TENAFLY, N.J. (WCBS 880) — Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday signed small business relief legislation to help New Jersey businesses hurt by the pandemic.
The hospitality industry has been in crisis since last year.
"We've gone from a full dining to nobody," said K.T. Tran, owner of Simply Vietnamese in Tenafly. "My water heater, I need to fix the place up, we need to run the business, I can get a new stove."
"There was definitely some scary, dark times in the beginning of all this," said Joseph Diovisalvo, who owns Ma Mì Eatery in Closter. "We were celebrating when the phone would even ring hoping it was an order."
The bill signed by Murphy provides $135 million in small business grants.
It is being split into different buckets, including $10 million for for-profit arts and cultural institutions, as well as $15 million for food and beverage establishments.
The governor said there are few strings attached.
"There's latitude with how they use that money. You heard inside, K.T. talked about air filters, hot water heaters," Murphy said.
This brings the total for small business relief to $700 million since the pandemic started.