CORNING, NY – After one round of the Restaurant Revitalization program, lawmakers are proposing a second round. Many qualified restaurants did not receive the money the first time, so, a second wave would be another chance for aid.
The U.S. Small Business Administration budgeted $28.6 billion to give out to businesses, and it was not enough. The first round of the Restaurant Revitalization fund was doled out in May, but, less than one-third of the over 362,000 qualifying applicants received the money.
Lawmakers are proposing $60 billion more in aid to cover those applicants that didn’t get it the first time around. One of those businesses was Slammin’ Jammin’ BBQ.
The restaurant has seen an uptick in business this year. Manager, Felicia Banik, says they would use the funds to cover the losses incurred from the pandemic.
“Business itself has been picked up this year but it’s about what we lost in 2020 not what we’re getting now,” Banik said.
For many other businesses, it is the same story. With summer and loosened COVID restrictions, business is making a comeback for many. But, that doesn’t mean the economic blow from the pandemic has healed.
The SBA was prioritizing minority applicants such as businesses owned by women, people of color, and veterans. Though, a lot of those minority applicants didn’t receive the money either.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand says that those that are already approved will be first in line to receive the funds. Gillibrand also says the bill has bipartisan support and is confident it would pass if it makes it to the senate.