THE MERCURY NEWS: ‘Customers are still afraid to return’: Small businesses in Santa Clara County to get $20 million in pandemic relief grants

The Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the program, which will come from the county’s $374.5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds

Sitting at her restaurant’s gold-clothed tables bedazzled with Christmas decorations while Univision plays quietly in the background, 31-year-old Eliselda Lombera described the pandemic’s brutal impact on her family’s business.

Over the past year and a half, they’ve been forced to lay off all three of their employees, and cut the menu down because of rising meat and vegetable prices as well as less demand for their items. Now, Lombera is reluctantly weighing whether she’s going to have to raise prices, too. The restaurant, La Mejor Taqueria No. 2, has been around for 20 years in San Jose’s historically Mexican-American Washington-Guadalupe neighborhood. Her uncle and aunt own No. 1, also located in San Jose.

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