Concord Forward

COVID-19 Resources

COVID-19 Business Resources

Concord Forward: How the City of Concord is Supporting Local Business

Below is a list of resources for local businesses. Please navigate down the page or choose a link to jump to each section:

Current Shelter-in-Place Status

Effective April 7, 2021, Contra Costa County has moved to the orange or “moderate” tier of the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, the statewide reopening system for loosening and tightening restrictions based on the spread of COVID-19.

Retail, restaurants, gyms, bars, family entertainment centers, and movie theaters may operate at greater capacity, following indoor/outdoor capacity guidelines specified in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy and industry guidance. Businesses operating in the manufacturing, warehousing and logistical industries may operate, in addition to previously-designated essential businesses.

Businesses authorized to reopen should read and follow the most recent social distancing order. Also, businesses should read the Face Covering Order, as well as the State of California’s COVID-19 Employer Handbook and industry guidance.

The City of Concord and Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce have teamed up to create and distribute signage that encourages social distancing (Spanish). Businesses can email the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce to request delivery of the signage, or self-print for immediate use. The signage is printable on regular 8.5 x 11 paper, with signs taking up either a half or full-page.

For general information on the pandemic and how the City of Concord is responding, please visit the City of Concord COVID-19 Updates page. 

Concord Forward Action Plan

On June 9, 2020 the Concord City Council adopted an urgency ordinance approving the Concord Forward Action Plan, allowing the City to take several actions in support of the Concord business community as we work together to rebuild the local economy.,

Comprised of two broad efforts, the Concord Forward Action Plan focuses on Reopening Guidance and Sustainable Recovery. The City is committed to providing assistance to the business community as restrictions in the health orders are lifted to allow more businesses to operate, while continuing to seek input from a wide array of sectors and stakeholders as we work to achieve a sustainable recovery.

To further support businesses, the urgency ordinance authorizes the temporary waiver of certain municipal codes and fees that would otherwise create impediments as businesses seek to reopen safely and quickly.

View Concord Forward Action Plan >

Measure V Commercial Rent Relief Program

The Measure V Commercial Rent Relief Program will provide a one-time grant of $10,000 to small businesses that have experienced adverse financial impact due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Funded by Measure V sales tax revenue, the program will provide commercial rent relief to 95 small businesses within the City of Concord.

Participation by both the commercial tenant and landlord are required. Small businesses with at least $10,000 in commercial rent arrears accumulated due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and that meet the eligibility requirements, may apply. Commercial rent relief will be paid directly to landlords.

The online application opened on Monday, April 26, 2021 at 8:00 a.m. and will close on Friday, May 14, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. The selection process will consist of an initial screening of applicants based on priority criteria, followed by a lottery should the number of qualified applicants exceed the amount of funding available.

Learn More About the Measure V Commercial Rent Relief Program >

Shop Concord Gift Card Program

Update: Shop Concord will relaunch the week before Memorial Day with a $10,000 contribution from the City of Concord to supply a bonus gift card with every purchase, while supplies last. As of December 10, 2020, the promotional value for the previous contribution, which launched the week of Thanksgiving, is no longer available. Gifts cards are still available for purchase. Businesses can still sign up to participate in Shop Concord.

The City of Concord and Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce are excited to launch Shop Concord, a community e-gift card program that is free to businesses, to help businesses increase sales while also keeping dollars local.  Launching November 25 with a special promotion for consumers, the e-gift cards will be purchasable through a centralized Yiftee community card website and redeemable at any participating Concord business. 

The City of Concord and Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce are excited to launch Shop Concord, a community e-gift card program that is free to businesses, to help businesses increase sales while also keeping dollars local.  Launching November 25 with a special promotion for consumers, the e-gift cards will be purchasable through a centralized Yiftee community card website and redeemable at any participating Concord business. 

Learn More About Shop Concord >

Hazard Pay for Grocery Retail Workers

On March 30, 2021 at 9 p.m., the Concord City Council passed an urgency ordinance requiring Large Grocery Stores to pay an additional $5 per hour of hazard pay to grocery retail workers in Concord, effective immediately. “Large Grocery Stores” refers to grocery stores with more than 300 employees nationwide.

The mandate will last for 120 days from the effective date or until Contra Costa County moves into the Yellow Tier of California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, whichever is later.

Grocery stores should read the urgency ordinance to determine impact. For more information, contact Guy Bjerke, Director of Economic Development & Base Reuse, at guy.bjerke@cityofconcord.org or 925-671-3076.

Urgency Ordinance Establishing Hazard Pay for Grocery Retail Workers >

Concord Eviction Moratorium

These are extraordinary times and companies of all types are being impacted. In an effort to provide temporary relief to businesses in Concord impacted by COVID-19, on March 25, 2020, the Concord City Council voted unanimously to place a moratorium on evictions and rent increases. Originally in effect through May 31, 2020, in concurrence with Gavin Newsom’s Executive Order N-28-20, the City of Concord’s ordinance has been extended through June 30, 2021. The repayment period is 90 days for each month of missed rent, with the cumulative time period expected to start the day after the Governor‘s Executive Order N-28-20 expires.

According to the urgency ordinance, tenants of commercial space who can provide evidence of a loss of income of at least 20 percent as a result of COVID-19 will be protected from eviction. The ordinance will also apply to those subjected to considerable out-of-pocket medical or childcare expenses as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak or shutdowns.

Commercial landlords and tenants with compliance concerns can contact the City of Concord Economic Development and Base Reuse Department: Marie Suvansin, Economic Development Specialist, at marie.suvansin@cityofconcord.org. If you are looking for residential relief, please contact the Housing Division.

Opening Instructions for Outdoor Operations

Despite shelter-in-place orders, a variety of businesses such as restaurants and fitness studios may provide outdoor services. Businesses should read the shelter-in-place information referenced above.

Please note that restaurants preparing to resume indoor operations should follow the State of California’s industry guidance for dine-in restaurants.

The City of Concord is offering free, temporary licenses for businesses seeking to establish outdoor operations. Outdoor operations on public property, such as public sidewalks, streets and/or parking, is only allowed in the downtown and requires a temporary encroachment permit in addition to the temporary master license. For application assistance, please email the Planning Division.

Temporary Master License Application Packet >

Temporary Encroachment Permit Application for Downtown Businesses >

Site Plan Example >

Business License Relief Program

Local businesses with business license renewals due during the shelter-in-place order can defer payment without penalties or fees, and the new due date will be the end of the month 90 days after the shelter-in-place order is lifted. Deferral of renewal payments will be automatically applied to all accounts whose renewal payments fall within the duration of the order.

Please note that, while the program is being made available to all businesses with renewals due during the shelter-in-place order, businesses that are able to pay their renewal fees during this time should make the payment if their finances allow. Payment can be made online via the Business License Portal.

View FAQs for Business License Relief Program >

Concord’s List of Open Businesses

Many businesses are still open around Concord, including auto shops, grocery stores, hardware stores and dry cleaners, as well as retail and local restaurants open for take-out and delivery. The Economic Development and Base Reuse Department is providing a searchable database for such businesses to encourage local and regional residents to support them.

Businesses that are able to operate and not currently on the list are encouraged to submit their company information directly through the portal itself and Concord Economic Development staff will review the information as soon as possible.

Find Local Businesses >

Supporting Restaurants Through #ConcordEats

The City of Concord, Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce, and Visit Concord have partnered together and developed a list of restaurants offering delicious food for take-out and delivery. Many restaurants are even providing curbside service.

Concordians can show support for our community of restaurants representing more than 20 countries by using #ConcordEats in social media posts and tagging @CityofConcord in Instagram stories.

Together we can shop local and sustain our vibrant community! Don’t see your restaurant on the list? Concord restaurants not yet on the list may contact Melissa Rea, Director of Programs & Marketing for the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce, at mrea@concordchamber.com.

View Concord Restaurants >

Virtual Permit Center Is Open

While the City of Concord offices will remain closed until further notice in response to the COVID-19 shelter-in-place order, the Building, Engineering, and Planning Divisions of the Community Development Department are continuing to serve local businesses during these unprecedented times. Our team of permit staff is available remotely to process new and existing applications and respond to any general inquiries. Inspectors are also now performing inspections on all project types.

Businesses seeking information on zoning, permit requirements, and fees may utilize our Virtual Permit Center, also known as the “Permit Pal” tool. If you have any questions regarding building permits, administrative permits, wireless facility applications or home-based business permits, please review our Building and Planning Division FAQs sheets or contact the staff member assigned to your project.

View Building FAQs >

View Planning FAQs >

Additional COVID-19 Business Resources

To help mitigate the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Concord has highlighted a variety of federal, state and other resources that businesses can pursue. For more information, please visit the City of Concord COVID-19 Business Resource Page.

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