CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito visited two places in Clarksburg on Friday.
The Senator, first, was a guest speaker at U.S. Federal Court in Clarksburg for a naturalization ceremony, held on Friday morning. Later in the afternoon, Sen. Capito made her way to Rogers and Mazza’s Italian Bakery, where she spoke to owners about the ups and downs of running a small business during the pandemic.
During the pandemic, the bakery was a recipient of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) funds.
The former owner, Roger Mazza, founded the company in the 1950s. His stepsons, Dennis and Michael, along with George Rogers, the current owner, now run the bakery. The business currently has more than 40 employees, most of which have been with the company for more than two decades.
“For more than 60 years, Roger and Mazza’s has been a mainstay in the local community, producing some of the best pepperoni rolls around,” Senator Capito said. “Today’s visit highlighted not only the importance of PPP funding that helped small businesses across West Virginia, but also the resilience of the owners and employees to make it through the pandemic. Unfortunately, Roger and Mazza’s, like many other small businesses, are struggling to fill jobs, and it’s critical the federal government stop incentivizing folks to stay home rather than look for work.”
During her visit, Senator Capito also highlighted the importance of checking with small businesses after the past pandemic year.
“I think it’s important for me to see the programs that we put into place, like the PPP loans and other things, how they’ve been able to benefit from it. But, also, some of the problems that they are having, stemming from the rescue package, with trying to get people back to work,” Sen. Capito said.
Senator Capito said that she wants to help these small businesses as much as she can.