Jamie Stitt

Assistant Commissioner, Business and Workforce Development

Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
312 Rosa L. Parks Ave., Nashville, TN 37243
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COVID-19 Updates and Information

Last updated 01/05/2021 at 09:10 AM CDT
Frequently Asked Questions

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The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development is working closely with state and federal partners to confront the economic challenges Tennesseans are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 


TNECD continues to work without disruption, and our team is committed to assisting our stakeholders and partners during this uncertain time. Important developments will be shared on TNECD.com and TNECD’s social media channels.

We have assembled a comprehensive list of resources to assist Tennessee employers and employees. This page will be updated regularly.


For the latest Tennessee information on COVID-19:


Tennessee Department of Health   Governor Bill Lee

Governor’s Daily Press Briefings

Governor Bill Lee is holding daily press conferences at 3 p.m. CDT.

View the Governor’s Daily Briefing Live Steam

Read the Governor’s Daily COVID-19 Bulletin | Catch up on the Governor’s past briefings

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Tennessee Pledge

The State is recommending safeguarding protocols for all businesses in Tennessee, including those that are re-opening and those essential businesses that have remained open during the Safer at Home order. These safeguarding protocols are based on the recommendations of the CDC and OSHA. To support the Pledge for Tennessee, all employers and employees should take steps to reopen safely, help other industries be able to open more quickly, and help Tennessee remain healthy and open for business.

Tennessee Pledge: Reopening Tennessee Responsibly

Tennessee Businesses Can Now Access Free COVID-19 Test Kits

The state of Tennessee has authorized a program for interested Tennessee businesses to obtain COVID-19 tests kits, free of charge while supplies last. The goal of the program, administered jointly by the Tennessee Health Department and Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, is to help participating businesses demonstrate with greater confidence that their facility is safe to customers and employees. In order to access the test kits, businesses must follow certain reporting requirements and follow guidelines. Request kits and find more information get more information online.  If your business is not eligible or you have questions, contact [email protected].


On July 20, 2020, Governor Bill Lee and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group announced an additional $115 million in Coronavirus Relief Funds will be made available to local governments to offset costs incurred from responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn More

Additional Coronavirus Relief Funds: Non-Profits

On July 21, 2020, Governor Bill Lee and the Financial Stimulus Accountability Group announced $150 million in Coronavirus Relief Funds will be made available to Tennessee non-profits to assist their ongoing efforts to address the ongoing health and economic impacts of COVID-19.

For non-profits wishing to receive response and recovery grants to provide direct services, instructions for grant proposals will be issued by the Department of Human Services and its partner non-profit grant administrators on August 1, 2020. Grant applications will be processed on a first-come, first-serve basis with monthly reporting requirements and a de-obligation date of November 15.

Learn More

Tennessee Business Relief Program

On June 2, 2020, Governor Bill Lee announced the formation of the Tennessee Business Relief Program, which will set aside $200 million in federal coronavirus relief funds to qualifying small businesses.

The Tennessee Department of Revenue will issue business relief payments through the Tennessee Business Relief Program to small businesses for costs incurred as a result of mandatory business closures. Tennessee businesses that were closed via Executive Order are encouraged to update their mailing addresses by logging into TNTAP at https://tntap.tn.gov/eservices.

Tennessee Business Relief Program


Disaster loan assistance through the U.S. Small Business Administration is available to small businesses and nonprofit organizations that have suffered economic injury as a result of COVID-19.

Small businesses and nonprofit organizations can apply for loans up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses. Applicants may apply online here

Apply for SBA Disaster Assistance

Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. (Eastern) or email  24hours a day at [email protected] for more information.

Additional COVID-19 guidance from the SBA can be found here


The SBA and Treasury Department have initiated the $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program, which is designed to help small businesses keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 crisis. 

A major piece of Congress’s relief package, the program offers up to $10 million for eligible small businesses. The SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. 

Businesses can apply through existing SBA 7(a) lenders or federally insured banks and credit unions. The SBA advises consulting with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program. More information on the Paycheck Protection Program is available on the SBA’s website

Paycheck Protection Program

SBA Virtual Office Hours for TN Business Owners

Ask questions and get the latest updates on PPP and EIDL loans under the CARES Act, as well as on the Nashville area and Chattanooga area SBA Tornado Disaster Loans.
June 16, 18, 23, 25, 29, and July 1
2:00 to 3:00 PM CT

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 836 3543 2493
Password: SBATN

Small and Rural Hospital Readiness Grant

Tennessee is allocating $10M in grants to support hospitals that are facing unusual and immediate financial pressures due to the ongoing response to the novel coronavirus. These funds will be allocated from the state’s FY20 COVID-19 response appropriation and distributed by the Dep. of Finance & Administration (F&A).

For participating hospitals, grants are available up to $500k per hospital and will serve as a bridge over the coming weeks as patient volumes decline and new federal funds become available. Applicants should be able to demonstrate that they are actively pursuing federal relief.

Learn More


For workers who are out of a job, the fastest and most efficient way to file an unemployment claim is to go to www.Jobs4TN.gov. Due to the high volume of claims because of the COVID-19 emergency, filing by another method may delay the processing of your claim.

File an Unemployment Claim

More information for workers is available here

For businesses, if your company has reduced hours or is closed due to COVID-19, you may also expedite the unemployment claim process for your employees. Additional information on employer-filed mass claims can be found here

Please visit the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development for additional resources and updates. 


TN Creators Respond is a program created by the Tennessee Chamber to help connect the dots between manufacturers and companies with the capability of producing, warehousing and or distributing personal protective equipment (PPE) or components of PPE that are needed in hospital systems and medical centers across our state.

View TN Creators Respond


Alongside unemployment benefits, the State is also spearheading a new initiative, the Tennessee Talent Exchange, which will quickly match Tennesseans who are out of work because of COVID-19 with businesses that are currently experiencing a surge in job openings.

The Tennessee Talent Exchange is designed to connect jobs seekers to hiring companies in the grocery, retail and logistics industry.

Visit Tennessee Talent Exchange


The Department of Human Services is also making essential financial resources available to certain families that have been significantly impacted by COVID-19.

Learn More


TNECD is supporting Governor Lee’s call for Tennessee manufacturers, distributors and businesses to help with critical health care supply needs.

If you are a business that has personal protective equipment to donate, you can email: [email protected]. Donations are being accepted at armories throughout Tennessee. A map of locations can be found on TEMA’s website

For vendors, including manufacturers interested in making component parts, please contact: [email protected]

PPE Donations From Businesses PPE Donations From Vendors


For employers that continue to operate, the Center for Disease Control has an invaluable resource of best practices to protect employees, customers and suppliers.

Employer Best Practices


Broadband access is more important than ever as Tennesseans have been instructed to stay home from work and school as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Here are resources to help you stay connected.

Stay Connected During QUARANTINE


Launch Tennessee has compiled various resources for Tennessee’s startups and small businesses to reference during the COVID-19 outbreak.

LaunchTennessee COVID-19 Resources


If you believe that you are sick with COVID-19, follow these instructions from the CDC.

What to Do if You Are Sick

Information from the Tennessee Department of Health regarding COVID-19 can be found here. 

COVID-19 Public Information Numbers:

833-556-2476 and 877-857-2945 Available 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. CDT Daily

Frequently Asked Questions

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