HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — As Americans wait for a second stimulus bill to pass, small businesses are still struggling.
One dry cleaner in Town N’ Country said with so many people out of work, or working from home, his business was hit even harder and now he’s hoping lawmakers can help.
“We need offices, and people, to go back to work because that's what my business thrives off of, and if people stay home, they don't need my services,” said Leo Reina, owner of Star Cleaners.
Reina owns two Star Cleaner locations — one in Clearwater and one in Tampa. He said business is still down about 60% and he was forced to lay off all of his employees, leaving just him and his wife to run both locations.
Reina said he was hopeful when he heard lawmakers talking about a second stimulus bill for businesses, especially since his business was deemed too small for the first round of PPP. Now he has a message for lawmakers.
“Mainly to focus more on small businesses like myself that don't have a lot of employees," Reina said. "I'm hoping we don't have another closure, and if we do have another stimulus PPP funding, that it does focus more on the smaller businesses like myself."
Reina also points out the bigger picture — the number of people effected when small businesses struggle. He said he had plans to expand his business last year and double the number of employees, rather than having to lay them all off.
Reina said if small businesses are struggling, it impacts the job market and a lot of people’s livelihood.