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The Chamber has been going live every Wednesday morning since April 1 on the Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber Facebook page with insights on topics important to businesses and our community as we navigate COVID-19. Video of the livestreams will remain available on Facebook and on our YouTube channel thereafter. We will also be cataloging them here. Find all of our April livestreams below.
June 24: Consumer Confidence and the Economy with UCF’s Sean Snaith
Sean Snaith, Ph.D. of the University of Central Florida’s Institute of Competitiveness joined us for a conversation on consumer confidence and the economy.
June 17: Connecting Central Floridians to Careers
Ray Villegas and Yaralise Colon from CareerSource Central Florida discuss connecting Central Floridians to careers and developing skilled talent for businesses.
June 10: Business Tax Incentives Through the CARES Act
We were joined by Amy Fondo, principal at CliftonLarsonAllen LLP, to discuss business tax incentives found within the federal CARES Act. Don’t forget that Tax Day 2020 is July 15!
June 3: Rethink and Reimagine Your Business – Reframing Reality
Larry Klimek of JKL Associates joined us to discuss creating opportunity for your business out of our new reality.
May 27: The Intersection of COVID-19 and Bankruptcy: The Impact on Your Business
Roy S. Kobert, shareholder at GrayRobinson, P.A., joined us to discuss “The Intersection of COVID-19 and Bankruptcy: The Impact on Your Business.” He covered major bankruptcy filings due to COVID-19 and the impact the virus could have on businesses in Central Florida and beyond.
May 20: We’ve Opened Safely Campaign
To boost consumer confidence amid the Coronavirus (COVID-19) health crisis, the Osceola Back 2 Work Taskforce has launched the “We’ve Opened Safely Campaign” to ensure Osceola County and its cities reopen businesses at their best. Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber President John Newstreet and Dirk Webb, his counterpart at the St. Cloud Chamber, are tell you more.
May 13: Business Interruption Insurance
We were joined by Alex De Jorge with Brightway Insurance, the De Jorge Agency to discuss business interruption insurance policies. What is business interruption insurance? How do you know if you have it? Are your pandemic-related losses covered? View to find out and reach out to us with questions.
May 6: Healthcare Update with Our Hospitals
Ken Peach with Community Vision’s Health Leadership Council gave us a rundown of best practices for businesses looking to reopen and explains what we can expect as we return to our hospitals for non-COVID procedures and treatments. We were also joined by Orlando Health Senior Vice President Thibaut van Marcke, AdventHealth Kissimmee CEO Sheila Rankin, Osceola Regional Medical Center President/CEO Davide Carbone, and St Cloud Regional Medical Center CEO Brent Burish for an update on Osceola’s hospital systems.
April 29: Immigration and Visa Update with Attorney Demian Serianni
With President Trump’s recent Executive Order and other concerns created by COVID-19, immigration is a hot topic. On April 29, we hosted a discussion on the Executive Order, and how it and other immigration issues, such as E2 visas, could affect your business or employees. We were joined by Demian Serianni, an immigration attorney with Widerman Malek, and Steve Silcock an E2 visa holder and owner of Bardell Real Estate.
April 22: Tourism Update with Experience Kissimmee President & CEO D.T. Minich
Tourism plays a major role in our business community. Experience Kissimmee CEO D.T. Minich gave an update on the tourism industry and EK’s phased response to help tourism recover once it is safe. While our tourism industry will face particular challenges, this phased recovery plan will provide insight to businesses of any industry. See Experience Kissimmee’s…
April 15: Staying Mentally Healthy During COVID-19
Chamber president John Newstreet spoke with Claudia Swonger, Director of Physical & Provider Relations Behavioral Health at Osceola Regional Medical Center, and Kristine Zwick representing Wraparond Osceola’s the Check-In Project. Find more about their programs and other resources for those experiencing a difficult time on our Mental Health Resources During COVID-19 blog post.
April 8: Community Resources and Assistance, featuring Mary Downey of the Community Hope Center.
Our mission at the Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber is to be “champions for business and community,” and we had the privilege to host the Rev. Mary Lee Downey with the Community Hope Center of Osceola County. Mary explained what the Hope Center does and how our non-profit community can be of service at this time. She also outlined some of the basics of the CARES Act stimulus package and clarified current questions about unemployment assistance. Find it along with ways you can offer appreciation or be of service during this crisis on our How You Can Help During COVID-19 blog post.
April 1: CARES Act Loan Opportunities for small businesses.
Franklin Coley and Joe Kefauver with Align Public Strategies joined us to help our members navigate the loans available through the CARES Act and answer questions in real time. We were also joined by Rafael Pratts of the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) to discuss the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan. Find the video with comments on Facebook here, or view it below. Find links and additional information about the CARES Act loans through the SBA and other available loans here.
Area Council Programs
In addition to our Wednesday livestreams, some of our area councils have hosted presentations on topics related to COVID-19, small businesses, and recovery.
PBC: Hurricane Preparedness During COVID-19
June 1, 2020 marked the start of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season, and on June 5 our Parkways Business Council welcomed Osceola County Office of Emergency Management Director Bill Litton for a conversation on preparing for hurricane season, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
SBC: Considerations for Creating a “Virus-Conscious” Workspace
On Friday, May 8 we were joined by Kristin Ahr, a partner at Nelson Mullins Broad and Cassel, who took us through some considerations and plans for reopening your business as a “virus-conscious” workspace. This is important information when considering the safety and protection of your business, your customers, and your employees. The conversation was moderated by Kevin Crain, Chairman of the Small Business Council and small business owner of Osceola Press.
HBC: Wake Up Entrepreneur! – Resources through the SBA
On April 23 Congress passed $484 billion package that will allocate additional funds to the SBA loan programs created by the CARES Act. The same day our Hispanic Business Council hosted SBA Senior Area Manager Ed Ramos. They followed his presentation with a panel discussion featuring HBC Chairman Carlos Velez, CenterState Bank branch manager Monica Medina, and small business owner Stella Siracuza (Tomato Express).
Presentation begins at: 1:50
Panel discussion begins at: 34:07
To view this presentation in Spanish click here.
DKAC Coronavirus Prep Panel
The Downtown Kissimmee Area Council hosted a panel discussion on the Kissimmee Chamber Facebook page on Monday, March 16. The video from that livestream, which featured panelists from Osceola Regional Medical Center, Edward Jones, the Florida Small Business Development Center, and Osceola County Office of Emergency Management, can be viewed on Facebook, on our YouTube page, and below.