Barstool Fund gives boost to help small business recover from 'darkest times': Portnoy

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Barstool Sports’ Dave Portnoy told “Fox & Friends” on Monday that the boost to help small businesses recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic was ‘rewarding.’

“It’s been, obviously, a rewarding thing and, hopefully, we don’t have to go back into it with everything that’s happening,” Portnoy told co-host Brian Kilmeade. But anybody we can help, one business, two businesses, it changes their lives. Not just the lives of business owners and their families, everybody around the community. It’s been a super rewarding program, no doubt about it.”

Portnoy said the beauty of the program is that the small business owners got their money “quickly.” Portnoy also noted that the donations weren’t a “one-time payment”; they stuck with the businesses month to month.

“We spoke with these people every month, checked in with them,” Portnoy said. “And the best part is getting the e-mails and letters from the businesses who say, hey, we don’t need the money anymore. We made it through … the worst part, and we want it to go to other people. Actually, we’ve gotten a ton of those letters, and that’s by far the most rewarding part,” Portnoy said.

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Barstool has now given over $40 million to almost 400 businesses across the country, after program founder Portney launched the financial support for small business owners in December.

Rather than providing a lump sum, the Barstool fund offers monthly payments to ensure businesses receive continued support. Businesses aren’t supposed to reveal how much money they were given, but are reported to have received anywhere between $5,000 to $60,000.

Portnoy noted there were stipulations, though, that the recipients were expected to uphold; businesses chosen by Barstool had to retain their staffers and stay up-to-date with rent and overhead costs, including payroll.

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Portnoy acknowledged that, despite help from The Barstool Fund, small businesses are still “struggling.” He responded to the idea that small businesses once again close after Las Vegas officials recommended masks indoors even if they’re vaccinated.

“They’re just in a better spot than they were. But another shutdown, masks — what do I know? I really hope so not, but I can’t believe, I won’t let myself believe that’s going to be the case.”

There were 938 new COVID-19 cases reported in Nevada on Tuesday, the biggest one-day jump since February. The new mask recommendation by Las Vegas officials comes just one day after Los Angeles County officials mandated masks indoors for everyone — regardless of vaccination status.

Fox News’ Paul Best and Fox Business’ Kieran Ungemach contributed to this report.

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