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This is the thirtieth COVID-19 update from San Jose Downtown Association. They are sent on Thursdays.
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Dear valued businesses:
We hope you can join us at the San Jose Downtown Association Annual Meeting Oct. 9 starting at 8:15 a.m. 
The Annual Meeting features our popular "two minute" committee reports to the members. You can hear from and about the people involved in SJDA business support, advocacy, marketing, communications and clean-and-safe operations. 
The Annual Meeting is also a first step in getting more involved in SJDA.  This year, for the first time, the meeting will be virtual, held on Zoom and Facebook Live.  That’s right – you can start your road to community involvement in your pajamas.
 
Be sure to have your coffee made and poured prior to 8:15 a.m.  The “State of the Downtown” address by Executive Director Scott Knies will kick off the meeting.
 

Official business at the Annual Meeting includes introducing the newly elected SJDA Board members, a review of the Business Improvement District and Property-Based Improvement District 2019-20 finances, and the “two-minute drill” recap of SJDA’s work provided by members.
 
One more important piece of business before the meeting:  Vote for SJDA’s Board of Directors for the 2020-2022 term by submitting your ballot online. It only takes a minute or so and you become eligible for a drawing for one of three prize packages containing a $25 dining gift certificate and $10 in Downtown San Jose Farmers’ Market “Carrot Cash.”
 
Register here to attend the meeting through Zoom.  Upon registration, you will receive a link accessing the Zoom webinar.  Note that webinar space is limited.  The meeting will also be streamed live on Facebook. If you have questions, please email sjdarsvp@sjdowntown.com.
 
More meeting information and registration information can be found on SJDA’s Facebook event page.

See you virtually on Oct. 9.
COVID-19 Business Update
Dine Downtown begins today – Restaurant promotion continues to Nov. 15.  All eateries still invited to join.
Dine Downtown, version 2.020, celebrates all Downtown San Jose restaurants currently open during the COVID-19 crisis.
“This is our most popular dining event because it highlights downtown’s unique food cultures,” said Julie Carlson, marketing director for the San Jose Downtown Association, which produces the event.  “This year, we stretched Dine Downtown to include more restaurants over a longer period of time to make sure customers have plenty of time to explore new dining experiences AND revisit a favorite.” 
Almost 20 restaurants have signed up for the extended promotion Oct. 1-Nov. 15 – that’s 46 days covering seven weekends to celebrate and support downtown San Jose eateries that have remained open for business during the strict pandemic protocols.
 
“Our restaurants are struggling because of the pandemic,” said Autumn Young, SJDA’s interim managing director.  “We wanted to bring attention to those businesses making their way through these difficult times so they can focus on what they do best – which is making delicious food!”
 
Cafes are joining in the program this year with creative food and coffee pairings. Dine Downtown in past years focused on white tablecloth dining with chef specials, prix fixe menus and wine/cocktail tastings.
 
More than 100 food establishments are open downtown offering take out, delivery and Al Fresco outdoor dining. 
 
SJDA is still gathering offers from regular Dine Downtown participants.  So far, the list of participants includes:  71 Saint Peter, Academic Coffee, Cubamex Sandwich Shop, District, Enoteca la Storia, Farmers Union, The Grill on the Alley, Habana Cuba, Hawaiian Poke Bowl, MakiBQ, Mezcal, The Nest Asian Bistro, Paper Moon Cafe, Pastelaria Adega, Poor House Bistro, Tiki Pete, Voltaire Coffee House and Voyager Craft Coffee. One newcomer this year is the Petiscos by Adega Portuguese restaurant at 399 S. First St., which is scheduled to open during Dine Downtown’s run.
 
If you want to join Dine Downtown, apply here or contact SJDA Marketing Director Julie Carlson at jcarlson@sjdowntown.com.
 
Check our webpage for a list of downtown’s open restaurants and those restaurants with Dine Downtown specials.
 
Keep up with Dine Downtown updates on SJDA’s Facebook and Instagram
 
Read how the Mercury News covered Dine Downtown today.

City Council extends Business License Tax exemption for businesses struggling the most
The City Council unanimously agreed to expand the Business License Tax exemption to sole proprietorships of any size suffering with low revenues/income through the pandemic.  The exemption continues through Sept. 30, 2021.
 
The City estimates about 6,000 businesses are eligible.
 
Those eligible must estimate that their projected 2020 adjusted gross income is less than two times the poverty level established by the U.S. Departtment of Health and Human Services, or four times if you have a spouse/domestic partner.  Those who take the exemption will need to provide proof that their AGI indeed met the revenue threshold.  If income proves to be higher, they will be back-billed by the City.
 
The threshold number is $25,520 in business revenues or $51,040 in annual household income with a spouse or domestic partner.
 
Paying the Business License Tax allows businesses to operate in San Jose.  The tax costs a one-person shop $203, a 20-person business $792 and a 100-employee business more than $4,000.
 
More coverage from Spotlight here.
 
City announces affordable home internet services
To address the digital divide in our communities, the Department of Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services (PRNS) will provide eligible residents information and resources on affordable and low-cost home internet services, $10 to $20 per month, with the first two months free.
 
This may be helpful for eligible small businesses that may do billing and other work at home.
 
PRNS is hosting two events:  TODAY at Seven Trees Community Center and Oct. 8  at Mayfair Community Center to assist eligible residents with the application enrollment process. Interested residents can schedule an appointment by calling 408-829-9855. Walk-ins will not be accepted.  

Residents who meet at least one of the following criteria are eligible for the Affordable Home Internet Service program:
  • Child is enrolled in the National School Lunch Program 
  • Receive CalFresh (food stamps) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) 
  • Receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Receive Medi-Cal
  • Have a Household Income Under $40,000/year
This effort has been funded by a grant from the California Emerging Technology Fund CETF, Digital Inclusion Fund. To learn more about the Affordable Home Internet Services program, visit the PRNS Digital Literacy webpage here.

How best to handle airports and flying during COVID-19
If you must travel by air for business, family or personal, AARP came out with an article this past week of the best way to do it.
Good pandemic practices are still in play way up in the sky:
  • Wear a mask
  • Keep social distance
  • Bring disinfectants to keep hands clean and to clean your seat and area
  • Do not touch your face
  • Choose an airline that blocks middle seats
  • Drive if you can
County message still cautious
This week’s message from Santa Clara County:

“While recent weeks have offered some reason for optimism, we are still operating in an environment of great uncertainty.  Currently, each day roughly 130 individuals in our County are newly diagnosed with COVID-19.   Hospitalizations are down, but deaths are up.  We don’t know what colder weather will bring.  The experience from around the state and country has taught us that we must not underestimate this virus. As we enter the fall, we have to be ready to adapt, but we can’t let our guard down.  Thank you for your help to keep our community as healthy as possible during this time.”
 
Not open in Santa Clara County:
  • Indoor dining
  • Indoor wineries and tasting rooms
  • Bars, breweries and pubs that don’t offer outdoor sit-down dining
  • Indoor gatherings, including religious services and political activities
  • Indoor personal services that require the removal of face coverings, such as facials and face makeup application
  • Hot tubs, spas, saunas and steam rooms
  • Community centers, concert venues and movie theaters
  • Playgrounds and recreational team sports
  • Offices for non-critical infrastructure sectors
  • Public events and gatherings, including nightclubs, convention centers, theme parks, festivals, concerts and live audience sports
SVO asks for a more open economy
The SVO is collecting signatures to support its request for the County to consider allowing indoor gatherings for places of worship (at 25% capacity); indoor dining (at 25% capacity); and to allow certain personal care services (such as estheticians) to safely reopen.
 
Other counties in Tier 2 of the state’s “Blueprint” allow these activities, but not so in Santa Clara County.
 
If you are interested in supporting the efforts by the SVO and local churches, go here.
Bay Area health officers worried about Halloween
We’re in October now and Bay Area health officers suggest that residents and businesses make different plans for Halloween this year.
 
From their statement this week:  “Focusing on decorations, limiting activities to the people you live with, and virtual costume parties or contests will help keep our communities safe this season, especially our children.”
These higher risk tactics apply to residents and businesses:
 
HIGHER RISK: Please avoid
  • Participating in traditional trick-or-treating where treats are handed to children who go door-to-door. Although this activity is outdoors, it is higher risk because it brings multiple people from different households together. 
VERY HIGH RISK or not permitted by State and Local Orders
  • Attending a crowded party held indoors or outdoors. Large gatherings, even if they are outdoors, are high risk for spreading COVID-19 and are associated with many cases throughout the Bay Area.
  • Sharing, eating, drinking, speaking loudly or singing amongst others outside of your household.
  • Haunted houses or indoor mazes.
  • Having trunk-or-treat where treats are handed out from trunks of cars lined up in large parking lots.
New County Web Page has multiple functions
The County has a new webpage that allows people to report concerns about protocols not being followed at businesses, schools and healthcare facilities. 
The page also allows businesses to submit a compliance or correction statement, submit a social distancing protocol, report a positive COVID-19 case at the workplace, ask the Business Call Center a question and keep up-to-date on the County’s response to COVID-19.
Free Flu Shots
Time to consider getting an infuenza vaccine
 The County offers free influenza vaccines every Saturday at the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds from 9 am to 4 pm throughout the fall. Flu shots will be available across the street from the COVID-19 testing site also in operation every Saturday. The car entrance for general parking is Gate D, 2542 Monterey Road.

In addition to the Fairgrounds, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center also offers free flu shots at several flu clinics and fairs around the county. The next San Jose flu shot fair is Oct. 17 at Valley health Center Moorpark, 2400 Moorpark Ave.
COVID-19 Links
Wildfire Info
Helpful tip preparing for evacuation
Be sure to pass these easy-to-follow action steps to anyone who might be in danger of evacuation this wildfire season.
 
Remember the 6 P’s when quickly and calmly responding to an evacuation order:
  • People and Pets
  • Papers, Phone numbers, and important documents
  • Prescriptions, vitamins, and eyeglasses
  • Personal computer hard drives and disks
  • "Plastic" (credit cards, ATM cards) and cash 
  • Pictures and irreplaceable memorabilia (if time allows)
Wildfire and Air Quality Resources
Air Quality Resources:
Wildfire Resources:
Heat and Power Outage Resources
Public Health Extreme Heat Resources: Fact Sheets from the CDC on those especially vulnerable to heat exhaustion and stroke.
More Local Resources for Businesses
If you are a business or property owner reaching out about vandalism, theft or property damage, you can submit an online police report here.

To report graffiti and things that need to be cleaned within the district, use the Groundwerx Everywhere app for iPhones or Android.
To report damage, graffiti or things that need to be cleaned in city parks/property or outside the district, use the San Jose 311 app for iPhone, visit sanjose.custhelp.com or call 311.

Businesses who would like a free graffiti removal tool kit can send an email to antigraffiti@sanjoseca.gov with their contact information and an address. A kit will be delivered to your place of business. 

SJDA staff can help.  Our list of staff and emails are here.
Let us know how else we can help by replying to this email. We’ll have another message next Thursday. We're in this together.
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