

Read More At Market Watch

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SUNY New Paltz Team 3D Prints Face Shields For COVID-19 Front Lines

The Hudson Valley Additive Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz has its 3D printers up and running, turning out 3D-printed face shields for regional healthcare workers and others on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you can manufacture face shields – either by 3D printing or injection molding please reach out to Dan Freedman freedmand@newpaltz.edu 

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ZOOM Call with SBA Branch Manager Robert Piechota – Today at 1:00.

The SBA will be the key implementer of the CARES act, the Federal Government’s response the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Robert Piechota SBA Branch Manager, will discuss key elements of the CARES Act as well as other related programs such as the Disaster Relief loans.  Mr. Piechota will also explain the key features of the Paycheck Protection Program.

Piechota joined the SBA in 2019 after six years directing the New York City College of Technology Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Brooklyn. Piechota also previously ran his own consulting business and is a U.S. Army Veteran where he served in the Military Police Corps. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Register Here

 

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COVID 19 Update 19.1

Thanks to Greenwald Doherty for their Webinar This Afternoon

The firm provided an excellent overview of these complicated and dynamic issues. We hope to have the recording available later this week.

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US Aims to Begin Making Small-Business Loans This Week

The Trump administration promises to get a loan program for small businesses up and running by Friday, aiming to prevent companies from going out of business or laying off workers. Companies with fewer than 500 employees can seek as much as $10 million to pay expenses, including wages and rent, for two months.

Read More at Market Watch

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The State has released a new flier that will help determine who does or does not qualify for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides payment to workers not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits (self-employed, independent contractors, workers with limited work history, and others you may know) who are unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus public health emergency. A helpful flier can be found HERE. There is also a flowchart that can be found HERE.

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Senator Gillibrand Expresses Sincere Appreciation to the State’s Manufacturers

On a conference call this afternoon with the CEO’s of the 7 Manufacturing Alliance of New York Partners including Council of Industry President Harold King, Senator Gillibrand expressed her sincere thanks and appreciation for all the sacrifices and hard work our member firms are doing to keep the state and the nation supplied and your employees safe during this crisis. She asked us to convey that message to all of you.

The Senator also provided a breakdown of the CARES Act and some thoughts on a 4th stimulus package that might include investments in infrastructure and R&D as well as further commitments to secure our critical supply chain.

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NAM Asks Treasury, IRS for Quick Implementation of Payroll Tax Deferral

One key provision of the CARES Act allows your businesses to defer payment of employer payroll taxes for the remainder of the year with repayment due in equal installments in 2021 and 2022. To ensure this resource is available to you quickly, the NAM sent a letter to the Treasury Department and the IRS calling for the provision’s expeditious implementation. You can read the letter here.

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COVID 19 Update 19

Monday Economic Report: Off the Charts: Job Losses Spike, Service Sector Shaken Amid COVID-19

Unsurprisingly many economic indicators hit historic and troubling records as the economic damage globally from the COVID-19 pandemic grows. Here are some of the record-breaking numbers from last week:

Monday Economic Report 0330 2020

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White House Extends Social-Distancing Guidelines Until End of April

President Trump said he was extending the administration’s social-distancing guidelines for another 30 days through the end of April.

Mr. Trump, speaking at a news conference in the White House Rose Garden, said the peak of the death rate from the new coronavirus was expected to hit in two weeks. Mr. Trump predicted the country would be on its way to recovery by June 1.

“Nothing would be worse than declaring victory before victory is won,” he said. “It’s very important that everybody strongly follow the guidelines.”

Read More in the WSJ

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Governor Cuomo Announces “NYS on Pause” Functions Extended for an Additional Two Weeks

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced all NYS On Pause functions will be extended for the next two weeks. The Governor also directed the state nonessential workforce to continue to work from home for an additional two weeks through April 15th. The state will re-evaluate after this additional two-week period.

Read the Summary of the Governor’s Sunday Press Update

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Council of Industry ZOOM Call – Key Elements of the CARES Act and Related Programs Including Disaster Relief Loans and the Paycheck Protection Program

  • When: Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 1 pm
  • Where: Online webinar/conference call
  • Cost: No fee to participate
The SBA will be the key implementer of the CARES act, the Federal Government’s response the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.
Robert Piechota SBA Branch Manager, will discuss key elements of the CARES Act as well as other related programs such as the Disaster Relief loans. Mr. Piechota will also explain the key features of the Paycheck Protection Program.
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OSHA Guidance for COVID-19 Workplace Safety

Bond, Scheoeneck & King Attorney Steven J. Ricca writes Employers are aware that the “General Duty Clause” (§5(a)1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 requires employers to furnish a workplace that is “free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm.” During the current global COVID-19 pandemic, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome virus known as “SARS-CoV-2,” there are issues in every workplace to varying degrees regarding application of the General Duty Clause. 

Read More

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COVID 19 Related Employment Law Issues Web Conference Essential HR Discussion with Greenwald Doherty

When: Monday, March 30, 2020 at 1 pm
Where: Online webinar/conference call
Cost: No fee to participate

contact abutler@councilofindustry.org for more information.

Register here

Through this discussion with three partners at Greenwald Doherty, participants will learn about best practices for managing the workforce, workplace safety and employer options concerning sick time, FMLA PFL, salary reductions and layoffs.

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COVID 19 Update 18

COVID-19: Paycheck Protection Program

CARES is expected to infuse approximately $2.2 trillion into the U.S. economy. The Act addresses a multitude of ways in which the federal government seeks to support businesses impacted by the pandemic and employees affected by COVID-19. Key areas of interest for employers relate to business loans, unemployment benefits, retirement plans, tax credits and executive compensation. The Act was passed by the House of Representatives in the early afternoon of March 27, 2020 and the President has signed the measure.

Perhaps the most important Program is the Paycheck Protection Program – a loan that could be forgiven after a certain time. WE UNDERSTAND THESE FUNDS WILL BE DISBURSED ON A FIRST COME FIRST SERVED BASIS.

Jackson Lewis has a good Summary 

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has Developed  Valuable Checklist for Applying

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ZOOM Call with SBA Branch Manager Robert Piechota – Tuesday March 31, 1:00.

The SBA will be the key implementer of the CARES act, the Federal Government’s response the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Robert Piechota SBA Branch Manager, will discuss key elements of the CARES Act as well as other related programs such as the Disaster Relief loans.  Mr. Piechota will also explain the key features of the Paycheck Protection Program.

Piechota joined the SBA in 2019 after six years directing the New York City College of Technology Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Brooklyn. Piechota also previously ran his own consulting business and is a U.S. Army Veteran where he served in the Military Police Corps. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Register Here

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CDC Releases New Facility Guidance after Manufacturers Request

On behalf of manufacturers across the nation, NAM has been calling on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to give manufacturers clearer guidance on how to operate safely during the COVID-19 outbreak. CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield has now provided us this additional guidance, which you can use to supplement your current plans and response efforts. In addition, the CDC provided more specifics and best practices in an NAM–Manufacturing Leadership Council webinar. Read a summary of the webinar here and listen here.

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Export-Import Bank Delivers Flexibility and Liquidity for Manufacturers

The Ex-Im Bank Board of Directors has approved a resolution to support four temporary measures to help inject liquidity into the market and provide maximum flexibility for exporters and suppliers. You can find more information about these measures here, which include temporary bridge financing, progress delivery payment financing, supply chain finance guarantees and working capital guarantee expansion. This comes on top of the Ex-Im’s initial relief measures.

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COVID 19 Update 17

President Trump uses Defense Production Act to Require GM to Make Ventilators

President Trump on Friday used the Defense Production Act to compel General Motors to produce ventilators to combat the coronavirus after days of hesitating to use the powers in the law.

The president in a statement said the federal government had abandoned negotiations with the automaker on ventilator production, complaining that the automaker was “wasting time.”

“Our negotiations with GM regarding its ability to supply ventilators have been productive, but our fight against the virus is too urgent to allow the give-and-take of the contracting process to continue to run its normal course,” Trump said.

Read the Story at The Hill

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CI Podcast – the Week that Was

As the COVID 19 crises unfolds the Council of Industry is using all its resources to keep its members up to date with the latest information and resources to keep their employees safe and their businesses operating. This podcast is one of those resources and part of those efforts.

In this episode Johnnieanne Hansen, Vice President of the Council of Industry and Harold King, President discuss the events of the week of March 21st – 27th surrounding the COVID 19 pandemic, its effect on Hudson Valley manufacturers and their employees, and the Council of Industry’s response.

Listen Here 

Listen the Tuesday’ Episode Featuring Ertel/Alsop President and Council Board Chair George Quigley

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Our Partners at the National Association of Manufacturers are Working at the Federal Level to Support Manufacturing

Essential Business Designations and Credentialing Clarity

The NAM last week called on governors, mayors and other local leaders to give manufacturers essential business designations and credentialing. Yesterday, the NAM sent another letter, with the Business Roundtable and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce joining, that called on the nation’s governors to take a uniform approach to essential business designations. We urged them to adopt the Department of Homeland Security’s Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce. They are also calling for clarity and uniformity regarding documentation or credentialing for workers, businesses and their supply chains. The NAM continues to work with association partners (including the Council of Industry)to ensure you can continue supporting our nation during this critical time.

New York’s “ad hoc” approach to essential manufacturing is causing unnecessary disruptions in national and international supply chains.

EPA Issues COVID-19 Enforcement Discretion Policy

The Environmental Protection Agency announced a temporary enforcement discretion policy due to COVID-19 at the NAM’s request. The EPA’s guidance will help manufacturers navigate this evolving landscape, easing compliance uncertainties while ensuring the health and safety of employees, communities and the environment remain a top priority. Send us details of your reporting and monitoring challenges to ERP@nam.org.

NAM Helps Navigate International Trade and Supply Chain Issues

Also on the priority list, NAM is working to address policy and operational challenges impacting trade and supply chains for critical manufacturing products. The NAM is closely monitoring foreign export restrictions and bans on personal protective equipment, health products and other products during the COVID-19 response. We are identifying these country-specific restrictions for our members and sharing them through a tracking document here while also engaging with key stakeholders in the administration and on Capitol Hill to spur action on addressing priority trade barriers ( you can also email your supply chain challenges to hking@councilofindustry.org and he will for ward to NAM and the Department of Commerce.) Consistent with this, President Trump joined the leaders of other G20 countries with a joint statement pledging global cooperation and stressed the importance of minimizing disruptions to trade and global supply chains.

Contact the NAM’s Trade and Supply Chain team if you have questions about export restrictions or intelligence on new or potential export restrictions being imposed by foreign governments.

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NYS Needs Manufacturers Able to Make Critically Needed COVID-19 Supplies

ESD Has reorganized and prioritized its request for supplies and the new webpage is very helpful for those interested in helping.

New York State appreciates the manufacturers who are ready and able to retool to help in producing critically needed COVID-19 supplies—whether you are already making these supplies or need guidance for adapting to do so. We are also looking for manufacturers who can direct us to sources of these supplies. For manufacturers interested in making these supplies, please first review the detailed information below, including new guidance from the FDA and CDC. For most of the critically needed products, you will likely be required to obtain federal certification to begin manufacturing and sales. This page also details the critical medical supplies and personal protective equipment that are needed. Thank you for your help in this effort.

Visit the Site:

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COVID-19 and OSHA Reporting and Recordkeeping

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COVID 19 Update 16.1

Council of Industry COVID 19 Resource Page

We have compiled many of the resources and information from the blog the in one spot for your convenience.  It will be updated regularly.

Visit Here

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SHRM Provides a 5 page Summary of the CARES Act

A very useful summary focusing on the employer provisions of the act.

SHRM Analysis CARES Act – Employer Provisions

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Manufacturers Want to Help – Its Not That Easy

Empire State Development is overwhelmed by companies offering to help make needed medical supplies and equipment.  This is a 3 phase effort:

  1. Getting all companies to donate or reassign needed PPE to Health workers and first responders.
  2. Getting existing manufacturers to ramp up production.
  3. Encouraging existing manufacturers to retool or repurpose their factories to make needed supplies and equipment.

For phase 3 – companies that are FDA approved suppliers are a priority, however, both ESD and the federal government are building an inventory of manufacturers who can be part of the supply chain for needed supplies and equipment.

If your company can help produce vital supplies and component parts send an email to: hking@councilofindustry.org

He will email you the ESD spreadsheet to complete.

At the Federal Level

The NAM continues to work with the White House and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate private-sector assistance to produce personal protective equipment and other products critical to our country’s response to this crisis. They have received an outpouring of support so far, and are working with federal leaders to coordinate with manufacturers as quickly as possible.

If your company can help produce vital supplies and component parts, fill out the Creators Respond form here.

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Ford, Fiat Chrysler Plan to Reopen in April

Ford could restart production at some North American plants as early as April 6, CNBC reports. Fiat Chrysler later said it planned to reopen on April 14.

“Ford’s schedule includes reopening a plant in Mexico that produces the Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans on April 6, followed by four truck, SUV and van plants on April 14 in Michigan, Kentucky, Missouri and Ohio.”

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Senator Gillibrand Provides Small Business Owners Guide to the CARES Act

The CARES Act has passed Congress and we expect it to be signed by the President. Please see attached the Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act  that was prepared by the US Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. This is a helpful guide to the latest stimulus bill to address COVID-19 that you can send to your constituents and networks.

Small Business Owners Guide to the CARES Act final

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COVID 19 Update 16

Manufacturing is Essential

Manufacturers across the Hudson Valley, New York State and the United States are mobilizing to supply desperately needed health care equipment and to keep supplying the essentials for daily life – while at the same time keeping our employees and communities safe. We should all be proud of the efforts we are making to end this pandemic.  But we have much more work to do.

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Key Provisions and FAQs from the CARES Act (Fed Stimulus)

The CARES Act COVID-19 relief bill the Senate passed Tuesday night and which the House is expected to pass it today.  Our partners at NAM secured some key wins in the legislation, including new federal loans and loan guarantees to help businesses get through this difficult time and tax incentives to aid manufacturers, such as a new credit for companies that retain workers during a temporary closure.

Read a summary of key provisions in the bill here and an FAQ document about the bill here.

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FuzeHub Compiles Useful list of Resources for New York’s Manufacturers.

Our friend (and Associate Member) FuzeHub has put together a very useful list of resources for New York State manufacturers coping with the many issues arising from the coronavirus outbreak.

FuzeHub COVID-19 Resources for Manufacturers

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COVID 19 Related Employment Law Issues Web Conference Essential HR Discussion with Greenwald Doherty

When: Monday, March 30, 2020 at 1 pm
Where: Online webinar/conference call
Cost: No fee to participate

contact abutler@councilofindustry.org for more information.

Register here

Through this discussion with three partners at Greenwald Doherty, participants will learn about best practices for managing the workforce, workplace safety and employer options concerning sick time, FMLA PFL, salary reductions and layoffs.

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China Is Open for Business, but the Post-coronavirus Reboot Looks Slow and Rocky

The Wall Street Journal reports that more than two months after imposing quarantines to counter the coronavirus, China is getting back to work. It is a slow and rocky process, one that rests on the world battling back successfully against the pandemic.

With new infections dwindling, factories are restarting, stores are reopening, and people are venturing outdoors. In some ways, China is where the U.S. and Europe hope to be within weeks or months.

Yet many Chinese factories find demand for their products has evaporated. Consumers in China and elsewhere are reluctant to spend over worries about what they have lost and what lies ahead.

Read More (subscription required)

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COVID 19 Update 15.1

New York State Issues FAQs Regarding the New COVID-19 Paid Sick Leave Law

New York State recently published some answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding the COVID-19 paid sick leave law that was enacted last week. The FAQs clarify some aspects of the law that were not clear from the text of the statute and give some insight into the manner in which the law will be interpreted and enforced.

Read the FAQs

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FFCRA Poster Requirement Takes Effect 4/1
Employers should post Prominently.

FFCRA Poster

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SBA Provides Alternative Site for EIDL Applications to be Filed

As the EIDL applications continue to surge, our Office of Disaster Assistance has provided an alternate method for applicants to submit and upload forms while the application portal is down for maintenance.

Here’s the link to the new application page with instructions for uploading documents:  IMPORTANT: You may have to clear your browser cache if you receive an error accessing this page. The page has links to all of the relevant forms, and I’ve also attached them to this message.

SBA Alternative EIDL Application Site Information

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Westchester County Executive George Latimer, Economic Development Director Bridget Gibbons discuss what the County is doing to assist businesses during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Westchester County Executive George Latimer, Economic Development Director Bridget Gibbons discuss what the County is doing to assist businesses during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Posted by Westchester County Government on Wednesday, March 25, 2020

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Cuomo: Uncertain Economy May Lead To Cuts In NYS Budget

WAMC Reports that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, facing a state budget deadline in less than a week, is out with a new proposal to try to cope as the state faces a multibillion dollar budget gap, and much uncertainty with much of the economy shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Cuomo says he wants to try something that’s never been done before. He wants to pass the budget by April 1, then update the state spending plan quarterly. He would revise the amounts paid out to school districts, local governments, health care providers and all others who depend on state funding, based on how much money the state actually has collected from revenues.

Read or Listen Here:

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COVID 19 Update 15

Fed chairman Jerome Powell: ‘There’s nothing fundamentally wrong with our economy’

Joining TODAY for a rare and exclusive live interview, Jerome Powell, chairman of the Federal Reserve, acknowledges that “we may very well be in a recession, but I would point to the difference between this and a normal recession.” He says “there is nothing fundamentally wrong with our economy” and that the Fed will “aggressively and forthrightly” replace normal lending channels for businesses that have temporarily closed due to the pandemic. He says “there can also be a good rebound” and that the Fed is working to “ensure that it is as vigorous as possible,” adding that “the virus is going to dictate the timetable.”

Watch the 12 minute interview

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COVID-19 to hit state budget hard

The state was facing a $7 billion deficit going into the 2020-2021 budget, which is due next week, but with the coronavirus here, the financial shortfall is expected to be even greater.

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, in Kingston on Wednesday, said he expects the short-term state budget dilemma to be more troublesome.

“By April 1st we have to come up with a spending plan for the coming year. That’s a very tall order for the legislature and the governor. These numbers are all speculative, but we have to assume in the short run it’s a worst-case scenario,” he said.

DiNapoli said hopefully by this time next year the state will have rebounded, but for now, we will see “severe economic damage.”

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$2 trillion Emergency Aid Package to Pump Billions into New York Economy

The $2 trillion package agreed upon by the Senate will allocate an initial $40 billion to New York State including funds that will go directly to residents, others to business and still other money for hospitals. The Bill is expected to be approved by the House on Friday Morning and signed into law by President Trump Friday afternoon.

Read More

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Labor Department Employee Paid Sick Leave Resources

As part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division has announced the FFCRA’s paid leave mandates will go into effect on April 1, 2020, for companies with fewer than 500 employees. They have also shared fact sheets for how this will affect employees, how it will affect employers and a helpful FAQ sheet for employers. The DOL has also requested that the public submit questions, concerns and recommendations for the implementation of the FFCRA. The NAM plans to submit recommendations, and we encourage you to provide feedback to help shape our suggestions.

This will be one of several COVID 19 Labor related subjects covered in our Webinar with Greenwald Doherty Monday March 31, at 1:00)

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COVID 19 Related Employment Law Issues Web Conference Essential HR Discussion with Greenwald Doherty

  • When: Monday, March 30, 2020 at 1 pm
  • Where: Online webinar/conference call
  • Cost: No fee to participate

Upon Registering your confirmation email will include phone and login information. If you do not receive a confirmation email please contact abutler@councilofindustry.org for the information.

Register here

 Manufacturers are have a great deal to consider as they deal with providing benefits to their employees during the COVID 19 pandemic. This web conference is designed to help answer many of the questions you have regarding state and federal regulations and the labor and employment laws covering the management of benefits during this crisis. Through this discussion with three partners at Greenwald Doherty, participants will learn about best practices for managing the workforce, workplace safety and employer options concerning sick time, FMLA PFL, salary reductions and layoffs.

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COVID 19 Update 14.1

Deal Reached on $2T Coronavirus Stimulus: What It Includes for SMBs

The economic impact of COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus, prompted the Senate and the Trump administration to release a $2 trillion stimulus package intended to bolster businesses and individuals, as many Americans remain out of work because of the pandemic.

What’s in the coronavirus stimulus plan for small businesses?

Read More at Business News Daily

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SBA Offers Disaster Assistance to New York Small Businesses Economically Impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to New York small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced today. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on March 17, 2020.

NY_16346 EIDL Fact Sheet

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Business Council of New York State Offers an Excellent Explanation of State and Federal Leave Laws

We thank them for sharing!

Business Council of NY Guidance on Leave Laws

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Ventilator Manufacturers Need More Components

Companies such as Royal Philips want to make more ventilators to meet demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic, but they lack enough circuit boards and other parts to do so. US manufacturer Calumet Electronics has gotten orders for tens of thousands of the boards.

Read the Full Story at BNN 

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COVID 19 Update 14

Updated ESD Guidance on Essential Business

Empire State Development wants to reinforce several key messages:

·    If your business function is listed as essential, then there is nothing else you need to do. You do not need to contact ESD for affirmative documentation or email confirmation and, due to volume, ESD will be unable to formally confirm to essential businesses that they are, in fact, essential. Given that you are already essential, you will not receive any further communication from ESD.

·    With respect to business or entities that operate or provide both essential and non-essential services, supplies or support, only those lines and/or business operations that are necessary to support the essential services, supplies, or support are exempt from the restriction. (Our understanding remains that if your operation is going to great lengths to keep employees safe and distanced “business operations that are necessary to support the essential services, supplies, or support” will be broadly interpreted.)

ESD Updated Guidance on Essential Businesses 2020 0324

ESD Essential Business FAQs

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White House, Senate Reach Deal on $2 Trillion Stimulus Package

The Hill Reports that the deal includes $500 billion for a major corporate liquidity program through the Federal Reserve, $367 billion for a small business loan program, $100 billion for hospitals and $150 billion for state and local governments.

It will also give a one-time check of $1,200 to Americans who make up to $75,000. Individuals with no or little tax liability would receive the same amount, unlike the initial GOP proposal that would have given them a minimum of $600.

Read More

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Employment Law Issues: The Council of Industry is Teaming Up With Greenwald Doherty, LLP For An Essential HR Discussion Led by Joel Greenwald

Monday, March 30, 1 pm  Online Web Conference – Audio Only

Register Here

Or email abutler@councilofindustry.org

 

We are living in interesting times, with, it seems, daily changes and challenges for employers under the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses are trying to do more with less—or are shuttering altogether where restrictions have been imposed on their operations. Many employment laws are implicated in the down-sizing, right-sizing, furloughing and laying off being contemplated and implemented. Wage and hour laws, lay-off notice laws, discrimination laws and others can impact employer actions. While trying to act swiftly to preserve business operations, employers need to be sure to comply with the various applicable laws.

Visit Greenwald Doherty’s blog Employment Law and the Current COVID-19 Crisis for additional information.

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Ulster County Businesses Are invited to Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan & the Office of Economic Development’s Zoom Webinar: March 26, 2020 at 12PM

Please join Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan and representatives from the departments of Economic Development, Tourism and Employment & Training on Thursday, March 26 at 12 PM via Zoom Webinar!
Zoom Registration

Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan will give you the latest updates and you will have a chance to ask your business questions to people who can provide you with answers. Information about essential businesses, Unemployment Insurance, possible grant and loan support are among the topics being covered. To ask a question in advance please email: oed@co.ulster.ny.us

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Federal Updates

Labor Department Asks for Input on Paid Leave Implementation

The U.S. Department of Labor will be hosting an online dialogue to provide employers and employees with an opportunity to offer their perspectives as the department develops compliance assistance materials related to the implementation of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. As a reminder, the FFCRA requires all employers with fewer than 500 employees to offer up to 12 weeks of paid leave for absences related to COVID-19. The deadline for submissions is Sunday, March 29. You can provide input here.

Overview of Small Business Administration Loan Program

The Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Read the NAM’s overview of the SBA loan process and other programs to aid in businesses’ response to the COVID-19 crisis here.

Overview of Financial Regulators’ Response to COVID-19

Federal financial regulators have taken aggressive steps to respond to the COVID-19 crisis, designed to free up capital and liquidity for small businesses across the country. The NAM has prepared an overview of these programs and regulatory changes as a resource for our members. Read the overview here.

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COVID 19 Update 13.1

Negotiators Near Accord on U.S. Stimulus Package to Combat Coronavirus

An estimated $2 trillion in funds would help buffer the American economy from the consequences of the pandemic.

The Wall Street Journal is Reports that lawmakers, administration officials, and aides said issues surrounding $500 billion in industry assistance loans and expanded unemployment insurance had largely been resolved, leaving a narrow set of unresolved items left to agree to.

The Senate could move to quickly vote on the package later in the day, if an agreement is reached.

 “I believe we’re on the 5-yard line,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said on the Senate floor. “I hope today is the day this body will get it done.”

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CI Podcast – George Quigley, President of the Ertel Alsop and Chairman of the Council of Industry Board of Directors on keeping employees safe and operations open during the COVID 19 Pandemic

Listen here

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Coronavirus Triggers Hiring Surge at Some Firms

Some businesses are gaining customers because of the coronavirus pandemic and are recruiting thousands of workers to meet demand. These companies include supermarkets, pharmacies, takeout restaurants, delivery companies and medical-equipment manufacturers.

Read More at CNN 

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Manufacturers, Distributors Shift Focus to Hospitals

Cleaning and health care distributors and manufacturers are prioritizing getting their products to hospitals and similar facilities ahead of other customers. Custom manufacturer and 3D printer Proto Labs is also focusing on “projects which are needed to equip our medical system to treat patients with COVID-19,” a company spokeswoman says.

This is also the Case with Council Member Belfor Property Restoration who is focusing all its efforts to support healthcare facilities and first responders. 

Read More at Digital Commerce 360

 

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COVID 19 Update 13

NAM Giving Voice the Manufacturers’ Concerns in D.C.

Regulatory Compliance and Enforcement

Manufacturers are  facing an unprecedented challenge with respect to their ability to meet reporting, testing and other regulatory compliance requirements in this time of crisis. There is an urgent need for general enforcement discretion regarding routine and non-routine regulatory compliance due to travel and shelter-in-place restrictions for employees and others. To help companies navigate the regulatory climate during these turbulent times, the NAM will be hosting a compliance and enforcement conference call on Wednesday, March 25, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT.

To register for the call, click here. Send in details of reporting and monitoring challenges to ERP@nam.org.

Labor Department Announces 30-Day Compliance Window for COVID-19 Relief Bill

The Department of Labor announced that it will issue a non-enforcement policy for 30 days after the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, signed into law on March 18, goes into effect. The 30-day period will give manufacturers time to come into compliance with the law, and the DOL will focus on compliance assistance rather than enforcement for manufacturers that have acted in good faith to comply.

To learn more about the FFCRA and the new paid leave requirements for businesses with fewer than 500 employees, see the DOL’s announcement here.

Creators Respond

The NAM continues to work closely with the White House to coordinate manufacturers’ response to COVID-19. We have heard from many of you and have shared that information with the White House. The administration has once again called on manufacturers to produce and distribute supplies critical to our country’s response to this crisis. Thank you to those that have already volunteered to aid in this effort, and at the urging of the White House, the NAM renewed our call to manufacturers on Saturday.

If your company can help produce vital supplies and component parts, fill out the Creators Respond form here.

We are also actively informing the American public, policymakers and the press about manufacturers’ efforts. Please send us your stories, social media posts and other ways we can share your efforts to responseteam@nam.org.

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“Aegrescit Medendo” – The cure is worse than the disease

In his press conference Sunday President Trump said ‘We can’t let the cure be worse than the problem itself’.” The Hill Reports that the economic calamity emanating from social distancing policies that have closed much of the U.S. economy are also having devastating effects, with some projections of 20 percent or 30 percent unemployment in the second quarter.

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Half of US COVID-19 cases are in New York State

The number of positive diagnoses for the Hudson Valley from the state health department:

  • Columbia County – 19
  • Dutchess County – 100
  • Greene County – 6
  • Orange County- 411
  • Putnam County – 45
  • Rockland County – 592
  • Sullivan County – 23
  • Ulster County – 35
  • Westchester County – 2,894

A drive-through testing center has been set up by the state at the Anthony Wayne recreation area in Stony Point on the Rockland-Orange County border.

In Ulster County, county government and Nuvance Health have set one up at Tech City outside Kingston and are planning another one in Ellenville.

Dutchess County and Nuvance Health have collaborated on a testing facility in the vicinity of Dutchess Stadium.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo: We Have To Start Thinking About How We Restart The Economy

During his Monday Press Conference Governor Cuomo said this “We implemented New York Pause, which stopped the essential workers, etc. We have to start thinking about New York Forward. And Steve Cohen and Bill Mulrow, who I’ve worked with for 30 years and now in the private sector, they’re going to start to think about this, how do you restart or transition to a restart of the economy? And how do you dovetail that with the public health strategy? As you are identifying people who have had the virus and have resolved, can they start to go back to work? Can younger people start to go back to work because they’re much more tolerant to the effect of the virus? So how do you — you turned off the engine quickly.”

Read More In Real Clear Politics

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COVID 19 Update 12.1

Update on NYS Request for Critical Supplies

The Council of Industry has received many offers from members offering to help with the manufacture of medical and PPE supplies.

ESD is looking primarily for:

  • Companies With an existing supply for FDA or other industry-approved/standard personal protection equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers (N95 masks, gowns, etc.)
  • Companies with an existing supply of FDA approved ventilators
  • Companies who already have or can secure on their own FDA or other industry-approved PPE specs and can begin producing this ASAP.
  • Companies who already have or can secure FDA-approved ventilator specs and begin production

If  you can provide any of the above (only if you can provide any of the above) contact ESD

General offers from companies are appreciated by ESD. However, they are swamped and they would like the Council of Industry to sort and organize them to make it easier to prioritize them.  We will be taking the offers to date and placing them in a spreadsheet provided by ESD.  We will do the same for any new offers you send us.

If you would like to make a General Offer please email Johnnieanne Hansen

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Our Good Friends at the Construction Contractors Association Compiled this Comprehensive list of Government Resources Related to Coronavirus and Its Impacts

Government Coronavirus Resources

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DHS announces flexibility in requirements related to Form I-9 compliance

Due to precautions being implemented by employers and employees related to physical proximity associated with COVID-19, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today that it will exercise discretion to defer the physical presence requirements associated with Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) under Section 274A of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Employers with employees taking physical proximity precautions due to COVID-19 will not be required to review the employee’s identity and employment authorization documents in the employee’s physical presence.

Read More

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NAM/ SHRM Present COVID 19 Webinar

On Wednesday, March 25th at 11:00am EST, SHRM will be holding a joint presentation with the National Association of Manufacturers: “COVID-19 & Manufacturing Operations: Immediate Best Practices. Learn about the steps manufacturers are taking to attempt to limit the spread of COVID-19.”

Register now.

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Six Economic Consequences of COVID-19

The economic and social impacts of COVID-19 are widespread and profound, so much so that it will take a long time to catalogue and assess them in detail. But a number of things with important economic consequences are coming into focus, starting with the fact that near-total shutdowns are compounding overall economic damage. They need to be more targeted.

Read the ITIF Commentary

 

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COVID 19 Update 12

NYS Department of Labor Shared Work Program

Many Council members are familiar with New York State’s Department of Labor’s Shared Work Program, having accessed it in the past.  Shared Work helps businesses manage business cycles and seasonal adjustments. Shared Work lets businesses keep trained staff and avoid layoffs. Employees can receive partial unemployment insurance benefits while working reduced hours. Full-time, part-time and seasonal employees are eligible.

More information can be found on this program here, including an example and step-by-step instructions:

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New York Small Businesses are Eligible for SBA Disaster Loans

Small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and most private not-for-profits in all Mid-Hudson counties are now eligible to apply for SBA economic injury disaster loans (EIDL).

The SBA can provide up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occurred. Your loan amount will be based on your actual economic injury and your company’s financial needs. The interest rate on EIDLs will not exceed 4 percent per year. The term of these loans will not exceed 30 years. The repayment term will be determined by your ability to repay the loan.

More information on the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans can be found here:

Some key resources:

SBA Disaster Loan Application:

If you have questions, you can reach out directly to the SBA at 1-800-659-2955 or disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

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COVID-19: Employee Benefits Consideration

Associate Member Bond Schoeneck and King (BSK) offer this benefits guide for employers

The swift impact of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in New York and across the country has forced employers to evaluate the impact of the virus on their workforces. This information memo addresses some of the more important employee benefit plan issues for employers to consider in connection with COVID-19.

Read More

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NAM Monday Economic Report for March 23, 2020

Weekly initial unemployment claims jumped from 211,000 to 281,000, the highest level since September 2017. This figure will spike dramatically this week, likely approaching 1 million, with more businesses being forced to close or reduce activity and both firms and consumers pulling back on spending outside of the home. The data released last week foreshadowed the economic damage that will likely emerge over the coming weeks.

NAM Monday Economic Report 2020-0323

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COVID 19 11.1

“Non-Essential” – Questions We Are Asking

The vast majority of Council member manufacturers are essential businesses under the Governor’s executive order. For the handful of members not essential and for many of our associate members as well we are seeking clarification on 2 significant questions.

Q:    If we are non-essential but have applied for a waiver can we stay open until the request is answered, or do we need to close?

A:    We do not have clarification on this but our initial understanding is the you must close pending a decision by ESD.

Q: In order to keep our site safe and secure we cannot simply lock the door and stay home, machines need to be shut down properly and we have materials in storage that need to be monitored.  Can we send some people in to make sure we are “safe and  secure?”

A: We are also seeking to clarify that question.  We believe that if the proper shut down and monitoring of your facility is critical to the safety of the public and your future operations, you can have the minimum staff needed to accomplish that in place.

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US Commerce Department Request for Information on Any Supply Chain Issues Manufactures are Experiencing

The US Commercial Services Department wants to know if you are experiencing supply chain issues  related to coronavirus.  Some of those may be due to international disruptions; some may be about the Defense Production Act; others may be about domestic U.S. issues.  Since supply chain issues are being dealt with out of the White House, the Commerce Department’s Westchester Business Assistance Center is logging concerns, which will be consolidated and sent to the White House.

Please send of these issues to Harold King and he will forward them to the Center or you can send them directly to:

Michael Grossman, Senior International Trade Specialist,
U.S. Commercial Service U.S. Department of Commerce | International Trade Administration
245 Main St., Suite 390 | White Plains, NY 10601   914.682.6712       914.441.2528
www.export.gov

The information will be sent to the White House.  Your concerns and the issues you face will hopefully help with crafting government responses.

 

 

 

 

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COVID 19 Update 11 – Podcasts

As the COVID 19 crises unfolds the Council of Industry is using all its resources to keep its members up to date with the latest information and tools to keep their employees safe and their businesses operating. Our podcast is one of those resources and part of those efforts.

COVID 19 Podcast #1  Johnnieanne Hansen, Vice President of the Council of Industry and Harold King, President

In this episode Johnnieanne Hansen, Vice President of the Council of Industry and Harold King, President discuss the dynamic events of the week of March 13th -20th surrounding the COVID 19 pandemic and the Council of Industry’s response.

Johnnieanne and Harold talk about the importance of keeping our members informed so they can keep their employees safe and their operations running, what it means to be an “essential business”, the tools our members have to respond to the virus and more.

COVID 19 Podcast #2 Ronald Hicks, Assistant Dutchess County Executive

Dutchess County government is on the front lines in the battle to contain the Coronavirus and Ron Hicks is County Executive Marcus Molinaro’s crisis point person.

The County is working hard to communicate effectively with the population as a whole and the business community in particular about how to keep people healthy and the virus from spreading.

Harold talks with Ron about some of the County’s efforts to contain the spread of the virus, how we can “flatten the curve” and why that is critical, his leadership in bringing Dutchess County Alliance for Business together in common purpose, “essential” businesses and more.

Look for More Episodes including and Interview With Council of Industry Board of Directors Chairman, and President of Ertel/Alsop George Quigley and others.

 

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COVID 19 Update 10

“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength … The universe is change; our life is what our thoughts make it.”  – Marcus Aurelius

When the Roman Emperor and Stoic Philosopher wrote these words in his “Meditations” he was far from home and at war with Germanic tribes somewhere in present day Austria.  He was no stranger to hardship. War, civil war, disease, economic troubles all were part of his 20 year reign. Yet he manged to remain hopeful, positive, caring and compassionate.

This past week was one of confusion and disruption.  I take some comfort from these words written by a leader nearly 2,000 years ago and I hope you can too.

Some Additional information heading into what promises to more difficult and confusing times:

  • The Council of Industry will remain “open” to serve our members.  We will most likely be working remotely, but our team will be working to get you the information you need. Look for updates on this blog, Zoom meetings (we are planning for a Thursday call for CEOs to discuss best practices and share ideas and concerns. We are hoping to have a series of calls in the coming weeks), our magazine will be ready to go in early April (most likely digital only) Our Green Belt Course will be held as online beginning April 1, with an orientation session set for participants March 25th.  We are available via email and phone during our regular hours.
  • We will be working with ESD and others to facilitate the manufacture of critical medical supplies including masks, gowns, gloves, other PPE and Ventilators. If you have some expertise and/or equipment that can be rapidly transitioned I want to know about it.  You would not only be doing much to help the community but the State is investing and purchasing as well.
  • Finally, I could not be more proud of our association.  For sure our staff, Denise, Alison and especially Johnnieanne have been exceptional. They are hard working, caring and selfless.  As for you, our members and associate members, I am humbled by your actions. For the past 10 days or so you have acted selflessly, thoughtfully and compassionately, putting the safety, well being and economic security of you employees above all else and I want you all to know that that is appreciated.

Our association turns 110 years old this June.  We have seen a lot.  Market crashes, world wars, cold wars terrorist attacks, financial crises and more. This virus, and our reaction to it will be another challenge.  Given our initial response I am confident we will rise to meet it.

 

 

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COVID 19 Update 9.1

NYS Response To COVID 19 – None Essential = Zero:  Governor Cuomo Issues “Pause ” Plan

The Governor’s 10-point NYS on PAUSE plan is as follows:

  1. Effective at 8PM on Sunday, March 22, all non-essential businesses statewide will be closed;
  2. Non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason (e.g. parties, celebrations or other social events) are canceled or postponed at this time;
  3. Any concentration of individuals outside their home must be limited to workers providing essential services and social distancing should be practiced;
  4. When in public individuals must practice social distancing of at least six feet from others;
  5. Businesses and entities that provide other essential services must implement rules that help facilitate social distancing of at least six feet;
  6. Individuals should limit outdoor recreational activities to non-contact and avoid activities where they come in close contact with other people;
  7. Individuals should limit use of public transportation to when absolutely necessary and should limit potential exposure by spacing out at least six feet from other riders;
  8. Sick individuals should not leave their home unless to receive medical care and only after a telehealth visit to determine if leaving the home is in the best interest of their health;
  9. Young people should also practice social distancing and avoid contact with vulnerable populations; and
  10. Use precautionary sanitizer practices such as using isopropyl alcohol wipes.

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NYS is Seeking Manufacturers to Produce Critical  Medical Supplies

The State is encouraging any company with the proper equipment or personnel to begin to manufacture PPE products if possible. The state is willing to provide funding to any company to obtain the proper equipment and personnel. Businesses interested in receiving state funding to manufacture PPE products should email: COVID19supplies@esd.ny.gov

Please include:

Company Name:
Contact Person and Info:
Tell us about what critical supplies/equipment you think your company could produce:

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Council of Industry’s Conference Call on COVID 19 Update and Best Practices from 3/19  –  Audio Available 

Here is the link to the conference call audio

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What does the Families First Coronavirus Response Act Mean for Employers? Our Friends at Greenwald Doherty have put together and excellent Q&A.

What does the Families First Coronavirus Response Act Mean for Employers

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Details on COVID-19 Paid Leave Legislation, Executive Orders as of March 19 (Updated 3/20) – From Associate Member Harris Beach

In the evening hours of Wednesday, March 18, both the federal government and the New York State government signed into law major legislation granting employees’ job-protected, paid leave from work as the country responds to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read More

 

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COVID 19 Update 9

Empire State Development has now posted guidance intended to assist businesses in determining whether they are an essential business and steps to request such designation. 

Please click on this link to view the guidance. 

If your business falls clearly into one of the categories (as a first or second  tier supplier) listed in the guidance, no further action is needed at this time.

If your business does not fall within the categories, you must complete this form and submit it to covid19designations@esd.ny.gov

Should you have question you can call Harold King (845) 565-1355 or email him at hking@councilofindustry.org

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Timmons: Don’t Shut Manufacturers Down When They’re Needed

NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons had an urgent request for America’s state and local leaders: label manufacturers “essential businesses” and “essential infrastructure” so they can keep making goods that ensure our “comfort and survival.”

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DHS issues guidelines defining critical jobs during the coronavirus crisis

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (part of DHS) has put out guidelines to help states and localities figure out which workers are “critical,” and they include manufacturing workers, reports The Hill.

The extensive list of critical positions also include those in law enforcement, farm workers, veterinarians, petroleum and natural gas workers, mass transit employees, air traffic controllers, information technology professionals supporting critical networks, and those working in manufacturing, among many others.

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A Positive Coronavirus Update—Life In China Returning To Normal—As Flights To London Resume

For anyone looking for some positive headlines regarding the most talked about topic online, they may seem few and far between.

Forbes Reports that just one new case of COVID-19 was reported on Monday this week in China domestically as parks restaurants and even domestic tourism begins to recover.

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COVID 19 Update 8.2

ESD Releases Update on Essential Manufacturing 9:34 p.m.

Essential manufacturing includes:

  • food processing, including all foods and beverages
  • chemicals
  • medical equipment/instruments
  • pharmaceuticals
  • safety and sanitary products
  • telecommunications
  • microelectronics/semi-conductor
  • agriculture/farms
  • paper products

We are advised the if you are in one of these categories or are a supplier to them you are exempt from the 25% rule and you DO NOT NEED TO APPLY TO ESD.

That said you should still:

  1. Strictly enforce social distancing at your site and work diligently to keep your employees safe.
  2. Encourage employees who can to work from home.

If you are not a part of, or a supplier of, these sectors you must reduce your on site density to 25% of your total headcount.  that is to say that no more than 25% of your total headcount can be in the facility at any one time.

Have a pleasant evening.

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