RELEASE: COUNCILMEMBER O’FARRELL ALLOCATES $1M GRANT FOR SMALL BUSINESSES TO HELP ENDURE STAY AT HOME ORDERS

City Hall

Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell on Tuesday introduced a motion to move $1 million of the Council Office’s AB1290 Discretionary Funds to kickstart a grant program that will assist small businesses in the 13th District during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

O’Farrell is initiating the “Emergency Small Business Grant Program” for businesses in the 13th District with 26 or fewer employees. The program will assist those struggling to make ends meet during the public health emergency orders. According to the motion [attached], the program will be administered and developed in partnership with the City’s Economic and Workforce Development Department. 

“As emergency orders are relaxed and our small business community ramps up for a new normal in their operations, financial assistance will help some restaurant, retail, and service operators survive,” said Councilmember O’Farrell. “Small businesses are the backbone of our local economy, and we must take action that will provide a swift, steady, and safe return for employers and employees.” 

Councilmember O’Farrell and his colleagues have taken the following action to assist small business owners

  • Councilmember O’Farrell won the support of his colleagues to refine the Right-of-Recall Ordinance, which aims to ensure workers who are laid off due to the pandemic have the opportunity to regain their jobs once emergency orders are lifted. O’Farrell fought to  exclude restaurants, coffee shops, bars, nightclubs, and wine bars not located in a hotel or event space, as well as expand the job notification requirement to include email and text messages to notify former employees as to when work is available.

  • Introduced a resolution that supports federal legislation to fix the Paycheck Protection Program to assist our small business owners.

  • Initiated a motion making it unlawful for a third-party food delivery service app (e.g. Grubhub, Doordash, etc.) to charge more than 15% of the purchase price in fees per online order for the use of its services during the COVID-19 public health emergency. 

In addition to the measures mentioned above, Mitch has taken the following actions to protect commercial tenants:

  • Helped lead a unanimous vote to waive late fees on rent.

  • Extended eviction protections and the payback period to three months for commercial tenants. The ordinance pertains to all Angelenos, regardless of immigration status. 

  • Approved amendment to COVID-19 related renter protections that allow tenants a Right of Action to sue landlords who ignore and maliciously violate any of the city’s protections during the pandemic.

  • Won unanimous support for his resolution that calls on Congress to include rent and mortgage relief paired together in the next federal package, including extending payment or forgiveness assistance to renters and property owners impacted by COVID-19.

  • Instructed a review of all federal and state legislation pertaining to emergency aid, with the goal of providing additional assistance by the City to ‘fill the gaps’ in aid for immigrant and undocumented Angelenos.

This work is in addition to Council action taken to assist residential tenants in the 13th District and across the City of Los Angeles. For a complete summary of protections for Angelenos, please visit CD13.com.

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