Kentucky restaurant owners start applying for relief funds

Coronavirus Watch Kentucky

OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – Kentucky restaurant owners started placing their orders for financial help from the commonwealth.

It’s the first day they could apply for aid from the state’s Food And Beverage Relief Fund.

Restaurants keep taking carryout orders. But some restaurant owners say it’s not making up for all losses from the three week in-person dining ban.

“Right now, the sales that we have in carryout won’t set it off. We’ve had to lay people off, but even the people we have working, we’re not going to have enough sales to cover those people,” said Patrick Bosley of Moonlite Bar-B-Q Inn.

“Every restauranteur that I know is reeling from this. It’s a serious challenge for our businesses,’ adds Ben Skiadas, who owns Lure Seafood and Grille.

They were among those applying for a part of the $40 million dollars available to restaurants through fund. Businesses can get up to $10,000 per restaurant. Skiadas and Bosley say they applied because every dollar can help, and will use their shares to cover payroll and other costs.

“$10,000 , it will get some bills paid, but it doesn’t give the help with staff that we need. I’d like to see more aid pushed towards the people,” Skiadas says.

“You’re looking for whatever help you can get to stay in business. It’s a drop in the bucket, but it will help,” Bosley adds.

While the money gives restauranteurs a little help staying open while indoor dining is closed off, some worry what can happen if in-person dining stays closed beyond the originally planned three-week period.

“I’m a little nervous going into the colder weather here to see how people respond and seeing if they’re still keen on sitting in a tent to dine,” says Skiadas.

“I’m confident we’ll be in business. We were in a positive situation before Coronavirus hit. It’s very difficult. it’s very challenging,” Bosley says.

To apply for assistance, click here.

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(This story was originally published on November 30, 2020) 

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