Economic Relief

This page focuses on resources for individuals, households, and small businesses in Columbia County. This information will be updated as information becomes available. 

Resources for Businesses, Employers, Workers and Job Seekers→

When will I receive my stimulus check and how much will it be? Do I have to do anything to apply for it?

The IRS says the first economic impact payments were issued April 11, with more deposits coming soon. If you filed taxes in 2018 or 2019, you do not have to do anything to receive your payment. If you did not file, you need to fill out a non-filers form→. Use the Get My Payment tool→ from the IRS to track your payment. 

IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief and Economic Impact Payments→

I recently became unemployed for COVID-19 related reasons. Do I qualify for unemployment? How do I apply? Is there other assistance available? 

Visit the Oregon Department of Employment’s COVID-19 page→ for information about unemployment benefits available in Oregon, who qualifies and how to apply.  

The U.S. Department of Labor also has information and resources dealing with COVID-19 related unemployment, paid leave and more. 

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Available in Oregon→- Oregonians who are eligible for this program include individuals who do not qualify for or cannot collect benefits on a regular unemployment insurance claim including self-employed, independent contractor, and agricultural workers.

Additional resources 

How can I get food assistance? 

During this hard time, the last thing families should have to worry about is their children being hungry. Help is on the way for families with children who are signed up for free or reduced cost lunch at school. Money will be automatically added to SNAP benefits card, or families will get a debit card in the mail from the state. This benefit is available to all community members who qualify based on income, regardless of immigration status. It will not count toward the public charge rule. If you are NOT already signed up, call your school or apply online→.

Sack lunches and food boxes for those experiencing extreme food insecurity through a partnership with Columbia Pacific Food Bank, Community Action Team, Columbia Pacific CCO, Columbia Health Services, Grace Baptist Church, and Columbia Community Health Services. Please email a completed Food Delivery Request form→ to PeerOutreach@ccmh1.com to request this service for a person in need.

For more food resources, please visit our Community Resources and Service Updates→ page

For assistance with pet food, visit Columbia Humane Society→ or call 503-397-4353.

How do I get help with my rent, mortgage, and utilities? 

Phones and Internet Service

  • Comcast: Free Internet and Low Cost Computers for Low Income Households→  Comcast offering 60 days of free internet to low income families, call 1-855-846-8376

  • Lifeline: Free or Discounted Phone Service→ Are you experiencing trouble with getting access to phone service or trouble paying your phone bill? Are you a low-income Oregonian? You may qualify to receive a discount on your existing phone service (with participating companies), or receive free monthly wireless service. Stay in touch with your family and friends during this difficult time. Call us at 1-800-848-4442 or email us at puc.rspf@state.or.us.

  • Free Xfinity WiFi hotspots for everyone: Find a map of Xfinity wifi hotspots here→.

Additional resources

Small Businesses

  • Columbia County Economic Team→
  • The Port of Columbia County is offering to help small businesses in Columbia County navigate the application process for federal and state relief funds. Please contact Mark Ellsworth by phone at (503) 369-4827 or email at ellsworth@portofcolumbiacounty.org.
  • Disaster Loan Assistance: Federal Disaster Loans for Businesses, Private Nonprofits, Homeowners, and Renters. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Provides low-interest, long-term disaster loans to businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners, and renters to repair or replace uninsured/underinsured disaster damaged property. SBA disaster loans offer an affordable way for individuals and businesses to recover from declared disasters. disasterloan.sba.gov→
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture COVID-19 Federal Rural Resource Guide→

Federal Student Loans

As of March 13, 2020, all federally held student loans will automatically have the interest rate dropped to 0% for 60 days, but suspension of payments will need to be requested on an individual basis; borrowers are encouraged to contact their loan servicer directly online or by phone to request the forbearance.

Public Health Quick Links
230 Strand St.
Columbia County Courthouse Annex
St. Helens,
OR
97051
Fax: 888-204-8568

Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5:00
Administrator
Michael Paul