Coronavirus

Learn the Facts and How We're Prepared

At American Bank, the health and safety of our customers, employees and the communities we serve is our top priority. We understand the concern and uncertainty you may be experiencing surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and are committed to being responsive to the needs of our customers and employees as the situation evolves.

Here, you’ll be able to find valuable resources, and we will be adding more as they become available.

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How American Bank is Prepared

Because we care about the health and safety of our customers, employees and the communities we serve, we've taken steps to ensure we're prepared as the coronavirus situation progresses. We are continuously monitoring information from the Centers of Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO).

We have a business continuity plan in place to protect against significant disruption of business as a result of an unplanned event, such as Coronavirus. The program is fully integrated with our standard operational procedures to ensure critical business functions will go uninterrupted and is optimally maintained through regular testing.

We are continuously monitoring our staffing levels throughout the bank to prevent any disruptions in service due to health reasons. Remote work is available to employees as needed and we ask employees to stay home if they or a family member are not feeling well.

We are also taking precautionary sanitation measures, such as regularly wiping down desks and other surfaces throughout the day, to help prevent the spread of germs.

 

Together we’re keeping each other healthy!   Our lobbies are open and we have put plans and equipment in place to help protect our employees and you from the spread of COVID-19.

Together We're Keeping Each Other Healthy

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A Letter from Our CEO to Our Business Customers

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A Letter from Our CEO Regarding

All Branch Lobbies Opening June 15th, 2020

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Mandatory Mask Requirement

July 22nd, Governor Walz issued a statewide mask mandate. People in Minnesota are required to wear a face covering in all public indoor spaces and businesses, unless they are alone. This includes when waiting outside to enter an indoor public space. The mask requirement begins at midnight Friday, July 24. It is set to remain in effect until the state’s peacetime emergency ends.
 
Exemptions to the order include:

  • People with health conditions that make it difficult to tolerate wearing a face covering.
  • Any person who has trouble breathing or unable to remove the face covering without help.
  • People who at work with jobs where wearing a face covering would create a safety hazard as determined by local, state, or federal regulators or workplace safety guidelines.

In addition, the mandate does not apply to private indoor spaces, including homes, or hotel rooms. There are also lots of situations in which you are allowed to temporarily remove your mask, including:

  • When eating or drinking (provided you can maintain 6 feet of social distance from other people)
  • When you have to show your ID at a bar or enter an event
  • When swimming
  • When communicating with someone who is deaf or hard of hearing
  • When visiting the dentist

You’re also allowed to take off your mask in many different indoor settings, as long as adequate social distancing can be maintained – including:

  • In offices and other work spaces
  • While playing organized sports
  • When taking part in indoor physical exercise, such as in a gym or fitness center
  • When speaking or performing in settings including theaters, news conferences, lectures, concerts and courtroom proceedings
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Small Business Disaster Relief 

Small Business Administration (SBA)

Minnesota small businesses and private nonprofits are now eligible to apply for SBA disaster loans. Applicants apply directly to SBA’s Disaster Assistance Program.

Learn More Here

The SBA is not affiliated with American Bank. The products and services provide by the SBA are not affiliated with American Bank. American Bank Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender.


Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

Visit our PPP Page for More Information


Minnesota Department of Employment & Economic Development (DEED)

Following Executive Order 20-15, DEED has established a loan program to assist small businesses directly and adversely affected and whose industry is named in Executive Orders 20-04 and 20-08 following the COVID-19 pandemic. Small businesses are a vital part of Minnesota’s economy and this program will provide a source of working capital to help businesses sustain operations during this challenging time.

Businesses should apply directly through a certified lender. A list of lenders and application materials are available on the MN Government DEED website. Nonprofits are not eligible for this program.

**Current loan requests have exceeded funding availability.**

Please visit the MN Government DEED site regularly to learn if the legislature has made additional loan funds available.

Learn More Here

DEED is not affiliated with American Bank. The products and services provide by DEED are not affiliated with American Bank. American Bank Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender.

  

CARES Act

The US Chamber of Commerce has issued a guide to help businesses understand the new employee retention tax credit that was passed as part of the CARES Act stimulus package. The program provides a tax credit for businesses who keep their employees on the payroll from March 12, 2020 and January 1, 2021. Here are a few key points we noted in the Employee Retention Tax Credit Guide.

  • Eligible businesses must have had their operations partially or fully suspended by a governmental authority due to COVID-19 OR experience a decline in gross receipts by at least 50% compared to the same quarter in 2019.
  • You may not claim both the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan and this tax credit. You may also not collect this credit if you are also collected the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.
  • The tax credit is for 50% of the first $10,000 in compensation (including employer paid health care benefits) for EACH eligible employee. You cannot count wages paid that the business was reimbursed for through the sick or family leave provisions of the FFCRA.
  • Employee eligibility will vary for employers with more than 100 employees versus 100 or fewer employees. Employers with 100 or fewer employees can claim the credit for all employees, even when only some are providing a service partially or fully suspending by the government. The employer must still meet the eligibility requirement of having partially or fully suspended services or having a 50%+ reduction in gross receipts compared to 2019.

The office of Senator Tina Smith has published a helpful, 4-page overview on the CARES Act.

 

City of Hibbing and HEDA

Hibbing Economic Development Authority (HEDA) has taken action to help businesses in response to COVID-19. Effective April 1, 2020, HEDA is deferring collection of HEDA loans from local businesses for six months through September 30, 2020. Businesses with loans through HEDA will not need to make a payment until October 1, 2020. This action does not change these loans into a grant, and loan payment schedules will resume as normal on October 1st.

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About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Because the situation is constantly evolving, it can be difficult to know where to find the most reliable sources of information. At American Bank, we rely on sources like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization.

 It’s important to be sure you’re receiving information about Coronavirus from reliable sources of information to help prevent the spread of misinformation about the evolving situation.

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Bank Wherever You Are

We offer convenient ways for customers to bank wherever they are. If you want to avoid public places or can’t make it to the drive-thru, you can use our Online Banking and eMobile Banking.  They are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Our free Online and eMobile Banking make it easy to view balances, make loan payments, transfer funds and more – no matter where you are.  When you use our mobile app, you can even deposit checks conveniently and securely any time.  We also offer ePay, so you can avoid making the trip to your local post office to send a check in the mail.

 
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Frequently Asked Questions for Bank Customers

The FDIC provided a list of questions frequently ask by bank customers during the coronavirus outbreak.  
 
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Summary of the New Social and

Workplace Guidance Changes


We know there are a lot of different items to track in both our workplace and social settings. The State of Minnesota has developed a matrix summarizing current COVID-19 guidelines and how those are expected to change in future phases of the Stay Safe MN reopening of our economy. DEED has also released a series of PDFs on Industry Guidance for Safely Reopening for a variety of industry types and recreational activities. Click here to access the guideline documents on business settings and social settings.
 

October 8th and June 5th Guidance on Further Business Re-Opening

Restaurants and bars can be open for indoor service as long as they:

  • Have adopted and implemented a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Ensure a minimum of 6 feet of distance between tables
  • Limit indoor occupant capacity to no more than 50% up to 250 persons
  • Do not exceed 250 persons in outdoor spaces
  • Limit party size in dining rooms to 10 people
  • Limit party size in bar area to 4 persons
  • Require patrons in all area to be seated
  • Require reservations
  • Require workers to wear masks at all times and strongly encourage customers to wear masks when not eating or drinking

Gyms, studios and fitness centers can reopen as long as they:

  • Have adopted and implemented a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Ensure social distancing (6 ft between persons) and limit occupant capacity to no more than 25%; not to exceed 250 persons for indoor and outdoor settings each
  • Strongly encourage that masks be worn by workers and users
  • Establish regular disinfection routine and train staff
  • Ensure ≥6 ft of distancing between equipment; greater distancing should be implemented for treadmills and other aerobic activity that encourages high exertion
  • Group exercise classes should only be offered if distancing requirements can be maintained and with no person-to-person physical contact

Seated and recreational entertainment and meeting venues can reopen as long as they:

  • Have adopted and implemented a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Limit occupant capacity to no more than 25% not to exceed 250 persons
  • Ensure social distancing and a minimum of 6 feet between persons
  • Strongly encourage masks for workers and customers

Personal care services (such as hair salons, barbershops and tattoo parlors) can reopen to provide services indoor as long as they:

  • Have adopted and implemented a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan
  • Limit number of clients inside the business at any time to ensure 6 feet of distance between persons except when providing services
  • Limit occupant capacity to no more than 50% not to exceed 250 persons
  • See clients by appointment only; do not allow walk-ins
  • Require workers and clients to wear masks at all times. For services where the client cannot wear a mask, the worker should add a face shield in addition to their mask.

Click here to view additional guidance.

 

  
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Social Gatherings

Social interaction is important for our mental health and well-being. We are at a point where people can start to gather in small groups. If you are hosting or attending a social gathering, follow these tips to help protect yourself and others.

  • Keep your indoor gatherings to 10 people or fewer.
  • Keep your outdoor gatherings to 25 people or fewer.
Whether you are indoors or outdoors:
  • People from different households should stay at least 6 feet apart.
    • Set up seating areas ahead of time that allow for space between people.
  • Wear a mask or cloth face covering during times when you can’t keep at least 6 feet between people.
    • Wear a mask when you arrive, when you leave, and if you have to move around among people.
  • Try to minimize sharing items and equipment with people not in your household. If you do, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol once you are done.
Remember: Stay home if you are sick and be sure to cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue.
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Beware of Scammers

Scammers are always looking for opportunities to take advantage of people in times of crisis. Below are some sources from the FTC to help protect you.

Tips to Avoid Coronavirus Scams                                                                  Social Distancing from COVID-19 Robocall Scams                                      Grandparent Scam                                                                                          Avoid SSA Scams During COVID-19                                                                IRS COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments Scams                                  Increased Phishing Fraud Attempts on Credit & Debit Cards                COVID-19 Scams: 10 Tips for the Elderly

Imposter Scams and Money Mule Schemes Related to Coronavirus

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Economic Impact Payments 

The IRS is committed to helping you get your Economic Impact Payment as soon as possible. The payments, also referred to by some as stimulus payments, are automatic for most taxpayers. No further action is needed by taxpayers who filed tax returns in 2018 and 2019 and most seniors and retirees.
Non-Filers Information: 

If you don’t file taxes, use the "Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info Here" application to provide simple information so you can get your payment.

You should use this application if:

  • You did not file a 2018 or 2019 federal income tax return because your gross income was under $12,200 ($24,400 for married couples). This includes people who had no income. Or
  • You weren’t required to file a 2018 or 2019 federal income tax return for other reasons. Or
  • You have not filed your 2019 taxes.

If you receive these benefits, we already have your information and you will receive $1,200. Do not use this application if you receive:

  • Social Security retirement, disability (SSDI), or survivor benefits
  • Railroad Retirement and Survivor Benefits

Special note: People in these groups who have qualifying children under age 17 can use this application to claim the $500 payment per child.

Non-Filers: Enter Payment Information Here

 

Track Your Economic Impact Payment

The IRS opened an online portal for people to check the status of their payment. 
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Returning to Work Safely - Best Practices

The MN Chamber produced a document that contains information that will help guide employers and employees through the challenges of returning to work safely.  Businesses of all sizes are eager to get back to work and these best practices will help us return to a sustainable level without jeopardizing employees or customer safety.
 
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Non-Critical Retail Business Curbside Pickup and Delivery:  What Does that Mean?

Retail stores and other businesses that sell, rent, maintain and repair goods that can be picked up outside, without entering the place of business and with limited interaction between employees and customers. Services like household goods rental, maintenance services, repair services and pet grooming are included. Other services are not. Salons and barbershops may do retail sales via outdoor pickup and delivery, but not provide services. In order to provide delivery, the business must have provided delivery services previously to the pandemic.
 
Effective May 4th, Customer-facing retail businesses that sell goods are permitted to engage in curbside or outside pick-up and delivery as long as they:

 
COVID-19 Preparedness Plan for Retail - Customer controls and protections for drop-off, pick-up and delivery

  1. Customers must pre-order goods or pre-arrange the maintenance or repair of goods or pet grooming services before traveling to the business.
  2. Customers must not be permitted to enter the business premises.
  3. Timing of outdoor drop-off, pick-up and delivery should be pre-arranged and arrival at the drop-off, pick-up or delivery location should be communicated through voice, text or email messaging.
  4. Contactless payment should be used whenever possible. If contactless payment is not possible, payment should be made in a manner that allows for at least six feet of distance between the worker and customer.
  5. Order verification should also be made using means that allow for at least six feet of distance or a complete barrier between the worker and customer.
  6. Workers should wear appropriate personal protective equipment, including non-medical face coverings.
  7. Drop-off, pick-up or delivery of goods should be made using means that allow for at least six feet of distance between the worker and customer.
  8. Customers should be asked to wear face coverings.
  9. Drop-off and pick-up locations should allow for six feet of social distance between customers.
 

Resources for Retail Businesses

Best Practices

 

Required COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

 
Employee Health Screenings

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Support Our Small Businesses

At American Bank we’re committed to being here for our communities.  In times like these we all come together to help each other and at American Bank  we feel now is the time to help those essential small businesses in our communities that are open to help them get the word out.  In April sponsoring full page advertising for essential small businesses to help spread the word that they are open for business!  Click on the links below for a full listing of open restaurants. 

Hibbing/Chisholm/Side Lake/Nashwauk Restaurants 

Grand Rapids/Cohasset/Deer River

Virginia & Surrounding Communities

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Emergency Child Care Grant Program

The Northland Foundation created the Emergency Child Care Grant Program to offer immediate financial support (up to $3000) to licensed family- and center-based child care providers caring for children whose parents/guardians are designated as emergency personnel and other essential workers. 
 
  • Licensed family child care will be eligible for $1,000 grants
  • Licensed center-based care will be eligible for $3,000 grants
  • Providers must be located within one of the following counties or Native Nations: Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, and St. Louis County, Bois Forte Band of Chippewa, Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe-District 1, or Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe-District 2.
  • We intend to provide a response and funding within two weeks of applications being received.
  • Funding will be awarded on a first-come first-served basis to qualifying applicants for as long as grant dollars are available.

If you have specific questions about the application process, please contact Northland Foundation Grants Manager, Carol Chipman by email at carolc@northlandfdn.org.

 3/31/20: The six Minnesota Initiative Foundations created an Emergency Child Care Grant Program to provide immediate financial support to licensed child care providers in Greater Minnesota. Learn more 

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Other Helpful Resources

  • If you’re a business or a worker who has general questions about how COVID-10 affects business, consult DEED COVID-19 Information page.
  • If you want to know what state government has to offer businesses so far, check out Helping Minnesota Businesses during COVID-19.
  • If you’re a business or a worker who has questions about how unemployment insurance works, consult our Unemployment Insurance FAQs.
  • If you’re going to apply for unemployment benefits, APPLY ONLINE. Phone lines are jammed and have long wait times. www.uimn.org
  • For information on delaying your sales and use tax payments see the MN Dept of Revenue Sales and Use Tax page.
  • For information on the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) that requires certain employers to provide employees with paid sick leave or family leave related to COVID-19, visit the Department of Labor website.
  • To apply for health insurance through the MNsure marketplace or learn more about who qualifies for the new open enrollment period through April 21st, Click Here.
  • To view daily updates of the number of confirmed cases at a county level, visit the Minnesota Department of Health website.
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Coronavirus Response: How to Help

From FEMA: Everyone has a role to play in the whole community fight against COVID-19. Learn how to help if you are a company with medical supplies to donate or sell, a volunteer who is medically trained, or a member of the general public.

From MN: Businesses with special skills or products to donate to help in the crisis, should contact the State Emergency Partnership at hsem.ppp@state.mn.us
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Do's and Don'ts of Wearing a Homemade Mask

 
 
 
Last Updated: October 8, 2020