We hope all of our members are staying safe and healthy and as productive as possible during this time. In light of the health crisis, the content of our Friday 5 emails has shifted to feature the top five COVID-19 news items and resources of the week.
Acts of COVID Kindness
As we all band together to get through the challenging days ahead, the Maryland Chamber would like to highlight the good deeds being done in our communities by our members. Here is a great example of an act of “COVID kindness”:
The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) is leading the mobilized response of creators to the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the ways they are doing this is by collecting stories of manufacturers that are assisting in the national COVID-19 response effort and sharing these stories across their digital channels. In addition, NAM provides a resource to tell elected officials that “manufacturers are essential in our effort to combat COVID-19.” Submit your story and view their resources by clicking here.
If you know of a Marylander or Maryland business or organization that is stepping up in the face of adversity to help others during the pandemic, please reach out to Kimberly Reach at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your story.
1. Governor announces Phase 2 Reopening
On Wednesday, Governor Hogan announced that his March 23 order requiring the closure of all non-essential businesses will be lifted as of Friday, June 5 at 5:00pm. This move will drastically increase the number of businesses allowed to open versus those that will remain closed. Despite lifting the order, the Governor urged employees who can work from home to continue to do so.
In addition to allowing non-essential businesses to open, he also announced that public transportation will gradually begin to run at their regularly scheduled times.
Effective Monday, June 8 state government agencies will begin a phased reopening with some agencies like the Motor Vehicle Administration opening up to customers by appointment only.
You can view the Governor’s full announcement here.
2. COVID-19 webinar series
The Maryland Chamber Foundation hosted a webinar earlier today: “Preparing for Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC).”
A panel of cyber experts discussed the Department of Defense’s Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC), the DoD’s next step to ensure cybersecurity controls and processes adequately protect Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI), based on five different levels of maturity expectations. This was a timely and relevant discussion for those with current DoD contracts or those looking to become a DoD contractor in the future. This certification will be required for both prime contractors and subcontractors.
You can view a recording of the full webinar on the Maryland Chamber’s YouTube Page.
And please be sure to join us for our upcoming webinar:
Get Maryland’s citizens and businesses back to work with the Talent Exchange
Tuesday, June 9
11 – 11:30 AM
The Maryland Chamber has been pleased to help promote the rollout of Talent Exchange, a new technology developed in response to the massive wave of layoffs and job losses occurring in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. Employers with impacted workers and companies that are hiring to meet COVID-related demand can sign up to join the Talent Exchange to connect individuals to jobs. The tool is free of cost and was recently made available to state chambers of commerce, whose leaders are sharing the resource with their members and others in their respective states. Talent Exchange was created by Eightfold.ai in partnership with The Food Industry Association (FMI) and supported by McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm. Eightfold.ai will join us for a webinar on June 9 to demonstrate how Talent Exchange works.
3. Still no decision on democratic nomination for Baltimore’s mayor
As of Thursday, election officials still have not declared a winner in the contest for to become the democratic nominee for Baltimore’s mayor. The Baltimore City Board of Elections has experienced several challenges like printing and counting errors leading to significant delays. This morning’s vote tallies put former Baltimore Mayor Shelia Dixon in the lead with 30% of the vote with City Council President Brandon Scott coming trailing with 25%.
Other tightly contested primary races in Baltimore Include the race for city comptroller and city council president, a winner has not been declared in either race for the democratic nomination.
Rep. Kweisi Mfume (D), who was sworn in just a month ago to replace the late Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D) after winning a special election in late April over Kimberly Klacik, has been announced the winner of the seventh district democratic nomination. In November, Mfume will again face Kimberly Klacik in the general election.
Other primary congressional victories include U.S. House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D) easily defeating a challenge from Mckayla Wilkes in Maryland’s 5th congressional district and Del. Neil Parrott (R-Washington) will be the Republican nominee for Congress in the 6th District. He’ll face freshman Rep. David J. Trone (D) in November. In the 2nd congressional district, State Senator Johnny Ray Salling (R-Baltimore), will face off against nine term incumbent Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D).
Danielle Hornberger, an aide to U.S. Rep. Andrew P. Harris (R) and the wife of Del. Kevin Hornberger (R-Cecil), beat incumbent Cecil County Executive Alan McCarthy in the Republican primary.
As expected, former Vice President Joe Biden handily won the Maryland democratic presidential primary.
4. Senate passes bill to give flexibility for small business coronavirus aid program
The U.S. Senate passed legislation on Wednesday to provide more flexibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which provides help for small businesses amid the steep economic impact of the coronavirus.
The bill, which would extend the window for businesses to be able to spend loans granted under the program, passed the Senate by unanimous consent. The bill already passed the House last month, meaning it now goes to the President’s desk.
In the March $2.2 trillion coronavirus package, businesses were given eight weeks to spend PPP funds. The bill passed by the Senate on Wednesday would extend that to 24 weeks. It would also change the 75-25 divide outlined in the March bill — which required businesses to spend 75 percent of the loan on payroll and 25 percent on other fixed costs like rent and utilities — to a 60-40 ratio.
5. Maryland nears tenth place in census reporting
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Maryland is just six-tenths of a percentage point behind Indiana for the 10th slot in the census self-reporting rankings by state. Some Maryland counties are nearing or have already surpassed their 2010 Census reporting rate. Overall, the nation hit a milestone on Sunday, May 31, with 60.5% of the self-response rate achieved.
The Census provides vital information for a host of areas, including the business community. Make sure you’re counted by visiting the Census 2020 website.
Click here to view up-to-the-minute COVID-19 resources on the Maryland Chamber of Commerce’s COVID-19 resources page.