The City of Springfield's Health and Human Services Department is currently monitoring the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and will provide further updates as new developments and relevant information becomes available.
UPDATE - July 7, 2020: Mayor Sarno Toured MGM Springfield to See Comprehensive Reopening Plans
July 2, 2020: Reopening Massachusetts: Governor Baker Announces Transition to Third Phase of Four-Phase Reopening Approach; 4th Round of Prime the Pump for Non-Profits Announced
July 1, 2020: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Releases Update for Fall School Reopning Guidance
June 30, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Updated Travel Guidelines to Support Massachusetts' COVID-19 Response
June 22, 2020: Massachusetts Transitions to Step 2 of Phase 2 of Reopening; Massachusetts RMV Offers License Renewal Incentive
June 17, 2020: City of Springfield Announces $500,000 in Third Round of Prime the Pump Grant Program
June 15, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Pop Up COVID-19 Testing for June 17 and 18
June 8, 2020: Sector-Specific Protocols and Best Practices
June 5, 2020: Mayor Sarno Moves to Facilitate and Energize Restaurants' / Businesses' Bottom Lines and Our Economy
May 29, 2020: Mayor Sarno joined Congressman Neal and PVTA Administrator Sheehan for Announcement of $36 million in CARES Act Funding to PVTA
May 22, 2020: RMV Implements Further Credential Extensions
May 21, 2020: Mayor Sarno Announced Phased Reopening Plans for City of Springfield
May 18, 2020: Governor Baker Announced Four-Phased Plan for Reopening Massachusetts
May 11, 2020: The Food Bank of Western Mass - Transportation to Get Food Through May 16th; Governor Baker Announces Four-Phase Approach to Reopening Massachusetts & Publishes Woekplace Safety Standards
May 7, 2020: Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance; City of Springfield Reopens Golf Courses
May 5, 2020: Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance
May 1, 2020: Governor Baker Issues Order Requiring Face Coverings to be worn in Public
April 29, 2020: Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Partnership with Mercy Medical to begin testing at the Springfield Rescue Mission
April 28, 2020: City of Springfield Awards 76 New Grants to City Small Businesses as Part of the Second Round of “Prime the Pump”; Governor Charlie Baker Announced 'Stay at Home Advisory' and 'Closure of Non-essential Businesses' Extended Until May 18th; Springfield City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to Public Until May 18, 2020; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Homeless Testing to Start in Partnership with Baystate Health Systems
April 23, 2020: City of Springfield’s Administration and Finance Division Recognized with Distinguished Budget Presentation Award
April 22, 2020: Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Report Major Spike of 104 New Cases Today; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory to Essential Retail Establishments
April 21, 2020: Massachusetts Schools will Remain Closed this Academic Year
April 20, 2020: Governor Baker Signs Housing Bill Granting Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures; Governor Baker Announced Implementation of CARES Act Unemployment Benefits for Self-Employed and Other Workers
April 17, 2020: Springfield Public Schools Announce Meals Available for All Kids, Not Just SPS Students
April 16, 2020: Masschusetts RMV Further Extends Certain Deadlines
April 15, 2020: Mayor Sarno Orders Hiring and Spending Freeze; MassMutual Offering $3 Billion in Free Life Insurance to Healthcare Workers on COVID-19 Frontline
April 13, 2020: Mayor Sarno Continues to Closely Monitor COVID-19 Situation; City of Springfield Activates COVID-19 Hotline; Governor Baker Signs An Act to Further Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities, School Districts and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19
April 10, 2020: City of Springfield Releases Round Two of Prime the Pump Business Grant Program; Governor Baker Advises Massachusetts Residents to Wear Face Coverings
April 9, 2020: MassHire to Hold Springfield Strong Online Job Expo; City of Springfield Responds to Massachusetts Gaming Commission Vote on MGM Budget
April 8, 2020: City of Springfield to Adjust Deadline for Tax Relief Applications; Mass. DPH Issued an Emergency Order Regarding Grocery Store Operations and Occupancy Limits; Governor Baker and DPH Updated COVID-19 Essential Services FAQs
April 3, 2020: Mayor Sarno and Health Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory and Recommendation; Springfield Awards 30 Grants to City Restaurants as Part of the “Prime the Pump” Grant Program; City of Springfield to Adjust Collection Date for 4th Quarter Real Estate Property Taxes
April 2, 2020: Springfield City Council and School Committee Schedule Virtual Meetings; Congressman Richard E. Neal Announces the signing of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and CDBG Funding for Springfield; Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Extends the Renewal Deadline for Motor Vehicle Registration
April 1, 2020: Springfield Public Schools Add Additional Meal Site and Make Other Announcements
March 31, 2020: Governor Baker Extends Order for Non-Essential Businesses to Remain Closed Until May 4, 2020
March 30, 2020: Mayor Sarno and Police Commissioner Clapprood Announce Partnership with MA State Police; Mayor Sarno gave his Weekly COVID-19 Situational Update; City of Springfield closes and prohibits all active recreational activities; Springfield Public Schools Begin Initiative to Distribute Laptops to Students.
March 27, 2020: Governor Baker Announced New Travel Guidelines; Springfield City Library Announced Services Available; MassDOT-Registry of Motor Vehicles No-Walk-in Policy; City of Springfield Announces Contingency Plan for City’s Homeless Population; Mayor Sarno Signs on to Letter Asking the President and Federal Government to Coordinate Efforts for the Purchasing and Distribution of Medical Equipment; Massachusetts Announces State Income Tax Filing Deadline Being Extended to July 15; Mayor Sarno Petitions HUD for Additional CDBG Funds for Small Business Assistance; Mayor Sarno Announces Request for Massachusetts National Guard
March 26, 2020: City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to the Public Until May 4, 2020
March 25, 2020: City of Springfield COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Situational Update
March 24, 2020: City of Springfield Office of Planning & Economic Development Resources
March 23, 2020: Governor Baker Issues New Order and Advisory
March 19, 2020: City of Springfield Issues New Public Health Emergency Recommendations
March 18, 2020: City of Springfield Restaurant Grant Program, U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Assistance to Small Businesses, and Western Mass Economic Development Council State and Community Partners Resources
March 17, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Small Business Recovery Loan Fund
March 16, 2020: City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Close to Pubic
March 13, 2020: City of Springfield Declares State of Emergency
March 11, 2020: Springfield Public Schools
March 10, 2020: Baystate Health COVID-19 Information
March 4, 2020: Massachusetts Department of Public Health
(UPDATE) July 7, 2020
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, along with key members of his administration, joined with MGM Springfield President and COO Chris Kelley and other MGM officials for a tour of MGM Springfield to see first-hand their comprehensive reopening plans. MGM Springfield is scheduled to reopen, in part and with restrictions, Monday, July 13, 2020.
MGM Resorts’ will follow a comprehensive “Seven-Point Safety Plan” which was developed in conjunction with an epidemiologist and other health experts to assure the wellbeing of the public and their workforce. MGM Springfield will also be following strict Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) guidelines where the property will be adhering to a substantially reduced capacity limit during the initial phase of reopening.
The City of Springfield will continue to work closely with MGM Springfield, medical experts, the MGC and other state officials as the casino begins the phased reopening of their facility and amenities.
(UPDATE) July 2, 2020
The following businesses will be eligible to reopen in Step One of Phase III, subject to industry-specific rules concerning capacity and operations:
- Movie theaters and outdoor performance venues;
- Museums, cultural and historical sites;
- Fitness centers and health clubs;
- Certain indoor recreational activities with low potential for contact;
- Professional sports teams, under the authority of league-wide rules, may hold games without spectators
Full guidance and list of businesses eligible to reopen in Step One of Phase III can be found at www.mass.gov/reopening. Businesses and sectors set to begin opening in Phase III are subject to compliance with all mandatory safety standards.
Revised Gatherings Order:
Under the updated gatherings order, indoor gatherings are limited to eight people per 1,000 square feet, but should not exceed 25 people in a single enclosed, indoor space.
Outdoor gatherings in enclosed spaces are limited to 25 percent of the facility’s maximum permitted occupancy, with a maximum of 100 people in a single enclosed outdoor space. This includes community events, civic events, sporting events, concerts, conventions and more. This order does not apply to outdoor, unenclosed gatherings if proper social distancing measures are possible.
This revised order does not supersede previously issued sector guidance, and is effective beginning Monday, July 6. It will be effective Monday, July 13 in the City of Boston.
Public Health Guidance:
In Phase III, health care providers may continue to provide in-person procedures and services as allowed in Phase II, with the addition of certain group treatment programs and day programs. These programs include adult day health, day habilitation programs, and substance abuse services day treatment and outpatient services. Certain human services programs can reopen including community based day services for adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities and psychosocial rehabilitation clubhouses.
Health care providers are subject to compliance with all mandatory safety standards, and must continue to utilize prioritization policies established in Phase II for care delivery and scheduling, as well as monitor patient volume for non-essential, elective procedures and services.
Read the full guidance here.
In Phase III, visitation guidelines have been updated for 24/7 congregate care facilities and programs overseen by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, including the Departments of Developmental Services, Youth Services, Children and Families, Public Health, Mental Health and the Mass Rehabilitation Commission. Offsite visits, including overnight visits, will be allowed, under specific guidelines. Other updated guidelines, including visitation for long term care facilities, will be released later today. Complete visitation guidance is available at www.mass.gov/hhs/reopening.
MassHealth will also extend its current telehealth flexibility through at least the end of the year to ensure member access to critical health care services and encourage continued adherence to preventative public health precautions.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan today announced the release of $250,000 for a Fourth Round of the Prime the Pump Grant Program, to assist Springfield non-profit organizations, which have been economically impacted by the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020. Since that time, the city has advanced over $1,250,000 to assist the city’s small businesses and restaurants in dealing with the economic impacts of the pandemic and the associated public health orders. The Prime the Pump Program to date has touched small businesses in every neighborhood of the city and has provided assistance to many minority and women owned businesses. Today’s announcement brings Springfield’s grant assistance to local employers to $1,500,000.
(UPDATE) July 1, 2020
The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released initial guidance for school reopening on June 25th with a focus on safely returning as many student as possible to in-person settings. Those guidelines were updated on July 1st.
Visit the Massachusetts Department of Education website: http://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/.
(UPDATE) June 30, 2020
Effective Wednesday, July 1, all travelers arriving to Massachusetts, including residents returning home, are instructed to self-quarantine for 14-days. This guidance does not apply to travelers from Rhode Island, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New York or New Jersey. Additionally, workers designated by the federal government as essential critical infrastructure workers are also exempt from this directive.
Travelers who are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 are instructed to not travel to Massachusetts.
All visitors and residents of Massachusetts are also reminded that the use of masks or face coverings in public places where individuals cannot socially distance from others remains required.
(UPDATE) June 22, 2020
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) is encouraging all eligible customers to renew their standard Massachusetts driver’s license or Massachusetts ID card online at Mass.Gov/RMV any time between now and August 12, 2020, in order to qualify for a free upgrade to a REAL ID credential in 2021. This one-time, time limited offer is available to most customers who have an expired or expiring license or ID card dated between March 2020 and August 2021, as renewals are allowed up to two years after expiration, or up to a year in advance of the expiration date printed on their license or ID.
Qualifying customers who complete their renewal online prior to August 12th and wish to upgrade to a REAL ID for free, will have to wait until at least February 2021 to visit an RMV Service Center. At this time, customers will not need a federally-compliant REAL ID for the purposes of boarding domestic flights prior to October 1, 2021 because the federal government delayed the compliance effective date by one-year. The fee for obtaining a standard or REAL ID license is $50, while the fee for obtaining a standard or REAL ID card is $25. The typical $25 upgrade / amendment fee will be waived under these qualifying circumstances. A limited digital campaign – “Stay Safe, Save Time, Go Online” -- will also accompany this promotion and can be viewed at this link:
The following will be eligible to reopen in Step Two of Phase II on Monday, June 22:
- Indoor table service at restaurants;
- Close contact personal services, with restrictions;
- Retail dressing rooms, by appointment only;
- Offices, at 50 percent capacity
Full list and safety protocols available at www.mass.gov/reopening.
In order to give Step 2 businesses time to prepare, the Administration had previously released sector-specific guidance in advance of Phase II for industries including restaurants, close-contact personal services and sectors not otherwise addressed:
- Guidance for Restaurants
- Guidance for Close-Contact Personal Services
- Guidance for Other Industries
- Guidance for Sectors Not Otherwise Addressed
Before these sectors can resume operations under the guidelines, businesses must meet all safety standards, create a COVID-19 control plan, and complete a self-certification.
(UPDATE) Update June 17, 2020
Applications for the Third Round of Prime the Pump are due July 1, 2020 by 3:00 p.m. and must be submitted electronically to the attention of Anthony Moore at email@example.com
Click on the links below to view the Guidelines and to download the application.
(UPDATE) June 15, 2020
The Commonwealth is urging anyone who has attended a large gathering in the past two weeks to get tested for COVID-19. This testing may be provided at no cost to you on June 17th and 18th.
More info: www.mass.gov/info-details/get-tested-for-covid-19-june-17th-and-18th.
Springfield Testing Locations
140 High St.
380 Plainfield St.
298 Carew St.
(UPDATE) June 8, 2020
Governor Baker has updated the sector-specific mandatory safety standards and recommended best practices to include restaurants and retail businesses as part of the Commonwealth's Phase II reopening plans.
(UPDATE) June 5, 2020
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and the City’s Licensing Department announced today that pursuant to Governor Baker’s Executive Order, applicable guidance from the Commonwealth and input from various municipal departments, the City of Springfield has issued guidance and applications for temporary extension of licensed premises to outdoor space.
As part of the Commonwealth’s and the City of Springfield’s Phase II reopening plan. Restaurants and other establishments will now be able to seek a temporary extension of their license to provide outdoor table service.
Applications for temporary modifications of Liquor Licenses do not need to be submitted to the State’s Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (ABCC). Review and approval of a modified permit from the ABCC will be made at the local level and notification to the State will be made by the City of Springfield.
(UPDATE) May 29, 2020
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, today, joined with Congressman Richard E. Neal, and Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) Administrator Sandra Sheehan for the announcement of $36,615,416 in Federal Transit Authority funding as a result of the CARES Act.
This funding will enable the PVTA to provide transit service during the COVID-19 public health emergency while also allowing the PVTA to respond to new transit operations needs post COVID-19. The grant is 100% federal funds with no local match required.
(UPDATE) - May 22, 2020
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) has implemented further extensions to the renewal timelines for expiring motor vehicle inspection stickers, passenger plate registrations, professional credentials, and driver's licenses and learner's permits, including Commercial Driver’s Licenses and Commercial Permits (CDLs / CLPs).
While the RMV previously announced extensions for most credentials, passenger plate registrations, and inspection stickers expired or expiring in March, April, and May, an additional extension has been applied to those credentials, and an extension has been added to some credentials expiring in June, July, and August.
(UPDATE) - May 21, 2020:
As part of the City of Springfield’s phased reopening plan, all municipal buildings and facilities will be reopening to the public, by appointment only, along with other restrictions, starting Wednesday, May 27, 2020.
All municipal buildings will remain closed to walk-in traffic.
Individuals will need to schedule an appointment with the appropriate city department they are looking to do their city related business with, as there will be a limit to the number of individuals inside city buildings and city offices.
Residents can schedule an appointment with the city department they need to conduct business with by calling either our 311 Call Center or by contacting that city department directly.
Appointments must be made at least 24 hours in advance.
Click here for Contact Info by Department.
(UPDATE) - May 18, 2020:
The Baker-Polito Administration announced today the comprehensive plan to safely reopen the Massachusetts economy, get people back to work, and to ease social restrictions while minimizing the health impacts of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
Governor Baker announced the states Four-Phased plan of reopening the Commonwealth. The phases will be "Start", "Cautious", "Vigliant", and "the New Normal", respectively.
Residents and Businesses are encouraged to visit the states "Reopening Massachusetts" website which provides additional information and guidance about the phased reopening and which industries and sectors are allowed to open and when at www.mass.gov/reopening
Click the link below to view the detailed guidance for specific industries and sectors on the opening plan, as issued by the Governor.
Click on the line below to view the detailed report on the reopening of Massachusetts, as issued by the Governor.
(UPDATE) - May 11, 2020:
On Monday, May 11, 2020, Governor Baker announced a four-phased approach to reopening the Massachusetts economy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and published Mandatory Workplace Safety Standards that will apply across all sectors and industries once reopening begins.
The Massachusetts economy will be reopened using a four-phase approach, based on public health guidance. Businesses and activities with a lower risk of COVID-19 transmission will open in earlier phases. Public health metrics will determine when the first phase of reopening begins, as well as when it is safe to move into later phases. If public health metrics worsen, the state may need to return to an earlier phase.
- Phase 1 will be “Start:” limited industries resume operations with severe restrictions
- Phase 2 will be “Cautious:” additional industries resume operations with restrictions and capacity limits
- Phase 3 will be “Vigilant:” additional industries resume operations with guidance
- Phase 4 will be the “New Normal:” development of vaccine and/or therapy enables resumption of new normal
The Department of Public Health (DPH) and the COVID-19 Command Center developed new Mandatory Workplace Safety Standards in consultation with the Reopening Advisory Board. These new standards will apply universally to all workplaces that are open in Phase 1, and are designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission to employees and customers during the first phase of reopening, and are applicable to all sectors and industries. Read more on Work Place Safety Standards at mass.gov.
The Reopening Advisory Board is scheduled to provide its full report to Governor Baker on Monday, May 18th.
The Food Bank of Western Mass has been authorized to give out LYFT codes " for people in Holyoke, Chicopee, or Springfield needing transportation to get food, the codes will give you a round trip to a grocery store, farm- stand or food pantry up to $10 each way. Codes can be obtained through May 16, 2020 by calling The Food Bank at 413-387-3849.
(UPDATE) - May 7, 2020:
Governor Baker has updated the Essential Services Guidance to allow golf courses to reopen on Thursday, May 7, 2020, with strict guidelines and restrictions such as prohibiting golf carts, bunker rakes and caddies.
Following the Governor's update to the Commonwealths Essential Services Guidance of allowing golf courses to reopen but under strict guidelines and restrictions. Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Patrick Sullivan, Executive Director of Parks, Buildings and Recreation Management, announced today during the Mayor’s daily COVID-19 (Coronavirus) cabinet heads meeting that the City of Springfield will be reopening the municipal golf courses on Sunday, May 10, 2020.
(UPDATE) - May 5, 2020:
Governor Baker updated the Essential Services Guidence easing restrictions on certain retail establishments for "remote fulfillment" and "no-contact" deliveries for many non-essential businesses including florist, bookstores, jewelers, etc.
The new guidelines require these stores to remain closed to the public and limit operating hours to allow for sufficient off-hour cleaning. Employees must wear face coverings and stay at least six feet apart from one another, and all deliveries must be "no-contact" deliveries to consumers.
The guidelines also limit the number of employees that can work at a given time, starting with three in a business smaller than 10,000 square feet and growing to seven in a facility with more than 30,000 square feet.
Employers must also require workers to self-administer temperature checks before their shifts, and not report to work if they have a fever over 100 degrees.
(UPDATE) - May 1, 2020:
Governor Charlie Baker issued an order requiring everyone in the Commonwealth to wear face coverings in public - including in businesses, outdoors, or on public transportation. The order will go into effect on Wednesday.
(UPDATE) - April 29, 2020:
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield in partnership with Mercy/Trinity Health will have all systems in place to continue testing of our vulnerable homeless population at the Springfield Rescue Mission’s Taylor Street site on Friday or Saturday and will begin to mobilize at the Rescue Mission’s Mill Street site by next week.
(UPDATE) - April 28, 2020:
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield in partnership with Baystate Health will have all systems in place to begin testing of our vulnerable homeless population starting tomorrow at the city’s Worthington Street site.
Mayor Sarno stated, “I am very thankful to Commissioner Caulton-Harris for her continued yeoman efforts and to Dr. Mark Keroack, President and CEO of Baystate Health Systems, and his team for once again stepping up to the plate and delivering. Additionally, working together, Baystate, with a providers note, will expand overall testing opportunities at their Carew and High Streets sites and per my request establish neighborhood-testing site by the end of this week at their Brightwood Health Center on Plainfield Street. We are also working together on a stand up testing site at the Mason Square Health Center very shortly too.”
Following Governor Charlie Baker’s extension of the Commonwealths stay-at-home advisory and closing of all non-essential businesses order, City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until May 18, 2020. The original date in which the state and local municipalities and non-essential businesses would have been able to reopen was May 4, 2020.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno also announced that he has directed his cabinet heads to begin reviewing plans and what measures that are going to be needed for the eventual reopening of City Hall and other municipal buildings. Mayor Sarno has also directed his cabinet heads to begin reviewing the city’s plans for when the Governor’s non-essential business closing order expires.
Mayor Sarno states, “Following Governor Baker’s extension and after meeting again with my cabinet heads, City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until May 18, 2020. I have also directed by cabinet heads, who have been tested and true, to begin reviewing our plans for the eventual reopening of the city. Though, like everyone else we’re chomping at the bit to reopen, we do not want to ‘jump the gun’ and reopen to soon, we must remain prudent and vigilant. My city team will begin reviewing what measures and protocols are going to be needed to reopen in controlled phases - out of an abundance of caution. We have to be smart on how we approach this. We will continue to listen to all of the medical and health experts and professionals so that when we do begin to reopen in phases, we do so with the utmost confidence for our residents and business community.”
Governor Baker announced back on March 15, 2020, Emergency Actions to help address and mitigate the potential spread of COVID-19. The City of Springfield continues to follow and adhere to all of the public health and safety guidelines and measures as directed by the Governor’s Office, Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
All City of Springfield employees continue to report to work as directed and under the discretion of their managers. Departments will remain open in a modified aspect. The City of Springfield will continue to maintain all essential functions and services. Residents are encouraged to continue to conduct their city related business remotely when possible by utilizing our 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111 and our website at www.springfield-ma.gov.
This afternoon, Governor Baker announced that he is extending the state's emergency order closing non-essential businesses as well as the state's stay-at-home advisory until May 18th. Governor Baker also announced the creation of a reopening advisory board.
City of Springfield Awards 76 New Grants to City Small Businesses as Part of the Second Round of “Prime the Pump”
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today the awarding of 76 grants totaling $500,000 in the second round of the Prime the Pump program, assisting businesses in response to the economic crisis spurred from emergency closures due to Covid-19.
The City saw overwhelming interest in the grant program, with over $1.5 million in grant requests from 114 applications across the city, all submitted in just one week.
The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020. With these awards, the city has now awarded 106 emergency grants to businesses in two rounds of Prime the Pump. The first round of the program awarded 30 grants to restaurants while the second round was open to businesses of all types. Between the two programs, the city has now awarded over $725,000 in grants to Springfield businesses.
The tentative awards subject to contract execution are listed here.
(UPDATE) - April 23, 2020:
City of Springfield’s Administration and Finance Division Recognized with Distinguished Budget Presentation Award
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno is proud to report that the city’s Administration and Finance Division, led by Chief Administrative and Financial Officer (CAFO) TJ Plante, has been recognized by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) with the prestigious Distinguished Budget Presentation Award.
Mayor Sarno and CAFO Plante are pleased to announce that the city’s FY19 budget submission was recognized by GFOA and awarded this honor. This award is the highest form of recognition in governmental budgeting and represents a significant achievement for the City of Springfield. This acknowledgement also marks the 12th year in a row in which the city has received this award.
UPDATE (April 21, 2020):
On the heels of the major spike in the daily number of positive COVID-19 cases, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris today issued a new Public Health Advisory to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and to continue to stress the importance of following social distancing guidelines and public health and safety measures.
The City of Springfield is asking those stores that provide essential services (such as grocery stores, pharmacies, large box stores, convenience and retail stores, etc.) to partner with the city and require their patrons to wear face coverings.
Springfield appreciates Big Y for already taking this proactive approach and the city strongly encourages and recommends that other essential retail establishments partners with the city for the good of all.
The City’s Health and Human Services (HHS) Department continues to review and monitor the COVID-19 situation. HHS staff continue to be proactive in the community by visiting sites across the city to assure that the public health emergency orders and recommendations issued by Governor Baker, the CDC and Mayor Sarno are being followed and adhered to.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris report a major spike of 104 new COVID-19 (Coronavirus) cases today, bringing the city’s total to nearly 1,000 cases (967).
Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris state that the city will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely so that the city does not reopen and ease the prudent measures to early, which could potentially expose residents to a second wave of the virus.
UPDATE (April 21, 2020):
Massachusetts Schools will Remain Closed this Academic Year
Governor Charlie Baker and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education announced on April 21st that Massachusetts students will remain home for the rest of the school year to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Remote learning will continue.
UPDATE (April 20, 2020):
Governor Baker Signs Housing Bill Granting Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures
Governor Baker signed a housing security bill (H4647) which establishes a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures until after the coronavirus pandemic. The moratorium will last for 120 days, or until 45 days after Governor Baker lifts the COVID-19 state of emergency. The bill does not absolve tenants or homeowners from paying their rents or mortgages, but does protect them from paying late penalties as long as they demonstrate that their inability to pay during the crisis is due to a hardship caused by the pandemic.
Governor Baker announced that residents who were not eligible for regular unemployment benefits can now apply online for the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) Program.
The new federal PUA program provides up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits who are unable to work because of a COVID-19-related reason but are not eligible for regular or extended unemployment benefits. This includes self-employed workers, independent contractors, gig economy workers, and those with limited work history. Applicants can learn more and apply at www.mass.gov/pua.
UPDATE (April 17, 2020):
Meal service provided by Springfield Public Schools’ food service provider, Sodexo, is available to not only Springfield Public Schools students but to students from all schools in Springfield and from surrounding communities.
“We’ve had a great number of inquiries from parents of students in surrounding cities and towns asking if they can take advantage of our free meal program during this closure and I want to be very clear that answer is a resounding yes,” said Superintendent of Springfield Public Schools Daniel Warwick. “Families from surrounding communities and Springfield families whose children do not attend Springfield Public Schools are more than welcome.”
Free breakfast and lunch are available each weekday for all students, regardless of their city or town of residence or of the school they attend. The meals are grab-and-go and are available between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday – Friday at 17 locations throughout the City. Identification is not required when picking up a meal.
UPDATE (April 16, 2020):
The Massachusetts RMV has implemented further extensions for expiring motor vehicle inspection stickers, passenger plate registrations, professional credentials, and licenses and permits, including Commercial Driver’s Licenses and Permits (CDLs / CLPs).
While 60-day extensions had already been implemented for most credentials, passenger plate registrations, and inspection stickers expired or expiring in March and April, this new action will apply the same 60-day extension to those expiring in May. Additionally, credentials expiring in March 2020 that previously were extended by 60 days will have an additional 60-day extension applied.
UPDATE (April 15, 2020):
Earlier today, MassMutual announced the launch of their HealthBridge Program, which will provide free term life insurance to the brave and resilient frontline healthcare workers across Massachusetts and Connecticut risking their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This program will offer our brave and dedicated healthcare providers a free 3-year term life insurance policy for employees of licensed hospitals, urgent care centers, or emergency medical services providers.
Mayor Sarno states, “Once again MassMutual is a well-respected national industry leader that never forgets its roots of providing during challenging times. Thank you Roger Crandall and Team for once again stepping up, especially for all those frontline healthcare providers, who keep us safe and sound.”
Interested individuals can find more information on the MassMutual HealthBridge webpage at www.massmutual.com/cm/healthbridge.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno announced that after consulting with CAFO TJ Plante, he has ordered the City of Springfield to implement a hiring and spending freeze due to the ongoing economic impact from the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. This decision was based on a recent economic roundtable discussion with state officials and economists over concerns of the ongoing coronavirus situation and its impact upon projected federal, state and municipal revenue shortfalls.
UPDATE (April 13, 2020):
Mayor Sarno Continues to Closey Monitor COVID-19 Situation
Mayor Sarno and his administration continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely so that we do not reopen and ease our prudent measures too early, which could potentially expose our residents to second wave of the virus. As other countries have experienced, lifting restrictions prematurely has led to a resurgence of the virus and a second-wave outbreak of infections. Mayor Sarno is senstive to this possibiity as he monitors and assesses the situtation.
City of Springfield Activates COVID-19 Hotline
The city's Department of Health and Human Services activated its 24/7 hotline Monday April 13, 2020. Residents can call 413-750-3250 for questions related to COVID-19. The Department of Health and Human Services continues to track positive COVID-19 cases across the city.
Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) testing requirements for the school year are suspended, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will modify or waive graduation requirements for students set to complete high school this summer, and due dates for district improvement plans will be pushed back under a bill Gov. Charlie Baker signed into law Friday.
UPDATE (April 10, 2020):
Governor Charlie Baker announced today that the Massachusetts Department of Public Health will issue an advisory recommending that people wear face masks or other face coverings in public. The advisory is consistent with recommendations issued by the CDC.
The City of Springfield's advisory regarding face coverings can be found here.
City of Springfield Releases Round Two of Prime the Pump Business Grant Program
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Tim Sheehan, Chief Development Officer, today announced the release of Round Two of the “Prime the Pump” grant program, aimed at providing immediate financial relief for small businesses in Springfield. The goal of the program is to help preserve jobs and assist businesses through this difficult time and as the federal assistance through the Small Business Administration and other entities is being rolled out. Grants in the Prime the Pump program will be awarded of up to $15,000 to eligible businesses.
The Prime the Pump program has already awarded $222,000 in its first round, assisting 30 restaurants in preserving a minimum of 30 jobs throughout the city. Mayor Sarno authorized an additional $500,000 of CDBG carryover funding to allow for a second round to address more business needs in the city.
Applications will only be accepted by email. Interested businesses seeking an application should email Anthony Moore in the Economic Development office at Amoore@springfieldcityhall.com or directly download an application from the City of Springfield’s COVID-19 Business Resources site on the Planning & Economic Development page of the city website.
UPDATE (April 9, 2020):
In response to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission’s vote granting MGM Springfield and other casinos in the Commonwealth some relief from monetary assessments collected by the Gaming Commission, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno is asking MGM to continue to meet its full obligations under the Host Community Agreement.
MassHire is holding a no cost online staff recruitment expo on April 28th, 29th & 30th. This event will be promoted through MassHire;s medoa partners 94.7WMAS, WEEI 105.5 and Nash Icon 98.1. Employers can advertise their openings on MassHire's dedicated web page with hyperlinks to job postings, company logo, company description and optional video embed.
JoAnn Miller, Director Business Services
MassHire Springfield Career Center
UPDATE (April 8, 2020):
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that following Governor Baker signing a Municipal Relief legislation (H4598: An Act to Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19), the City of Springfield will adjust the deadline for filing personal exemption and deferral applications to June 1, 2020. The original statutory deadline was April 1, 2020.
Previously, the City of Springfield had adjusted the collection dates for 4th quarter real estate and personal property taxes to June 1, 2020. The original due date was May 1, 2020.
The City of Springfield Assessor’s Office also encourages homeowners, renters and residents 65 years or older to consider applying for the Circuit Breaker Tax Credit as well.
For more information and applications on these statutory abatement exemptions, please visit the city’s Board of Assessors website at www.springfield-ma.gov/finance/assessors or call the Assessor’s Office at (413) 787-6164. Residents can also contact our city’s 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111.
Please see the attached FY20 Personal Exemption Chart.
On April 7, the Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health issued additional guidance for grocery stores and local boards of health related to the March 25, 2020 Order of the Commissioner regarding grocery stores.
This list of FAQs provided by the Governor's Office addresses many of the submissions received by EOHED relating to “COVID-19 Essential Services” guidance associated with Governor Baker’s March 23, 2020 Emergency Order (which was updated and extended on March 31, 2020).
UPDATE (April 3, 2020):
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that following Governor Baker signing a Municipal Relief legislation (H4598: An Act to Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19), the City of Springfield will adjust the collection date for 4th quarter real estate taxes to June 1, 2020, instead of the original due date of May 1, 2020.
The due date for the collection of real estate taxes is a state statue and any changes required approval by the state Legislature and the Governor.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today that 30 grants totaling over $225,000 for restaurants have been awarded as part of the city’s ‘Prime the Pump’ Grant Program in response to the economic crisis resulting from emergency closures due to Covid-19.
The Prime the Pump Program was announced on March 18, 2020. The priority focus being on full service restaurants that needed to begin or expand their takeout and delivery operations to comply with the public health emergency orders and all the restaurants that continued to remain open and keep some of their workers employed. Applications for the available grant funding became available on March 21, 2020 with a filing deadline of March 24, 2020.
The City saw overwhelming interest in the grant program, with over $1 million in grant requests from 80 applications across the city. Those restaurants that were not awarded or did not receive their full funding request are eligible to apply in the upcoming Small Business Grant Fund for up to a total amount between both funds of $15,000. The Small Business Grant Fund Application is anticipated to be released in the next few days.
View the list of tentative awards subject to contract execution here.
In response to the ongoing and growing concerns of the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, Mayor Sarno and Health Commissioner Caulton-Harris are issuing a new joint public health advisory and recommendation for our residents.
The City of Springfield is asking residents to wear face coverings when out in public, especially in locations where people are in transit such as but not limited to; grocery and convenient stores, bus and train stations, pharmacies and medical facilities, pet supply stores, and hardware shops or if they otherwise leave their home to participate in an exempt activity.
UPDATE (April 2, 2020):
Springfield City Council and School Committee Schedule Virtual Meetings
The Springfield City Council and School Committee have schedule virtual meetings. The City Council will hold their regular meeting virtually on Monday, April 6, 2020. The School Committee will hold their Budget and Finance Subcommittee meeting on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 and the meeting of the full School Committee will take place on Thursday, April 9, 2020.
Congressman Richard E. Neal announced that the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, was signed into law on Friday, March 27, 2020. The CARES Act, in part, provides for an additional $5 for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program on which Springfield is set to receive $2,301,793 of CDBG funds.
Grantees may use CDBG funds for a range of eligible activities that prevent and respond to the spread of infectious diseases such as the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), such as:
Buildings and Improvements, Including Public Facilities:
- Construct a facility for testing, diagnosis, or treatment.
- Rehabilitate a community facility to establish an infectious disease treatment clinic.
- Acquire and rehabilitate, or construct, a group living facility that may be used to centralize patients undergoing treatment.
- Rehabilitate a commercial building or closed school building to establish an infectious disease treatment clinic, e.g., by replacing the HVAC system.
- Acquire, and quickly rehabilitate (if necessary) a motel or hotel building to expand capacity of hospitals to accommodate isolation of patients during recovery.
- Make interim improvements to private properties to enable an individual patient to remain quarantined on a temporary basis.
Assistance to Businesses, including Special Economic Development Assistance
- Provide grants or loans to support new businesses or business expansion to create jobs and manufacture medical supplies necessary to respond to infectious disease.
- Avoid job loss caused by business closures related to social distancing by providing short-term working capital assistance to small businesses to enable retention of jobs held by low- and moderate-income persons.
- Provide technical assistance, grants, loans, and other financial assistance to establish, stabilize, and expand microenterprises that provide medical, food delivery, cleaning, and other services to support home health and quarantine.
- Carry out job training to expand the pool of health care workers and technicians that are available to treat disease within a community.
- Provide testing, diagnosis or other services at a fixed or mobile location.
- Increase the capacity and availability of targeted health services for infectious disease response within existing health facilities.
- Provide equipment, supplies, and materials necessary to carry-out a public service.
- Deliver meals on wheels to quarantined individuals or individuals that need to maintain social distancing due to medical vulnerabilities.
The funds may also be used for planning, capacity-building, and technical assistance in the furtherance of these goals.
Effective April 1, 2020, all passenger and dealer plate registrations that expired in March and passenger plates that are expiring in April have been extended for 60 days. Registrations that expired in March have been extended until May 31 and registrations that expire in April have been extended until June 30. Registration renewals can continue to be performed online at Mass.Gov/RMV.
UPDATE (April 1, 2020):
Springfield Public Schools Add Additional Meal Site and Make Other Announcements
The Springfield Public Schools have announced the addition of Sumner Ave to the Meals Program. This brings the total number of locations up to 17.
Other announcements include, the School Department initiating plans to include dinner to the Meal Program and to begin the distribution of laptops to students.
UPDATE (March 31, 2020):
Governor Baker Extends Order for Non-Essential Businesses to Remain Closed Until May 4, 2020.
In accordance with Governor Baker’s extension of his March 23, 2020 order, all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” must continue to keep their physical workplaces and facilities closed to workers, customers and the public until May 4, 2020.
Governor Baker also extended his stay-at-home advisory until May 4, 2020.
UPDATE (March 30, 2020):
Springfield Public Schools Begin Initiative to Distribute Laptops to Students
Springfield Public Schools is set to begin an initiative to put as many as 10,000 laptops in the hands of K-12 students who do not have access to a computer while they are at home. The laptop distribution initiative began today with a three-day registration period for families requesting a laptop.
The initiative builds on the district’s Technology Plan. Implemented six years ago, the initiative provided a laptop for every Springfield Public School student in grades 3 through 12. The program provided a computer for every two students in grades kindergarten through second. In recent years, the district piloted a program that allowed students at the pilot schools to bring the laptops home at night, rather than leave them at school.
“Clearly, we were moving at a measured pace in the direction of providing a take-home laptop for every student, the coronavirus pandemic has forced us to quicken that pace exponentially,” said Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick. “As we engage in remote learning, it is important for us to make sure every student has access to the same resources.”
The initiative will allow families with students who need a laptop to either pick it up via drive-through at the student’s school or those without transportation can arrange for home delivery. Both alternatives will be scheduled. The Springfield Public Schools Information Technology Department, along with paraprofessionals, teachers, and Central Office staff who have volunteered to assist in the effort, will disinfect each laptop and help with distribution. The distribution process will follow appropriate social distancing guidelines to protect the health of staff, students and families.
Laptops are currently expected to be ready for scheduled pick-up or delivery beginning on April 6, 2020. Schools will reach out directly to families who register for a laptop to inform them of the distribution schedule.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood announced that the State Police will partner with the City of Springfield’s Police Department by deploying 9 state troopers to the city to complement the police department’s patrols and operations while awaiting the National Guard. The troopers will be assigned 3 per shift.
Mayor Sarno gave his Weekly COVID-19 Situational Update
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and his Cabinet Heads continue to provide weekly updates to our residents and business community the City of Springfield's COVID-19 (coronavirus) situational updates. Also in attendance was Baystate Health President and CEO Dr. Mark Keroack, and Mercy Medical Chief Medical Officer and Regional Chief, Addiction Medicine and Recovery Services Dr. Robert Roose
City of Springfield Closes and Prohibits All Active Recreational Activities
The City of Springfield' Parks Department, out of an abundance of caution, has closed and are prohibiting all active recreational activities which include but limited to: Golf Cources, Basketball (hoops are down), Tennis (courts are locked), Playgrounds (tapped off), and Farmers Markets.
UPDATE (March 27, 2020):
Baker-Polito Administration Announces Travel Guidelines To Support COVID-19 Response
Beginning March 27, all travelers arriving to Massachusetts are instructed to self-quarantine for 14 days. This guidance will be displayed as posters at service plazas along 1-90 eastbound, distributed as flyers at major transportation hubs and on posted on highway message boards. Visitors are instructed not to travel to Massachusetts if they are displaying symptoms. Health care workers, public health workers, public safety workers, transportation workers and designated essential workers are exempt from this requirement.
The Springfield City Library has prepared a list of services they are offering to patrons while library buildings are closed to the public. Visit the Springfield City Library website for more information: https://www.springfieldlibrary.org/library/.
MassDOT-Registry of Motor Vehicles No-Walk-in Policy
Effective today, Friday, March 27th, the RMV will enforce a strict no walk-in policy at its eight open Service Centers. The only transactions processed at service centers will be those that require an in-person transaction, including Commercial Driving Licenses/Permits, some new registrations, out of state conversions and new Mass IDs. These customers will be required to make an online appointment reservation.
City of Springfield Announces Contingency Plan for City’s Homeless Population
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno joined with members of his administration today to announce the City's Contingency Plan for the Springfield Homeless Population. Under the plan, there will be three tents available for individuals who are homeless to access on Worthington St. One tent is reserved for Testing, one for those with Symptoms to isolate, and the third for those in Quarantine.
Mayor Sarno Signs on to Letter Asking the President and Federal Government to Coordinate Efforts for the Purchasing and Distribution of Medical Equipment
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today signed onto a letter from the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group asking President Trump and the Federal Government to support our hospitals and healthcare facilities, and our cities, towns and states by using their federal power and authority to ramp up production of ventilators, PPE’s such as the N95 masks, testing kits and quicker turnaround for results, and other much-needed medical equipment.
Mayor Sarno stated, “This public health emergency situation has affected all of us across the nation. The needs of our cities, states, hospitals and other healthcare facilities to proactively respond to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 has put stress upon our first responders and front line personnel. It has pushed our resources to their limits. Now more than ever, we need a coordinated effort on a national scale to meet the ever growing demands of the purchasing and distribution of medical equipment.”
Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Robert DeLeo today announced an agreement to extend the 2019 state individual income tax filing and payment deadline from April 15 to July 15 due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. This income tax relief is automatic and taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms to qualify.
Individuals with questions or concerns regarding taxes can contact the Massachusetts Department of Revenue at (617) 887-6367 or send a secure e-message through MassTaxConnect.
Mayor Sarno Petitions HUD for Additional CDBG Funds for Small Business Assistance
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan today sent a letter to David Tille, Regional Administrator for HUD, seeking flexibility to redeploy potentially $500,000 additional CDBG funding for the “Prime the Pump” restaurant grant program and to assist small businesses with a direct grant initiative.
Previously the City had announced and released the “Prime the Pump” grant application, aimed at providing immediate financial relief for restaurants in Springfield that have transitioned to take out service models. The goal of the program is to help preserve jobs and assist restaurant businesses through this difficult time.
Following up on this grant program, the city is seeking to utilize this additional CDBG funding from HUD for additional relief for our restaurants and other small businesses.
Mayor Sarno states, “It’s critical that we do what we can to help support our small businesses during these difficult times. I have directed my Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan to follow up with HUD Regional Administrator David Tille on this matter and to prepare program guidelines for as early as next week so that we can get this much-needed assistance out to our small businesses. I want to thank Congressman Richard Neal for his continued leadership and for reaching out to HUD Secretary Ben Carson in support of our letter.”
Mayor Sarno Announces Request for Massachusetts National Guard
Mayor Sarno announced today, out of an abundance of caution and to continue to be proactive in addressing any potential needs that might arise due to the public health emergency situation of COVID-19. That he has contacted the Office of Governor Baker and MEMA to request the Massachusetts National Guard to be deployed in the City of Springfield under the command of Police Commission Cheryl Clapprood.
The Mayor has requested for 75 members of the Massachusetts National Guards to be deployed to help augment and supplement our local police and city operations.
“Though our dedicated men and women in blue are currently fully staffed and out on the front lines providing our residents and business community with the public safety operations they need. The reality of the situation is this COVID-19 situation will eventually begin to take its toll on our first responders and front line personnel.” Mayor Sarno said. “From the daily morning reports Police Commissioner Clapprood has provided me, we are already down 20 officers and are awaiting their test results to determine if they can end their self-quarantine and return back to duty. Commissioner Clapprood and I realize that this number can and will increase so we have to be proactive in our strategies to continue to keep our residents and business community safe and sound.”
Mayor Sarno added, “I take this action as a precautionary measure as we continue to plan ahead and stay proactive during this COVID-19 situation. The addition of these 75 members from the Massachusetts National Guard will help to augment and supplement our local police and other city operations as needed under the direct command of Commissioner Clapprood.”
UPDATE (March 26, 2020):
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that out of an abundance of caution due to the current public health emergency and the evolving concerns related to the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the City of Springfield will extend the period in which City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until Monday, May 4, 2020.
Governor Baker announced on Wednesday, March 25, 2020, that his administration was taking new actions in support of the state’s ongoing COVID-19 response to mitigate the spread of the virus, by extending the closure order of all schools across the Commonwealth until May 4, 2020.
UPDATE (March 25, 2020):
All city services continue to operate and serve the public’s needs. Imperative City services go beyond public safety and health care. Birth and death certificates still need to be issued, municipal lien certificates still need to be produced in order for house closings, payroll and benefits still need to be administered for City employees, IT services need to be available to assist employees working remotely.
Those things considered, all city employees continue to provide essential city services under modified schedules, which include working remotely, alternating days working on site, or any combination, which has been determined as appropriate by the department head where services can continue with minimum interruptions.
UPDATE (March 24, 2020):
City of Springfield Office of Planning & Economic Development Resources
The City of Springfield’s Office of Planning & Economic Development will continue to update their dedicated COVID-19 Business Resources page with information, resources, and guidance for businesses here.
UPDATE (March 23, 2020):
Governor Baker Issues Order for Non-Essential Services and Workplaces to Shutdown and Advisory on Non-essential Travel
Governor Baker issued an emergency order requiring all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers and the public as of Tuesday, March 24th at noon until Tuesday, April 7th at noon. These businesses are encouraged to continue operations remotely.
The Order also prohibits the gatherings of more than 10 people.
The Governor also issued an Advisory asking people to avoid any non-essential traveling and stay at home.
Click here for the full list of categories of “COVID-19 Essential Services”
Click here for a copy of the Emergency Order
Click here for a copy of the Guidance of Assemblages
UPDATE (March 19, 2020):
City of Springfield Issues New Public Health Emergency Recommendations
Following up on Governor Baker’s order to close all daycares and childcare centers across the Commonwealth, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, upon the recommendation of Health Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, is strongly encouraging other venues to voluntarily adhere to and follow these Public Health Emergency recommendations by taking precautionary measures needed.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, the city is reminding everyone to adhere to the social distancing recommendations and asking that certain venues take the precautionary measures needed during these public health emergency times by voluntarily discontinuing services. The city is asking that barber shops, salons, hairdressers, tattoo and piercing studios, massage parlors and spas, and nail salons all take the precautionary measures during these public health emergency times and voluntarily discontinue services as to adhere to the social distancing guidelines of remaining at least six (6) feet apart.
We must continue to strike a balance between serious health concerns and the nature of doing business. The City of Springfield must do our very best to stay ahead of this growing concern to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
The City of Springfield will continue to monitor the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) situation. The city is committed to keeping our residents and business community informed about the latest developments. To stay up-to-date on all the latest information we encourage everyone to visit the City’s website at www.springfield-ma.gov.
The City of Springfield has a dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update webpage that is continually updated with new information and developments from our health experts, the city, the state, federal government and other important agencies and organizations.
UPDATE (March 18, 2020):
City of Springfield's Planning and Economic Development Office - Restaurant Grant Program
The City of Springfield has launched a grant program aimed to assist our local restaurants during these challenging times by making available, funds to help restaurant businesses that seek to reorganize their service delivery operations to meet the public health restrictions and retain their existing employees to degree possible. Qualifying restaurants can apply for up to $15,000 to help with these expenses.
For more information and details on how to apply, please contact the city’s Chief Development Officer Timothy Sheehan at (413) 787-6024 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Western Mass Economic Development Council has provided a dedicated site listing available resources from both the state and community partners.
U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Assistance to Small Businesses
TheU.S. Small Business Administration is offeringlow-interestfederal disaster loans for working capital for small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Hampden County has been identified as an eligible region.
Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.
Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email email@example.com for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.
For more information about Coronavirus, please visit: Coronavirus.gov.
For more information about available SBA resources and services, please visit: SBA.gov/coronavirus.
UPDATE (March 17, 2020): Governor Baker Announces Small Business Recovery Loan Fund
The Baker-Polito Administration announced economic support for small businesses with a $10 million loan fund to provide financial relief to those that have been affected by COVID-19.
The $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund will provide emergency capital up to $75,000 to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits. Loans are immediately available to eligible businesses with no payments due for the first 6 months. Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) has capitalized the fund and will administer it.
How to Apply:
Please complete the application found on MGCC’s website, EmpoweringSmallBusiness.org.
Completed applications can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “2020 Small Business Recovery Loan Fund”.
MGCC can be reached by email: email@example.com
Loan Fund Details:
- Who Qualifies: Open to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits (negative impact must be verifiable).
- Terms and Conditions: This fund is being offered with no payments due for the first 6 months, then 30-months of principal and interest payments and no prepayment penalties.
- Businesses can apply for loans up to $75,000.
UPDATE (March 16, 2020): City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Close to Public
Due to the evolving concerns related to the spread of COVID-19 – Coronavirus and out of an abundance of caution, the City of Springfield has announced that it will be closing City Hall and all other municipal buildings to the public beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020 until April 5, 2020.
Governor Baker announced Sunday evening, March 15, 2020, Emergency Actions to help address the potential spread of COVID-19. As such, the City of Springfield will adhere to these actions by strictly following the public health recommendations of social distancing guidelines and limiting public gatherings to 25 people or less.
At this time, all City of Springfield employees will continue to report to work as directed and under the discretion of their managers. Departments will remain open in a modified aspect.
The City of Springfield will continue to maintain all essential functions and services. Residents are encouraged to conduct their city related business remotely when possible by utilizing our 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111 and our website at www.springfield-ma.gov. Individuals encountering urgent, time-sensitive situations requiring the attention of City of Springfield staff are advised to contact the appropriate department to determine if an accommodation can be made.
UPDATE (March 13, 2020): City of Springfield Declares State of Emergency
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today declared a state of emergency in the City of Springfield to mitigate any potential spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result the following actions have been taken by the city:
- Springfield Public Schools are temporarily closed
- Springfield Senior Centers are temporarily closed
- Springfield Public Libraries are temporarily closed
- Large assemblies over 250 people or more are temporarliy canceled
UPDATE (March 11, 2020): Springfield Public Schools update and FAQ's
UPDATE (March 10, 2020): Baystate Health has established a dedicated web page to provide accurate and timely information and recommendations regarding COVID-19
UPDATE (March 4, 2020): Per the Massachusetts Department of Public Health - Revised CDC guidance regarding returning travelers from Level 2 and 3 countries
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced revised guidance regarding travelers to Level 2 and 3 countries returning to the US and recommended procedures for reducing the risk of transmission of the virus associated with COVID-19). The CDC link is also here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers (click on the travel notice beside each country).
Change in guidance for returnees from Level 2 and 3 countries:
- Returning travelers from Level 3 countries other than China and Iran (currently Italy and South Korea) are asked to self-quarantine (“stay home") for 14 days since the date of entry to the United States and self-monitor for symptoms consistent with COVID-19. CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine (DGMQ) will NOT be providing traveler information on returnees from these countries to states. DPH will NOT be asking local health departments to educate these travelers on self-quarantine nor actively monitor these individuals during their 14-day quarantine period.
- Returning travelers from Level 2 countries (currently Japan) are asked to limit contact with others and self-monitor for symptoms. DGMQ will NOT be providing traveler information on returnees from level 2 countries to states. DPH will NOT be asking local health departments to educate these travelers on self-monitoring.
Reminder of guidance already in place:
Foreign nationals may not travel from China or Iran to the United States. US residents returning from these countries will continue to be identified for state health departments by DGMQ and DPH will continue to request local health department assistance in monitoring these returnees and supporting them to self-quarantine for 14 days.
CDC recommends everyone avoid all non-essential travel to Level 3 countries (currently China, Iran, Italy, and South Korea) and that older individuals and those with chronic health conditions avoid non-essential travel to Level 2 countries (currently Japan).
Travelers with questions should call the 24/7 Epi Line: 617-983-6800. DPH will be conducting weekly conference calls with local boards of health starting next week. Call information will be forthcoming.
The Department will share further guidance as it becomes available.
The City of Springfield encourages you to check out the following information from the State of Massachusetts and the CDC:
- Health Alert: Travelers from Wuhan, China
- MA Department of Public Health Memo- Coronavirus
- MDPH Coronavirus webpage
- MDPH Fact Sheets for Patients and Translations
- CDC Coronavirus Landing Page
- Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers Webpage on COVID-19
The new MDPH website provides relevant up-to-date information on the state of the novel coronavirus for all residents: mass.gov/2019coronavirus.
Additional details and guidance regarding the novel coronavirus, is available from the CDC: 2019 Novel Coronavirus.
Fact Sheets from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health can be found here.
Springfield Department of Health and Human Services is working closely with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention