Attention City Businesses: Click here for COVID-19/Coronavirus Business Assistance

COVID-19/Coronavirus: External Resources

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Important Resources for Businesses 

The CARES Act (H.R. 748) - The CARES Act was signed by the president on Friday, March 27, 2020. The Virginia Small Business Development Center (VA SBDC) has a Comprehensive Guide to the CARES Act for Small Business Owners. If you are a small business owner and you have questions regarding the CARES Act, we recommend contacting our local Hampton Roads SBDC office to Request Counseling. We have also published a CARES Act FAQ on our website, with information targeted to business owners. 

  • The U.S. Department of Labor created this information sheet regarding changes to Employee Rights as mandated by the CARES Act.  

U.S. Small Business Administration - The SBA has a variety of programs available to financially assist businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. A summary of their Funding Options can be found on their website. 

  • The Paycheck Protection Program (P3) is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. Please note: funding has run out for this program and the SBA is no longer accepting applications. If this changes, we will update this page. 
  • The Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) provides vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Please note: funding has run out for this program and the SBA is no longer accepting applications. If this changes, we will update this page. 
  • The Express Bridge Loan allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly. 
  •  The Debt Relief Program is providing a financial reprieve to small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic

The City of Williamsburg - The City of Williamsburg is diligently working to inform the public as information is received. Please continue checking the website for updates. 

William & Mary Students are available to assist your business:

  • MBA students at the Raymond A. Mason School of Business at William & Mary are offering small business crisis services.  A team of students backed by faculty and volunteers is offering support to locally owned small businesses (more than one and less than 100 employees) for free. If you are interested in receiving this free service, email
  • William & Mary undergraduate students are also available to assist your business. There are many ways they can provide free assistance, including the creation of website and social media content, calling your clients to update them on your current operating procedures, data management and much more. If you are interested in this free service, email Elizabeth Miller, Associate Director of the Office of Community Engagement at W&M. 

Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center - The Hampton Roads SBDC is monitoring COVID-19 disaster relief and sharing helpful information for businesses. If you would like to request free business counseling services from the Hampton Roads SBDC, email them at or call them at (757) 664-2532. 

The Virginia Tourism Corporation -  This tourism industry page has Virginia updates and a sign up to join weekly industry conference calls.

The Williamsburg Tourism Council - This local organization is working closely with the Virginia Tourism Corporation, U.S. Travel Association, and local tourism suppliers and partners in order to best support and serve Greater Williamsburg. Visit their website for resources targeted specifically to tourism-related businesses.  

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce - The U.S. Chamber is working closely with the White House, U.S. government agencies, and foreign government officials to inform and equip businesses with the most important and up-to-date information to prevent the spread of the virus and prepare businesses for the near and long-term impact. They have shared a Small Business Guide

Virginia Career Works If you are a business owner or HR representative for an employer considering work stoppages, layoffs or furloughs, we encourage you to contact Steve Cook at either (757) 876-9054 or of our Business Services team. They will get back to you within one (1) business day, or sooner, to discuss information and services that may assist impacted employees, including Unemployment Insurance, tax assistance, layoff aversion strategies, financial planning, remote access career services and more.  

In the meantime, please share the Virginia Employment Commission website with your employees. 
If you are a worker who has been totally or partially separated from your job due to Coronavirus, please note that no claim for unemployment insurance may be filed or processed until an actual lay off from employment has occurred, or until there has been an actual reduction in hours.  When filing your claim for unemployment benefits, please be sure to check the reason for separation as Lack of Work/Lay off.  
You may file a claim for unemployment insurance through this Website by clicking the link below to File a new claim for unemployment benefits or through our Customer Contact Center by calling 1-866-832-2363 Monday through Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm.