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Recap: 7/10/20 COVID-19 Industry Partner Call

Dear Industry Partners:

Thanks to those who joined today’s call. Plan on 9 a.m. Friday, July 17, for the next call. Watch for an invitation with the details.

Here is the call summary: 

John Talmage, Lee County Economic Development (EDO) Director, said the Business Relaunch Program has closed and gave an overview of the Business Rehire Program. He said there were enough funds to hire 4,000 workers.

The Business Rehire program will:

  • Provide grant funding to small businesses for rehiring full-time equivalent (FTE) positions that were on the payroll as of March 1, 2020. Eligible positions must be rehired on or after July 6, 2020.
  • Provide grants of $5,000 per full-time equivalent positions rehired, up to $10,000 for businesses with 10 or fewer employees or up to $20,000 for larger qualified businesses with fewer than 250 employees. Note: 501(c)3 and 501(c)19 organizations are eligible.
  • Allows grants to be used for operating expenses not covered by other resources, including working capital, professional services or employee training.
  • Applications and additional eligibility requirements are available online at

The county is welcoming suggestions from citizen groups and individuals as it continues the LeeCARES programs.

Tamara Pigott, Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau (VCB) Executive Director, gave an update on bed tax collection – down 69% for May ($811,403) and fiscal year-to-date ($29,181,253), down 12.5%.

STR Report for the week of June-28-July 4:
Occupancy: 54.8%, down 14.1%
ADR (Average Daily Rate): $142.88, down 0.9%
RevPAR (Revenue Per Available Room): $78.27, down 14.9%

At 8 a.m. Monday, July 13, the Individual Assistance Program will reopen. Visit for more information.

Brian Ososky, VCB Marketing Director, said the VCB has paused recovery media for the Know the Feeling campaign. We are closely monitoring federal and state policies, infection rates, public sentiment and their likelihood to travel. It is important for us as a destination to align with public sentiment and be good stewards of the budget. When things improve, we will relaunch the campaign. Right now, we’re following the data.

Stay in touch and let us know if we can help. Visit for updates. Thank you for all you do. Have a safe weekend.

Tamara Pigott
Lee County VCB Executive Director

The Beaches of Fort Myers and Sanibel

2201 Second Street, Suite 600 | Fort Myers, Fl 33901
Toll Free 800.237.6444 | Local 239.338.3500

Sanibel & Captiva Islands
Fort Myers Beach
Fort Myers
Bonita Springs
Cape Coral
Pine Island
Boca Grande & Outer Islands
North Fort Myers
Lehigh Acres

Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau
2201 Second Street, Suite 600, Fort Myers, FL 33901, USA
phone: (239) 338-3500 | toll free: (800) 237-6444

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