Active State Issues
Active Federal Issues
Wednesday, June 30, 2021
Governor Inslee released a statement yesterday afternoon reaffirming that businesses may mostly return to business-as-usual effective today Wednesday, June 30th. Updated guidance was also released. You can read more about the Governor’s announcement in his accompanying press release.
Indoor and outdoor guidance effective June 30
Effective 12:01 AM on June 30, all industry sectors previously covered by guidance in the Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery or the Safe Start Reopening Plan may return to usual capacity and operations, with limited exceptions for large indoor events (any event with more than 10,000 simultaneous participants in an indoor, enclosed space.)
- Vaccine verification/negative testing: For Wineries please see guidance below specific to employers in our industry
- Capacity limitations: No restrictions in restaurants, bars, stores, businesses, theaters etc. (except large indoor events)
- For Wineries, this includes the return use of our bar area!
- Physical distancing: No requirements
- Facial coverings: Not required for vaccinated individuals, unless the business chooses to require them
- Travelers: Follow CDC recommendations
Guidance Specific to Employers Regarding Fully Vaccinated vs. Not, including Masks, Methods for Vaccine Verification, and More
Requirements for places of employment issued by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries have been updated here. Please read these carefully and thoroughly! This resource includes:
- Detailed options for fully vaccinated workers to go without a mask
- Methods for verification of worker vaccination status
- Employers must be able to show the process used to verify employee vaccination status. However, they do not need to keep an actual copy of the employee’s vaccination records. Acceptable types of verification include:
- Vaccine card or photo of vaccine card
- Documentation from a health care provider
- State immunization information system record
- A hard copy or electronically signed self-attestation from the employee.
- Choices workers have to continue to mask up
- And other updated guidance to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on the job and help employers meet their obligations to provide a safe and healthy workplace.
Other Helpful Washington State Links
Department of Labor and Industries
The Department of Labor and Industries has published a Paid Sick Leave FAQ. L&I and ESD have worked together to establish a Paid Family and Medical Leave FAQ. Combined, these FAQ address a range of possible scenarios that may unfold as workplaces resume operations.
Employment Security Department of WA State (ESD)
If you do not find the answer to your question on the ESD website, please send your question directly regarding any UI or related items to Josh McDonald at WWI – Josh@wwi.wine. We have secured a direct contact with ESD to get answers for all Washington wine industry questions. ESD has requested our members use a point person with their association to try and help with the overwhelming amount of questions and requests they are getting right now. This approach will likely get your question(s) answered much faster!
TTB Announces Three Month Excise Tax Postponement
The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) recognizes that businesses that they regulate are being severely impacted by COVID-19. To assist these businesses during this period, they are postponing several filing and payment due dates for 90 days where the original due date falls on or after March 1, 2020, through July 1, 2020.
- Postponing tax payment due dates for wine, beer, distilled spirits, tobacco products, cigarette papers and tubes, firearms, and ammunition excise taxes.
- Postponing filing due dates for excise tax returns.
- Postponing filing due dates for submission of operational reports.
- Postponing filing due dates for claims for credit or refund by producers.
- Postponing filing due dates for claims by manufacturers of non-beverage products.
- Postponing due dates for submission of export documentation.
- Considering emergency variations from regulatory requirements for affected businesses on a case-by-case basis.
- Reviewing requests for relief from penalties based on reasonable cause.
To view the latest updates and guidance to help you and your business respond to the COVID-19 national emergency – Click here
Other Helpful Federal Links
CARES Act: Covid-19 Stimulus Summary
On March 27th, the President signed into law the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” (the CARES Act), the largest economic relief act in our country’s history.
WineAmerica has provided a basic summary of the CARES Act and benefits for the wine industry here.
The US Travel Association has provided a list of relief resources through new or existing federal programs as a result of this legislation. You can find those specific programs here
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
An SBA Loan that helps businesses keep their workforce employed during the Coronavirus (COVID-10) crisis. Information on the program as well as how to apply can be found here
The US treasury also has published information on assistance for small businesses thru the paycheck protection program, you can access that information here
US Department of Labor
The US Department of Labor announced new action regarding how American workers and employers will benefit from the protections and relief offered by the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act, both part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Wage and Hour posted a temporary rule issuing regulations pursuant to this new law, effective today, April 1, 2020.
The US DOL will post a recorded webinar on Friday, April 3, 2020 to provide interested parties a more in-depth description and help you learn more about the FFCRA.
Wage and Hour Division (WHD) invites webinar viewers to call the agency’s toll-free help line at 866-4US-WAGE to speak with trained WHD professional about any questions you may have. Please also check our COVID-19 response website often, as we continue to update the compliance assistance information available there. Similarly, signing up for the USDOL Key News Alerts will ensure that you remain current with all notice requirements.
The Seattle District Office is also here locally to offer assistance to our stakeholders in the business, government and worker communities in Alaska, Washington and Northern Idaho at 206-398-8039.
Centers for Disease Control