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    American Express is offering card members up to $50 for money spent on small businesses in an effort to help mom-and-pop shops devastated by the coronavirus pandemic. The financial services giant came up with the deal — which gives card members $5 for every $10 spent — after its own research revealed 62 percent of small businesses are desperate to boost revenue to survive the COVID-19 crisis. The deal, first reported by Bloomberg on Monday, is good for ten purchases. It will cost American Express $200 million. Deepak Grover, a Brooklyn small business owner, called the offer “pretty amazing.” “We do have a lot of customers pay by card,” Grover, proprietor of Big Apple Ride car service, told The Post. “The coronavirus has been very hard on my business.” “Yeah, it will help,” said an employee at the Health Nuts store on Second Avenue in Midtown, who declined to...
    The economic fallout from the COVID-19 crisis will produce business losers. Lots of them. Sad but true. The COVID-19 era will eventually end, but it could take years. Between now and then, I predict that many businesses and their customers will take unprecedented steps to protect themselves from whatever comes next. Even if it turns out that nothing really bad comes down the road anytime soon, steps will still be taken — as insurance. Good idea, IMHO. Bottom line: The old normal will be replaced by a new post-COVID-19 normal that’s significantly different. The transition from old to new will produce business winners, and many will come from America’s small business sector. This column explains why operating as a tax-favored qualified small business corporation (QSBC) can help eligible businesses survive and thrive in the new normal. But first, indulge me in some optimistic brainstorming about the kinds of new-normal...
    A small business owner in Wisconsin was denied coronavirus relief funds from the local government after he participated in a rally protesting statewide stay-at-home measures to combat the pandemic. Dimple and Denis Navratil have owned Dimple's Fine Imports LLC in Racine, Wisconsin, for more than 20 years. They applied twice for some of the $900,000 the city allocated to small businesses to help offset the financial burden of the health crisis, according to an investigation conducted by the Journal Times and published Sunday. Upon receiving his second denial, Denis Navratil was told by the city's mayor that his attendance at a rally in Madison on April 24 protesting Democratic Gov. Tony Evers's "Safer at Home" measures was used as a basis for his rejection. “Participating in mass gatherings outside of our community, such as the rally that was held at the State Capitol — such large gatherings...
    The Trump administration in April quietly issued a sweeping waiver exempting members of Congress and other federal officials from ethics rules in order to allow them and their families to apply for small business coronavirus relief loans without facing conflict of interest reviews. The existence of the ethics waiver was reported Friday by the Washington Post and met with alarm by good government advocates who warned the “blanket approval” from the Small Business Administration (SBA) opens the door to abuse of Paycheck Protection Program funds designed to help struggling small businesses stay afloat. Scott Amey, general counsel with the nonprofit Project on Government Oversight, told the Post that “this is the exact time when we should be worried about government officials, even members of Congress, taking money out of the hands of others in need.” “Let’s hope someone else is minding the store,” added Amey, “because SBA seems more about speed and less about accounting for taxpayer dollars.”...
    TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Since reopening her barbershop, Laleh Rezaie has required customers to wear masks, except when getting a shave or beard trim. “As of today, I’m not offering that anymore,” she said Thursday. With a new executive order by Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley taking effect Friday, Rezaie says she wanted to increase the precautions she’s taking. “I would hate to be somewhere in the chain of causation for someone to get sick. That scares me the most,” she said. As the number of COVID-19 cases have begun to surge again, many clients have canceled. She also had one customer upset about wearing a face covering, who prompted her to frame a mask with the words “Good Vibes Only” near the entrance to her business. Tarrant County business owners who spoke to CBS 11 News say they support the new mask requirement, even if customers don’t. While it...
    When you think about Hennessy, you probably think about partying at social hour or entertaining at a private affair. However, cognac brand many Black Americans love offers more than just a good time–the company now wants to invest in small businesses with a new grant. As a family business spanning three centuries, the brand’s $3 million initiative is called Unfinished Business. READ MORE: Hennessy partners with Thurgood Marshall College Fund for $10 million graduate program Unfinished Business is a new campaign from the 255-year-old beverage company that has committed to helping companies that have negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Many small businesses and nonprofits have suffered financially during the global COVID-19 crisis, but the Unfinished Business initiative wants to lend support. Starting this June, the company will tap industrial and social entrepreneurs who will give capital to help nurture visions of business owners disproportionately affected by the health and/or...
    DOWNTOWN — My Block, My Hood, My City raised more than $1 million for its Small Business Relief Fund and is now looking for groups to get the money. Businesses can apply online for the organization’s Small Business Relief Grant program through July 1. The grants are meant to help small businesses reopen during the coronavirus pandemic and rebuild after possible damages from looting. Businesses must be for-profits, located within Chicago, employ 20 or fewer full-time staff and have earned less than $2 million in 2019 to be considered, according to a press release from the organization. Grants will range in size and could be up to $7,500. Selected businesses can use the grants to restock inventory, provide personal protective equipment to employees and repair storefront damage, among other needs. Grant applications will be reviewed by the “impact” the money will have, according to the group. Black and Brown business...
    Washington (CNN)Congress' $650 billion forgivable loan program helped small business owners keep millions of people on their payrolls as states imposed shutdowns, but some lawmakers and economists say more aid will be needed to make sure they recover in the long term. Despite bipartisan support for providing more economic help, there's less agreement on how to do it -- and it's unlikely there will be a plan in place when the Paycheck Protection Program stops taking applications for new loans on June 30.Congress included the lending program in its sweeping $2 trillion economic relief package passed in March, known as the CARES Act. It was launched quickly by the Treasury Department and Small Business Administration in April, and Congress approved a second round of funding when the pot ran dry a couple of weeks later. To date, it's approved more than 4.6 million loans worth nearly $515 billion.Generally, businesses with...
    Fox Nation host Raymond Arroyo went to Santa Monica, Calif., to speak to small business owners, who found their stores, and in some cases their lives, threatened by violent mobs amid the turmoil in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd. FOR LIMITED TIME, RECEIVE 25% OFF NEW PURCHASE OF A YEARLY FOX NATION SUBSCRIPTION "At the end of May, here at the Santa Monica Promenade, 80 businesses were looted, ransacked, and destroyed while police did nothing," narrated Arroyo, in a special episode of Fox Nation's "Laura and Raymond." "In all, 225 businesses suffered damage." On Sunday, May 30, a peaceful protest descended into chaos after a smaller group of looters broke away from the main demonstrations. Locals merchants said that when the violence and destruction spiraled out of control the police were nowhere to be found.  In the end, however, law enforcement reportedly made about 400 arrests. Kristen Rotblatt, the manager of the Santa Monica Homoeopathic pharmacy,...
    BROOMALL, Pa. (CBS) – Small business owners in Delaware County picked up essentials on Monday needed to reopen. Eyewitness News was in Broomall for the distribution effort. Download The New And Improved CBS Philly App! Small business owners previously ordered kits online at a discounted price, courtesy of the Bringing Back Delco Task Force. Those kits include hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, gloves, masks, and social distancing floor markers. The kits, which cost $10, contain about $90 worth of supplies. Some kits are still available online. There will be another distribution at the Broomall Fire Company from 9:30 until 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday. You must register to pick-up a kit, click here.
    NEW YORK (AP) — The Trump administration has relented to public pressure and pledged to provide more details about which small businesses received loans from a $600 billion-plus coronavirus aid program. But government watchdogs say even more transparency is needed to get an accurate picture of who was helped, and who was left out. Under pressure from Democratic lawmakers and government watchdogs, the Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration said Friday they would disclose the names of small business owners who received $150,000 or more in forgivable loans. The agencies will reveal the general amount these businesses received, their address, demographic data and the number of jobs they helped protect. But for loans of less than $150,000, the agencies will not name the recipients, revealing only summary information broken down by zip code, industry and demographics. Experts say this could paint an incomplete or misleading picture. Recipients of smaller...
    WASHINGTON - The Trump administration has abruptly dropped its insistence on secrecy for a $600 billion-plus coronavirus aid program for small businesses. The administration announced Friday it will publicly disclose the names of recipients of the taxpayer-funded loans, the amounts they received in ranges, as well as demographic data on the businesses. The unexpected move came after Democratic lawmakers, government watchdogs, ethics advocates and news organizations called for the administration to make the information public. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin refused to do so at a Senate hearing last week, saying the data on the Paycheck Protection Program was “proprietary information.” The Small Business Administration, which manages the loan program, has only provided general information, such as the total amounts of loans awarded in a given time period. Mnuchin said in a statement Friday that the new position resulted from a bipartisan agreement with leaders of the Senate Small Business...
    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration has abruptly dropped its insistence on secrecy for a $600 billion-plus coronavirus aid program for small businesses. The administration announced Friday it will publicly disclose the names of recipients of the taxpayer-funded loans, the amounts they received in ranges and demographic data on the businesses. The unexpected move came after Democratic lawmakers, government watchdogs, ethics advocates and news organizations called for the administration to make the information public. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin refused to do so at a Senate hearing last week, saying the data was “proprietary information.” Mnuchin said in a statement Friday that the new position resulted from a bipartisan agreement with leaders of the Senate Small Business Committee. Copyright © 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    (CNN)The Small Business Administration and Treasury Department, under withering criticism for lack of transparency, shifted course Friday and announced they would disclose details of borrowers in the Paycheck Protection Program.The SBA, which manages the $660 billion emergency lending program, will disclose business names, addresses, loan amount ranges and demographic data, among other things, as part of an agreement with bipartisan lawmakers on Capitol Hill, the SBA and Treasury announced in a joint statement.This is a breaking story and will be updated.
    President Donald Trump was excoriated on social media after turning his attention to Twitter during a roundtable Thursday afternoon on the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic as one attendee detailed the hardships faced by her small business due to the outbreak. “Get off your phone and pay attention!” tweeted author Jason Cranford Teague. Get off your phone and pay attention!https://t.co/YSC7s7mMgc — Jason Cranford Teague #BLM (@JasonCT) June 19, 2020 The president began scrolling through his phone as a business owner described how the pandemic has affected her company’s operations, including the need for added runners and phone operators to handle social distancing requirements. Trump’s focus instead was apparently on composing a tweeted threat to China referring to Ambassador Robert Lighthizer’s comments Wednesday to the House that it was unlikely the Chinese and U.S. economies could “decouple.” Trump demonstrates the depth of his empathy with two small business owners he...
    (CNN)Senior House Democrats demanded the Small Business Administration comply with Government Accountability Office requests related to the $660 billion Paycheck Protection Program, accusing the agency of breaking the law with its decision not to respond oversight requests.The lawmakers, in a letter signed by the chairs from key House oversight panels, said they were "deeply troubled" by the SBA's lack of compliance up to this point and alleged the agency's actions to this point were "in violation of the law," the latest escalation in a series of battles between Democrats and the Trump administration related to the oversight of the trillions in federal spending deployed to stem the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic."GAO informed the Committees that SBA has not complied with GAO's requests and repeatedly failed to commit to a timeframe in which SBA would comply," the lawmakers wrote to SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza. "To date, SBA has not...
    A coalition of civil rights groups including the ACLU sued the Trump administration on Tuesday for denying coronavirus relief loans to small business owners with criminal records, arguing the restrictive policy violates the law and perpetuates systemic racial injustices by discriminating against people of color. “The excluded small business owners are more likely to be Black and Latinx because of bias in our criminal legal system, and their communities are hardest hit by Covid-19,” ReNika Moore, director of the ACLU’s Racial Justice Program, said in a statement. “We won’t stop fighting until this economic lifeline is afforded to all.” The Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Treasury Department initially barred any small business owner convicted of a felony within the past five years from receiving loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was established by the CARES Act. The SBA slightly loosened the restrictions (pdf) last week, banning from relief loans anyone...
    Rob Frohwein, CEO of KabbageAdam Jeffery | CNBC In late March, with the coronavirus pandemic forcing mom-and-pop shops across the country to shut down indefinitely, small business lender Kabbage furloughed a "significant number" of employees and paused its lending operation, anticipating the contraction in its customer base. But CEO Rob Frohwein, who co-founded the Atlanta-based company during the previous financial crisis in 2009, had no intention of sitting back and waiting for shelter-in-place orders to expire. Rather, he saw an opening for Kabbage to put its technology, over a decade in the making, to use on a much bigger stage. Frohwein knew that massive numbers of restaurants, boutique hotels, retailers and barber shops would immediately need checks from the government to avoid having to permanently shut their doors. So the CEO and his team, all working from their homes mostly in the Atlanta area, rapidly stood up partnerships with small banks...
    The Treasury Department is defending its decision to protect information about businesses that received Paycheck Protection Program loans amid the coronavirus pandemic, citing small business privacy concerns. Congressional Democrats have called on the Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration to release more information about the nearly 4.6 million recipients of PPP loans and grants, including the amount of money each small business received from the program -- despite applications for the funds telling would-be recipients that their information would be kept private. MEMBERS OF CONGRESS BENEFITTED FROM PPP LOAN PROGRAM: REPORT Most recently, Rep. Jennifer Wexton, D-Va., on Wednesday morning, led 34 Democratic colleagues in a letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza urged "the immediate disclosure" of information on PPP loans distributed to businesses with multiple employees and "to require the collection of demographic data in all new PPP loan applications and PPP loan forgiveness applications." "Secretary Mnuchin has indicated that...
    A federal loan program designed to keep small businesses afloat during the coronavirus pandemic is wrongfully excluding business owners with a criminal past, a lawsuit filed Tuesday by the American Civil Liberties Union and other legal rights groups contends.  The Small Business Administration's Paycheck Protection Program excludes business owners with a criminal record from applying for a low-interest loan. That unfairly denies them crucial government assistance, according to the lawsuit, which noted that the policy particularly disadvantages African-Americans and Hispanics given that they make up a disproportionate share of those with a conviction.  In court documents, business owners with previous convictions asked a Maryland judge to eliminate the criminal exclusion.  Trending News A second stimulus check? Here's how much you could get Restaurants again shutting their doors as coronavirus flares PG&E pleads guilty to 84 counts of manslaughter in devastating Calif. blaze Some Social Security recipients to get stimulus checks today "Bye-bye Tucker...
    CAPITOL HILL AUTONOMOUS ZONE (CHAZ) — An apparently false report from inside Seattle’s Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ) resulted in an angry mob descending on a small business Sunday evening, according to Daily Caller reporters on the ground. The scene inside CHAZ, recently renamed the “Capitol Hill Occupied Protest” (CHOP), was at first relatively relaxed Sunday evening, with a large group of people playing music and dancing. At one point, a man paused the music and told the crowd that someone was being detained with a gun to his head just outside of the CHAZ border. The crowd sprinted into action and headed towards the location where the alleged incident was occurring. Upon arriving at the local business – an auto repair shop called “Car Tender” – the mob began to yell at individuals guarding the location, although those individuals said the report was false. Some protesters ripped down the...
    The U.S. Small Business Administration late Friday said in a legal filing that detailed information about the Paycheck Protection Program should not be made public. The SBA made the argument in response to a lawsuit filed by 11 news organizations, including Washington Business Journal parent company American City Business Journals. The $659 billion Paycheck Protection Program is the federal government’s primary Covid relief program for small business. The program has been criticized for favoring larger, more established businesses at the expense of the vulnerable small businesses for which it was created. The federal agency’s response was expected after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin this week told Congress that he would not release the names of borrowers. “We believe that that’s proprietary information, and in many cases for sole proprietors and small businesses, it is confidential information,” Mnuchin testified on Wednesday before the Senate Committee on Small Business and… Read the full...
    OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- A big cleanup was happening in Oakland Saturday. Small business owners were repairing dozens of shattered windows along Telegraph Avenue after vandals left a path of destruction overnight.Plywood was going up outside Mark's Paint Mart on Telegraph Avenue where six windows were smashed Friday night by vandals."It makes no sense," said Chris Rago.Co-owner Chris Rago says his family-owned business started in 1973 has never been targeted."We were just back open and getting busy again, now this happens, it makes no sense," Rago said.RELATED: Oakland business owners speak out after restaurant vandalized, lootedOakland Police say groups of vandals are responsible for the damage. The paint store's security cameras captured a group outside the store, setting fires on the street.Nearby, employees at the Kelly Moore store were scraping paint off the floor after vandals broke in, looted and dumped paint inside and out."Basically they vandalized the street and...
    A large number of small US businesses could fail during the coronavirus recession, the Federal Reserve said on Friday, slowing recovery and creating lasting damage to the world’s largest economy. “The nature of the economic recovery that follows the COVID-19 crisis will depend in part on the survival of small businesses,” the Fed said in its biannual monetary policy report to Congress on Friday. “The pandemic poses acute risks to the survival of many small businesses [whose] widespread failure would adversely alter the economic landscape of local communities and potentially slow the economic recovery and future labor productivity growth.” Congress has extended some help, including $660 billion to cover payrolls and overhead. About three-quarters of small businesses with employees have applied for the aid, with many getting funding, the Fed said. Still, “some industries may face an ongoing need” after the program expires this summer. Meanwhile, job losses have been...
    (CNN)The once troubled emergency small business lending program has stabilized, turning into a cornerstone of the government's economic response to the coronavirus crisis and credited with having a significant impact on a positive May unemployment report that stunned economists. But one issue remains a point of frustration for lawmakers: its lack of transparency. The issue has simmered for months, with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle asking for more detailed information about the more than 4 million recipients of the more than $500 billion disbursed through the program so far. Despite continued efforts on Capitol Hill to obtain that data, it is information is not coming any time soon, according to administration officials."As it relates to the names and amounts of specific PPP loans, we believe that that's proprietary information, and in many cases for sole proprietors and small businesses is confidential information," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Wednesday...
    Over the last four years, California bakery Whole Pie survived raging wildfires, flooding and a massive power shutdown. Then came the coronavirus, which has proved one too many disasters for the small business to overcome. The bakeshop's co-owners, Julia Freis and Trishia Davis, spoke with CBS MoneyWatch about their struggle to keep their business alive and the painful decision to close it down. This interview has been edited for clarity and length. Trishia Davis said she and her co-owner decided to close their Santa Rosa, California, bakeshop after a series of crises, including the coronavirus pandemic.  Facebook / Trishia Davis CBS MoneyWatch: The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on small businesses across the county. How long were you in Santa Rosa before you decided to shut down for good last month? Julia Freis: We opened our doors in October of 2016. May 8 was our final day. Our one-year anniversary was...
    A Minneapolis small business owner gathered an armed group to protect her neighborhood and its residents when police stepped back amid rioting and looting that grew out of protests over the death of George Floyd in the city, according to a report. "Material things we can replace, that's true," restaurant owner Cesia Baires told NPR in a residential hallway above her business last week. "But there are families up here. These aren't empty buildings." Baires and other residents rallied armed, properly licensed citizens for protection after police shrank their presence in her neighborhood, according to the outlet. At times, they watched from rooftops with semiautomatic rifles. MINNEAPOLIS POLICE CHIEF BRISTLES AT CALL TO 'DEFUND' DEPARTMENT, SAYS HE WILL NOT 'ABANDON' RESIDENTS They also reportedly handed out fire extinguishers to their neighbors. And Baires wasn’t alone -- armed citizens formed similar groups in neighborhoods around the city, The Washington Post reported Sunday....
    A New York small business owner told “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday that the past few months have been a “nightmare” following the temporary closure of her store due to the coronavirus pandemic. Naoemi Gullickson, the owner of Gifted in Staten Island, went on to say that she has trouble wrapping her head around the fact that New York leaders forced businesses to temporarily shut down in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19, but then allowed violent demonstrators to destroy and damage stores. “It doesn't make any sense,” Gullickson said. “It gives me the sense that our leaders here in this state are not looking out for the small businesses that make every small community thrive,” she added. Last week, looters broke into stores in New York City, wreaking havoc. The city, like others around the country, has been rocked by protests, with some turning violent, over the death...
    The coronavirus pandemic has led to the largest drop in small business ownership in the United States, hurting black business owners the most, according to a June study from an economic research organization. 3.3 million business owners are not actively working, and 22% of the closures came during the February-to-April window of coronavirus restrictions, reported Axios, citing a National Bureau of Economic Research working paper. In the whole Great Recession of 2008, small business owners shrank by 730,000 at 5% reduction, the study noted. Of the 3.3 million, 1.1 million small business owners were black, according to the study. Black business owners shrank from 1.1 million to 640,000 — a 41% difference. Latino business owners represented the second-largest loss at 32% from February to March, the study showed. Asian business owners were at 26%, and 17% white business owners, the study continued. “These findings of early-stage losses to small businesses...
    This content is sponsored by Wells Fargo. Business owners have had to turn on a dime and adapt to unfamiliar circumstances during the coronavirus pandemic, an effort made even more difficult due to plummeting revenue and new pandemic-related restrictions. But some businesses in the nation’s capital are getting a boost with the help of Wells Fargo, which has donated $1 million to support small D.C. businesses, focusing on business owners from diverse and low-to-moderate income communities Wells Fargo granted the funds to three local Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), which are institutions that can help business owners from underserved communities access funding that they might otherwise be unable to qualify for through traditional banking options. The CDFIs include the Washington Area Community Investment Fund, the Latino Economic Development Center and City First Enterprises. “Now more than ever, small businesses, and the investments we make in them, are critical to reviving...
    PULLMAN — Hoping to assist South Side businesses that suffered damage during last week’s unrest, the non-profit Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives launched the Small Business Repair Program. “We’re responding to what we have seen and heard from a lot of small businesses on the South Side that were hit by some of the looting last week,” said David Doig, president of Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives. The group, which works to coordinate resources and bring development projects to under-resourced neighborhoods, wants to raise $100,000 for the new program, all of which will be given to small businesses through grants, Doig said. More than $50,000 has already been raised, he said. The fund aims to bring help to small businesses in neighborhoods including Roseland, West Pullman, Burnside and Auburn Gresham, Doig said. Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives is working with activist Ja’Mal Green, who on behalf of the Majostee All-Stars Foundation, has raised more than $100,000 for...
    Two small business owners told “America’s News HQ” their surveillance cameras caught looters destroying their businesses and they’re now left with even more challenges after already reeling from coronavirus restrictions that have stayed in effect since mid-March. “When we were being looted and broken into, the police were spread pretty thin and no one responded to that,” said Jim Stage, the owner of Lloyd’s Pharmacy in St. Paul, Minnesota, which has been in the area for over 100 years. He went on to note that first responders showed up only after looters set his pharmacy on fire. Stage said firefighters “worked tirelessly all night” to battle the flames. Stage said his business was gone, but he planned to rebuild as soon as possible. “We’re trying to take care of patients as best we can amidst this,” he added. When asked if he could fulfill all of his customers’ prescriptions, Stage said he has been able to “triage” patients by sending...
    Some Midway business owners impacted by looting and arson have already raised tens of thousands of dollars toward rebuilding through private efforts such as online fundraisers. Local government and business associations are hoping to do the same. The Midway Chamber of Commerce lists several business relief efforts that are accepting donations online at midwaychamber.com/member-relief. On Wednesday, the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce announced it would be collecting donations alongside the Midway Chamber and Downtown Alliance for a new business relief fund called WeloveStPaul.com. Also Wednesday, the Midway United Fund (also known as Neighbors United FC) sent out $75,000 in checks to 30 Midway businesses for COVID-19 relief. The effort sprang from a coalition of the Union Park District Council, the Hamline-Midway Coalition and the community benefits fund serving the area around Allianz Field. More information is at MidwayUnited.org. Additional business relief fundraisers have been established on GoFundMe.com by the...
    Looters shattered windows and destroyed the entrance to a Minneapolis co-working space last week, but one of its owners believes the incident could have been much worse. Christopher Webley of New Rules said he and some of the artist-tenants who use the building were working at night when they heard the sound of glass shattering at around 3:30 a.m. "We were able to defend it and run off, basically stave off, any further action," Webley said.   Amid unconfirmed reports that some protests drew looters from out-of-state and extremist groups, he suspects the people who damaged his business and others were targeting black-owned stores.  "They want us to leave and close up shop," said Webley, New Rules' managing director, "but you'll find that many of us black businesses here in Minnesota, there's resiliency built into our culture here."  An estimated 360 small businesses across the Twin Cities suffered different levels...
    WASHINGTON (AP) — A widely supported bill to refine a payroll subsidy program for businesses struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic could soon be on its way to getting signed into law by President Donald Trump despite hitting a speed bump in the Senate on Wednesday. The legislation would give business owners more flexibility to use taxpayer subsidies for other costs and extend the lifespan of the program as the economy continues to struggle through record joblessness and a deep recession. It passed the House overwhelmingly last week on a 417-1 vote, but an attempt by top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer of New York to fast-track the bill through the Senate failed after Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., objected. The legislation to modify the Payroll Protection Program, a central pillar of two costly coronavirus rescue laws, has strong momentum, and Johnson and other GOP senators who don’t like the bill appear...
    In a heartbreaking video posted on social media, an elderly woman in New York City lashes out in a message to the looters who destroyed a small business. “Look what you did to my store. Look!” she says, pointing behind her at an exposed storefront with wires hanging from the ceiling and people cleaning up inside. “Look what you did to my store,” she repeats. NYC BRACES: GEORGE FLOYD PROTESTS CONTINUE, TROUBLE EMERGES AS CLOCK REACHES NEW EARLIER CURFEW She was among countless other people left to deal with the aftermath of damaged property, lost jobs and uncertain futures as a wave of riots and looting continued sweeping across the U.S. following the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25. The woman in the video then walks over to a pile of debris at the curb in front of the store. “Look!” she says again. “Look at...
    For Dr. Ali Barbarawi, his dental practice on the corner of Chicago and Lake streets in Minneapolis was more than just a means to feed his family – it was a way to help the city’s poorest, the disabled, the uninsured and those struggling the most to make it through. But his Chicago Lake Dental, close to the spot where George Floyd died while in police custody last week, is now nothing more than a burned-out shell. Less than two days before Barbarawi’s small business was slated to reopen after more than two months in lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis, it was trashed and burned by rioters on the backend of protests in the name of Floyd and police brutality toward people of color over the weekend. “It looked like a war zone; it looked like a bombing in Fallujah,” Barbarawi, 36, told Fox News. “Everything around me was rubble, my...
    For Dr. Ali Barbarawi, his dental practice on the corner of Chicago and Lake streets in Minneapolis was more than just a means to feed his family – it was a way to help the city’s poorest, the disabled, the uninsured and those struggling the most to make it through. But his Chicago Lake Dental, close to the spot where George Floyd died while in police custody last week, is now nothing more than a burned-out shell. Less than two days before Barbarawi’s small business was slated to reopen after more than two months in lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis, it was trashed and burned by rioters on the backend of protests in the name of Floyd and police brutality toward people of color over the weekend. “It looked like a war zone; it looked like a bombing in Fallujah,” Barbarawi, 36, told Fox News. “Everything around me was rubble, my...
    (CNN)Senate Republicans are divided over how to move forward with legislation to fix the Paycheck Protection Program likely delaying the process and requiring the Senate to have to hold a roll call vote on the House-passed bill that would give business owners more time and flexibility to use funding they received.The disagreements spilled into the Senate GOP's Tuesday lunch where Republicans were divided over whether the House proposal should get a standalone vote without additional fixes. Leaders had hoped to fast track the legislation this week with a unanimous consent agreement, but multiple lawmakers including GOP Whip John Thune of South Dakota told CNN that a simple unanimous consent agreement wasn't likely given how widespread disagreements are over the proposal. "At the moment, it's a complicated picture," Thune said. "Multiple members are opposed for different reasons, but some are just opposed to doing anything right now. We have to see...
    Doug Burns is typically a wedding photographer but with the COVID-19 outbreak the wedding industry has come to a screeching halt. Owning a small business himself, he knows the struggles and fears many business owners are facing. Meet Bleu Bot, the socially distancing food delivering robotSo he decided to reach out to small business owners and photograph them with the tools of their craft, free of charge. He shares the photos on Facebook along with information on the business to shed a light on what they do and give them support in this difficult time. WATCH: More Philadelphia Localish videosHe hopes the photos encourage others to support their local businesses and help them get back on their feet. #BeLocalish
    (CNN)Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is checking with senators to see if a bill to fix elements of the emergency small business lending program, passed overwhelmingly by the House last week, can pass the chamber unanimously, according to two aides.If all 100 senators give the bill the greenlight, it could move early this week, the aides said, as small business owners involved in the program have furiously lobbied lawmakers to make changes to the Paycheck Protection Program as the clock ticks on the ability for businesses to have their loans forgiven. "I hope and anticipate the Senate will soon take up and pass legislation that just passed the House by an overwhelming vote of 417-1 to further strengthen the Paycheck Protection Program so it continues working for small businesses that need our help," McConnell said Monday on the Senate floor, alluding to the potential for quick passage in the chamber....
    Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox.  Sign up here.Small business owners in several metropolitan cities are wondering whether they’ll be able to economically recover after protests in reaction to George Floyd’s death turned violent, and rioters destroyed storefronts and looted goods as the streets devolved into chaos. The owner of Levels clothing store in Minneapolis, Brandy Moore, 41, has been left with just rubble after rioters broke into one of her locations last week to loot the store before setting a fire that spread to several adjacent buildings, USA Today reported. "My business burned down two days ago, you see the flames? It's still going," Moore, 41, said Sunday. "That flame down in people's soul? It's still going. They want justice." CLICK HERE FOR FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE Karen Williams sweeps broken glass from a window at the Louisville Visitors Center,...
    Homeland Security and the Labor Department have transmitted recommendations to President Trump for next steps in his immigration pause, putting the White House on the clock for its next big decision about whether foreign workers will help or hurt the coronavirus recovery. Both sides are bracing for the worst. Mr. Trump in April announced a 60-day pause on some permanent immigration visas, saying he didn’t want those foreigners to compete with out-of-work Americans seeking jobs as the coronavirus recovery ramps up. TOP STORIES Asphyxiation not the cause of George Floyds death: Autopsy Chattanooga police chief tells officers OK with George Floyd death to turn in badges Rep. Ilhan Omar: Protesters feeling terrorized by National Guard troops, militarized police But the president left untouched the much larger pool of competitors — temporary guest workers, who arrive on non-immigrant visas. He told his Labor and Homeland Security secretaries to report back...
    OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- This is a breaking news update: Mayor Libby Schaaf addressed the George Floyd protest that turned violent in Oakland Friday evening."We are sickened to wake up this morning, to wake up to the destruction and violence of our beloved Oakland," Schaaf said. "We want to make clear, this is not tolerated."Schaaf said the violence crossed the line and asks people to stay home."We are struggling with a deadly pandemic. We are under a shelter-in-place order and we ask everyone to stay home. "Schaaf continued, "there are other ways to demonstrate your anger and activism right now. we want to express our condolences to the two federal officers who were shot, one who died." She said the more than 30 police officers were also injured last night.A senior DHS official tells ABC News that the shooting involving two FPS officers and overnight protests are related, but the...
    With plywood boards purchased and more donated by Penumbra Theatre, Tetra Constantino and five volunteers calmly but resolutely boarded up Elsa’s House of Sleep, his University Avenue furniture store. Like many small businesses across St. Paul, they hoped for the best while prepping for the worst. During the riots Thursday night, Constantino had approached teens in the alley and explained to them, in no uncertain terms, that a fire at his store would cause flammables to explode, and they would die. Next door, Tim Wilson, proprietor of Urban Lights music store, acknowledged he hadn’t slept in over 24 hours after catching a would-be fire starter behind his store, one of several in St. Paul’s hard-hit Midway neighborhood marked “Black-Owned Business.” Community members work to clean up damage on University Ave. in St. Paul Friday, May 29, 2020. What appeared to start as impromptu demonstrations for George Floyd, the man who...
    New Orleans was once named an epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic but has since seen a steady decline in the number of new cases purportedly due to a growing number of tests and a steady drop in hospitalizations. Yet even though the news is looking up in the Big Easy, residents and business owners are still hesitant to venture back into the previously buoyant and bustling city. “It went from just the constant flow of people in our store, on the streets, music vendors everywhere, street vendors to a complete ghost town. The French Quarter was completely shut down,” Rheannon Serino, an owner of two retail shops in New Orleans, told Fox News. When stay-at-home mandates were announced in Louisiana, Serino was forced to close the doors at her two locations in New Orleans--the Nola Rock Co. on Royal Street and a second on Decatur street, both prime...
    Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox.  Sign up here. As the world continues down the path of reopening, one of the United States’ most vibrant cities, New York City, remains in the dark. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has allowed all other regions of the state to begin reopening after the coronavirus lockdowns, except for New York City. With the coronavirus curve effectively flattened, many in the city are growing frustrated with the lack of action from the government. At one point, New York City accounted for half of the daily deaths in the country, however, that number has rapidly declined in recent weeks and is now roughly one-eighth of what it was at its peak. In his most recent press conference Thursday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city will begin “Phase 1” of reopening in early-mid June. Despite the mayor’s enthusiasm, this is not great...
    Washington (CNN)The House is scheduled to vote Thursday on bipartisan legislation to make changes to the Paycheck Protection Program set up to help struggling small businesses with emergency loans during the pandemic, the latest effort on Capitol Hill to address economic fallout from the Covid-19 crisis. The legislation -- titled the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act -- was introduced by Republican Rep. Chip Roy of Texas and Democratic Rep. Dean Phillips of Minnesota. It is intended to make loans more accessible under the program by making its terms of use more flexible.The legislation would give small businesses more time to use emergency loans under the program by extending the eight-week period in which they must use the money to qualify for loan forgiveness to 24 weeks.The bill would also give small businesses more flexibility by changing the so-called 75/25 rule, which requires recipients of funds under the program to use...