COVID-19 Updates


Ashland, Boyd County and Catlettsburg have started a joint daily update on the COVID-19 outbreak. This report provides updates on services, closings, emergency management and other important information for the public.

The daily reports can be viewed at the City of Ashland’s news page,

Commonwealth of Kentucky

Gov. Andy Beshear is holding daily news conferences to provide the latest COVID-19-related announcements. These are live streamed to his Facebook page,

Each briefing is available on the governor’s YouTube channel and is followed by a news release, available at

Employers and residents can stay up to date on the latest Kentucky COVID-19 information at:

Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development

The Cabinet’s business development project managers will be making calls to existing Kentucky manufacturers, service and tech companies. Project managers will offer insight, assistance and guidance during this time. As well, Kristina Slattery, executive director of the Office of Business and Community Services, will take point on handling and directing the Cabinet’s COVID-19-related business inquiries to our project managers, KY Innovation staff, the communications team and others within the Cabinet.

Contact the Cabinet for Economic Development at: (502) 564-7670 or
The Bottom Line

Kentucky Chamber

To address concerns surrounding the coronavirus, the Kentucky Chamber has created an open line of communication where you can get your business’s most pressing questions answered.

Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet

Gov. Beshear is waiving the waiting period for unemployment for those who are losing their jobs because of COVID-19 and will waive any work-search requirements while Kentucky’s state of emergency is in effect.

“We know the steps we are taking are going to cause people to lose their jobs,” Gov. Beshear said. “We want you to be able to qualify for unemployment and we don’t want to create impediments that keep you from being able to get through this. We are going to make sure we get through this together.”

The Kentucky Career Center provides unemployment services when employees become unemployed at no fault of their own. Those workers can receive a small amount of money to help them make ends meet during unemployment. That money comes from unemployment insurance. Unemployment insurance is funded by payroll taxes. To file a claim for unemployment insurance benefits, the job seeker must be separated from your employer or experience a reduction in your work hours.


Kentucky Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

The Kentucky SBDC stands ready to engage in contingency planning with our small business clients. Regardless of the causes, small businesses need to take action when the going gets tough. While there is no single cure-all, there are many steps a business owner can take to manage through the difficult times and position the business for future growth.

Business coaches are available to meet via Zoom web conference or phone to develop a plan of action for your business.

Download a checklist copy of Managing in Times of Financial Difficulty.

The Kentucky SBDC is here to support small business, especially during times of crisis. The Kentucky SBDC is open for business and ready to assist business owners with contingency planning and financial management tools. The Kentucky SBDC is here to help businesses navigate this public health crisis.

Contact the Kentucky SBDC at

Business as Unusual


As COVID-19 continues to alter our lives, the SOAR team has launched a webpage for a one-stop shop for information related to the virus. This site is pulling real-time information from SOAR Co-Principal Officers Governor Andy Beshear and Congressman Hal Rogers, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Kentucky Department for Public Health.

Additionally, provided are important resources for the following:

  • SMALL BUSINESSES | Access to SBA Disaster Loan information, services from the Kentucky Small Business Development Center, the Southeast Kentucky Economic Development Corporation, and Mountain Association for Community Economic Development.
  • EMPLOYEES | Access to information on Unemployment Insurance, as well as workforce training through regional workforce innovation boards, community action agencies, Kentucky SkillsU (GED Testing), and information on the Kentucky Community and Technical College System colleges in Appalachia Kentucky.
  • E-LEARNING | Access to information on virtual learning tools applicable to schools, parents, and guardians working to do coursework provided by schools when they are not in session.
  • FAMILIES | Access to everything from virtual field trips, zoo visits, and even dance lessons to keep children and families active and engaged during this time.
  • MENTAL HEALTH | In this time of disruption, it is important to provide access to help for those struggling with the stress and uncertainty of this moment.

SOAR has also started a free twice weekly series, Business as Unusual.


Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act: This bill addresses economic impacts of, and otherwise responds to, the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak.

To help small business owners and entrepreneurs better understand the new programs that will soon be available to them, a comprehensive guide to many of the small business provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was just passed by Congress is provided. These programs and initiatives are intended to assist business owners with whatever needs they have right now.

When implemented, there will be many new resources available for small businesses, as well as certain non-profits and other employers. This guide provides information about the major programs and initiatives that will soon be available from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to address these needs, as well as some additional tax provisions that are outside the scope of SBA.

To keep up to date on when these programs become available, please stay in contact with your local SBA District Office, which you can locate here.

Download the guide here.

Coronavirus Tax Relief

The IRS has established a special section focused on steps to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. This page will be updated as new information is available.

Visit Website

Restore Your Economy

Restore Your Economy is your resource for up-to-date information related to COVID-19 and its economic impacts. It is managed by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) with generous support from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and IEDC’s Economic Development Research Partners program.

The website contains resources for economic development leaders, surveys and helpful business assistance and recovery strategies.

WHD Website

U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced its first round of published guidance to provide information to employees and employersabout how each will be able to take advantage of the protections and relief offered by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) when it takes effect on April 1, 2020.

For more detailed information, see the fact sheet and press releases provided to SKED by Congressman Hal Rogers’ Office below:

U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division


U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved disaster relief loans for small businesses in Kentucky that are not able to operate due to the novel coronavirus outbreak. Kentuckians are urged to begin applying via the SBA’s official website or by calling 800-659-2955.