Publix offers rent relief to businesses in its shopping centers

Published: Mar. 28, 2020 at 10:03 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 28, 2020 at 10:04 PM CDT
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LAKELAND, Fla. (WSFA) - A major grocery store chain is offering help to many of its neighboring businesses as the COVID-19 pandemic forces them to close their doors.

Publix grocery stores are open and doing business, but it’s a different story for many businesses around them. Saturday, the chain announced that it will give the businesses in the shopping centers it owns a relief package amid the pandemic’s continuing economic fallout.

The package includes the waiving of rent for two months, plus the elimination of payments for common area maintenance fees and taxes. And the package is being offered regardless of the tenant’s access to other relief or assistance, Publix said.

“As a company that started as a small business 90 years ago, Publix wants to help businesses renting from us survive the economic impact of these unexpected closures,” said Publix Director of Communications Maria Brous.

Publix has 1,243 stores in seven Southern states that employ more than 200,000 people, and the company says it will hire even more to meet demand from the coronavirus crisis.

The move is the latest mark of goodwill by the chain or its individual stores. Earlier in the week, the chain’s charity arm announced $1 million in donations to food banks.

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