SUFFOLK, Va. - Sen. Tim Kaine heard the challenges businesses have faced over the last year during a walking tour on Monday afternoon.
Kaine toured several businesses in the downtown area of the city. "These are just kind of the heart of the American economy and it's been the toughest year for them in my life. I'm 63 and I've never seen anything like it," he said.
Kaine had planned a similar tour in April 2020, but had to cancel when the pandemic took hold. Business owners shared ideas Kaine can use in the Senate to help make their lives easier, including making it easier to get loans.
"We're hearing things like the process can be complicated. Can you make it more streamlined? It's one thing to pass a bill and another to put the right resources to the right use," he said.
With vaccinations rising and the economy improving, Kaine and the business owners are optimistic things are rebounding. "We're picking back up slowly, but surely," one of the owners told him.
Now, the focus is shifting to economic recovery. "I think the COVID bill might be the last emergency relief bill. We're moving onto to infrastructure which is more about economic recovery," said Kaine.