Phase Three is now open for business

Chamber Corner

Western New York has moved into Phase Three of the New York Forward plan, allowing restaurants to serve indoors at 50 percent of capacity, and personal service businesses to reopen such as massage therapy, spa services, tanning businesses, manicure and pedicure services, and tattoo and piercing services.

If you are a business owner and have questions, remember that the New York Forward plan is all available online at https://forward.ny.gov/ny-forward. Under each Phase you will find your business sector, and under each business sector you will find a handy reference chart that provides Summary Guidelines, as well as the Detailed Guidelines. At the very end of the Detailed Guidelines for each sector there is a link to click, taking you to an Affirmation Form online. Each business must AFFIRM that they have read the detailed guidelines for their sector. This includes all businesses that have been open as Essential Services.

Cornell Cooperative Extension sent reminders out in the past week that all farms are also required to implement safety plans that cover issues surrounding employees, work environment, and processes. For assistance with farm planning please contact Cornell Cooperative Extension at 664-9502.

As our economy continues to move through the phased reopening process, we remind all businesses, employees, and customers to take precautions and follow the requirements of reopening. The new rules are designed for our public health and safety. In addition, the guidelines and rules provide each business with direction on how to mitigate the risk of employees and customers. As a reminder, COVID-19 is not gone, and we encourage precautions not just to protect our local residents, but to keep us from having to backtrack in what has already been a difficult process this year. Please wear masks and continue to social distance as needed – for the sake of our businesses and our entire community.


The next Chamber/MAST Business Weekly Webinar will feature the Mayors of Dunkirk and Jamestown as our special guests. Dunkirk Mayor Willie Rosas and Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist will meet with local businesspeople on Monday, June 15 at 3:30 during our Business Weekly Webinar online. The mayors will focus on topics important to local businesses as they reopen including a variety of items such as special accommodations for local businesses, grant programs, and more.

Pre-registration is encouraged, but not required. To sign up or attend the webinar visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/8683224162938372623. The Business Weekly Webinar is sponsored by Digitell, FORECON, and the Law Offices of Sheila Starkey Hahn. All local businesspeople are welcome to attend these free and informative sessions.


Each year the Chamber of Commerce provides an opportunity to meet with our Congressman. This year that event will be held online at 8:30 a.m., Thursday, July 16. Representative Tom Reed will be our guest and will answer questions from the audience.

We encourage all participants to get up and get out and pick up some breakfast or coffee from your favorite local restaurant, then join us online beginning promptly at 8:30. You may attend for free, but we are also providing a registration option for a donation to the Chamber of Commerce if you are so inclined. Not unlike many businesses in our community COVID-19 has had a financial impact on our organization, so your donation is greatly appreciated.

The Congressional Breakfast is sponsored by Advanced Manufacturing Technology, Jamestown Mattress Company, Law Offices of Sheila Starkey Hahn, Media One Radio Group, OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, University Advancement at the State University of New York at Fredonia, and UPMC Chautauqua. You may register online through the events calendar at www.chautauquachamber.org.


Chautauqua has been nominated for USA Today’s Best Small Town Cultural Scene, and all local people are encouraged to vote! You can vote daily through June 29 by visiting vote.chq.org. You can also sign up for daily reminders to vote!

We have had some tremendous successes this year for local communities and attractions at Fredonia won the Season 5 vote in The Small Business Revolution, and the National Comedy Center won the USA Today Best New Museum poll. Let’s all work together to make this just as successful! Vote each day!


Responding to your needs as a member/investor in the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce and Manufacturers Association remains a top priority. Given the financial challenges posed by COVID-19 we have made some staff scheduling adjustments through June and July in an effort to reduce our costs. Office hours in our Jamestown office will be by appointment only. Our Dunkirk office remains closed as part of the Jamestown Community College campus closure. We will respond as quickly as possible to your calls and emails. Because our staff will be working part-time there may be a delay in getting back to you. We ask for your patience. Our contact information remains available on the Contact Our Team page on our website. In addition, you may call 716-366-6200 or 716-484-1101.


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