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October 20 – Independent Restaurants on Paycheck Protection Program: "Didn't Work for Restaurants in March and It Won't Work Now"

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 October 20, 2020

Jeff Solnet

Independent Restaurants on Paycheck Protection Program: "Didn't Work for Restaurants in March and It Won't Work Now"
Accommodation and Food Services Sector Received Just 8.1% of Paycheck Protection Program Dollars Despite Restaurants Contributing to Nearly a Quarter of All Jobs Lost During the Pandemic, More than Any Industry

 WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, leaders of the Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC) released the following statement on the Senate's proposed Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) refill:
 "The Paycheck Protection Program didn't work for restaurants in March and it won't work now. Since the program began, one in six restaurants has closed, 2.3 million people are no longer on the payroll, and $220 billion revenue was lost in just the second quarter. With outdoor dining growing more difficult, the cost of supplies increasing, and the virus still raging, restaurants cannot take on any more debt. Restaurants need grants, not loans, to survive the winter during the pandemic. It’s commonsense policy, and that’s why a Restaurant Revitalization Fund was included in HEROES 2.0 in the House and cosponsored by over 40 Republicans and Democrats in the Senate.  Senators serious about helping neighborhood restaurants should pass the RESTAURANTS Act, not another round of Paycheck Protection Program."
 In August, 
the U.S. Small Business Administration reported that the Accommodation and Food Services sector received just 8.1% of PPP dollars, despite restaurants and bars contributing to nearly a quarter of all jobs lost during the pandemic, more than any other industry. Restaurants and bars have shedded 2.3 million jobs since the outset of the pandemic, with the National Restaurant Association estimating 1 in 6 restaurants have closed during that time.
 Independent restaurants and bars are pushing for the passage of a $120 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which was included in the House's recently-passed HEROES Act. The legislation would create a fund for small establishments that have been impacted by the pandemic. The RESTAURANTS Act, from which the program is derived, has the bipartisan support of 213 House members and 40 senators.


 The Independent Restaurant Coalition was formed by chefs and independent restaurant owners across the country who have built a grassroots movement to secure vital protections for the nation’s 500,000 independent restaurants and the more than 11 million restaurant workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The Coalition’s leadership team includes Tyler Akin, José Andrés, Kevin Boehm, Sean Brock, Katie Button, Andrew Carmellini, Ashley Christensen, Jeanie Chunn, Amanda Cohen, Tom Colicchio, Nina Compton, Rosa Garcia, Suzanne Goin, Gregory Gourdet, Will Guidara, Mason Hereford, Sam Kass, Max Katzenberg, Mike Lata, Camilla Marcus, Ivy Mix, Kwame Onwuachi, Patrick Phelan, Erika Polmar, Naomi Pomeroy, Niki Russ Federman, Steven Satterfield, Michael Shemtov, Nancy Silverton, Frank Stitt, Bobby Stuckey, Robert St. John, Caroline Styne, Jill Tyler, and Andrew Zimmern.

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