Senator John Jasinski of Faribault has introduced a bill to help bars and restaurants with COVID-19 food and drink losses.

According to a news release issued by the District 24 Republican State Senator:

Jasinki's bill would provide 20 million dollars to reimburse bars, restaurants, and other hospitality businesses for food and drinks that became unfit for human consumption due to lost business caused by COVID-19 and the governor's stay-home order.

Senator Jasinki says, "Bars and restaurants are being crushed by the stay-home order.  I have been pressing the governor to give these businesses a chance to reopen safely, and I will continue to do that.  But in the meantime, we have to take whatever measures we can to help these businesses survive.  Every little bit helps."

While allowing curbside food pickup or temporary to-go sales of beer and wine have helped, the hospitality industry remains one of the industries suffering the most due to the outbreak of coronavirus.  There have been more than 66,000 unemployment claims filed within the industry, a 7,200% increase from last year.

At best, hospitality businesses are bringing in between zero and 20% of their normal revenue but they still have bills to pay.

According to a Hospitality Minnesota survey, over half of hospitality businesses projected they will be forced to close in the next one to three months at the current rate.

Businesses seeking reimbursement must provide several pieces of documentation, including:

  • Invoices showing the quantity, cost, and date of purchase for perishable food or drink.
  • The date the food or drink had to be destroyed, donated, or disposed of.
  • Proof the food or beverage was not sold or otherwise consumed by the applicant.
  • The manner in which the food or drink was destroyed or disposed of.

In addition businesses must attest that they did not otherwise consume or sell the food or drink they are claiming as losses, and that they did not receive any other reimbursement for it.