About

The Chaffee’s Got Heart Campaign invites community members from across Chaffee County to unite and pledge to Have HEART because our kids, businesses, and residents deserve it.

H.

Hang at Home if Sick

E.

Excel at Handwashing

A.

Always Wear a Mask

R.

Respect Social Distancing

T.

Test if You Have Symptoms

Press Release

How You Can Help

TAKE THE PLEDGE

Spread the Word

Connect with Us

Our Partners

Covid Resources

State Relief Resources

State COVID-19 Dial Level for Each County

State of Colorado COVID-19 Website

CDLE Work-Share Program

The Work-Share Program gives businesses an alternative to laying off employees and allows them to let its employees keep working, but with fewer hours. While the employees are working fewer hours, the program helps pay these employees part of their regular unemployment benefits they could receive for a given week in which their work hours were reduced. Advantages of the program include:

  • The ability to continue production and maintain quality levels
  • Retention of experienced staff
  • Ease of returning to full production when economic conditions are better
  • Lower costs for hiring and training new employees
  • Spending less money on public assistance and unemployment benefits because your employees are still working

Program Information 

CDLE Rapid Response Program*

Employers experiencing a reduction in workforce are eligible for support services including consultation on layoff aversion strategies, onsite workshops for employees in transition, job placement assistance, and information on unemployment benefits.

More Information

Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT)

  • Click HERE for OEDIT’s COVID-19 Business Resource Center, which includes information and links to a wide range of small business resources.

Federal Relief Programs

NOTE: On August 8, the SBA stopped accepting PPP loan applications as required by current law. Federal policymakers are debating amending and reopening the Program.

Main Street Lending Program

On October 30, the Federal Reserve announced new changes to its Main Street Lending Program, a $600 billion lending effort designed to help small and medium-sized businesses. The program offers five-year loans to qualified businesses and nonprofits with deferred principal and interest payments. The recent changes include lowering the minimum loan amount to $100,000 and allowing borrowers to exclude Paycheck Protection Program loans of up to $2 million for purposes of determining maximum loan amount.

+ Learn More

+ FAQs

SBA Loans for Small Businesses

The SBA provides targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and private non-profit organizations that have been severely impacted as a direct result of COVID-19. Below are the SBA’s two primary loan programs related to COVID-19:

  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan
  • Paycheck Protection Program
    • Application
    • LOAN FORGIVENESS APPLICATION
    • The SBA also released a new streamlined “EZ Version” loan forgiveness application for certain borrowers that meet the following criteria:
      • Those who are self employed and have no employees.
      • Those who did not cut back pay for their employees by more than 25% and did not reduce their head count or workers’ hours’.
      • Those who saw a drop in business activity because of health directives related to Covid-19 and did not cut back employees’ pay by more than 25%
  • Click HERE for a PPP FAQ guidance from SBA and the US Department of Treasury (Updated October 13)
  • Click HERE for a side-by-side comparison of the two loan programs, along with the Main Street Lending Program.
  • For support navigating applications, please contact the Denver Metro SBDC
  • Additional support: The Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT) has a hotline for small business owners to call with questions about how to apply: (303) 860-5881. If the hotline is busy, you can also email oedit_sbnavigator@state.co.us.

Deferment of Existing SBA Loans

The SBA announced changes to help borrowers still paying back SBA loans from previous disasters. By making this change, deferments through December 31, 2020, will be automatic.

Coronavirus Emergency Loans – Small Business Guide and Checklist

The US Chamber of Commerce created a useful guide for small businesses to help you understand and utilize the funding made available by the CARES Act, with a particular emphasis on the Paycheck Protection Program. The guide answers the following important questions:

    1. Am I eligible?
    2. What will lenders be looking for?
    3. How much can I borrow?
    4. Will this loan be forgiven?

US DOL 

The Department of Labor issued guidance for employers and employees regarding the new requirements for paid sick leave and paid family medical leave. See below for this important information.

Paid Sick and Family Medical Leave Eligibility

On March 18, 2020, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) passed in the Senate and was signed into law. Effective as of April 1, FFCRA  requires certain employers (under 500 employees) to provide employees with paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division administers and enforces the new law’s paid leave requirements. These provisions will apply from April 1 through December 31, 2020.

Paid Leave and Tax Credit for Small Businesses 

To offset the costs of paid time off pursuant to the FFCRA, covered employers (under 500 employees) qualify for dollar-for-dollar reimbursement through tax credits for all qualifying wages. Qualifying wages are those paid to an employee who takes leave under the Act for a qualifying reason, up to the appropriate per diem and aggregate payment caps. Applicable tax credits also extend to amounts paid or incurred to maintain health insurance coverage. For more information, please see the Internal Revenue Service’s guidance and FAQs.

More Information

CDC, OSHA and EEOC

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE)

  • Click HERE for CDPHE’s multi-industry construction guidance. (NOTE: As of May 5, the guidance no longer requires mandatory temperature checks of employees)
  • Click HERE for a COVID-19 Employee Health Screening Form for Onsite Screening.
  • Click HERE for CDPHE’s website demonstrating how to conduct a facility health screening.

Pinnacol Assurance

Pinnacol has provided guidance for employers regarding short-term COVID-19 related wage replacement benefits.

Click HERE for the full document.

The Chaffee’s Got Heart Campaign invites community members from across Chaffee County to unite and pledge to Have HEART because our kids, businesses and residents deserve it.

H:  Hang at Home if Sick

E:  Excel at Handwashing

A:  Always Wear a Mask

R:  Respect Social Distancing

T:  Test if You Have Symptoms

I hate wearing a mask and feel like you are trying to infringe on my rights. Why should I comply?

We hear you and understand your frustration and recognize that we are asking you to choose to sacrifice some things for the good of your neighbors, loved ones and small businesses. As your neighbors, our goal is simply to allow our community to thrive despite the virus. We want to keep our students in the classroom full time, keep our businesses open and maintain the special nature of Chaffee County. We know that masks are not the cure-all, but they do help slow the transmission of a variety of sicknesses, including COVID-19. We are a community that takes care of each other in good times and in bad. Now more than ever, we need to come together. Join us.

I’ve seen signs that say: My mask protects you, your mask protects me.  Can you explain?

Wearing a mask is a super simple, selfless act that shows how much you care for fellow members of our community. Wearing a mask shows how much HEART we each have. You can’t always see if someone around you has a compromised immune system or underlying medical condition. Protect others from the virus by wearing a mask when you leave home, keeping at least 6 feet between yourself and others, and washing your hands well and frequently.

What’s the goal here? I complied early and it didn’t seem to do any good.

We recognize that we are asking people to choose to make personal sacrifices. Our goal is to keep our students in school full time and to keep our businesses open and people in their jobs. We can’t control what happens on the Front Range or the pandemic, but we can help our family and neighbors in Chaffee County. We have been successful in slowing the virus while preserving those things that are special to us. Most of our small businesses had very successful summer sales and recreating outdoors proved to be safe when combined with HEART. Now that we are entering the indoor winter months, we must adjust our behaviors to stay safe, keep our students in the classroom and to keep our businesses open. We have come so far. Let’s not stop halfway to the mountain top. Together, we can beat the virus with HEART…our kids, jobs and community deserve it.

Where can I go to find out more about what Chaffee County is doing to slow the spread?

http://chaffeecounty.org/Public-Health-Coronavirus

You can’t guarantee that if I follow your 5 safety steps that we will keep kids in school and businesses will stay open. Why should I comply?

In Chaffee County, we are resilient and independent. And, thus far, we have thrived, despite a worldwide pandemic. And, that’s because we are a community of family, friends and neighbors that work together to do what’s right for Chaffee County. No, we cannot make any guarantees. But, we believe it’s in our community’s best interests to do everything we can to keep our kids in school, businesses viable and people in their jobs. We are Chaffee County…We have HEART. Our kids, jobs and community deserve our perseverance.

The holidays are coming up. What can we do to comply and still enjoy our families?

We recognize that limiting interactions to 1-2 families during the holidays will be tough. We recognize the sacrifice we are asking people to make but we believe it is imperative for the health of our community and loved ones. We are encouraging families to be creative about how you can engage with families and friends from afar. Some ideas might include the following:

  • FaceTime with your loved ones
  • Drive by celebrations
  • Caroling outside your loved ones homes or places of business or even virtual
  • Virtual tree lighting celebration through FaceTime or Zoom
  • Virtual opening of presents – fashion shows – and family/friends skits through FaceTime or Zoom
  • Virtual family happy hours, dinners and storytelling events
  • Virtual dancing, singing or talent contests

What can I do to support the Chaffee’s Got HEART campaign?

First and foremost, you and your family can follow the 5 simple steps of HEART. You can also encourage your family and friends to pledge to do the same. You can also show your support by placing a window decal in your place of business or car or place a yard sign in your yard. For more information on where you can obtain a decal or sign go to

www.ChaffeesGotHeart.com. You can also shop and dine locally via online ordering, curbside pickup and delivery where available. Visit https://www.colorfulcolorado.com/ for details

Where can I find more resources about COVID-19?

Chaffee County:  http://chaffeecounty.org/Public-Health-Coronavirus

Colorado Covid Updates: https://covid19.colorado.gov/

About Covid: https://covid19.colorado.gov/about-covid-19

Covid Facts: https://covid19.colorado.gov/frequently-asked-questions-faq

COVID Information: https://www.211colorado.org/covid-19/

Small Business COVID Support: https://centralsbdc.org/

Colorado Small Business COVID Support: https://choosecolorado.com/covid19/

Where is the spread of the COVID virus occurring in our county?

We are seeing a rise in cases due to social gatherings. We understand why people are eager to socialize, but we must be diligent in stopping the spread of the sickness and limit social interactions outside our immediate households for the time being. If we don’t choose to make this sacrifice, there will be more closures, hospitals at capacity and kids not able to attend school in person.

Where can I donate my time or money to help our community? 

Chaffee County Community Foundation: https://www.chaffeecommunity.org/

 The percent positivity rate is low and has been going down over the past few weeks. That means we are doing well, right? Why is there all this concern about the virus spreading and talk of increased regulations?  

Percent positivity is just one metric that is used to track the prevalence of the virus in the county.  The percent positivity rate includes many asymptomatic people who have either come into close contact with a positive case, need testing due to travel or higher risk employment, or who are just curious whether they have the virus or not.  It also includes the large number of tests that our healthcare providers conduct at appointments before operations and other procedures.  In order to get a sense of how Chaffee County is faring, it is important to look at all of the metrics together.

Today our county dashboard says our positivity rate is 3.69% while the state says we are 2.2%. Why are the stats on our county dashboard different than the ones on the state dashboard for Chaffee County?

As CCPH has warned many times, the data on the state dashboard will vary from the local dashboard.  The state dashboard does not get updated as frequently as the local dashboard.  In addition, CCPH might know of a case or outbreak before the state does and vice versa.  Both tools can be used to track and trend the incidence of the virus in our county and its impact on our healthcare system.

I went to the store and saw customers not wearing masks and/or employees not wearing masks – What is public health doing at these businesses and how can we stop this kind of behavior? What can I do? I am very concerned about the rise in cases or I am vulnerable and can’t be exposed (or any number of concerns) and don’t feel like we/Public Health is doing enough. 

The Public Health Department has hired a Community Outreach Coordinator to work closely with businesses and help them follow the compliance steps that have been laid out.  For more information on the guidelines for businesses go to:  http://chaffeecounty.org/Public-Health-Coronavirus

What is the predicted outlook for the next couple weeks? Will there be a change in regulations? Are we headed back to March and April restrictions? Will it be up to the state or the county or both? 

We are doing our best to keep our county open in the yellow level as long as possible (status quo level)- if we keep our case count stable, positivity low, and hospitalizations at a minimum, we should be fine as long as the state leaves it up to local control.  We have built, and continue to build, a strong public health system, which includes case tracing and investigation, testing, and promotion of the 5 commitments, but it is going to take all of us to pull off a successful outcome.  Limiting group gatherings to no more than 10 and up to 2 households, working from home whenever possible, and decreasing our activities that involve physical interactions will help curb the spread of the virus.  At this time, our health department is focused on education and outreach to tighten up behaviors, and it is our intent not to apply greater restrictions beyond the state public health order.  The state is enacting as many strategies as possible to avoid a state-wide stay at home.

Understanding the Levels

Capacity Restrictions

Level Determinants