The Grand Valley’s surge in COVID-19 instances is as soon as once more straining native companies.
Mesa County imposed additional well being restrictions this week that took impact Saturday. However, if the development of constructive instances continues, then a stay-at-home order much like the one carried out initially of the pandemic remains to be on the desk. That has native enterprise leaders and house owners anxious.
“I count on some companies to die, sadly. And that makes me actually annoyed. They’ve labored actually laborious to remain open,” stated Diane Schwenke, president and CEO of the Grand Junction Space Chamber of Commerce. “They’re your mates and neighbors. They want you to put on your rattling masks and do the appropriate factor. They may lose their enterprise.”
Beneath the brand new degree, all indoor capability for companies is capped at 25%. Any companies which have acquired a 5 star score from the Variance Safety Program, a collaboration between the chamber and Mesa County Public Well being, can decide to have capability set to 50%. These companies can even be checked on extra incessantly to make sure they’re following protocols, Schwenke stated. If the state strikes right into a stay-at-home order, Schwenke stated, it’s potential that five-star companies obtain exemption from that order and the chamber is hopeful that’s the case.
Schwenke anticipates that the companies that can be harm most by the brand new restrictions are retailers, occasion planners, venues, and any enterprise that depends on foot site visitors.
A few of these companies can be spared sure restrictions, although.
Shane Allerheiligen, proprietor of A Robin’s Nest of Antiques & Treasures, 602 Major St., isn’t anxious about how the brand new restrictions will influence his enterprise.
The shop is about 21,000 sq. toes, he stated, which makes social distancing simpler. Robin’s Nest additionally makes use of an air sanitation system from ActivePure know-how, which claims its system can kill most, if not all, traces of COVID-19 on a floor in seven hours.
And if the state strikes to a stay-at-home order, Robin’s Nest could be unaffected, Allerheiligen stated.
“We have now a federal firearms license, so we’re thought-about a necessary enterprise,” he stated. “Thank God for the Second Modification.”
Different companies, particularly eating places, received’t be as fortunate.
The previous two weeks have been devastating for MX Tapas Bar Restaurante, 546 Major St.
Supervisor Shayna Livingston stated that enterprise in that time-frame has dropped between 50-75%. Since MX doesn’t have a patio, the 25% capability might additional stifle earnings.
“Every little thing has dropped. Suggestions, gross sales, and I don’t see loads of our regulars anymore. We do on-line ordering however that doesn’t cowl it in any respect,” Livingston stated. “It’s irritating. I perceive persons are nervous however all of this comes again on us, the eating places. Please put on your masks to maintain numbers down and please store regionally.”
To assist companies comparable to MX, the chamber is working with the Enterprise Incubator Heart to extend funding for help grants.
On Wednesday, Grand Junction Metropolis Council approved the Incubator to distribute as much as $300,000 of grant funding, in keeping with a Friday Chamber information launch. That is much like the Incubator’s final spherical of grant funding that expired on Oct. 30.
Companies that acquired that funding are eligible to use for this spherical, too. The max award is $7,500.
Initiatives comparable to this funding may help companies keep afloat, however Schwenke stated it’s crucial the neighborhood does its half, too. “At this level, we’re in neighborhood unfold,” she stated. “By not carrying your masks, you’re placing companies and their workers in danger.”