Miami-Dade Approves $25 Million to Assist Small Business

Grant Miller

To get on track to recovery, small business is going to need help for a while.

The first step was to allow all business to operate again. That was a good move.

But we are learning two things are happening: social distancing rules are decreasing the volume of people in every store and restaurant. That means fewer dollars are being rung up on cash registers.

And, some businesses, even though they have been given the green light, are not coming back because the smaller foot traffic means their slim profit margins have disappeared, leaving growing losses. In some cases, some business owners feel its better financially to throw in the towel.

Without additional money to float these small businesses while they struggle to get their legs in the wake of COVID-19, there is every chance that they will fail, again.

In comes the Miami-Dade County Commissioners, which approved Tuesday the $25 million Rise Miami-Dade Fund, which is seeded with federal CARES Act dollars. Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, who worked with District 5 Commissioner Eileen Higgins to bring the Re-Investing in our  Small Business Economy (RISE) program to life, also recruited the first corporate sponsor, Citi Foundation.

The Dade Federal Credit Union will administer the RISE Fund. This money is important because small businesses, categorized as having no more than 10 employees, make up more than 80 percent of all local business.

Small, women-owned and other minority-owned businesses are also encouraged to participate by having local community development financial institutions, which specialize in assisting these groups, are originating the loans.

But again, this is only the beginning of the road to recovery. Locals also have to spend their money in local shops, restaurants and stores. We will rise together if we stick together. Buy Local, Shop Local!

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  1. We are in our rainy/storm season , many people have not recovered from their loss of a paycheck. Paying for parking, walking with an umbrella, and trying to follow all of the guidelines is not “user” friendly to shop local. It is true that the SM commission passed a resolution to give one (1) hour free parking, but it’s just not enough. all metered parking fees should be suspended until Miami-Dade has approved all of the phases of re-opening. Until then, it’s much less stressful to park free in Dadeland , be out of the bad weather, and stroll around with an ice cream cone.

  2. The problem with Snoopy’s comment is that it makes too much sense and is too logical. Therefore the mayor and commissioners will not follow the good advice.

  3. The City is handicapping small business by charging for parking. The City has more competition than Dadeland. There are also all the strip shopping centers in Pinecrest with free parking. South Miami government could cut lots of self indulgent overspending, and get rid of parking fees once and for all! Now we even have to support an obnoxious, expensive WiFi pay for parking system thanks to a misguided city government. Small business also has to bear the burden of high rent and city fees. The city and landlords want revenue from small business, but do everything to burden them to death. This is why the turnover rate has been so high for the last several years. We, the residents are supposed to bail them out, and are burdened with the surcharge of obnoxious parking fees. This is why our downtown is so depressed, and huge construction projects that will take years will be the final death knell of small business in South Miami.


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