On Tuesday, March 16, 2021, President Joe Biden visited GBCA member Smith Flooring, Inc. in Chester, PA, as the first stop of the White House’s “Help is Here” tour. He met with Smith Flooring’s President, Kristin Smith, and Vice President, James Smith, to discuss his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package. Smith Flooring is a union, MBE and WBE certified flooring specialty contractor.
(Scroll down to watch a video of the meeting, as well as some local coverage of Biden’s visit.)
Biden, who started the meeting by highlighting that Smith Flooring is a union contractor, spoke about his goal to help Americans return to everyday life, and about how relief packages, including PPP loans, have helped businesses like Smith Flooring. Kristin Smith later spoke with 6abc and shared in Biden’s message of hope for fellow Americans during these challenging times.
Don’t give up. If you want to start a business or if you want to go to school or achieve a goal, it’s doable.
Kristin Smith, President, Smith Flooring, Inc.
From the Associated Press:
Smith Flooring had 23 employees during peak times but currently is employing 12 workers. It is using [PPP loans] to help retain workers and upgrade technology. Borrowers are eligible for forgiveness if they meet certain requirements, including devoting at least 60% of the proceeds to payroll expenses.
In his chat with the owners of [Smith Flooring], Biden repeatedly asked “what else” they thought his administration should be doing to help businesses like theirs. …
The Biden administration estimates that 400,000 small businesses have closed because of the pandemic and millions more are barely surviving. His aid package includes a $28 billion grant program to support restaurants and drinking establishments. It also includes $15 billion in flexible grants.
The visit to Smith Flooring was meant to drive home that point. The business saw revenue fall about 20% during the pandemic. It recently qualified for a federal Paycheck Protection Program loan during a two-week window in which the Biden administration focused the program exclusively on helping businesses with 20 or fewer employees.
C-SPANCourtesy of the White House
Photo Credit: The White House