Colorado inches closer to another lockdown with tighter limits on gatherings; restaurant owners and managers feeling squeezed by delivery service fees in the Denver-metro area will want to check out their city committee meetings early, as a handful are considering fee caps; and today is the very last day to apply for loans and grants from the Energize Colorado Grant Fund. Plus, if you’ve ever considered changing your wage model, there’s never been a better time.
The following information comes from the CRA’s Friday, October 23 newsletter. Sign up to receive the full version here.
State Limits Gatherings to 10 People From Two Households
Earlier today, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment amended the state Safer at Home order to limit public and private gatherings to no more than ten individuals from no more than two households when not otherwise regulated as a specific sector or activity. These updates apply to all counties in Safer Levels 2 and 3 on the state dial. You can check where your county is on the dial here. You can read the entire amended state order here. The full restaurant guidance can be found in Appendix H starting on page 45.
Denver, Arapahoe, and Adams counties currently have stricter limits on gatherings; those orders remain in place and are not affected by this new state update. You can read about those counties’ orders here.
Because restaurants have existing regulations and public health guidance, this new gathering limit does not apply to restaurants. Although these orders do not implement significant changes within restaurants, we strongly encourage you to ask that your employees be vigilant and adhere with all existing public health orders, even outside of work. Stress to them that in addition to protecting their own health, they’re protecting their community: our industry’s survival—and all of our livelihoods—is dependent on bringing these numbers down. If these orders fail to curb the spread of COVID-19, there will be further restrictions for restaurants—which would be devastating to this industry.
Upcoming Local Meetings That Impact Restaurants (Arapahoe County, Aurora, Broomfield, Commerce City)
Arapahoe County, Aurora, Broomfield, and Commerce City have local meetings on October 26 and 27 to consider issues that would impact restaurants. You can read more about these meetings here, as well as find details about how to attend.
Arapahoe County is seeking approval of additional funding for the Advance Arapahoe grant program that targets small and medium-size businesses. Aurora, Broomfield and Commerce City are considering proposals for a cap on third-party delivery service fees.
Energize Colorado Applications Due Monday, October 26
The second round of applications for grants and loans through the Energize Colorado Gap Fund are due on October 26, 2020.
Small businesses with fewer than 25 full-time employees can apply for support through a mixture of grants and loans, up to a maximum of $15,000 in grants and $20,000 in loans, for a possible combined total of $35,000 in financial assistance. You can apply here.
October 28 Virtual Education Session: To Tip Pool or Not to Tip Pool: What You Need to Know About Changing Your Wage Model
As COVID-19 forces restaurateurs to scrutinize every aspect of their business, what was once an unusual move away from the traditional tipping model has become more common. Join us for a presentation by Todd Fredrickson, labor law attorney with Fisher & Phillips, who will outline the four main wage models used by restaurants and discuss the legal considerations of each. Restaurateurs who have shifted away from traditional tipping models will then discuss why they decided to make a change, and how it’s impacted their operations. There will be time for Q&A.
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