‘Anything Helps’: Chandler Offers Safety Grants To Businesses

By Christina Estes
Published: Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 2:50pm

sign on door requests people wear face coverings
Shimogamo Restaurant in Chandler received a $500 grant to help cover the cost of personal protective equipment.

Chandler has awarded $30,000 to help local businesses cover the cost of personal protective equipment and the city has another $170,000 earmarked for the coronavirus grant program

Mika Otomo’s family owns Shimogamo Japanese Restaurant in Chandler. They received the maximum grant of $500.

“Anything helps,” she said. “I think all of us are just desperately searching for anything to make us survive.” 

chef preparing sushi
Head Sushi Chef Zachary Rodenburg prepares a takeout order in July 2020.

Between April and June 2019, Otomo said they spent less than $400 on gloves and sanitary goods. During the same period this year, she said they spent more than $1,600.

“It is a big chunk of money for us because we are only doing takeout right now,” she said.

Otomo said sales are 60% of normal but they feel fortunate because she often hears about other restaurants being forced to close permanently.

Shimogamo had remodeling expansion plans before the pandemic and the family is using this time to move forward. But when dine-in service resumes, Otomo expects the new space will not result in more tables because of social distancing.

As of July 29, 2020, Chandler had awarded 63 grants. Applications are for private, for-profit businesses located within the city limits and have no more than 100 employees and are registered with the city.

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curbside sign says takeout service
Since the pandemic, Shimogamo says business is at 60% of normal sales.
sushi to go platters
Shimogamo is a family-owned restaurant in Chandler.

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