As a CBMM family, we’re all going through a challenging time as we try to flatten the curve and slowdown the spread of COVID-19. The most important thing all of us can do right now to stay safe—and keep our families and communities safe—is to follow CDC and state guidelines.
I have been so impressed by the spirit of our staff during this difficult time. Even working remotely, the team is doing everything they possibly can to prepare for CBMM’s reopening, once it’s safe for all of us to return. And return we will.
Since our initial closure announcement on March 13 in response to COVID-19 concerns, CBMM’s Senior Management Team—along with the Executive Committee and Board of Governors—have done everything possible to mitigate the financial hardships we anticipate over the next several months. We have reduced expenses, halted most of our capital projects, and opened lines of credit—all while trying to preserve care of the collection, campus maintenance, employee salaries, retirement contributions, and health benefits during these extraordinary times.
I am very, very pleased to announce that CBMM has just received a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) small business loan from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This loan will help keep CBMM’s entire staff employed through June 14, and it will not only help with salaries, benefits, and utilities, but also alleviate the lines of credit we have opened, to specifically keep the CBMM family together.
This staff has grown to be the strongest, most cohesive team in CBMM’s 55 years. To maintain our workforce of 59 FTEs during this time is significant, especially just after the most successful year in CBMM’s history. Keeping this CBMM family together is an example of our strong commitment to our valued employees, and the community. Our determination to protect the culture and the stories CBMM preserves during these unparalleled times represents the passion we have for the people of the Bay.
Although this is a positive step toward our financial recovery, it is important to recognize that the economic challenges presented by COVID-19 are not over for CBMM. Until a vaccine and proven treatments are established, CBMM will need to adjust to life with COVID-19—as will all of us—until these remedies are in place. Our goal is to reopen CBMM as soon as we possibly can, while anticipating less revenue from attendance, festivals, programming, and weddings during our prime season, due to the global economic impact from COVID-19.
Thank you to our donors and members who have provided their strong support. We greatly appreciate your continued assistance as we work together to make progress, knowing that you are also coping with the personal toll this has likely taken on both you and your families.
To our first responders, healthcare providers, pharmacists and essential workers, I thank you for all your efforts. My heart goes out to those who have been directly affected by this illness.
I believe we will get through this hardship together. Overcoming this moment in our lives is what will define all of us going forward.