News of Note

COVID-19 Resources Update Mar. 18


Last night Governor Sisolak announced the closure of nonessential businesses for 30 days across the State and is directing all Nevadans to stay home in an attempt to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Per Governor Sisolak “Only essential services should remain open, such as fire, police, transit, & health care services, in addition to businesses that provide food, shelter, or social services for disadvantaged populations.  Non-essential services like beauty & barber shops, & nail, tanning, & waxing salons should close until further notice. Only essential businesses should remain open, such as pharmacies, grocery & drug stores, banks & financial institutions, hardware stores, & gas stations.” View his press conference at Every one of our members will be affected over the next month – either by having employees work remotely, reduction in services, or a complete shut-down. The Las Vegas community is coming together to support those in need.  Below is an updated list of resources that you can share with your employees, friends and family: BUSINESS SERVICES SBA SUPPORT The Small Business Administration will work directly with governors to provide targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and nonprofits that have been severely impacted by the coronavirus. The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. Find more information on the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans at: DETR/UNEMPLOYMENT Telephone claim call center hours will increase to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday. With the convenience of 24-hr filing, claimants are highly encouraged to use the internet to file their UI claims. Employees may be eligible to file claims if their hours have been reduced. For more information, see below or visit HEALTHCARE SERVICES  NEVADA HEALTH RESPONSE To inform Nevadans statewide, the Nevada Department of Health Read More

SBA and Access to Economic Injury Loans


On Tuesday, Joseph Amato, District Director for the US Small Business Administration (SBA) shared important information about access to Economic Injury loans through the SBA as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. This morning the SBC declared a state of emergency for Nevada which allows for the immediate acceptance of SBA disaster loan applications for Economic Injury. These applications will be processed through the Office of Disaster Assistance (ODA) in Sacramento, CA. These Economic Injury loans are different from the typical SBA loan as they are being funded directly by the federal government and not through a lender. The SBA has tried to set up a seamless process for small businesses to apply for financial assistance. You must go to their Economic Injury website to begin the application process. Small businesses and nonprofit organizations are eligible for an Economic Injury loan of up to $2MM with low interest rates (public companies are not eligible for this program). For-profit businesses – 3.75% Fixed Rate Non-profit businesses – 2.75% Fixed Rate $0 Closing Costs for applications through the website Size standards are still in effect. You must have an explainable credit history (they will consider medical and other life changes). You must have the ability to repay the loan. Please note that these loans can have expanded terms up to 30 years to keep the monthly payments low. SBA will be required to take all available collateral until the loan is repaid. The website will help you to determine the loan amount you will need based on factors including your monthly burn rate: Current debt obligations including SBA and 3rd party loans Lease/Rent Fixed liabilities including payroll and benefits for critical employees Costs to not only stabilize your operation but prepare you for recovery Individual contractors are also able to apply Normally the SBA would fund the above for 3-6 months, however it is allowing small businesses to request up Read More

Important Resources: COVID-19


The Downtown Vegas Alliance is closely monitoring state and local agencies as the situation regarding the COVID-19 virus is rapidly evolving. On Thursday evening, Governor Steve Sisolak declared a state of emergency and last night announced the closure of K-12 schools through April 6th, at a minimum. Many of the Las Vegas Strip casinos, including the Wynn and MGM, have also announced closures as well as other places of gathering such as the Mob Museum and Children’s Discovery Museum. These necessary actions will have an effect on nearly every resident in Southern Nevada and will impact our members. As a result, we would like to share the resources below that you and your employees can access during this critical time. The State has created a website that provides a central, state-wide hub for individuals, businesses, & organizations to access federal & NV-specific guidance & resources to make informed decisions surrounding this rapidly developing situation. Learn more: We’d also like to know if your business is doing anything in response to this situation, please let us know so that we can share with members and the community via our social media channels. Please email us at For updates from the Governor’s office please follow his twitter page at Go to the Nevada Health Response Center for latest information on Nevada’s response to COVID-19 at For updates from the city of Las Vegas go to their website for information at     IMPORTANT INFORMATION AND LINKS   DETR/UNEMPLOYMENT Telephone claim call center hours will increase to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday. With the convenience of 24-hr filing, claimants are highly encouraged to use the internet to file their UI claims. Employees may be eligible to file claims if their hours have been reduced. For more information, see below or visit OF LAS VEGAS In following the President’s declaration of a national Coronavirus Read More

Downtown community goes above and beyond to help each other.


A message from Carolyn Wheeler Over the past few weeks, I have had the privilege to work with our members and the community to provide hope to the survivors of the devastating Alpine Motel Apartments fire, the deadliest blaze in city of Las Vegas history.  This fire impacted 68 people in our community who lost everything in the fire; their clothes, their home, their memories, and tragically, six people lost their lives. The mission of the Downtown Vegas Alliance is to create an attractive, vibrant, diverse and sustainable downtown Las Vegas.  This is true for our businesses but also true for our community, and so we knew we needed to do whatever we could to help our neighbors. We quickly acted and started a GoFundMe page to collect funds to meet the immediate needs of those who were displaced.  We also established a location to accept item donations from the community such as clothing, toiletries and toys for the nine children who lost their homes right before the holidays.  DVA members who answered the call for help include the Mob Museum who agreed to be our item drop-off location, Lyft who offered ride vouchers and volunteers to sort items, Downtown Grand who donated blankets and pillows, and the Hydrant Club that donated items for families with pets.  I also want to thank U-Haul, Costco, Home Depot, Max Pawn and Timbers who also pitched in. Throughout the whole process, we worked with the American Red Cross of Southern Nevada along with Veterans Village, also a DVA member, to make sure that we were able to deliver these items to the survivors in a timely and coordinated manner. A lunch was hosted at Veterans Village where everyone was invited to come together and receive items that were given by the public including nearly $16,000 in gift cards thanks to community donations. The event became so much more than a vehicle to Read More



The board of directors of the Downtown Vegas Alliance (The Alliance), a member-driven nonprofit organization committed to creating an attractive, vibrant, diverse and sustainable Downtown Las Vegas, is pleased to announce the appointment of Carolyn Wheeler as executive director. Wheeler comes to the role with an extensive leadership background in strategic planning, marketing, communications, non-profit leadership, corporate social responsibility and community relations in a 30-year career that includes a five-year stint at Caesars Entertainment where she most recently served as director of philanthropy and corporate social responsibility marketing and director of the Caesars Foundation. “I’ve been fortunate to call Las Vegas home for the last 22 years,” said Wheeler. “I am passionate about creating ways for companies, non-profits and community stakeholders to come together to increase impact and improve our community, especially in the downtown area that is the heart and soul of our city. I share the commitment to help make Las Vegas the best place to work, live and play with each of the members of the Downtown Vegas Alliance.” Prior to Caesars Entertainment, Wheeler served as the Nevada state community development director for Citibank, held leadership roles at various Southern Nevada companies and non-profit organizations as well as accruing significant experience in major advertising agencies in Las Vegas and her native California. “With determination, experience, intelligence and skillful communication, Carolyn Wheeler has been a unifying and guiding force in driving positive development in Southern Nevada for the last two decades,” said Jonathan Ullman, board chair of the Downtown Vegas Alliance and CEO of The Mob Museum. “Carolyn brings strategic ideas, plans and tactics to our organization, and we look forward to working together under her leadership.” In addition to her role with the Downtown Vegas Alliance, Wheeler is a commissioner of Nevada Volunteers, a position to which she was appointed by Governor Sandoval and serves on the board of Family Read More

  • Dayvid Figler and Rae Lathrop

    DF: Downtown was great as a kid and it is even greater as an adult. I love all of downtown’s hidden gems, its vibrancy, history and sense of connection. Rae is relatively newer to Las Vegas, but just as passionate about downtown. Downtown lends itself to the shared experience, and as a couple we both love seeing this part of the city through each other's eyes. Photo: Lucky Wenzel


  • Rob Ponte

    Some of the best nights I’ve experienced started out with no plan other than walking around to check out what’s going on. The great thing about having so many bars and restaurants downtown is the ability to move around if you’re not feeling the vibe in one place. There are plenty of options just outside the door. Photo: Lucky Wenzel

  • Brandon Wiegand

    The downtown Las Vegas of today has much to attract residents - a burgeoning restaurant and nightlife scene, growing diversity of businesses, and major centers of art and culture. Plus, living downtown I am easily within walking or biking distance of it all. Photo: Lucky Wenzel

  • Hank Gordon, Chairman of Laurich Properties

    It is always a pleasure to deal with the city of Las Vegas’ economic development department. The staff is really interested in helping create a positive business environment to work with.

  • Jonathan Jenkins, Founder & CEO of OrderWithMe

    As our company continues its rapid growth, we quickly realized the need to set up a formal U.S. headquarters. We explored multiple cities and were about to make the move to San Francisco, and then we heard about the complete reinvention of downtown Las Vegas. Coming from China where things are booming and growing, we love that downtown Vegas now has a similar vibe of energy and change. Not only is there an exciting tech community here and much lower costs than the Bay Area, but we love the fact that almost every industry group brings their conventions to our front door once a year.

  • Andy Hsieh, Owner of Lux Delux

    We love the vibrancy and energy of Las Vegas, and downtown is at the heart of it all. That's why we've launched our mobile platform with a focus on downtown. This is an exciting time in Las Vegas history, where community, commerce and technology are all converging at once. Downtown is our city's hidden gem.

  • Ramesh Srinivasan, Chief Marketing Officer & Head of Partnerships of SocialWellth

    We chose to relocate from the suburbs to downtown for several reasons. Our brand image and that of downtown’s mesh perfectly. The new downtown Las Vegas reflects a more hip, startup, social media-style image. Additionally, downtown’s emerging technology corridor, anchored by Zappos, is an environment that enhances our ability to recruit the types of technical skill sets required for our continued growth and success.

  • Mark Brandenburg, President of Golden Gate

    I think downtown Las Vegas is a unique blend of intimacy and great energy. Plus, in contrast to The Strip, it’s so easy to walk around…The Golden Gate has been here for over 100 years and with all the changes going on downtown, it feels like a new era. It truly is a renaissance—the rebirth of a classic.

  • Roberto Mendoza, Co-owner of Banger Brewing

    The city has been great in helping us with the licensing and procedures necessary to start a business. There hasn't been a brewery built in the city of Las Vegas for probably 10 years. So for them it hasn't been a typical ‘cut and paste’ thing. We're something different. It was a team work process to get us opened – a lot of talk and listening on both sides. And now the city started opening up the doors for other breweries once we were up and running. Good news for us and good news for the future. (Photo: Lucky Wenzel)

  • Alexandra Epstein, Executive Vice President of El Cortez Casino Hotel

    This downtown area… is emerging and where many events are happening.

  • Meghan Mossler, Owner of Stitch Factory

    The city and the department of economic development have been very helpful to us and all the other downtown business owners. It’s such a community here, and everyone asks you what you need. That kind of help launching a business is amazing and priceless.

  • Pamela Dylag, Co-owner of Velveteen Rabbit

    The city is so supportive of new businesses. Things are popping up constantly. (Photo: Lucky Wenzel)

  • Marc Abelman, CFO & Co-owner of Inside Style

    Downtown is becoming very much in demand…there’s a limited supply. Run fast, don’t walk.

  • Sam Cherry, CEO of Cherry Development

    For a while, downtown was one of the only places in the valley you would see cranes when you drove around. It was nice that city government stepped up and the private sector married with the public sector to create amazing projects that filled the gap. That was very important for us.

  • Johnny Jimenez, Owner of Toy Shack of Las Vegas

    Our business is booming amid the foot traffic on Fremont Street, and we’ve started to see how tourists are falling in love with downtown as they discover it. In the past year, we’re increasingly hearing things like, ‘Wow, next time we’ll stay downtown instead of on The Strip,’ or ‘We’ve visited downtown many times, but this is the first year we’ve actually stayed in a downtown hotel.’ They like that there is more to do within a smaller walking radius.

  • Rich Worthington, President and CEO of The Molasky Group of Companies

    Historically, downtown Las Vegas has not been a top destination for many locals, but in recent years… that trend is reversing itself. Given all the recent openings and progress, there’s much to explore and experience downtown.