"Four out of five of our favorite independent restaurants may not survive this shutdown." ... Most survived on small profit margins before the Covid-19 crisis compelled many to temporarily close, and re-open at 25% capacity, operating with skeleton crews doing takeout and serving food outdoors when the weather permits. Now, they're trying to convince Congress to throw them a much needed lifeline in the form of the Restaurants Act, a bipartisan bill to establish a $120 billion grant program distributed through the Treasury Department... But despite one-third of Congress co-sponsoring the bill, it has not been taken up by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as negotiations for a new round of relief drags on.


[The] supply chain is now breaking, with small family farms feeling the pain. "It's nearly impossible to plan what we need to grow, how much seed to buy, or when we should start growing given the current situation," said third-generation farmer Kate McClendon from Peoria, Arizona. "Farms like ours don't have the connections to grocery chains and other businesses that might help us get through this. We depend on independent restaurants."


The Restaurants Act's sponsors believe their bill will reduce the unemployment rate by more than 2 percentage points -- given the fact that restaurant and bar workers made up a staggering 60% of initial unemployment claims when the coronavirus pandemic hit.

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