Showing 11 posts by Mitzi L. Hill.
Both the state of Georgia and the CDC have released guidance to help school authorities “determine their plans and strategies for reopening schools” in the fall, whatever of the status of the pandemic. While neither document is binding, they will be important in establishing the standard of care for both independent and public schools. The guidelines focus on the ability to open buildings and allow students to move freely, based on the degree of potential community spread.
On May 12, 2020, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp issued an updated Executive Order regarding continued social distancing, sanitation and other measures for businesses, and continued prohibition of Gatherings (more than 10 people if they cannot be kept six feet apart). The Order can be found here.
Below are some of the key business points of the Order, which is in effect from May 14 through May 31, 2020. Restaurants are subject to extensive and complex requirements under the Order; those will be summarized separately.
As Georgia businesses consider reopening or expanding after Gov. Kemp’s most recent executive order, many are considering liability waivers to have clients and/or customers sign. To date, no courts have reviewed any waivers specifically in light of COVID-19, but there are some general principles available.
As the shelter-at-home (SAH) orders for many states expire this week, companies across the country are starting to think about how and under what circumstances they will reopen. While it is early in the process, some themes have emerged:
Georgia will permit some non-essential businesses to reopen this week and next, subject to social distancing measures. Governor Brian Kemp announced the loosening at an afternoon press conference on Monday April 20. Other states including South Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, and Florida also made announcements yesterday regarding initial moves toward statewide reopening.
On Tuesday, the Treasury Department released guidelines to the market in the form of a Top-Line Overview of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Lender Information Sheet, Borrower Information Sheet and Application Form, which can be found here: https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/top-priorities/cares-act/assistance-for-small-businesses. This guidance is not firmly established and we expect additional guidance, clarification or reconsideration of interpretations to come. For now, however, the market guidance is noteworthy for several reasons as it is informative, clarifies and even contradicts the statutory provisions contained in the CARES Act. Specifically, below are the notable points of information, clarification and contradiction:
Department of Labor Releases Q&A Regarding Coronavirus Emergency Paid Sick Leave and FMLA Leave Rules
The United States Department of Labor (DOL) on Tuesday issued a concise Q&A relating to the leave, pay calculation, employee count, overtime, and other technical details contained in last week’s Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). The Q&A answers many of the immediate and common questions raised by the recently released emergency changes to the nation’s paid sick leave and paid FMLA leave requirements.
A $2T stimulus package deal was announced by Congress and Administration late last night after lengthy negotiations. It is expected that the package will be passed and enacted within days. The New York Times reports that portions of the bill are still being drafted as of early today, for a vote expected when the Senate convenes this afternoon.
With at least one in four Americans living under lockdown orders due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a new question has started to affect many US companies: can my company stay open during a lockdown?
For small businesses in Georgia (and many other states), relief from coronavirus-related economic losses may be available via a federal loan from the Small Business Association (SBA). These are low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital and can be used for bills and debts that the business cannot pay because of the virus’ impact, such as payroll, accounts payable, and fixed debts.
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