Develop New Albany president (copy)

Rob Dunn, president of Develop New Albany since mid-2018, is a Palmyra native and a veteran of the U.S. Air Force.

NEW ALBANY — Develop New Albany, in conjunction with the Urban Enterprise Association, the City of New Albany and private donors, have created a fund to help the local service industry workers affected by the COVID-19 crisis in New Albany.

“Develop New Albany is proud to partner with our city to serve some of those hit hardest and support our local restaurants who continue to serve the community,” Rob Dunn, board president, said in a news release issued Saturday.

Restaurants and bars have been ordered closed throughout the state, but can still provide curb side food service. Unfortunately, this adversely affects a substantial segment of service industry workers. The program is designed to provide employees affected by the closures a $25 daily stipend to order curb-side service at a participating New Albany restaurant.

City Council member Jason Applegate stated, “A lifelong resident of New Albany asked me how he could donate to laid off workers. After a quick call to Develop New Albany and Mayor Gahan, the idea that the laid-off worker feeds the business financially while literally being fed was born. I could not be more proud of our city for uniting in such a beneficial way.”

“We are glad to partner with DNA, UEA, and other donors to help service workers affected by the business closures in our downtown. It’s our responsibility to help others during this time,” said Mayor Jeff Gahan.

Employees and businesses affected by the closures can participate by following the guidelines and contacting DNA at, the news release stated.

Program details:

Employees affected will be able to get food at participating downtown restaurants. A list will be generated of those affected and distributed to participating restaurants. When an employee places an order and verifies identity at pickup, Develop New Albany will reimburse the restaurant up to $25 per person per day. The reimbursement will come in the form of a check and will be distributed multiple times per week (to be determined).

Who can participate in the program?

All service industry employees of restaurants / bars within New Albany whose job was affected by the COVID-19 crisis are eligible. Verification from employer will be required. Identity of employee will be verified by restaurants at the time of food pickup.

How can a restaurant

/ bar in New Albany participate?

• All restaurants and bars can submit a list of employees. This list should be of active employees as of March 16, 2020. This information should be emailed to Heather Trueblood, program coordinator of Develop New Albany at

• Downtown New Albany restaurants that are interested in participating as a food provider should contact Trueblood at or by calling/texting at 812-941-0018.

This program will continue until the allocated funding runs out. If you know of a business or organization that would be interested in contributing to this program, contact Trueblood at the email or phone number listed above.

Information for participating restaurants

Restaurants will be provided with a list of eligible employees. If someone who is not on the list contacts the restaurant directly, he or she must provide a pay stub from a New Albany restaurant within the last two weeks and identification for verification. If this happens, email the name of the employee to Trueblood to update the master lists.

The program will reimburse up to $25 per person per day while funds last. A tracking sheet will be provided to help restaurants with accounting.

Checks for reimbursement will be handled by Develop New Albany. Restaurants will submit their tracking form and a check will be delivered to the restaurant multiple times a week.

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