One of the biggest issues during the COVID-19 crisis is the uncertainty, anxiety, and fear which can lead to lots of undesirable consequences and upset in families. People should be calmed and encouraged to remain so. It will be okay, and many, many in our community, including governments are stepping up to make sure that people are cared for. Below is a list of information and updates according to topics:
Santa Fe County Food
Up to date information on general food distributions can be found at:
Santa Fe Public Schools – Food for Children
School-aged and under, can receive a “grab and go” breakfast and lunch bag. Addresses for the locations are listed below.
Aspen Community School:
450 La Madera St, Santa Fe, NM 87501
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Capital High School:
4851 Paseo del Sol, Santa Fe, NM 87507
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Chaparral Elementary School:
2451 Avenida Chaparral, Santa Fe, NM 87505
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Kearny Elementary School:
901 Avenida de las Campanas, Santa Fe, NM 87507
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Ramirez Thomas Elementary School:
3200 Calle Po Ae Pi, Santa Fe, NM 87507
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Santa Fe High School:
2100 Yucca St, Santa Fe, NM 87505
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Sweeney Elementary School:
501 Airport Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87507
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Listing of Free Grab & Go Meal Sites for Children through the Public Schools Statewide (breakfast and lunch times listed for Santa Fe): https://www.newmexico.gov/education/meal-sites-for-children/
Change to Unemployment Rules to Make Workers Affected by COVID-19 Eligible for Unemployment Benefits
Individuals whose hours are reduced, whose workplaces are temporarily closed, or who are laid off due to COVID-19 precautions can apply for unemployment benefits. Even if a person was not a full-time employee, they may be eligible for unemployment benefits if their hours were significantly reduced, while the state remains under a state of emergency. People required to self-isolate or are caring for an immediate family member who is self-isolated, they will also be eligible. The work search requirements for affected workers (showing contacts or applications with at least two potential employers per week) will be waived for up to four weeks. They do still need to “certify” online each week by answering some questions about their work status. More information at https://www.newmexico.gov/jobs-the-economy/.
Employees can apply online at www.jobs.state.nm.us or over the phone at 1-877-664-6984 Monday-Friday, 8:00am-4:30pm.
Businesses with employees who may need to apply for unemployment should look at: This 4 min video explaining the process.
Worker’s Rights Video
A very clear and concise video with five pieces of information about worker’s rights during COVID-19 by the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty.
PNM NOT Disconnecting Service, Waiving Late Fees
To ensure that residents do not lose electric service, PNM will not disconnect service for nonpayment at this time. They are also waiving late fees, and those recently disconnected for nonpayment will have power restored without a reconnection fee. They will not report nonpayment to collections or credit reporting. For more information:https://www.pnmforwardtogether.com/help
New Mexico Gas Company NOT Disconnecting Service
During this public health emergency, no gas service will be disconnected for non-payment. You can pay your NMGC bill by mail, by phone or on this website (https://www.nmgco.com/). If you need help with a payment plan, billing questions or other inquiries, please call 1-888-664-2726.
No Water Shut-Offs – City of Santa Fe
The City is placing a moratorium on water shut-offs for non-payment of the bill. Water will not be free, nor will this be a non-billable grace period: Water charges will continue to accrue and be owed. Customers need to contact the Water Utility to make payment arrangements, or to find out if there are subsidies for which they qualify. Customers are encouraged to call to set an appointment, inasmuch as many issues can be handled over the phone.
Questions www.santafenm.gov/customer_service_and_utility_billing or 505-955-4333
Free Internet Access for Low-Income Individuals/Families
Comcast has a program called Internet Essentials that enables households that do not already have their internet service and who qualify for public assistance programs (including free and reduced school lunch, housing assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, and others) to purchase internet service for $9.95/month. There is no contract, credit check, or installation fee. Right now, to increase connectivity during COVID-19 closures, they are offering two months of free service to new customers who qualify for Internet Essentials. After the first two months, service can be canceled or continued at $9.95/month
Temporary Child Care Assistance Changes to Expand Child Care Access:
The state has made several changes to expand child care access during the COVID-19 response. These include issuing full-time child care assistance to first responders and health providers, temporary registration for family, friend and neighbor providers to be paid under child care assistance, waiving family copays, helping families find child care, and maintaining child care assistance benefits for families event if they keep their children home during the state of emergency. For more information, see: https://www.newmexico.gov/early-childhood/children-and-families/
Prohibit Eviction of Tenants
The Mayor is prohibiting the eviction of residential and commercial property tenants whose ability to pay has been adversely impacted by the public health emergency.
Tax Deadline Moved to July 15
Tax Day would be moved to July 15, giving Americans an additional three months to file their federal and state income tax returns.
There is likely relief available from individual financial institutions. Some guidance is available from Fannie Mae.
Santa Fe Rides Free Fares
Santa Fe Trails buses are free for all riders effective immediately.
Santa Fe Ride ADA Complementary Paratransit and Senior Transportation Service will also be free. Please note that you must complete an application and receive an ID number to schedule trips with Santa Fe Ride. Please visit https://www.santafenm.gov/santa_fe_ride for more information and how to complete an application.
Questions – Call 505-955-2001 and a Transit Customer Service Representative will assist you.
Parking Fees Suspended
Effective immediately, Municipal Garage “arms” will be left up until 10 p.m., at which point the facilities will be closed and secured. This applies to all City parking garages and parking lots.
Parking at on-street meters will be free. Meters will be bagged with white bags to indicate that fees have been suspended during this emergency and to prevent coins from being deposited.
Parking restrictions will continue to be enforced for the following categories: Handicapped parking, valet parking, loading zone parking, parking in the traffic lane, fire hydrant blocking, and access to driveways. Uniformed staff will patrol seven days a week.
If you have been issued a parking ticket, you are still responsible for paying that ticket. You can pay online at www.santafenm.gov/pay_a_citation
City of Santa Fe Enacts Measures Including Free Transit, Prohibition of Eviction, No Water Shutoffs
See the Emergency Proclamation from the mayor below for details including prohibition of eviction of residential and commercial property tenants, delay of lodger’s tax collection, free Santa Fe Trails and Santa Fe Ride services, and suspension of parking fees during the public health emergency
Numerous organizations and groups including Santa Fe Mutual Aid, Earth Care YUCCA, Red Nation, Santa Fe DSA and Fathers NM are collaborating to match people who need help and resource during this time with others who can offer it. Thisgoogle form can be used to request or offer support.
Earth Care further describes the Santa Fe Mutual Aid network and has a listing of additional resources including food, education, and other resources, here: https://www.earthcarenm.org/mutualaid_resources
The Santa Fe Community Foundation has established the COVID-19 Response Fund to address the critical gaps in services during the unprecedented Corona Virus pandemic. The COVID-19 Response Fund will support a diverse array of needs during the crises. At the outset, we will be prioritizing support for nonprofits focusing on health/wellbeing and food insecurity. As more funding becomes available, we will consider making support available to nonprofits providing other kinds of services. For more information, see this application form.
Delay of Lodger’s Tax Collection
The City will delay the collection of the Lodgers Tax during the public health emergency. However, the Lodger’s Tax must still be reported to the City on time.
Summary Slideshow of Available Business Assistance
COVID-19 Business Loan Guarantee
The New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD) has created a program to assist businesses seeking emergency loans or lines of credit to deal with negative economic impacts from COVID-19. NMEDD can guarantee a portion of a loan or line of credit up to 80% of principal or $50,000. Loan proceeds are flexible and can be used for (and not limited to) the following: working capital, inventory and payroll.
LEDA Zero-Percent Interest Loans
For assistance with LEDA loans, find & contact your Regional Representative, or contact Mark Roper, Mark.Roper@state.nm.us or 575.562.0327
New Mexico Finance Authority: Business Loan Partnership Program
NMFA and “Partner Banks,” together, share risk while lowering the overall cost of borrowing for the business by NMFA offering low-cost rates on its portion of the loan to a New Mexico business. Contact, John Brooks, 1-877-ASK-NMFA, or jBrooks@nmfa.net
Businesses in New Mexico impacted by COVID-19 are now eligible to apply for low-interest federal disaster loans up to $2 million through Small Business Administration. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
Learn more and begin a loan application:
• Online by visiting the Small Business Administration Disaster Loan Assistance program at www.sba.gov.disaster.
• By phone at (800) 659-2955 or email at email@example.com.
Individuals who are hearing impaired may call (800) 877-8339.
If you elect to submit a hard-copy application, you may do so by mail to the following address:
U.S. Small Business Administration
SBA International Trade Assistance:
Contact Edward Herrara, 505.670.5957 or Edward.Herrera@state.nm.us.
The Wage and Hour Division is providing information on common issues employers and workers face when responding to COVID-19, including the effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act.
The Office of Public Liaison at the Department of Labor shared their latest press release on COVID-19 (A.K.A. novel coronavirus). It outlines DOL guidelines and recommendations for dealing with the virus and also contains links to more detailed information and resources.
Guidelines for Employers
Businesses should be ready to implement strategies to protect their workforce from coronavirus while ensuring continuity of operations. For more on best practices and recommended strategies, please visit the CDC’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
“United Way of Santa Fe County’s early childhood programs put all of our children on the path to success. We are fifth generation New Mexicans who have lived in Agua Fria Village all of our lives. We are excited about United Way at Agua Fria and the opportunities it provides our family, neighbors and community. We’ve experienced firsthand the impact of these life-changing programs.”- Dennis & Anita Hernandez
"My husband and I both feel that the Triple P® parenting class has helped us feel more confident as parents. My husband valued learning about how to have a positive learning environment in our home, specifically by using descriptive praise toward our daughter. I most valued learning about how to manage and accept feelings, share emotions, encourage curiosity in my daughter, and help her to be emotionally resilient. We have all benefitted from the learning we gained at Triple P® and the support we receive from the kind and helpful home visitors from the First Born® Program. These are valuable experiences to us as parents, and the things we learn will bless our family and future children greatly."- Adrianna, Tod and Miranda, First Born® family
“My experience with the Santa Fe Children’s Project of United Way of Santa Fe County has been a wonderful one. My son and I have received the best support and guidance from both the administrative and educational staff, and as a mom I have greatly benefited from attending the Triple P® seminar offered to parents and caregivers. I gained useful and relevant insight about the power of positive parenting and the opportunity to share with other parents as well. Thank you, United Way!”- Valentina and Ethan, PreK family
“Mi experiencia con el Proyecto de Niños de Santa Fe administrado por United Way del Condado de Santa Fe ha sido maravillosa. Mi hijo y yo hemos recibido la mejor guía y apoyo desde la asistencia administrativa hasta las educadoras de mi hijo, y como madre me he beneficiado mucho al atender el programa de Triple P® que ofreció United Way a los padres y representantes. Aprendí información útil y relevante acerca de la maternidad/paternidad positiva y tuve la oportunidad de compartir con otros padres. Muchas gracias United Way!”- Valentina y Ethan, familia de PreKinder
“We had such a positive experience with our older son attending PreK at The Early Learning Center that we have recently enrolled our younger son. The teachers contribute to all children feeling eager and confident to begin their learning experience. Both of our boys have gained a real love for school while attending Pre-K, and are active and engaged learners. We cannot say enough about the wonderful staff and teachers. We have gained friends and truly feel a part of the school community. We will always be grateful for the wonderful experience our family has had with The Early Learning Center.”- Venessa, Manuel, Manuel and Marcos, PreK family
"Batallamos mucho para encontrar un lugar de educacion para nuestro hijo porque varios lugares piden muchos requisitos. Cuando fui al Centro de Aprendizaje de United Way, nunca me dijeron que no...desde un principio me dijeron que si iban a aceptar a mi hijo. Todas del Centro de Aprendizaje han sido muy amable y las maestras nos invitan y nos involucran a participar en la educacion de nuestros hijos. La escuela consiste del alumno, las maestras y los padres de familia."- Ramona, Librado y Angel, PreK family
“Our family is so blessed to be part of the Santa Fe Children’s Project of United Way of Santa Fe County. As a first time mom, I was worried I would not know how best to care for my baby. Our First Born® home visitors were there every step of the way. My mind was at ease knowing that I had someone to help with the things I was unsure of. Our son is now in PreK at The Early Learning Center and we feel the same way. The kindness, patience, and love that the staff show all of the children is more than we could ask for. Our son wakes up every day excited to go to The Early Learning Center, and comes home every…- Marcie, Stephen, Morgan and Abel, First Born® and PreK family
"Having a First Born® home visitor available to me and my husband throughout my pregnancy and now into the early stages of parenthood has been amazing. Jessica is a gentle but dependable presence in our lives, available to do research and give us developmental checklists, but also just to listen when we're having a tough week and need someone to talk to. We did the birth preparation and even parenting preparation classes, but now that we're in the thick of it, we feel very grateful to have someone who checks in and brings back our big picture perspective."- Lucy, Okwen and Elise, First Born® family
“I just gave birth to my second baby. Even though I knew what to expect, it was so good to have my home visitor support us with a great start. She was very knowledgeable and felt like a friend, while providing good suggestions and assistance with breastfeeding. Specifically, she recommended that I pump daily, so that I have sufficient milk supply when I go back to work in a few months.”- Desirae and Alex, Great Start Family Support
“My home visitor came for three visits after my baby was born. She was friendly, helpful and had really useful information. She also connected us to community resources to help us on our way.”- Cynthia, Dominic, Jayden and Kruze, Great Start Family Support