Tulsa Restaurant Owners Hope For Extended Federal Funding

Wednesday, December 23rd 2020, 5:57 pm

TULSA, Okla. -

Restaurants have gotten hit hard during the pandemic and some owners are hoping to get more federal funding soon.

Several downtown Tulsa restaurants give credit to the CARES Act for helping to keep their doors open.

Sean Sylvester owns about ten restaurants, including Shiloh’s, which he plans to open next month.

"People say I'm crazy for opening a restaurant around this time, but we are wanting to expand,” Sylvester said.

Sylvester said it been a tough year as a restaurant owner, losing about 40 percent of his revenue since the pandemic began.

He said the CARES Act's Paycheck Protection Program, which helped businesses pay their employees, really kept his restaurants going.

He believes sit-down dining is going to be the biggest challenge for him in 2021.

Workers at Ike's Famous Plate Lunches are also trying to push through the uncertainty.

"It was awesome, people were lined up to get in and now we have don't have the line,” Dwight Beard said.

However, owner Beard said he knows it could be a lot worse.

"We still have the lights on and paying the bills,” Beard said.

Since the pandemic, Beard said he’s had to cut back on staff and even implement more specials to attract customers.

Sylvester said it's important for restaurants to keep pushing through.

"I think you can't just sit there and not do anything; you have to move forward,” Sylvester said.