Supporting Local Businesses During COVID-19 (FAQ)

News Article

Our families, our communities, and our local businesses are healthier and safer when we come together to support them. 

The Office of Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler is committed to bolstering relief efforts for local businesses as part of the City’s COVID-19 recovery and resiliency efforts, the City’s public safety responsibilities, and the City’s aspirational goals for how we shape our built and natural environment. 

Mayor Wheeler recognizes the invaluable contributions, entrepreneurial and innovative spirit, and the think-outside-the-box solutions that local businesses bring each and every day. This Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page answers questions that the Mayor’s Office has received from local businesses. 

We hope this page will be helpful. It may feel like “information overload” to some, and if that’s the case, the Mayor’s staff is here to help you! Please feel free to contact the Mayor’s staff if you have any questions. We are happy to be your guide. 

Governor Kate Brown Announces Launch of 'Give the Gift of Oregon' Campaign to Support Local Businesses


I cannot operate my business the same way, or at all, for the next four weeks because of Governor Brown’s Executive Order 20-65 (November 17, 2020). What resources are there for my business?

We understand the frustration that business owners and residents feel in hearing the Governor’s Order 20-65. The surge in COVID-19 cases and deaths poses immense individual and societal challenges. Like many other state governors, Governor Kate Brown is focused on keeping Oregonians safe and healthy in light of record numbers in increases of COVID-19 cases and deaths. On November 17, 2020, Governor Brown announced $55 million in business relief funds to be deployed through counties. More information can be found at the Governor’s Newsroom Page.

Join and promote the Love Portland, Shop Local effort throughout the holiday season! The City of Portland (Prosper Portland), Mercatus, Travel Portland, Central Eastside Industrial Council, Portland Business Alliance, Venture Portland, Bricks Need Mortar, and Greater Portland Inc have created a healthy and safe way for residents to support local businesses and for local businesses to connect with more customers. 

If you are a local small business, please join and promote this effort at the Prosper Portland website:!


My business has been vandalized and/or my products have been stolen. What is the City of Portland doing to help me? 

As of November 16, 2020, the City of Portland offers local businesses a suite of services and resources to choose from to (1) call on responsive action through the criminal justice system (e.g., Portland Police Bureau); (2) request aid to help prevent crime in and around your business; and (3) access financial resources to rehabilitate and or renovate a business that has been physically damaged: 

  • If there is an immediate threat to life or property, please call 9-1-1. For more information about the kind of situations where you should call 9-1-1, please learn more at the Bureau of Emergency Communications website. 
  • If there is not an immediate threat to life or property, please call (503)823-3333, the City’s non-emergency line. For more information about the kind of situations where you should call (503)823-3333, please learn more at the Bureau of Emergency Communications website.
  • The Office of Community & Civic Life, Community Safety Program offers services to businesses and residents citywide. For businesses, your community safety coordinators can help you design the layout and surrounding environment of your business to  influence and encourage positive social interactions in the space, which can help reduce opportunities for criminal behavior.  Coordinators can provide a Neighbors Together opportunity designed for specific groups of businesses which could include a personal safety training to help employees explore and practice de-escalation and safety planning. As well, they can connect businesses to existing community-based safety efforts.
  • Please call the main phone line at (503)823-4064 or fill out this short form to learn more about these services. 
  • Prior to and throughout the pandemic, Prosper Portland has supported the rehabilitation, renovation, and creation of local businesses through a variety of financial resources. On Thursday, November 12, 2020, Portland City Council voted to allocate $300,000 to support local businesses. Prosper Portland added $150,000 in existing resources for a total of $450,000 in immediate support to local businesses. To learn more about Prosper Portland’s efforts and sign up for updates to receive timely information like ‘when’ and ‘how to apply,’ please visit Prosper Portland’s website. go directly to this signup: 

When I call 9-1-1 or the non-emergency line, the response time is very long or my call is never responded to. What is the City of Portland doing to make sure calls are answered and within a shorter time frame?

  • First and foremost, please keep using the 9-1-1 or the non-emergency line (503)823-333
  • Currently, the average response time is approximately 90 minutes, up from approximately 30 minutes in early 2020.
  • In mid-November 2020, the Mayor directed Portland Police Bureau Chief Lovell and the Bureau of Emergency Communications Director Bob Cozzie to audit the City’s response time. The Mayor’s Office staff will update the FAQs with more information as soon as the Mayor has received the baseline.