Restaurant Revitalization Fund will soon pump billions into bars, restaurants and caterers


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Shanita McAfee-Bryant, known professionally as Chef Shanita, is brimming with confidence that her catering business will bounce back from the pandemic stronger than ever.

Even so, she admits, it’s been a treacherous ride.

“A lot of the changes that you need to make for your business, in order to do that whole pandemic pivot, are expensive,” McAfee-Bryant told FOX4.

And now, some major help is on the way for bars, restaurants and hospitality entrepreneurs like McAfee-Bryant.

“As restaurants recover, everybody recovers,” said Michael Barrera, district director for the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Barrera is spreading the word about a pool of $28.6 billion that will soon be available through the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.

There will be plenty of competition when the application process begins in a couple of weeks.

Barrera explained how this fund, part of the stimulus bill passed by congress in March, will work.

“What they would look at (is) your 2019 gross receipts and subtract your 2020 gross receipts,” Barrera explained. “And you take that number, once you have that number, figure it out, then you subtract any PPP or payroll protection money you received, and that will be basically your grant.”

Minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses will have the first crack at the billions in relief funds.

It’s the financial shot in the arm McAfee-Bryant, and thousands across the metro, have been waiting for.

“It’s going to have a huge impact,” she told FOX4. “I have so many things on this sticky board that I’ve come up with, these are my post-COVID goals, how I’m going pandemic-proof my business.”

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