Lancaster Chamber VP details how new hospitality grants will be distributed for the county


LANCASTER, Pa (WHTM) – Restaurants, bars, and hotels will soon get another influx of cash. The state is distributing $145-million to counties to help businesses hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s been a challenge as it has for anyone in this business,” Tony Ciro, co-owner of Ciro’s Italian Bistro, said.

Ciro’s is a popular restaurant in Manehim Township.

With indoor dining at 50 percent, outdoor dining closed for the past few months, revenue at Ciro’s was down 40 percent December and January.

The owners of Ciro’s are now among the 200 businesses who already applied for the $6.2-million the county has from the state to help the hospitality industry recover from the pandemic.

Vice President of the Lancaster Chamber, Heather Valudes, said the applications are showing the hardships business owners suffered through during the pandemic.

The Lancaster Chamber is in charge of reviewing applications in Lancaster County. They will also help determine how the grants are handed out by using a scoring criteria.

“(The scoring criteria) looks at the year over year revenue decline, other funding they may have received, and the impact of the governor’s mitigation orders,” Valudes said.

Valudes said grants will range between $30-thousand and $50-thousand.

Tony Ciro said any money he gets will go to payroll, in hopes of maintaining his staff.

“Most of our staff this isn’t a part-time job, this is their livelihood and we take this very seriously,” Ciro said.

In Lancaster County the application process is open until March 19. You can find more information and an application here.

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