City relief money could soon be on the way for Jacksonville small businesses

JAX Chamber is looking at providing relief for local businesses hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Help at the city level could soon be on the way for small businesses in Jacksonville.

The coronavirus pandemic is taking a big bite out of the bottom line for many small businesses.

The restaurant, hospitality and tourism industries are among the hardest hit.

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The president of the JAX Chamber, Daniel Davis, said it’s too soon to know exactly what the impact is, but we should know more in a month.

“We conducted a survey of our chamber membership and got significant response rates. We will be releasing that survey to the public and to elected officials to let them know what our members, what small businesses, need,” said Davis.

In the mean time, Davis said much of the chamber’s focus will be to make sure that its members understand how to navigate their federal stimulus relief.

Mayor Curry, a former business owner himself, said the city will help too.

The plan isn’t finalized, but he said this during a Thursday virtual news conference when asked if it’ll include direct payment to businesses: “The concept that we have at this point I believe that’s a very high possibility.”

Action News Jax also spoke with the mayor’s chief administrative officer, Brian Hughes, who said that helping businesses will in turn help individuals keep their job.

The question is: what can the city afford to do? We’ll learn more about that next week.