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Northeast Ohio businesses looking for guidance on reopening

As we move closer to reopening the state, businesses are looking for guidelines from the state on how to do so.

As we move closer to the possibility of reopening the state, some businesses are already working with local leaders to find ways to reopen safely.

“It’s been rough, it’s been rough. There are hundreds of kids that work for us that we had to tell, they don’t have a job right now and we don’t know when they’ll be able to come back,” says Bobby Roberts, franchise partner of Paninis.

The situation at Paninis is a common one around the country. Businesses are trying to figure out how to get by with no idea what the future holds.

Roberts says, “Right now we’re doing carry-out. The girls take orders and cars pull up, but it’s barely paying the bills.”

Now there is some light at the end of the tunnel. As cases of the coronavirus begin to decline, talk of reopening businesses next month have surfaced, but what exactly will they have to change in order to do so? Lake County Commissioner and candidate for State Senate, Jerry Cirino, has been working with different businesses to come up with tailored reopening plans and delivering their proposals to the state.

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“It takes some time to plan for that,” says Cirino. “Every single one of them has been very creative and very diligent. We really need the state to give some local governments the opportunity to work with businesses so that they can tailor the way that they open and the way they operate in the future.”

Some changes to restaurants reopening could mean a lot of things. Everything from taking the temperature of customers and moving tables further apart to getting rid of current menus in favor of disposable ones and limiting party size. Everything is on the table, but they’re all just waiting for guidelines from the government.

“We don’t’ know yet,” says Roberts. “They really haven’t given us any guidelines on what is going to happen. We’re sitting on the sidelines waiting and when they tell us to go, we’re ready.”

As businesses in Lake County and all across the buckeye state continue to wait for those guidelines, Cirino says he’ll keep working with these shops and companies. He wants to make sure as soon as Governor DeWine gives the green light, they’ll be as prepared to open as they are eager.

“I know how badly they want to get back in business and serve their customer base,” says Cirino.

Roberts adds, “It’s just the light at the end of the tunnel, a sign of hope. That’s what we are looking for.”

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