FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE) — The latest round of closures may become permanent for some businesses as they struggle to survive during the pandemic.
They were dealt another blow Monday as reopening plans were once again scaled back.
Andy Haussler the community and economic development director for the city of Clovis said the full impact won’t be known for awhile, but he knows several businesses have already been forced to close for good, and they expect to see more going forward.
“It’s tough. A lot of these businesses invested time, money getting staff back on board for the reopening that occurred in May, June and we’re just getting going again and now they’re having to shut down and go through this all over again,” he said.
Governor Gavin Newsom announced statewide closures of many indoor services and additional closures including indoor fitness centers, malls and personal care businesses on top of those for much of the valley.
Nathan Ahle the president and CEO of the Fresno Chamber of Commerce said businesses have been bracing for this as COVID-19 cases continue to rise.
“Back in the spring when this happened the first time a lot of business owners told me ‘Let’s just do what we have to do to not be in this situation again’ and unfortunately we have a lot of folks in this community who just don’t want to take it seriously,” he said.
Ahle said owners as well as employees will take another major hit.
“The hard part is the for the workers who have been laid off or furloughed for a certain amount of time, and then they’re back to work for three weeks and now they have to be closed again,” he said.
Newsom said many of the businesses may continue to operate outside. Haussler is hoping this will keep more of them afloat.
“If a business is interested in exploring how to operate outdoors have them get ahold of me here at the city we’re ready for them. We’ll figure it out,” he said.
At this point Haussler said Clovis does not have a hard number on how many businesses will be closing for good. He said the full impact probably won’t be known until late this year or early next.