Local businesses feel economic impacts of Covid-19

As the city prepares for a shelter-in-place ordinance businesses are bracing for what's to come.

Posted: Mar 23, 2020 8:22 PM
Updated: Mar 24, 2020 12:46 PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) St. Joseph businesses are starting to feel the effects of the Coronavirus’s economic impact.

The city is imposing a Shelter-in-Place ordinance set to go into effect March 24th, the ordinance will force all nonessential businesses to close.

Business owners who fall into the nonessential category are bracing for the economic impact.

LaTonya Williams, a local photographer, is feeling the effects first hand as businesses deemed "non-essential" are forced to cease operations.

Williams, who is self-employed said her bottom line is likely already busted.

"I would’ve never imagined anything like this," She said. "almost all of my income overnight is just completely gone, it's pretty scary."
Other businesses around town are also struggling, managers said the closures mean having to tell their staff members they can no longer guarantee steady work.

"It was so heartbreaking last week when we had to tell [our staff] that we don’t know what the future holds right now," Korey Massey, The Mark-It said.

In the midst of so much uncertainty, businesses have had to adapt to changes. Some have had to shift traffic from their brick and mortar stores to the web.

"We’re still trying to get it out there that we still can do things," Massey said. "It will just be online."

Not every business can make the transition however, Williams said her photography business relies on face-to-face interaction.
"I've had to completely close down my business," She said. "the majority of my job is taking the picture and the interaction."

Business owners said their future remains unclear, yet they remain hopeful when all this is in the past they can come back stronger than before.

"It's just one of those things where we just hope and pray that whenever this is over our customers will be coming back to us," Massey said.

The city shelter-in-place ordinance runs from Tuesday, March 24 until Thursday, April 2.

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A cold front is currently moving through our area this morning dropping temperatures into the lower 40s and upper 30s. Today will be a cool day with highs in the upper 40s and lower 50s with increasing clouds. Temperatures will fall into the lower 30s tonight. We could see a few areas of light rain and drizzle this evening, but precipitation chances will start to increase overnight into tomorrow morning. With the sub freezing temperatures, precipitation will transition from light rain and drizzle in the evening to snow overnight into Tuesday morning. Snowfall will continue through the morning hours on Tuesday before transitioning to a rain/snow mix while it exits the area. Most areas will see around 1-3 inches. Accumulations will stay mainly on grassy and elevated surfaces, but expect slushy road conditions Tuesday morning. Conditions will slowly start to improve for the rest of the work week with sunshine returning and temperatures slowly warming. Rain chances will return for the end of the work week.
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