Gulfshore Business Daily: April 15

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Photo courtesy of Wink News

CARES ACT RESOURCES

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has issued the guide here to help small businesses and self-employed individuals prepare to file for a loan. More details here.
 
 

Video courtesy of WINK News

‘HERO FUND’ WOULD GIVE FRONTLINE PANDEMIC WORKERS UP TO $25,000

Many call those first responders and health care workers on the front lines heroes. Now, they could get a bonus of up to $25,000 for their work. The proposed “Hero Fund” plan, making its way to Congress, would be for healthcare workers, first responders, grocery store workers, bus drivers, postal workers and airport workers—all groups of people who are getting the coronavirus and sometimes dying because of their everyday duties. These essential employees could get up to $25,000 in hazard pay, if the plan is approved. Story reported by WINK News.
 

STIMULUS PACKAGE SEMINAR HELD TODAY

Bold Business is sponsoring IMPACTnyc’s upcoming free webinar “The Stimulus Package Uncovered,” held today at 1 p.m. Former Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet and former SBA Associate Administrator of Capital Access Ann Marie Mehlum will be live, diving deep into the CARES Act stimulus package to address your most important questions. To register, click here
 

Video courtesy of WINK News

EXPERTS SAY STAYING AT HOME HELPING TO FLATTEN CURVE

Medical professionals say people staying off the roads and in their homes is part of why we’re seeing the projected peak for coronavirus moving back a bit later in Southwest Florida. Health experts agree that we are flattening the curve for COVID-19 cases. “The numbers do appear to be flattening out a little bit,” said Dr. Robert Hawkes, director of the Florida Gulf Coast University physician assistant program. The social distancing measures are working but medical professionals say it is important for everyone to understand that we are not out of the woods yet. If we stick with what has been working, they say we will see daily case numbers continue to fall. Story reported by WINK News.
 

GAS PRICE REPORT: OPEC AND ALLIES FINALIZE RECORD PRODUCTION CUT

The plunge at the pump continued last week, with Florida gas prices falling another 6 cents. How much lower gas prices go will depend on how the market responds to a historic deal made by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its oil-producing allies over the weekend, according to a report by AAA – The Auto Club Group. On Sunday, OPEC and its allies agreed to cut oil production by 9.7 million barrels per day—the single largest output cut in history. This effectively ends a price war that broke out between Saudi Arabia and Russia, which caused an overnight 25% reduction in oil prices last month. From there, the downward trend continued as the effects of the coronavirus impacted the global economy and forced Americans to stay off the road. In total, oil prices are down 56 percent since February 21. During that time, the price of crude plummeted from $53 per barrel to $23 per barrel. Florida gas prices also dropped 56 cents. This deal is an attempt to help eliminate supply surpluses and strengthen the price of crude, the press release states. AAA updates fuel price averages daily at GasPrices.AAA.com
 

Photo courtesy of Wink News

COLLIER LIBRARIES HANDING OUT UNEMPLOYMENT FORMS AMID STATE WEBSITE ISSUES

Florida’s unemployment website is offline nightly now because officials say they’re shutting it down for “necessary maintenance.” Even with upgrades, many users are having trouble logging on to a system plagued by frustrating glitches. On Tuesday, Collier County starting helping residents apply for unemployment by placing a table with forms for people to take outside libraries. These unemployment applications will be available outside all seven Collier library locations every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Reported by WINK News.
 

FRESH MARKET REQUIRING WORKERS, SHOPPERS TO WEAR MASKS

On Tuesday, the Fresh Market grocery chain started requiring shoppers and workers to wear masks in its stores as further precautions to protect against COVID-19. A spokesperson for Fresh Market said they won’t block shoppers from entering without a mask but they are asking guests to support this recommendation for the benefit of the community. The spokesperson says their biggest fear is someone walking into a store who doesn’t know they’re carrying the virus and getting other people sick. Story reported by WINK News.
 

KENNEDY JOINS SANIBEL CAPTIVA COMMUNITY BANK

Ryan Kennedy has joined Sanibel Captiva Community Bank as a loan process coordinator in the lending division. He is responsible for the initial review of incoming loans for required documentation. Kennedy graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University in December 2019 with a double major in communications and political science. Prior to joining the bank, he interned at Florida Citizens Alliance and Covanta.
 

Shepard Drinkwater

VI AT BENTLEY VILLAGE NAMES FOOD & BEVERAGE DIRECTOR

Vi at Bentley Village has promoted Shepard Drinkwater to director of food and beverage. Drinkwater started as executive chef at Bentley Village in September of 2014 after serving in the same role with Vi at the Glen in Glenview, Illinois, for 12 years. He has worked with the Hyatt and Vi families for nearly 30 years. Drinkwater is a Culinary Institute of America graduate and a recipient of national certifications as an executive chef (CEC), dietary manager (CDM), and food protection professional (CFPP).
 

JINX MCDONALD INTERIOR DESIGNS COMPLETES NAPLES HOME

Jinx McDonald Interior Designs Inc. has completed the interior design on a 3,200-square-foot private residence built by Divosta Homes, in the new neighborhood of Winding Cypress in Naples. Design Associate Janine Blume created a coastal chic furniture and color scheme with flashes of Florida whimsy, according to a press release. Jinx McDonald has won CBIA Sand Dollar Awards, Lee BIA Pinnacle Awards, Distinctive Design Awards and Aurora Awards while designing homes throughout Naples, and internationally in Costa Rica, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Canada, and Ireland. For more details, visit jinxmcdonald.com.
 

CHARITABLE NOTES

 AAA offers free roadside assistance to healthcare workers, first responders

In an effort to give back to those on the front lines fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, AAA – The Auto Club Group is now offering free AAA Roadside Assistance to all healthcare workers and first responders in Fort Myers and Naples. Healthcare workers and first responders in Fort Myers and Naples can receive free AAA services–including towing, tire changes, fuel delivery, battery service, jumpstarts, and lockout service–through the end of the month, regardless of whether they are AAA members. Eligible non-members can call 833-222-3284 to receive these free AAA Roadside Assistance services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more information about this AAA program, visit AAA.com/hero.
 

St. Matthew’s House feeds families with help from Harry Chapin Food Bank 

St. Matthew’s House last week fed a record 967 families during its two food distribution days. The organization is feeding the hungry again with the help of the Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida Inc., which is donating food for the organization to distribute. Its next food drive is from 1-5 p.m. on Thursday. For more details, click here.

 

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