Local small businesses are dealing with yet another challenge brought on by the Coronavirus.
According to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, some employers will have to pay employees up to 12 weeks of sick time if they can't work because they have to care for a child whose school or child care center is closed. With small businesses already losing money, it's a cost some don't know if they'll be able to afford.
"Small business we don't have a lot of access to resources that bigger corporations have," Tiffany Draper, the owner of Studio 53 in Harvest, said.
Draper's event rental facility has taken a hard hit in the last couple weeks.
"The whole month of March and April and may were already booked and now we're having to give people refunds," she said.
Now, Draper is stuck with another financial challenge of having to find out how she's going to be able to afford to pay the small staff she does have with paid leave if they have to stay home.
Thursday, the Governor closed schools for the remainder of the school year, child care facilities already closed earlier this month.
"We don't have anything that's like a paid leave for people to be off, we can't afford that because we are a small business, we can't afford to even take off ourselves," Draper said.
She said the added expense along with having to issue so many refunds due to cancelled events could shut them down.
"If we can't have that income to offset some of the costs that we have of the business then unfortunately that may not work, it may not be able to remain open," she said.
But, she said even in this challenging time..hope remains
"I'm a firm believer that you can come back from anything so there is hope, i just don't know when it's coming. there is hope though," she said.
Draper said right now no one has asked for the paid leave. She said she's been seeking words of encouragement and advice from other small business owners on how to maintain during this time.