New program to provide rental assistance to small businesses

University of Nevada, Reno Extension continues its online town hall and webinar series this week to assist small-business owners. In addition to providing information on how small-business owners can find and use data, Wednesday’s town hall will also focus on a new grant program beginning Aug. 24 that will provide commercial rental assistance from Coronavirus Relief Funds. A speaker from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development will discuss how the program will work, qualifications, and how small businesses can apply. Friday’s webinar will focus on different structures for paying employees, contractors and owners, and their pros and cons. Both the town hall and the webinar are free, and there will be English-language and Spanish-language sessions.

The events are part of a series of town halls and webinars for small businesses, “Coping With COVID-19,” being offered each week. The town halls begin with a presentation on a given topic, and then participants network with one another and drive the discussion. The webinars provide information on specific topics to help entrepreneurs and businesses plan strategically, adapt and succeed. This week’s sessions include:

• The town hall, “New Commercial Rental Assistance” is Aug. 19, at 9 a.m. for English speakers, and at 2 p.m. for Spanish speakers. Panelists include:

— From the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development: Tatjana Vukovic, business development manager;

— From the Nevada Small Business Development Center: Kevin Raiford, Nevada Grow manager;

— From the Small Business Administration: Saul Ramos, deputy district director (9 a.m. session); and Alfredo Cedeño, outreach/marketing specialist (2 p.m. session); and

— From Extension: Reyna Mendez and Juan Salas, business development instructors; and Mike Bindrup, research associate.

• The webinar, “Paying Employees, Contractors and Yourself,” Aug. 21, at 9 a.m. for English speakers, and at 11:30 a.m. for Spanish speakers. Salas will discuss:

— The structure of business owner compensation;

— Properly classifying an independent contractor and an employee;

— Employee tax on the federal and state levels;

— Crucial employee compliance documentation and ideas.

“This economic crisis is obviously far from over,” said Buddy Borden, economic development specialist with Extension’s Business Development Program. “The new commercial rental assistance program can provide some relief to small businesses, nonprofits and those who are self-employed. We are happy to help get the word out about it via the town hall, as well as provide some useful tips on pay structures for small business at Friday’s webinar.”

Both the town halls and the webinars usually run about an hour. To register:

• For the Aug. 19, 9 a.m., English-language town hall, go here.

• For the Aug. 19, 2 p.m., Spanish-language town hall, go here.

• For the Aug. 21, 9 a.m., English-language webinar, go here.

• For the Aug. 21, 11:30 a.m., Spanish-language webinar, go here

For more information, go to the Extension Business Development Program website at There are also other resources at the website to assist businesses during the COVID-19 crisis. For more information, email Borden at

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