RESTART Task Force

Playbook: Restaurants & Bars

The Chamber, in partnership with the Cincinnati Business Committee/Cincinnati Regional Business Committee, has launched RESTART, a group of business leaders who will guide the work of the business community in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. We are here to guide you on how to keep your business thriving. Check back frequently as we are continuously adding to this site with more information and helpful resources.



Paycheck Protection Program

Why you should consider applying:
  • Companies could be eligible to cover payroll, rent/mortgage & utilities with this SBA loan (loan could be 100% forgivable)

Action needed:

Dining Bond Initiative

Why you should use them:

  • Like government-issued war bonds, the Dining Bond Initiative seeks to bring in immediate cash in exchange for future restaurant purchases. Diners can buy gift certificates sold at a 25% discount ($100 worth of food for a $75 bond) to be redeemed in the restaurant within the next month or two, depending on how individual restaurants decide to honor the bonds. 

Action needed:

  • Sign up now, the program is open to all restaurants.

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation

Why you should use them:

  • Offering zero-interest loans to get restaurants back up and running. 15 days after opening they’ve raised $500K for businesses (as of 3/31).

Action needed:

  • Sign up for their newsletter to be the first to know when applications are open for these funds.

James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund

Note: Due to an overwhelming response within hours of opening, the Foundation has suspended the application at this time. They will notify if the application is going to reopen.

Why you should use them:

  • Micro-grants to independent businesses..

Action needed:

  • Sign up for their newsletters to receive updates on the fund opening back up.

Uber Eats

Why you should use them:

  • The delivery fee will be waived for all Uber Eats orders placed to independent restaurants (service/small basket fees will still apply).
  • Increased marketing efforts to highlight local independent restaurants in-app.

Action needed:

  • Complete form at link for 0% pickup marketplace fee offer for all restaurants in available markets that have the feature enabled.
  • Complete form at link for daily payouts, rather than weekly billing.


Why you should use them:

Action needed:
  • If you’re currently paying for their marketing program, apply for their deferral program here, but know that you’ll need to keep GrubHub as a delivery service for at least one year after obtaining deferral.

Save America’s Restaurants Petition

Why you should consider this:
  • Waiving payroll tax
  • Endorsing rent and loan abatement for workers
  • Working with state liquor authorities to enable restaurants offering take out and delivery to also sell/deliver beer, wine and cocktails by the bottle
  • Waving zoning or permit restrictions to allow restaurants to temporarily use their spaces as boutique food and beverage markets, offering an alternative to overcrowded supermarkets and by extension continuing to pay their staff and support their farms and purveyors. 
Action needed:
  • Sign the petition

Choose Restaurants – Restaurant Employee Relief Fund

Why you should consider this:
  • The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) created the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (RERF) to support U.S. restaurant workers financially impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Starting April 2, 2020, impacted restaurant workers will be able to apply online for a one-time, $500 check to use towards housing, transportation, utilities, child-care, groceries, medical bills and/or student loans. These grants will be administered by the NRAEF and offered on a first-come, first-served basis. 
Action needed:
  • Almost immediately after opening the application process, extremely high user volume overwhelmed the application platform. As of Monday April 6, they are still not back up, though they said they would provide an update Monday, April 6. Be on the look-out for when this is back up so you and impacted employees can apply.

Find other resources at Ohio Restaurant Association

Chamber Logo White

The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber grows the vibrancy and economic prosperity of the Cincinnati region. It does this by serving as a bold voice for the interests of its nearly 4,000-member businesses and their more than 300,000 employees.

Invest In the Work of the Chamber
Invest in the work of the Chamber by donating to the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber Foundation.
Invest Now

Give the Gift of Business
The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber is offering businesses and individuals an opportunity to support our small business community and the region.
Give the Gift of Business

Stay Connected on Social Media

Sign Up for our Weekly Newsletter
Sign Up

Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber | 3 East 4th St., Cincinnati, OH 45202 USA | 513.579.3100

Copyright © 1996-2020, Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber. All Rights Reserved.