Long Island small businesses struggling to survive during virus pandemic
The financial impact of the pandemic has already made a major mark on small businesses across Long Island.
Nassau and Suffolk officials say Long Island's economy is taking a big hit. Some small business owners like Julie Marchesella of Queen of Hearts Boutique in Merrick say they're managing to keep their heads above water.
"I'm hopeful that things will pick up come the fall season, but I can't say I'm going to tie the numbers that I did last year, I doubt that," says Marchesella.
But others are hurting worse. Nassau County Executive Laura Curran says a recent survey of 1,400 small businesses showed staggering results.
"More than half of these businesses have already laid off employees, and all of them predict they will have to do layoffs by the end of the year," says Curran.
Economic expert Martin Cantor says there are 100,000 small businesses on Long Island and the number of people impacted is probably greater than what the counties' surveys indicate. He says it'll probably be a few months until we have a better idea of the overall impact.
"It's going to be a long, drawn out process that's going to take several months after public officials say it's OK to stop hunkering down," says Cantor.
Both counties now have task forces that will try and help business owners. President Trump says federal loans will be available starting Friday to help small businesses.