Local Business Assistance

The City of Hilliard is committed to supporting our local business community during the rapidly evolving coronavirus situation.

In particular, we know our local small businesses may need information and support from the City during this challenging time. This page has been created as a one-stop shop for info and resources for our local business community.

Additional information and previous updates can be found at our Coronavirus page and on City of Hilliard social media.

Free SBA Meeting

Small businesses are invited to join the Hilliard Chamber of Commerce and City of Hilliard online to hear from Jerome Jones from the SBA Columbus office to discuss the CARES Act at on Thursday, April 9.
This is a free Zoom meeting, so you must have an account. (Sign up free.) You do need to RSVP by Wednesday, April 8, at https://business.hilliardchamber.org/events/details/zoom-meeting-with-the-small-business-association-sba-on-the-cares-act-5792.

From the State

Job postings by employers and job search assistance are available on the State of Ohio’s website.

Allow as many employees as possible to work from home by implementing policies in areas such as teleworking and video conferencing.

  • Actively encourage sick employees to stay home until they are free of fever or symptoms (without the use of medication) for at least 24 hours.
  • Do not require a healthcare provider’s note to validate the illness or return to work of employees sick with acute respiratory illness; healthcare provider offices and medical facilities may be extremely busy and not able to provide such documentation in a timely way.
  • Ensure that your sick leave policies are up to date, flexible, and non-punitive to allow sick employees to stay home to care for themselves, children, or other family members. Consider encouraging employees to do a self-assessment each day to check if they have any COVID-19 symptoms (fever, cough, or shortness of breath.).
  • Separate employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms from other employees and send them home immediately. Restrict their access to the business until they have recovered.
  • Reinforce key messages — stay home when sick, use cough and sneeze etiquette, and practice hand hygiene — to all employees, and place posters in areas where they are most likely to be seen. Provide protection supplies such as soap and water, hand sanitizer, tissues, and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
  • Frequently perform enhanced environmental cleaning of commonly touched surfaces. Use the cleaning agents that are usually used in these areas and follow the directions on the label. Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces can be wiped down by employees before each use.
  • Be prepared to change business practices if needed to maintain critical operations (e.g., identify alternative suppliers, prioritize customers, or temporarily suspend some of your operations).

Gov. Mike Dewine has encouraged all employers to take employees’ temperatures when they arrive at work in the morning. Although thermometers are difficult to come by right now, here’s a link to some advice from the law firm Bricker & Eckler for small businesses to consider.

Effective immediately, all vendors/contractors of the City of Hilliard must comply with Gov. DeWine’s recommendation that employers implement procedures to either check the temperatures of employees each day upon arrival at work or provide a procedure whereby employees take their own temperature at home each morning prior to coming to work.

Any person with an elevated temperature must be sent home or stay at home. Read this notice here.

Governor DeWine has that seeks to provide some assistance for small businesses with mortgage and rent payments. The order asks lenders and landlords across Ohio to work with their small businesses and suspend payments for at least 90 days in an effort to avoid foreclosures.

Temporary Orders To Support Small Business

With the support and encouragement of City Council, City Manager Michelle Crandall signed several temporary orders designed to help local businesses including restaurants and bars during the coronavirus pandemic. Each is effective until ended by the City Manager or City Council.

The intent of these orders is to support and promote local businesses during this difficult economic time and to support the recommendations of local and federal health officials to promote social distancing within the community.

Read the order

The City will allow businesses to create more temporary signage.

  • Window signs – A business may temporarily erect window signs greater than ten percent of the square footage of all windows for that business. Any increase shall not hinder the ability to view into the business for safety purposes. An application and permit are not required for this increase.
  • Temporary signs, banners and sandwich boards – A business may erect one temporary sign, banner, or sandwich board on or in front of its establishment. There will be no application or fee for this temporary sign. This temporary sign must comply with all Building Code Standards and with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Read the Order

The City will permit each restaurant or bar in the Old Hilliard Zoning Districts to block off and erect signage to create one temporary pick-up spot or parking spot to allow for easy takeout and carryout by patrons.

Read the Order: Food Trucks | Push Carts

The date to submit an application for a food truck, mobile food vending unit, or pushcart for their annual routinely scheduled locations is extended to June 1, 2020. These permits will not be approved until after June 1, 2020.

If a food truck or mobile food vending unit wants to provide services to or in support of a City of Hilliard business before June 1, and those services require it to be on a City sidewalk, walkway, street, road, park, or alley, the applicant must submit an application to the City’s Building and Zoning Department with the following information:

  • Applicant’s name, address, telephone number and employer identification number or social security number;
  • The requested location, date, and time;
  • Copy of a current license issued by a County or City board of health to conduct a Food Service Operation;
  • The name of the City of Hilliard business it is providing services or support to.

Upon review of the above information, the City may issue a permit which allows the Food Truck or Mobile Food Vending Unit to operate for the specific requested location, date and time.

Read the Order

The City will temporarily suspend the issuance of permits for canvassers, peddlers, and solicitors and has suspended existing permits until further notice.

Businesses can get up to a $500 rebate for COVID-19 related sign purchases through the Hilliard Development Corporation. Refer to the program guidelines below for more information.

Resources

Lots of local resources for our business community.

Hilliard residents and others wanting to help their neighbors and community during the COVID-19 crisis are urged to support the “Hilliard Gives: We’re All In This Together” charitable initiative.

Financial contributions to the Hilliard Community Foundation’s “Hilliard Gives” campaign will be used to directly benefit community non-profit organizations that are on the front lines supporting local residents who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

All tax-deductible contributions are distributed from The Columbus Foundation to Hilliard Community Foundation. Visit The Columbus Foundation to donate to “Hilliard Community Foundation Fund” today, or send a check to Hilliard Community Foundation, 4081 Main Street, Hilliard, Ohio 43026.,

Funds from “Hilliard Gives” will be distributed to these non-profit agencies through a grant process managed by the Hilliard Community Foundation. Download this form, fill it out, save it, and then either email it to rapel@directedlifestyle.com or mail it to Hilliard Community Foundation, 4081 Main Street, Hilliard, Ohio 43026.

“We will weather this storm as one community,” said Bob Apel, Hilliard Community Foundation Board Chair. “The Hilliard Community Foundation stands ready to support the community during this crisis by dispersing collected funds quickly to local non-profits that are working to help our affected residents. We’re all in this together – and together we will show the compassion and caring spirit Hilliard residents have in their hearts.”

Because of the COVID-19 response, many people in the community have found themselves without a guaranteed income or access to basic needs that can be provided most effectively through local non-profit agencies. These agencies can apply to the Hilliard Community Foundation to request funds they can use to directly benefit those most in need.

“This is an unprecedented time for our country and our community,” said City Manager Michelle Crandall. “We have heard from many people who want to find an appropriate way to open their hearts and help their neighbors but are not sure how they can best make a difference. Contributing to the ‘Hilliard Helps’ campaign shows you recognize that we are all in this together.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has ordered relaxing of some unemployment compensation requirements for COVID-19 impacted workers. The claim process has been expedited for those who do not receive paid leave and for people who have been quarantined due to COVID-19. Visit unemployment.ohio.gov for additional information.

While Gov. Mike Dewine has placed a ban on restaurants and bars being open, it is still possible to get carry-out and delivery.

The SBA is working directly with Governor DeWine’s office to facilitate a disaster declaration from the SBA for businesses to be eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans. To expedite this process, complete the attached Disaster Loan Declaration form and email it to james.laipply@development.ohio.gov.

Additional disaster assistance resources are also available from SBA.

The City is inviting students, residents or employees who would normally access WiFi at their place of work, school or the public library to access its public WiFi network, “Hilliard Public.” A map of these access points is available on our website.

Please visit COTA’s Coronavirus page to learn more and join COTA in the fight to stop the spread of infectious disease.

COTA will begin to implement Focused Service as early as Tuesday, March 17.  It will likely include frequency reductions on commuter routes to build capacity for alternate needs in the near future. It is designed to be more focused on the areas of greatest need.

As service may fluctuate throughout this public health emergency, COTA is directing customers to stay up to date on information by:

  • visiting COTA’s Major Service Change Announcements website.
  • subscribing to COTA Rider Alerts, and/or
  • calling COTA’s Customer Care Center at (614) 228-1776.

COTA has temporarily suspended crosstown routes Lines 21 Hilliard-Rome, Line 25 Brice, and Line 35 Dublin-Granville have been temporarily suspended. All other crosstown lines continue to operate on reduced frequency. Rush Hour lines, AirConnect, NightOwl remain suspended.

COTA recognizes that the temporary suspension of these lines will restrict transit access for some communities on the Far East, Westside, and North Columbus, including our growing New American populations. Please know that we take these decisions seriously.

Visit the COTA website for updates.

  • Compiled federal and state resources available for businesses and the workforce.
  • Columbus Chamber of Commerce resource guide.

Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted have submitted a formal request for federal assistance for small businesses.

The Franklin County Commissioners today voted to approve two new initiatives aimed at delivering assistance to small businesses and their employees who are suffering under the current public health restrictions.  Both efforts are to be delivered by the commissioners’ Economic Development and Planning Department using existing partners.  The first includes $500,000 in additional funding for ECDI, the Economic and Community Development Institute, which will be able to leverage that money in order to provide $2 million in market-rate small business loans that can be used for things like payroll, inventory, or other working capital.

The second program created by the commissioners with Tuesday morning’s vote is aimed at providing direct support to employees who suddenly find themselves out of work due to the ongoing public health restrictions.  It is a further $500,000 investment with the Workforce Development Board of Central Ohio, which will use it to provide direct cash support for qualified applicants.  Participants will engage in workforces preparedness or credentialing activities such as online workshops and, in return, they will receive $250 to help with immediate expenses until unemployment or other longer-term support options kick in.

Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses in over 30 countries where we operate. We’ll share more details as they become available.

Important Links

Important Documents

Get the facts

The City of Hilliard encourages you to get COVID-19 health information directly from these reliable sources: