ST. CLOUD -- Democratic Governor Tim Walz and Minnesota House Republicans both unveiled economic relief packages Tuesday aimed at helping businesses impacted by COVID-19 restrictions.

St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce President Teresa Bohnen says it's important that our legislature can work together and come to some solution that is going to make a difference in our business community.

We have businesses that were stretched as they possibly could be, many many businesses.  So what's going to happen to them?  If they don't get some kind of additional relief to carry them through we are going to see businesses close at record rates, and I am not overstating that at all.

Senate Republicans say they'll unveil their own economic relief plan soon. The Governor has said he'll call a special session to pass a relief bill as soon as one is ready to be voted on.

Meanwhile, the St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce is shifting back to all virtual meetings and events again. Bohnen says they're sticking to the guidelines outlined by the Governor's office.

So don't think we're just going off the deep end here it is definitely the executive order.  If you're in a business and you have a staff and you can meet virtually you're not supposed to be meeting in person, even if it's three or four people, I would say even two.  If you can avoid contact with anyone you should be doing it right now so we can get out of this.

Bohnen is encouraging Chamber members to attend the virtual meeting on Monday night with Representative Dan Wolgamott. He'll be taking feedback about what small business owners need to help them get through this latest round of COVID-19 restrictions.

The regular session of the Minnesota State Legislature is set to begin on January 4th.

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