AUSTIN, Texas - Funding could soon be on the horizon for those businesses hit hardest by the pandemic: music venues, bars, restaurants, and childcare.
The Austin City Council voted to approve the SAVES (Save Austin's Vital Economic Sectors) resolution that could identify ways to support these businesses so they don't close for good.
“I mean, it's brutal. It's really brutal,” said Jeannette Gregor, who says she used to be heavily involved in Austin’s live music scene before COVID-19 shut those businesses down to slow the spread.
“You just hear that expression over and over again, first to close, last open, but there's no actual date on when that last open is,” she said. “[The resolution] acknowledged, you know, the most affected sectors in Austin, so childcare bars and restaurants, and music venues. I was like, holy crap they see us. There's hope."
Mayor Steve Adler says the SAVES resolution will help businesses like music venues as it puts the topic of funding options for these businesses back on the table.
“It's hard to watch. I mean this virus has been full of things that have been hard to watch. There have been a lot of people have gotten sick, a lot of people have died. Some of my favorite businesses in town haven't been able to survive,” said Adler.
Mayor Adler says there's no timeline as to when businesses like music venues will receive city funding since this resolution is still in the very early stages of discussion.
“The council identified that economic development commission and corporation and I asked the staff to work with the consultants to see how it might be able to work in this instance, and how quickly we could get it up and up and running,” he said.
Gregor says she’s just excited that this issue is being brought up as an issue.
“I'm excited to have that conversation, you know, throwing my faith into the city funding live music venue so that we can begin to say how we proceed as the live music capital of the world,” she said.
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