GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Grand Island city and business leaders spoke in a virtual conference about information that could help people find payment and comfort during these difficult times.
Businesses closing their doors or workers unemployed have more options now on how they can get financial support in Grand Island. (KSNB)
“It is the city's obligation to always remain operational in times of distress and this is one of those times,” Mayor Roger Steele said.
Mayor Steele addressed the public to share what he has done to keep the public safe. He was joined by the utilities department who shared how they are planning to keep the power plants running. They will not be shutting off people's utilities at this time.
“We're trying to lower the stress levels here a little bit. Don't worry about your utilities getting shut off if you can't make a payment at this time,” GI Utilities Director Tim Luchsinger said.
They just ask people to call and set up a payment plan for the future. Many people are out of work as business close. The Nebraska Business Development Center explained businesses can get loans to help with on-going expenses. The loans are for covering leases and other costs, not for lost profits. They can get up to six months of expenses or $2 million.
For workers, the Department of Labor has information on their website to apply for unemployment funds for those fully or partially out of work.
“Things are changing by the hour at the federal level, so if you hear it, it's not going to be enacted that day locally,” Randy Kissenger with the Nebraska Department of Labor said. “But if it's coming and they're sending legislation it will go through the process and we will get those to you as fast as we can.”
They suggest the best thing to do is apply and see if you qualify for these benefits. Mayor Steele ended the conference with words of hope.
“We will get past this, but our success depends on you, each and every one of you. We will be successful when we slow and then stop the coronavirus,” Mayor Steele said.