The wave of unrest in Cleveland that followed the controversial death of George Floyd caused an estimated $6.38 million in damages to downtown businesses and property owners, according to Downtown Cleveland Alliance (DCA) President and CEO Joe Marinucci.
DCA is a non-profit organization that works with downtown Cleveland entities to “make it the most compelling place to live, work and play.”
Marinucci made these comments at a Cuyahoga County Board meeting on Monday, cleveland.com reports.
The DCA president estimated the damages came from $3.38 million in physical property destruction and another $3 million in lost business from the May 30 riots.
DCA’s numbers reflect the 103 applications, 88 from businesses and 15 from property owners, that it received as a result of the vandalism done to downtown Cleveland, according to News5Cleveland. The three top businesses that applied for the DCA’s fund for help were restaurants, retailers and fitness installations.
Paul Herdeg, the deputy chief economic development officer for Cuyahoga County, told the board that these downtown Cleveland businesses accrued around $2.07 million in losses not covered by insurance, News5Cleveland reports.
To help businesses damaged during the George Floyd riots, the board approved $300,000 to the DCA fund, according to cleveland.com.
Business owners who applied for help will receive no more than $50,000.
Downtown Cleveland is not the only place in Ohio that was damaged during the George Floyd riots. At the Ohio Statehouse, protesters who defaced the Capitol on two separate occasions caused $158,000 in damages.
Earlier this month, state Rep. Jeff LaRe (R-Violet Township) introduced a bill that would give the Ohio Attorney General authority to prosecute crimes on state property in downtown Columbus. This proposal comes after the City of Columbus failed to prosecute anyone who damaged the Ohio Statehouse.
“I support the constitutional right of people to peacefully assemble and protest. That’s an important cornerstone of our democracy,” LaRe said in a statement. “But destruction and violence is a crime. And when crimes are not prosecuted, it sends the message that the criminal activity is not only condoned but endorsed.”
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