This is the twenty-ninth COVID-19 update from San Jose Downtown Association. They are sent on Thursdays.
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Table of Contents
Dear valued businesses:
Some good news just announced:  Children’s Discovery Museum is hosting member events in Bill’s Backyard at the museum the next two weekends.  On Oct. 9, Bill’s Backyard opens to the public and for the foreseeable future, will be open for two sessions per day, 10am-12:30pm and 1:30-4pm with an hourlong cleaning break in between.

“25% of the capacity at 100% of the fun!”  Now, that’s a tagline.

The museum expects to announce a date to open the interior of the museum sometime this fall.

No word on opening the other three museums downtown yet, but the CDM announcement is definitely significant progress.
By the way, San Jose Museum of Art’s Virtual Gala and Auction, a free event, is online Saturday starting at 6 p.m.

Onward.  We’re one step closer to a downtownwide reopening.
COVID-19 Updates
SJDA:  30 weeks of Thursday messages about covering COVID-19
 Over the past 30 weeks, starting before shelter-in-place orders, SJDA has sent on Thursdays a long message about the programs, changes, orders and guidance provided on local, county, state and national levels. 
If it is useful to business, it is included. 
The focus has always been on the coronavirus, but as time has gone on, we’ve included information about heat, wind, air quality, power outages and wildfire safety, too.
Because what is needed to protect your families also has an impact on how you can conduct your business, we’ve also supplied information on that.
The bottom of each week’s message is full of links.  There’s a lot of information, but hopefully this is the only place you needed to search for something.  For every one thing listed here, we’ve checked five or six other items that aren’t included because they are vague, redundant or not accurate.
Point is … we’re trying to save you precious time and provide you with the best and most current information during times when sometimes things change daily.  We want to help keep your business moving forward.
If you’ve seen something here and need to find it again, you can.  Every one of the 30 Thursday messages is posted here.
We’re going to continue these at least until we are all back open and there is a vaccine.  Maybe longer if you find the Thursday messages useful.
If you have an extra moment, please let us know how we’re doing with the Thursday message and tell us how the Thursday message might be improved.  Send your comments to
SJDA staff is available to answer your questions. Our names, titles and emails are listed here.
City of San Jose business support summary
On Tuesday, the City of San Jose recapped its business support and economic recovery efforts between March and August, inclusive.  The City’s focus areas: 
  • Supporting access to emergency funding:  More than 12,000 businesses located in San Jose were successful in receiving a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) forgivable loan. It is estimated that over $1 billion of federally backed stimulus loans were secured for businesses located in San Jose. 
  • Established and fundraised for the Silicon Valley Strong Small Business Grant Program which provided $1.42 million (142 grants of $10,000) to eligible small businesses in San Jose.
  • CDBG microenterprise business grant program: the City’s Housing Department and Office of Economic Development provided $2.175 million in funding (145 grants of $15,000 each) to businesses based in San Jose employing five or fewer staff.
  • Policy changes and new programs:  Construction hours changes; Development Services more rapid response measures; San Jose Al Fresco outdoor business programs; training and placement programs went online, four virtual job fairs,
  • Communications with businesses:  Webinars, e-blasts, hotline to answer business questions, outreach by Small Business Allies, flash reports as needed and social media announcements. 
The report is here.
What’s open and closed
Earlier this week, the San Francisco Chronicle reported what’s open and closed in each Bay Area County.  Here’s what the Chronicle reported about Santa Clara County:
Tier status: Three weeks in red tier 2

Latest assessments: 4.7 per 100,000 case rate, 2.4% positive test rate

Next week’s potential status? Would remain in red tier 2 based on current case rate.

Schools: Distance learning for K-12 schools and higher education; individual schools and districts and can decide if it’s safe to open for in-person instruction beginning Sept. 14.
What is currently open:
  • Essential businesses like health care, grocery stores, pharmacies, banks
  • Restaurants for outdoor dining, pickup and delivery
  • Bars, pubs and breweries that offer outdoor sit-down meals
  • Outdoor wineries and tasting rooms
  • Indoor retail, including malls, with 50% capacity, plus closed common areas and limited capacity in food courts
  • Indoor and outdoor hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, massage therapy, tattoo parlors and other personal services with modifications
  • Indoor gyms and fitness studios with a maximum 10% capacity plus outdoor gyms and fitness centers
  • Indoor museums, zoos and aquariums with 25% capacity
  • Outdoor recreational activities, including miniature golf, batting cages, driving ranges, shooting ranges and kart racing
  • Parks, beaches, golf courses, dog parks, skate parks, campgrounds, athletic fields, tennis courts, swimming pools and outdoor recreation facilities
  • Outdoor gatherings of up to 60 people for worship services, cultural ceremonies and protests or political activities
  • Car-based gatherings, including drive-in theaters
  • Low-contact service businesses like appliance or automobile repair, car washes, laundromats and pet grooming
  • Indoor cleaning services, such as housekeeping and janitorial services, with limitations
  • Outdoor activities like walking and biking with proper social distancing; construction, real estate transactions and other outdoor businesses with physical distancing requirements
  • Child care, summer camps, summer schools and other educational and recreational programs with limits of 12 or fewer participants
  • Manufacturing and warehouse facilities
  • Hotels and lodging, including fitness centers at 10% capacity
  • Libraries with 50% capacity

What is not open:

  • 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

San Jose Downtown Association’ Stabilization Plan
San Jose Downtown Association has created a Stabilization Plan that takes into consideration 1,254 responses to a “What’s Next for Downtown San Jose” survey and guides downtown and SJDA through disruptions started with the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Stabilization Plan helps SJDA chart a course so that it can make sense of what actions are needed in the next 12-18 months and the opportunities to be gleaned in a changed future.

#dtsjopen recovery campaign
The #dtsjopen marketing campaign continues despite heat, smoke-filled days, COVID-19 … whatever.  The campaign has two interconnected goals:  to bring new and old customers back to downtown San Jose and help downtown businesses survive,
Look for campaign ads in local newspapers, television stations NBC Bay Area and Telemundo 48, radio stations  Mix 106.5, KBAY 94.5 and KRTY 95.3, plus 15 Clear Channel Outdoor billboards over the next few months.
Businesses can add energy to the program by affixing posters and cling decals to their windows.  Construction sites can also post on their temporary barriers.  Arts groups and other major partners will be asked to spread the word through their communications channels.  Download the graphics at or contact to be included.
City of San Jose Funding Opportunities
Coronavirus Relief Fund:  Arts Organizations and Artists
Deadline: 5 p.m. Sept. 29 | Apply here

The San Jose City Council approved using $2.12 million of the City’s federal Coronavirus Relief Funding provided through the CARES Act to help support San Jose nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that have experienced significant financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The CARES Act and subsequent guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury specify the type of expenditures which may be funded, specifically expenditures that:
  • Are necessary due to the COVID-19 public health emergency;
  • Were not accounted for in the City’s FY2020-2021 budget prior to COVID-19; and
  • Were incurred during the period March 1, 2020 through December 30, 2020.
The Coronavirus Relief Fund: Arts Organizations will be managed by the San Jose Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA) and disbursed through a third party to expedite processing. Arts organizations play a vital role in the City’s unique cultural identity and economic vibrancy. The arts sector in San Jose and nationally has been particularly hard hit as arts and cultural venues have been among the first to close and among the last designated for re-opening in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.  This grant program is intended to provide needed relief by reimbursing nonprofit arts organizations for specific and documentable expenses and income loss due to the pandemic.

For individual artists and sole proprietor arts businesses, the City has a $208,000 pool.  Artists can get up to $2,000 to help mitigate COVID-19 related financial impacts. Find complete details, including Guidelines, FAQs, and the application on the Center for Cultural Innovation website.

Collective Impact Grant:  Implementation Partner
Deadline: 4 p.m. Sept. 25 | Apply here
The City of San Jose has designated funds from the Coronavirus Relief Fund to launch the Collective Impact Grant Program, which aims to provide economic support to qualified Community-Based Organizations (“CBOs”) that are providing food and necessities services to the community due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Coronavirus Relief Fund requires that all expenditures related to this public health emergency be incurred by Dec. 30, 2020.
The City seeks a Partner to assess the immediate and unmet needs of the community and design a food and necessities distribution framework that addresses the gaps in local food insecurity. The Partner will also serve as a liaison between stakeholders, such as other local organizations such as the County of Santa Clara, other non-profits, and faith-based organizations. The Partner will administer grants to CBOs to create sustainability in the “Food and Necessities Network” by way of financially supporting direct and/or indirect costs associated with maintaining an emergency operations model that serves the residents of San Jose.

Collective Impact Grant:  Grantee Funding Partner
Deadline: 4 p.m. Sept. 25 | Apply here

The City of San Jose has designated funds from the Coronavirus Relief Fund to launch the Collective Impact Grant Program, which aims to provide economic support to qualified Community-Based Organizations (“CBOs”) that are providing food and necessities services to the residents of San José due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The CARES Act requires that all expenditures related to this:

Desired Qualifications:
  • Grantee should have experience or similar experience in providing delivery or distribution of essential needs and services to vulnerable populations;
  • Grantee should have experience working with various food and nutrition program partners across the City of San José and can identify gaps in service and opportunities to address systemic food distribution issues including community-based organization infrastructure needs to improve program effectiveness and resiliency;
  • Grantee must have the ability to implement services quickly;
  • Grantee should have an established procedure to screen and intake participants or have a formal relationship with an organization that will refer pre-screened participants that meet the eligibility requirements of this Program; and
  • Grantee organization mission statement must include or be aligned with one or more of the following goals:
    • To improve the health and well-being of vulnerable populations;
    • To respond to emergencies and/or crises;
    • To enrich the lives of isolated or medically vulnerable community members; and
    • To improve the social and physical health of the community through nutritious foods, educational opportunities, social connections, or other means.
Upcoming SJDA Annual Meeting - Please Vote for Board 
SJDA Annual Meeting
Oct. 9 | 8:15 a.m. | Register 

Official business at the San Jose Downtown Association Annual Meeting includes introducing 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 by each of the association’s subcommittees over the past year.
The traditional “State of the Downtown” address by Executive Director Scott Knies will kick off the meeting.

Please participate in the election of SJDA’s Board of Directors for the 2020-2022 term by submitting your ballot online. 

All ballots received by Oct. 8 will be 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.”

Upon registration to attend the meeting, 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
More meeting information and registration information can be found on SJDA’s Facebook event page.
COVID-19 Links
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 or call 311.

Businesses who would like a free graffiti removal tool kit can send an email to 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.
Copyright © 2020 San Jose Downtown Association, All rights reserved.

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