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Local Restaurants Get $5K Grants for Equipment, Payroll
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By Edward Smith
Published 10 months ago on
June 19, 2023

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Seven local restaurants received money to help with equipment and payroll needs.

“After taking a financial hit from other repairs, this grant from SoCalGas will cover the cost of our new AC unit, which will provide a more welcoming environment for our staff and customers.” — Miguel Reyes, CEO of Quesadilla Gorilla in Visalia

The $5,000 grants from the California Restaurant Foundation’s Restaurants Care Resilience Fund can be used on equipment and technology upgrades, employee retention bonuses, training, and unforeseen hardships.

The following Central Valley restaurants received money:

  • La Elegante Taqueria, Inc. in Fresno
  • Senor Aji in Fresno
  • Café Leon Mexican Restaurant in Fresno
  • Mi Linda Tierra in Sanger
  • Colima Mexican Grill in Hanford
  • Quesadilla Gorilla in Visalia
  • Birria y Pollos El Guero in Porterville

Small Businesses Targeted

The $2.1 million fund supported 184 restaurants across the state. Money has gone to 972 restaurants since 2021. SoCalGas donated $1 million, Pacific Gas & Electric donated $900,000 and San Diego Gas & Electric donated $200,000 to the fund.

“After taking a financial hit from other repairs, this grant from SoCalGas will cover the cost of our new AC unit, which will provide a more welcoming environment for our staff and customers,” said Miguel Reyes, CEO of Quesadilla Gorilla, in a news release.

“The City of Visalia is grateful for the ongoing collaboration with SoCalGas,” said Visalia Mayor Brian Poochigian. “Their commitment to giving back to the community is commendable, and we are especially appreciative of their support for small businesses like Quesadilla Gorilla.”

The $2.1 million fund is the largest round for the California Restaurant Foundation. Of the restaurants that received money, 89% are single-unit restaurants and they average eight years in business. Seventy percent of the recipients were women and 78% were people of color.

Applicants needed to be open for at least one year and earn less than $3 million in annual revenue.

The next round of funding opens in October.

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Edward Smith,
Multimedia Journalist
Edward Smith began reporting for GV Wire in May 2023. His reporting career began at Fresno City College, graduating with an associate degree in journalism. After leaving school he spent the next six years with The Business Journal, doing research for the publication as well as covering the restaurant industry. Soon after, he took on real estate and agriculture beats, winning multiple awards at the local, state and national level. You can contact Edward at 559-440-8372 or at Edward.Smith@gvwire.com.

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