Cape Cod & COVID-19

Updated June 6, 2020

The Massachusetts economy will be reopened using a four-phase approach, based on public health guidance.
Find out more>
Guidance for industries on the reopening plan>

Business sector certifications and check lists and further details can be found here.

Business Reopening Ideas to Improve Revenue and Engagement can be found here

LODGING: Safety Standards and COVID-19 Checklist

RETAIL: Safety Standards and COVID-19 Checklist

RESTAURANTS: Safety Standards and COVID-19 Checklist

Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission Advisory Regarding Local Licensing Authorities’ Approval of Outdoor Seating 

Safety Standards for Public and Semi-Public Swimming Pools - Phase II 

Safety Standards for Playgrounds, Spray Decks and Outdoor Fitness Areas – Phase II

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The Cape Cod Reopening Task Force has invited the public to submit comments. Comments will be reviewed and taken into consideration as the Task Force develops a reopening report. Comments can be submitted online here. Please feel free to share this link widely.

The Cape Cod Reopening Task Force unveiled a new website:
The site serves as a one-stop location for residents, businesses, employees, municipalities, and visitors to the region.

A Reopening Advisory Board was formed to map out a phased statewide approach to safely reopening our economy. While this document will be finalized by May 18th, the timing and roll out of the plan will be anchored in evidence that the public health threat is being effectively managed in Massachusetts. They would value the input businesses via this online form.

On June 4, the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), was amended by including terms of use, timing for forgiveness and percentage that must be applied to payroll to qualify for forgiveness. The updates can be found here.  

1. The Small Business Administration’s Boston District Office connects small business owners to information and technical assistance through SBA Resource Partners. These partners can provide remote counseling, workshops, and other support to businesses navigating the impacts of COVID-19 and include: 

  • Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs): A network of centers that provide counseling and training to help small business owners start, grow and expand their business. Find an SBDC here.
  • SCORE: Volunteer business counselors, advisors, and mentors who offer individual free to low cost counseling throughout the U.S. and its territories. Find a SCORE mentor here.
  • Women’s Business Centers: WBCs provide free to low cost counseling and training and focus on women who want to start, grow and expand their small business. Find a WBC here.
  • Veterans Business Outreach Centers: Designed to provide entrepreneurial development services and referrals for eligible veterans owning or considering starting a small business. Find a VBOC here.

2. Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) also has dedicated tools to support companies managing the impacts of COVID-19 on their businesses.

  • The COVID-19 Small Business Stabilization Network consists of MGCC Small Business Technical Assistance grantees, nonprofit organizations offering small business supports, including lending, financial education, and business coaching. Read about the COVID-19 Small Business Stabilization Network here.consult a list of technical assistance providers participating in the Network.
  • Translation Services for Paycheck Protection Program applications are available through MGCC’s partners across the state. This service will be available in 19 languages.  Access Translation Services here. Again, businesses should consider preparing an application in the event that additional funding becomes available.

3. SCORE Cape Cod & the Islands has provided a Reopening Toolkit for Small Businesses

The Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) has released helpful new resources and guidance to support individuals seeking to claim unemployment benefits.

Governor Baker signed a bill establishing a moratorium on non-essential evictions and residential foreclosures. This law provides temporary protections for both residential tenants and small businesses that are unable to pay rent, in an effort to stabilize homes and commercial spaces during the COVID-19 crisis. The law also prohibits proceedings on residential foreclosures during the COVID-19 crisis.

  • While this bill does not relieve a residential or commercial tenant of their responsibility to pay their rent or mortgage, it does offer protection for those who are unable to make these payments as result of the economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Under this legislation, a landlord cannot file a complaint in court to evict an eligible small business for a non-essential purpose (i.e. a purpose that does not pose a health or safety risk). Eligible small businesses are businesses which operate only in Massachusetts, have 150 or fewer employees, and are not publicly traded. This moratorium will last for either four months following the bill’s signing on April 20, 2020, or until 45 days after the emergency declaration expires (whichever is sooner, and unless extended by the Governor).
  • The new law does not eliminate or reduce an obligation to pay rent. Businesses that are able to pay rent should continue to do so, and should work collaboratively with their landlords when they are unable to pay rent due.
  • Under this legislation, landlords may not apply late fees or negatively report to credit bureaus if the tenant sends a timely notice that the non-payment of rent was the result of a financial hardship caused by COVID-19. Evictions may still proceed when a tenant’s lease violation creates a health or safety risk for others.

Eligible small businesses can use the Form of Notice – COVID-19 Hardship – Small Business Tenant and the Documentation of Financial Hardship – Small Business Tenant forms to provide the required notice to their landlord of their inability to pay rent. Access these forms and Emergency Regulations here.

We are #InThisTogether working to keep our Cape strong and resilient during the COVID-19 crisis. One way we are doing this is by sharing member updates @CapeCodChamber Instagram story in the highlight labeled “Open4Biz.” Tag us in your Instagram posts and stories or notify us at

We encourage you to connect with other members via our Community Member Message Board located in your Member Portal. Log in here>

Click here to find a list of local restaurants offering take-out at this time ( and don't forget pet food/supplies!) For questions about this page, email

Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce offers Complimentary Membership during the COVID-19 Crisis: Receive important updates as business info breaks, and our bi-weekly enews. Provide your name, business name and email address to:

Find out more about the Cape & Islands Major Crisis Relief Fund.

Read Tocci & Lee's Guide to Reopening Businesses.

The Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business Guide and Checklist takes a small business step-by-step through the process of preparing to file for a loan.

The Arts Foundation of Cape Cod's Cape Cod Arts Relief Fund will provide one-time relief in the form of grants up to $500 to artists who live, work, create, and/or perform on Cape Cod. Applications for the Cape Cod Arts Relief Fund are now being accepted. To donate to the Cape Cod Arts Relief Fund, click here.

The State Treasurer’s Office of Economic Empowerment (OEE) will offer The Empowerment Grant for Small Businesses as an acknowledgement of the devastating economic impact that the COVID -19 pandemic has had on the Massachusetts small business community. Grant resources will be focused on small business owners serving Massachusetts Gateway Cities (of which Barnstable is one). Find more info here.

Town of Yarmouth Launches Job Retention and Creation CDBG Grant Program

Need a face mask? Check out our list of local businesses and individual makers that are making them.

COVID-19 Fishermen Assistance Programs

Mass Cultural Council announces COVID-19 Grant Fund for the Creative

Here is the link to the Dept. of Unemployment Assistance

Latest guidance from the Small Business Administration

Latest updates from Cape Cod Healthcare

Latest updates from Barnstable County

Prepare for Recovery by Cliff Robbins, MSBDC Senior Business Advisor

Community resources developed by the Cape Cod Commission

The Registry of Motor Vehicles is extending the expiration date of certain credentials. Read more here >

Find information on a Bartender Emergency Assistance Program

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation has this employers’ resource page

BoardSource resource at no charge to every non-profit navigating these eventful days