Small businesses await relief funds

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ENCINITAS, Calif. — Many small business across San Diego County have been frustrated watching the first $350 billion small business rescue package going to major corporations, leaving most small businesses without any help to navigate the COVID-19 lockdown.

“They know how to juggle money, they know how to get the money. They have multi-million dollar companies. They know how to navigate these waters,” said Brea Flores, owner of Moxie Saloon in Encinitas. 

Flores met with a small business advisor only to be told the money had already run out. Tens of millions of dollars of the loans went to major chain restaurants and other companies that had existing relationships with the banks that were given the money to loan. 

“It’s truly striking to see and obviously we got a public health crisis as well as an economic crisis,” said Congressman Mike Levin, 49th District.

Levin is now heading to back to Congress to negotiate a new, $310 billion small business package. He hopes the money gets to businesses that need it most.

“The bill includes $300 billion for the SBA, $75 billion for hospitals that are so important,” Levin said.

The house will meet again Wednesday to try to craft a bill that finally gets to the businesses that don’t have existing relationships with the banks.

“You want to believe in your government, and I still do. I think we are going to work it out, but only if the little guys speak loud enough,” Flores said.

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