Despite rise in COVID-19 cases, business leaders want to avoid shutdown

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — With the coronavirus pandemic worsening in Alabama and around the nation, some states are beginning to reimpose some shutdown measures for businesses.

Here in Alabama, state and business leaders say shutting down should not be an option.

The Business Council of Alabama (BCA) recently launched its Keep Alabama Open campaign.  According to BCA President, Katie Boyd Britt, store owners should be trusted to keep their places of business safe for customers.

“That means us being vigilant about the protocols we have put in place, the protocols we know to work from the CDC. So, part of keeping Alabama open is keeping those things in place that will keep us as safe as possible,” Britt said. 

This week, Governor Kay Ivey announced the Revive Plus program. It’s a $200 million grant program designed to help small businesses hit hard by the pandemic.

“$200 million should go a long way to help out small businesses and especially our smaller businesses like our mom-and-pop shops,” Gov. Ivey said.

The Keep Alabama Open campaign is also getting support from the Alabama Retailers Association.  

“When you can’t open your door but you keep on having re-occurring expenses, but there is no revenue to pay expenses, that won’t work long,” said Rick Brown, the Retail Association’s president. 

With the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday upon shoppers hitting store isles, business leaders know this is a crucial time of year to keep store owners from going out of business.  

They say while grant money is welcome to business owners, the real relief will come once the pandemic is finally over. 


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