KEEP is working closely with the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, the Kentucky Veterinarian’s Office, the state legislature and other leading equine organizations to support Kentucky’s horse industry and provided timely information and resources for the equine community across the state.

Below are resources you can use as we all react and adapt to the impact of COVID-19:


  • For questions or suggestions of other ways KEEP can support the horse industry and community, email
  • Laurie Mays, who oversees KEEP’s workforce project in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce, is the lead contact for questions related to the horse industry regarding workforce and labor issues. Contact Laurie by emailing
  • For questions regarding what equine businesses are allowed to be open or must be closed, contact the office of the State Veterinarian.



Recommended Industry Guidelines and Best Practices:



  • KEEP is closely monitoring legislation in Frankfort and Washington that may benefit or impact the horse industry and community.
    • The Kentucky General Assembly passed COVID-19 legislation that codifies many of the Governor’s orders. Labor policy changes that may pertain to equine businesses and employees include:
      • Waiving the seven day waiting period for collecting unemployment benefits.
      • Allowing employees who have not lost jobs, but have had hour reduced, to be eligible for unemployment benefits.
      • Moving the 2019 state income tax filing deadline to July 15, matching the federal government’s shift.
      • Expanding unemployment benefits to self-employed individuals who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19.
    • The United States Congress has passed three massive bills in response to COVID-19 and are currently working on a fourth. In the legislation that has already been enacted into law, the following policy changes may impact equine businesses and employees:
      • Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program: a loan program designed to keep small businesses afloat and support continued employment employees. If employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the funding is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest or utilities, the loan will be forgiven.
      • SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan: a loan advance program that could provide up to $10,000 of economic relief. The advance will not need to be repaid.
        • On May 5, 2020, the SBA announced that agricultural business are eligible for the EIDL program
      • SBA Debt Relief: SBA will pay the principal, interest and fees of 7(a), 504 and microloans for a six month period.
      • Payroll tax deferral: employers can defer the payment of payroll taxes incurred between March 27, 2020 and December 31, 2020.
      • Employee Retention Credit: a fully refundable tax credit for employers equal to 50 percent of qualified wages (including allocable qualified health plan expenses) that Eligible Employers pay their employees. This Employee Retention Credit applies to qualified wages paid after March 12, 2020, and before January 1, 2021.