Wolf To Legislature: “Help Our Struggling Restaurants Now”

Gov. Tom Wolf speaks at a news conference on Oct. 22 in Pittsburgh
Submitted Article
Gov. Tom Wolf is asking the state’s Liquor Control Board to waive liquor license fees through 2021 in an effort to help businesses deal with the effects of the novel coronavirus pandemic and business closures.
Wolf and other officials present at a news conference in Pittsburgh on Thursday said the pandemic hit the restaurant and hospitality industry particularly hard.
That’s not the fault of the restaurants,” Wolf said, adding, “They should not be forced to bear the financial burden of this on their own.”
Wolf admitted that he has no control over the Liquor Control Board, which is independent, but he hopes it follows his recommendations. Wolf nominated all three board members to their current positions.
Wolf called on the Republican-led Legislature to work with him to help restaurants by canceling or reducing alcohol taxes, allowing restaurants to purchase alcohol nearly at cost for six months, directing $225 million in loans from CARES Act money to small business associations, and setting up $100 million in forgivable loans and grants.
Wolf pointed out that the both sides were able to come together to distribute two-thirds of the cares act funds. Now, according to Wolf, it’s time to get the rest to the people.
We still have plenty of time to do it, let’s do it,” he said.
Wolf made this call for cooperation as state health officials reported 2,063 new coronavirus cases across the state. Health officials said that number included some people who should have been added in Wednesday’s total.
Pennsylvania has seen an average of 1,549 cases per day over the last seven days—the highest numbers since mid-April.
The commonwealth has had 188,360 cases of the novel coronavirus and at least 8,592 people have died from COVID-19 or coronavirus-related illness.
Asked if he would issue another statewide shutdown order, Wolf said, “No. Who knows? There’s a chance.”

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