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North Alabama restaurants already taking advantage of federal grant program

A new government grant program known as the Restaurant Revitalization Fund will provide relief to thousands of restaurants still struggling with surviving the pandemic.

Posted: May 3, 2021 5:05 PM

A new government grant program known as the Restaurant Revitalization Fund will provide relief to thousands of restaurants still struggling with surviving the pandemic.

Monday was the first day restaurants got the chance to apply for that funding and some in North Alabama have already taken advantage.

"We've already applied," Steve Bunner, the part owner and executive chef at 1892 East Restaurant & Tavern, said.

Bunner said he wasted no time applying for the SBA's funding to help his restaurant in downtown Huntsville.

If approved for funding, restaurants can get up to $10 million through the grants. They can use that money to pay staff, utility bills or any other revenue because of pandemic-related losses over the past year.

Bunner has had his fair share of issues throughout that time, including having to make difficult decisions.

"We had to fire our entire staff," he said.

They have been able to get almost half their staff back and the business operating on limited hours, but more issues have come up.

"There are supply issues that are occurring, whether it's catfish or oils or to-go packaging, so we're having to be very nimble because we're getting new and almost interesting challenges every week," he said.

"You deal with ice storms, you deal with power outages; none of us had a plan in our back pocket about a pandemic," Bunner said.

Bunner isn't alone in this.

"This area does seem to still be struggling desperately to bounce back completely where they were a year ago," Tish Hardric, the CEO of Tish Hardric & Associates, said.

Hardric's company, a consulting firm, helps small businesses apply for grants like the Restaurant Revitalization Fund. She said she urges any restaurant to apply for this funding.

"Take advantage of this opportunity. This is an opportunity that is absolutely incredible for the restaurant industry," she said.

For the first three weeks, only women, veterans or socially and economically disadvantaged restaurants will be processed. After those three weeks, other applicants will be processed and approved in the order they came in.

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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 530325

Reported Deaths: 10966
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson763971520
Mobile40908804
Madison34717503
Tuscaloosa25730452
Montgomery24314588
Shelby23401249
Baldwin21107307
Lee15856171
Calhoun14488314
Morgan14282279
Etowah13819353
Marshall12210223
Houston10557280
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Limestone9954150
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St. Clair9644242
Lauderdale9419241
DeKalb8825185
Talladega8214175
Walker7223277
Autauga6918108
Jackson6804112
Blount6651137
Colbert6292134
Coffee5506119
Dale4828111
Russell440638
Chilton4279112
Franklin425582
Covington4118118
Tallapoosa4019152
Escambia393276
Chambers3559123
Dallas3547151
Clarke350861
Marion3113100
Pike310577
Lawrence299898
Winston274072
Bibb260464
Marengo249264
Geneva249077
Pickens234160
Barbour230757
Hale222677
Butler215969
Fayette212062
Henry188744
Cherokee184445
Randolph179941
Monroe177340
Washington167039
Macon158750
Clay156156
Crenshaw152057
Cleburne148741
Lamar141934
Lowndes138653
Wilcox127030
Bullock123041
Conecuh110129
Perry107526
Coosa107128
Sumter104332
Greene92334
Choctaw60424
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 852841

Reported Deaths: 12255
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby956561619
Davidson89355933
Knox50675635
Hamilton44280494
Rutherford43046434
Williamson28015217
Sumner24012349
Montgomery20255225
Wilson18804234
Out of TN1840797
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Sullivan16794294
Blount15490193
Bradley15032150
Washington14597245
Maury13499172
Sevier13391175
Putnam11396175
Madison11168242
Robertson9756131
Anderson8760172
Hamblen8610173
Greene7877155
Tipton7359103
Coffee6905121
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Cumberland6734132
Carter6634158
Gibson6526146
McMinn650898
Bedford6506128
Roane6282105
Jefferson6211124
Loudon613069
Hawkins6077107
Lawrence593887
Monroe584095
Warren554881
Dyer5425106
Franklin515090
Fayette506877
Cheatham455355
Obion454196
Cocke450099
Lincoln435763
Rhea434875
Marshall419058
Campbell415463
Weakley412865
Giles3996100
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White364170
Macon361978
Carroll361683
Hardin357167
Hardeman352664
Lauderdale318944
Henry318576
Claiborne318273
Marion312347
Scott312345
Overton301161
Wayne296334
Hickman284046
McNairy282054
DeKalb279654
Smith277839
Haywood271162
Grainger262850
Morgan250139
Trousdale250122
Fentress241547
Johnson240739
Chester214351
Bledsoe214211
Polk207824
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Cannon192031
Union190734
Humphreys179927
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Lake170326
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Lewis158126
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Jackson132036
Clay110131
Houston109333
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