Coronavirus

State Rolls Out New Funding Program for Small Business

As small businesses continue to rebound from the economic shutdown, another funding program introduced on Monday is providing $25M in small business loans and grants to boost small business enterprises.

Energize Colorado, alongside the State of Colorado and the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, are now accepting applications for grants and loans through the Energize Colorado Gap Fund.

Small businesses with fewer than 25 full-time employees can apply for support through a mixture of ...

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Some Economic Insights about Northern Colorado

Recently, I was invited to brief a bank board about Northern Colorado Prospers and my perspectives on where the economy is headed as we try to climb out of the Covid-hole. A PDF copy of my PowerPoint presentation can be found here.

In the middle of the presentation and in the ‘bonus slides’ section at the end you’ll find some interesting data. Some of it is unsurprising: initial unemployment claims filings soared mid-March through mid-April. The economic downturn was widespread but part...

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America is a Gift

Happy belated 4th of July! I hope you had a great weekend. For my part, I enjoyed a quiet weekend that included grilling and a hike.

More than I should have, I also enjoyed watching video clips of alarmed newscasters in places like Los Angeles showing massive displays of illegal fireworks going off. People were going to celebrate their country in their own way regardless of what some state and local governments had to say about it. (Note to governors and mayors all across the nation: You can...

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The Fight for Business Goes On

The COVID-19 interrupted state legislative session recently concluded. With businesses damaged by the public health response to close the economy, our plea to the state legislature was “primum non nocere”, first do no harm. In their haste to foster social recovery, don’t pile new regulatory and financial burdens on businesses that finish them off or disincentivize them from hiring people.

In the end, it was a very tough session for business.

The area chambers and economic developers ...

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Re-igniting the Economy and Equality of Economic Opportunity

I want to cover a couple of economic issues with this post: re-igniting the regional economy and equality of economic opportunity.

Regarding the first, you may have seen the recent story in BizWest titled “Economic developers draft plan to reignite business recovery.” It’s about a coordinated effort on the part of chambers and economic developers in the region to understand what happened to the economy due to the public health shutdown of the economy. Further, we are exploring what can ...

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Making a Better Community

Our ability to look forward pulls us into the future and picks us up when we’ve been knocked down.

The past several months has put all that to test. The extended public health response to the novel coronavirus has left a lot of economic rubble. We’re looking up from the bottom of a deep hole…but now we’re starting to see good economic news:

A V-shaped economic recovery looked unlikely but now the numbers are shooting up.
Last Friday's unemployment report showed that 2.5 mill...

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Covid Crankiness and Being a Person of Good Deeds and Good Cheer

There’s a story in today’s Wall Street Journal that starts out like this: “The U.S. economy could take the better part of a decade to fully recover from the coronavirus pandemic and related shutdowns, a U.S. budget agency said, as a series of surveys pointed to continuing weakness in global manufacturing.”

Oh great, short-term losses and indignities of the COVID-19 and now this!

The public health response to the pandemic threat helped tank the economy. Now we have a lot of work in ...

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Thoughts on the Economic Impact to the Fort Collins Area of the Shutdown

The Board of Directors of the Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce held its first-ever virtual Board Retreat yesterday. A lot of topics were covered including reopening businesses and rebuilding the economy. Here are observations I shared with directors about how the public health shutdown will economically impact the greater Fort Collins area:

Lack of vaccine = a cautious public = reduced economic activity = slower economic recovery (a Nike swoosh instead of a “V” recovery). An 80% ec...

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The Chamber and the Pandemic Response

The Chamber has been sending a lot of information to you about specific loan programs and other resources to help you adapt to a pandemic world. It’s time for me to pull that together for a general overview.

Respond. In early March we started to pivot toward this threat. With the pending then subsequent mandatory government shutdowns in mid-March we were creating resources and communicating funding options to members:

We created an “Open for Business” page as a platform for area bu...

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The Face Mask Requirement

The City of Fort Collins and Larimer County have both mandated that businesses open to the public require employees, customers and others entering the business to wear a face covering. Estes Park has also put into place a similar ordinance.

We understand these orders have caused confusion, have been challenging to implement, and have put front line employees in a difficult position of trying to police these orders. One thing that may help: Both the City and the County have created signage tha...

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