As summer begins, we’re slowly emerging from the isolation of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of us are returning to dine and shop indoors at restaurants and stores that were closed during the pandemic, or limited to take-out and delivery. Sadly, several of those restaurants and stores took a big financial hit and had to close, while the ones still open are struggling to stay in business.
That’s the case for our In Depth guest today, Elise Schumock, owner of Portland’s Rose City Book Pub. We talked with Elise in April 2020 after she secured funding from several Coronavirus Relief initiatives for small businesses, including the Paycheck Protection Program, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan, and the CARES Act. That funding helped keep the lights on, but the Book Pub still finished the fiscal year deep in the red.
Elise’s business was recently awarded a life-saving grant from the federal government’s Restaurant Revitalization Fund. But the money was rescinded, after federal judges ruled it unconstitutional to prioritize grant applicants on the basis of gender and race.
Join us as Elise talks of the difficulties of keeping a small business operating during the pandemic, and why the much-needed federal grant was rescinded.
A friend of the Rose City Book Pub recently started a crowdfunding campaign to help keep the business afloat. You can find out more, and contribute if you like, on their GoFundMe page.