Latino Business Owners Optimistic As Pandemic Subsides

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In the midst of the pandemic, many Latino-owned businesses struggled to keep their doors open, especially if they were left out of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). But now, they’re starting to get their hopes up as the pandemic subsides.

Himar Hernandez works with many Latino business owners in his role as community development specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. He said he’s seen multiple new businesses open including two restaurants, a grocery store and a bakery.

“They’re just excited, they see opportunity. They see their space to grow. It’s like no pandemic happened. I mean, they’re just remodeling buildings, and they’re just all over. And I think it has to maybe go with the theme that we’re all just ready to get out,” Hernandez said.

One of the main concerns now, he said, is finding enough staff for these new businesses.

Last month, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Iowa will no…

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