York County restaurants to receive an additional $6.4 million in COVID-19 relief

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch

York County restaurants will receive $6.4 million in federal and state grants to continue to help them bounce back after being battered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 223 restaurants will receive the grant funds from both the state's COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program and the federal American Rescue Plan, business leaders and county officials announced Friday at Central Market House in York City.

The state program, known as CHIRP, allocated $4.9 million. The county will allocate the additional $1.5 million from federal funding, said York County Economic Alliance President Kevin Schreiber.

"While these are tumultuous times, they are winding down," Schreiber said. "We do know there is light in the tunnel."

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Of the 223 businesses, 34% are owned by people of color, 31% are owned by women and 7% are owned by veterans, Schreiber added.

York County Economic Alliance CEO and President Kevin Schreiber, announces $6.4 million in federal and state funding that will be provided to York County businesses through the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP) and the American Rescue Plan during a press conference at Central Market House in York City, Friday, June 11, 2021. Dawn J. Sagert photo

The businesses will receive 75% of the funds by July 15, which will come from the state program that allocated $145 million to counties throughout the state. The average grant amount in York was about $29,000.

The remaining 25% will be allocated as federal funds come in. 

Jessica Ayala, owner of Revival Social Club in York City, said she expects to receive $35,000 from the CHIRP program on top of the aid the restaurant acquired at earlier points in the pandemic.

"One of the things we used funding for was health care, vacation and sick days for our employees and making changes in our industry that were most necessary," she said.

Tim Spangler, owner of Mezzogiorno in Central Market House, declined to disclose how much money he expects to receive.

But any amount of money is helpful, he said.

Tim Spangler, chef and owner of Mezzogiorno, joins officials as they discuss $6.4 million in funding that will be provided to York County businesses through the COVID-19 Hospitality Industry Recovery Program (CHIRP) and the American Rescue Plan during a press conference at Central Market House in York City, Friday, June 11, 2021. Dawn J. Sagert photo

"It gave us the chance to stay open," he said. "We never closed. We thought about it."

The grant funding comes as York City officials indicate businesses, including restaurants, appear to be rebounding.

"COVID struck our businesses hard across the City of York. It is very promising to see this amazing rebound and commitment by entrepreneurs and business owners within our City," Mayor Michael Helfrich said in a statement.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.