'I sleep maybe 2 hours:' Raleigh business considers store changes as PPP forgiveness ends

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Some work is coming in at Glenwood South Tailors during the COVID-19 crisis. Pants still getting hemmed and dresses being altered but the volume is certainly not like it was before the pandemic.

Glenwood South Tailor owner Brian Burnett said foot traffic is down 60 percent, as most people are working from home and staying in comfy clothes.

The owner is now weighting a tough decision since federal help is evaporating.

Burnett has been making masks to help offset losses and has been relying on money from his PPP to keep everyone on staff.

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Now that forgivable payroll loans are ending, Burnett's considering to make a call.

"Maybe having to tell team members, 'Hey, we might have to relax your hours again,'" he said.

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Here's the predicament: Small businesses that received PPP money will be reimbursed for payroll costs through June 30. Payroll beyond is not covered.

With so many places still struggling to build business back up, some owners like Burnett can't afford to keep everyone on staff.

"We still have to take care of other expenses," said Burnett.

Lawmakers are looking into extending PPP through August 8.

Nearly 4.8 million loans have been granted in the country during COVID-19 totaling $518 billion.

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Burnett said he's been sleeping two or three hours a night these days wondering if another safety net is coming and helping his Black-owned small business.

"Those things are really scary because you don't know if another lifeline is going to happen again, especially when you see businesses going out of business that are larger than ours," he said.

Small business owners can start applying for payroll reimbursement and have until the end of October to submit paperwork.
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