This is Derek Miller Speaking on Business. Salt Lake City is the economic hub of Utah and is well-positioned to capitalize upon human, cultural, and technological assets, even during a global pandemic. Ben Kolendar, director at the Salt Lake City Department of Economic Development, is here to tell us more.

At the SLC Department of Economic Development, we meet with about 300 businesses in person each year. Due to COVID-19, we’ve modified that process and have been exploring a virtual site visit program moving forward. We’re also proud of the “Emergency Loan Program” we initiated this spring to help small businesses.

We’ve teamed up with tremendous partners in the community. The “Tip Your Server” grant program in particular is something I’m proud of. We partnered with the Chamber and Downtown Alliance to provide $500 grants to more than 1,200 local employees in the food and beverage industry. We just concluded the “Open Streets SLC” program, which expanded patio dining for restaurants along Main Street. We will continue to innovate moving forward.

We have constantly been working with our own employees who have been working from home since mid-March to address issues ranging from mental health to work schedule flexibility as children have gone back to school.

We are grateful for the SLC Department of Economic Development and how it has adapted to continue to serve Utahns. Visit, for more information. I’m Derek Miller with the Salt Lake Chamber, and this is Speaking on Business.