Loading...

Independent Restaurant Coalition Runs Ad to Support Congressional RESTAURANT Act

August 3, 2020 by Gracie Kreth
Ground Zero is a blues club in Clarksdale, Mississippi that is co-owned by Morgan Freeman, attorney Bill Luckett, and Memphis entertainment executive Howard Stovall. (Photo by Deisenbe via wikipedia commons)

WASHINGTON – As Congress and the White House continue to negotiate another package of coronavirus relief, the Independent Restaurant Coalition is stepping up its effort to make sure they are included in the emergency funding this time around. 

This week, the Coalition is running a television and online advertisement, featuring actor Morgan Freeman. 

“Neighborhood restaurants we love are closing everyday, knocking a rung off the ladder of someone’s American dream,” said Andrew Zimmern, a founding member of the Independent Restaurant Coalition, host and executive producer of MSNBC’s “What’s Eating America”.

“Nearly 40% of independent restaurants are owned by immigrants,” he said. “They are America’s favorite first job, the top employer of non-white managers, and employ over one million single moms. They are passion projects and community lifelines. They are our family, and we hope this ad reminds Congress of the stakes facing their communities during the pandemic. 

“Independent restaurants simply cannot generate enough revenue to stay open and continue employing 16 million people around the country without relief from Congress,” Zimmern added.

Earlier this summer, Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., with Reps. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., and Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., introduced the Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed to Survive, or RESTAURANTS Act.

The bipartisan bill would establish a $120 billion grant program run by the Department of the Treasury to support operational costs of restaurants, bars, food trucks, catering business, and other food and drink establishments suffering due to the economic toll of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding would go to help the 500,000 restaurants that aren’t publicly traded and have less than $1.5 million in revenue and would be used to pay rent, mortgage, payroll, personal protective equipment, and other similar costs — determined by comparing the businesses’ 2019 to 2020 revenue. This money will not need to be repaid.

According to the National Restaurant Association, restaurants employ about 11 million people and about 5 million people make up the food supply and delivery chain. The industry accounts for four percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Restaurant consulting agency Aaron Allen & Associates estimated one-third of restaurants will face closure in the United States, and of the Americans who lost their job in the pandemic, one in four were in the restaurant industry. 

With support in both the House and Senate, 165 lawmakers have already signed on to the bipartisan bill, and more are expected to join this week.

“The coronavirus pandemic continues to threaten millions of jobs supported by America’s small and independent restaurants,” Wicker said when he introduced the bill. “These small businesses are hurting because of the costs of restocking perishable foods, retooling their operations, and they still cannot operate at full capacity even as the country reopens. The RESTAURANTS Act would save many of these businesses, benefiting their workers and the farmers, fishermen, distributors, and truckers that rely on them.” 

In The News

Health

Voting

Business

January 28, 2023
by Dan McCue
The Rise of Contractors Screams Out for a Rethinking of Policy

WASHINGTON — Hard as it may be to believe, a revolution really did take place while we were all inside,... Read More

WASHINGTON — Hard as it may be to believe, a revolution really did take place while we were all inside, hoping the dark, early shadow of COVID-19 would somehow pass us by.  According to Liz Wilke, principal economist with Gusto, a payroll, benefits and HR platform... Read More

January 25, 2023
by Tom Ramstack
Justice Dept. Sues Google Again Alleging Monopolistic Ad Tactics

A Justice Department lawsuit filed Tuesday against Google accuses the internet giant of illegally acting like a monopoly with its... Read More

A Justice Department lawsuit filed Tuesday against Google accuses the internet giant of illegally acting like a monopoly with its digital advertising technology. The lawsuit filed in federal court in Virginia seeks a court order to break up Google’s grip on online advertising sales and to... Read More

January 24, 2023
by Tom Ramstack
Attorneys General Challenge Social Responsibility Policies for Investing

Some state attorneys general are continuing a conservative backlash against investment strategies that emphasize social responsibility with a challenge to... Read More

Some state attorneys general are continuing a conservative backlash against investment strategies that emphasize social responsibility with a challenge to two corporate advisory companies. A letter written last week to the two companies says forcing social responsibility onto investors could be irresponsible, perhaps shortchanging them when... Read More

January 23, 2023
by Dan McCue
EVs Take Center Stage at Washington Auto Show

WASHINGTON — Forget a weeklong vote to get a House speaker, when all is said and done, the biggest news... Read More

WASHINGTON — Forget a weeklong vote to get a House speaker, when all is said and done, the biggest news of the month may well be how electric vehicles dominated center stage at the Washington, D.C., Auto Show. The annual event returned to the Washington Convention... Read More

Elon Musk Depicted as Liar, Visionary in Tesla Tweet Trial

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Elon Musk was depicted Wednesday as either a liar who callously jeopardized the savings of “regular... Read More

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Elon Musk was depicted Wednesday as either a liar who callously jeopardized the savings of “regular people" or a well-intentioned visionary as attorneys delivered opening statements at a trial focused on a Tesla buyout that never happened. Lawyers on opposing sides drew... Read More

January 5, 2023
by Dan McCue
Offshore Wind Project Nets $24.1M in Tax Incentives

EAST SETAUKET, N.Y. — A project aimed at transforming a warehouse into a support facility for a pending offshore wind... Read More

EAST SETAUKET, N.Y. — A project aimed at transforming a warehouse into a support facility for a pending offshore wind project has netted $24.1 million in tax breaks from the Town of Brookhaven in New York state. The sales, use and real property tax exemptions are... Read More

News From The Well