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Updated on 5/1/20.  To obtain information on developments since then, please reach out to the Association office.  If you are on our email lists, you will receive information as it is released into the public space.

Your Association is open and working to keep you informed on issues and government action related to the coronavirus pandemic.

We have vigorously worked with our state and federal officials to identify our farm and construction equipment dealerships as an “essential business” in the event there is a government-mandated shutdown of all “non-essential” businesses.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued UPDATED guidance, which identifies key industries that would be allowed to operate should a federal shutdown/quarantine be declared. Farm and construction equipment dealerships would be included as part of that group. Dealerships’ sales, rental, service and parts departments would be allowed to continue to operate, subject to their respective state laws.

The farm equipment exemption (page 6 & 7) states:

  • “Farmers, farm workers, and agribusiness support services to include those employed in auction and sales…”
  • “Employees engaged in the manufacture and maintenance of equipment and other infrastructure necessary for agricultural production and distribution.”

The construction equipment exemption (page 10) states:

  • “Employees who repair and maintain vehicles…and the equipment and infrastructure that enables operations that encompass movement of cargo and passengers.”
  • “Workers critical to rental and leasing of vehicles and equipment that facilitate continuity of operations for essential workforces and other essential travel.”

Other websites and articles related to COVID-19 are listed below. Please give us a call at the office and let us know if you have any questions.

The information listed below reflects decisions and executive orders made on a state-wide basis.  To follow city guidelines, you would need to look up COVID-19 resources specific to your city.

Minnesota Resources

Schools - Closed. Transitioned to online learning.

Food Service Businesses - Closed to in-dining services.  Take-out, Delivery, Curbside, and Drive-throughs will continue service. In effect until May 4th.

Public Accommodation & Amusement Businesses -  Closed until May 4th.

Non-Essential Businesses - Closed from March 28th through May 4th.  See the information above for clarification on the consideration of equipment dealers.

Essential Businesses - Open

MN State COVID-19 Webpage

MN Governor's Executive Orders

MN Unemployment Insurance Information 

MN Employer Obligations

MN Small Business Loan Guarantee


North Dakota Resources

North Dakota's business restrictions expired on April 30, 2020. The state has released guidelines for businesses to follow as they start to open to the public, and has published the state's long-term plan for dealing with COVID-19.

ND State COVID-19 Webpage

ND Governor's Executive Orders

ND State Health Recommendations from Governor Burgum

ND Unemployment Insurance and Q&A on CARES Act.

ND Dept. of Health Travel Order


South Dakota Resources

Though South Dakota's Governor, Kristi Noem, never issued a "Stay At Home" Order, she did issue an order requiring open businesses to follow specific guidelines. That order has been updated with the "Back to Normal Plan" that was released on April 28, 2020.

SD State COVID-19 Webpage

SD State Recommendations for Employers


Articles & News Releases

What If an Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19?

By growthzone | April 2, 2020 | Comments Off on What If an Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19?

If an employee reports testing positive for COVID-19, it’s important to remember that the safety and well-being of all employees is paramount, but the privacy of the reporting individual must also be preserved under federal law. As a general rule, an employer should not disclose the identity of an employee diagnosed with (or suspected of…

Minnesota Small Business Loan Guarantee Program

By growthzone | March 30, 2020 | Comments Off on Minnesota Small Business Loan Guarantee Program

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is announcing the Minnesota Small Business Loan Guarantee Program, which was approved by the Minnesota Legislature last week.  This temporary program, established in response to the impacts of COVID-19, provides another option for financing to help small businesses weather this difficult time.  DEED estimates that this…

Walz Signs $330M Response Package

By growthzone | March 30, 2020 | Comments Off on Walz Signs $330M Response Package

Governor Tim Walz today signed a bill to allocate $330 million in COVID-19 aid in Minnesota – bringing the state’s total response to more than $550 million to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill was passed by the legislature on March 26, 2020. “The swift, bipartisan passage of this bill is One Minnesota in action.…

CARES Act Passed by Congress

By growthzone | March 27, 2020 | Comments Off on CARES Act Passed by Congress

Today Congress completed action on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. It is noted as the largest single relief package in American history totaling $2 trillion in economic stimulus. The CARES Act is the third round of emergency legislation Congress has approved to help provide action and relief surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic,…

“Travel/Work” Permit

By growthzone | March 27, 2020 | Comments Off on “Travel/Work” Permit

Several of our Minnesota Pioneer EDA members have contacted our office and requested a “travel/work permit” that they may use to identify their employee as a critical or essential worker.  The premise is that the document would be provided to the employee and, in the event the employee is pulled over by law enforcement while…