City of Camarillo – Businesses Reopening – New Biz-Scene Newsletter


Businesses are starting to reopen, which is good news for retailers, restaurant operators, manufacturers, and other businesses – as well as residents. However, there is some confusion regarding the requirements to reopen, and how to apply for financial assistance. For Ventura County businesses, the initial step to reopen is to visit The site has a checklist (plan) to complete before receiving approval to reopen.

With respect to COVID-19 financial help for businesses and families, the Board of Supervisors has approved a two-phase, $20 million Economic Stabilization and Recovery (ESR) program, funded through the Federal CARES Act. The ESR criteria is still being finalized, and the County is not yet taking applications. Business owners should go to and Sign-up to Receive Updates for email notification about the ESR application period.

ESR will include $5,000 grants to help small businesses with payroll, monthly rent, personal protective equipment, and other operational expenses. ESR is also for special costs connected to reopening (cleaning services, signage, customer interface protocols, security, etc.). Businesses with a maximum of $2 million in revenue during each of the prior two years are eligible to apply for assistance. The focus of the ESR grants will be the employment sectors hardest hit by COVID-19, including retail, food service, hospitality, personal care, and recreation. Over 95,000 people in these sectors have been affected, accounting for 26.2% of all jobs in Ventura County.

The pandemic caused the unemployment rate in Ventura County to increase significantly from March (4.6%) to April (14%), with over 80,000 residents filing for unemployment benefits. To help address the highest unemployment since the 1930s, the second phase of ESR will provide residential rental assistance to those facing possible evictions. For updates on ESR rental assistance, sign up at

Please note that other CARES Act assistance, including the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), is still in effect for qualified businesses and employees. For information, please go to (click the link to COVID-19 funding programs).

As always, consultants are available to assist all area businesses, at no cost, through the Economic Development Collaborative (EDC) and Small Business Development Center (SBDC); including help with the applications for CARES Act funding. In 2019, the EDC SBDC consultants assisted over 115 businesses in Camarillo. The EDC also has its own loan program, as does one of its partner agencies, Women’s Economic Ventures.

For EDC SBDC assistance, please call (805) 409-9159 (English), or (805) 309-5874 (Spanish), or contact Client Services Manager Alondra Gaytan: [email protected]. Business Reopening and Assistance



City of Camarillo

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