Weekly Roundup: March 29-April 2

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LeeCARES logo. Photo via WINK News

Friday, April 2

LEE COUNTY UTILITIES MORATORIUM EXPIRES

The “utilities moratorium” in Lee County that kept power companies from turning water and power off during the pandemic expired Thursday, but Cape Coral is giving families about 60 days’ notice for when shutoffs continue. Lee County Electric Cooperative will turn off the lights, if necessary, but will work with people who can’t pay their bills. Florida Power and Light is waiving bills and offering payment extensions, WINK News reports.

 

Thursday, April 1

SBA DISASTER LOAN REPAYMENT DEFERRAL

The Small Business Administration (SBA) has extended the deferment period for all its disaster loans, including the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, according to Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co. P.A. All disaster loans issued in 2020, including COVID-19 EIDL, will have the first payment due date extended from 12 months to 24 months from the date of the note. Any of the same types of loans made in 2021 will have the first payment due date extended from 12 months to 18 months from the date of the note.

 

Wednesday, March 31

HERTZ PROGRESSES TOWARD CHAPTER 11 EXIT IN SECOND QUARTER OF 2021

Estero-based Hertz Global Holdings Inc. announced Tuesday that it has made all of the required court filings in its Chapter 11 case needed to continue the process the company initiated at the beginning of March 2021 to exit Chapter 11 in June 2021. The filings also report on the status of ongoing negotiations regarding funding the company’s proposed reorganization plan. Initially filed March 1, the plan proposed a $4.2 billion equity infusion from affiliates of Certares Opportunities LLC and Knighthead Capital Management LLC to fund the payment in cash in full of all senior claims and a 70-cent payout to the company’s unsecured creditors. Prior to filing its initial plan, Hertz had received interest from a number of parties to provide the equity capital needed to fund its Chapter 11 exit, including a proposal from Centerbridge Partners L.P., Warburg Pincus LLC, and Dundon Capital Partners. Based on its assessment of the proposals received and all of the information then available, Hertz believed that the plan chosen would support a value-maximizing conclusion to its Chapter 11 case, while also providing the best opportunity for an efficient and timely exit from Chapter 11. For the court documents or filings, click here.

 

Tuesday, March 30

Video courtesy of WINK News

FLORIDA SENATE APPROVES ONLINE SALES TAX BILL

Paying an online sales tax in Florida is one step closer to reality. The state Senate approved a proposal that would require out-of-state online retailers to collect sales taxes, with the money slated to be used to help Florida business owners avoid increases in unemployment taxes. It would add a 6% tax to online purchases, making out-of-state retailers responsible for giving that money back to the state of Florida. This is already something Floridians are supposed to pay, but most people either don’t know about it or don’t pay it because it isn’t strongly enforced. Florida economists estimate this tax would bring in around $1 billion each year if it passes. The money would replenish the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, which took a hit during the pandemic. The bill could be an incentive for employers to hire more people, WINK News reports.

 

Monday, March 29

LEE COUNTY DOT INVITES PUBLIC TO MEETING TODAY FOR ORTIZ AVENUE WIDENING

The Lee County Department of Transportation (DOT) invites the public to participate in an Ortiz Avenue widening project public meeting from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Monday, March 29, at the Hyatt Place at the Forum, 2600 Champion Ring Road, Fort Myers. The project will widen Ortiz Avenue from Colonial Boulevard to Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard from two to four lanes. Additionally, Ortiz Avenue serves as a relief road to Interstate 75 during periods of heavy congestion. The project will accommodate future widening to six lanes. The open house meeting today is an opportunity for members of the public to review and comment on the project design. Lee County staff will be available to answer questions. 

 

2021 Best of Business voting in now open

Vote now for your favorite local businesses by midnight on April 30.

 

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