Kansas City restaurants can soon apply for federal grant program to help them recover

Restaurants have a shot at part of a $28 billion federal grant program to help them recover.Because of the nature of the business, the restaurant, bar and food industry suffered as much as any other field.The Small Business Administration project is for grants, not loans. Almost every small restaurant or bar operation under 20 stores and not closed for good, can apply.”Not only for the restaurant business, but for our suppliers. Our baking companies that we buy the bread from. The people we get our groceries from,” said Jasper Mirabile Jr., owner of Jasper’s.While many places no longer have capacity limits, there’s still social distancing rules that restrict crowd size. Jasper’s is a high-end restaurant that struggled. The El Sombrero’s in Claycomo is not. Its owner, Larry Barrera, has worked here since he was a boy. He said he’s going to apply, and even has a different strategy since he does not believe the pandemic is waning, or much less over.”And it could happen again. We want to be prepared and strong, so we could survive any that comes before us again,” Barrera said.And here’s the other thing: While $28 billion sounds like lots of money, there are more than 1.5 million restaurants with 15 million people who work in the industry.Mirable said he believes the industry is about to revive.”I’ve had customers tell me, ‘You know what? We have some money to spend.’ They haven’t spent that money in a year on restaurants. And now they want to go back,” Mirabile said.The Small Business Administration is not taking applications, yet. But it will very soon. Details are on the SBA.gov website.

Restaurants have a shot at part of a $28 billion federal grant program to help them recover.

Because of the nature of the business, the restaurant, bar and food industry suffered as much as any other field.

The Small Business Administration project is for grants, not loans. Almost every small restaurant or bar operation under 20 stores and not closed for good, can apply.

“Not only for the restaurant business, but for our suppliers. Our baking companies that we buy the bread from. The people we get our groceries from,” said Jasper Mirabile Jr., owner of Jasper’s.

While many places no longer have capacity limits, there’s still social distancing rules that restrict crowd size.

Jasper’s is a high-end restaurant that struggled. The El Sombrero’s in Claycomo is not.

Its owner, Larry Barrera, has worked here since he was a boy. He said he’s going to apply, and even has a different strategy since he does not believe the pandemic is waning, or much less over.

“And it could happen again. We want to be prepared and strong, so we could survive any that comes before us again,” Barrera said.

And here’s the other thing: While $28 billion sounds like lots of money, there are more than 1.5 million restaurants with 15 million people who work in the industry.

Mirable said he believes the industry is about to revive.

“I’ve had customers tell me, ‘You know what? We have some money to spend.’ They haven’t spent that money in a year on restaurants. And now they want to go back,” Mirabile said.

The Small Business Administration is not taking applications, yet. But it will very soon. Details are on the SBA.gov website.