REPORT: Business Owner In California Says He’s Forced To Flee State Over Lockdown Restrictions

(Screenshot/ Twitter Jorge Ventura)

Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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A California business owner is reportedly moving his IT business out of state due to heavy coronavirus restrictions impeding his business.

Nick Kershner, president and chief technology officer at Matchless IT, told Fox Business Monday that he’s ditching Long Beach, California for Erie, Pennsylvania, as the new set of shutdowns are “very, very difficult.”

“The cost of living from the zip code we are operating in now to the zip code where we are going to be relocating is over 90 percent less expensive than Southern California.,” Kershner told Fox, noting the move will allow him to “keep all of my employees on payroll and lower my expenses overall.”

Kershner said the recent restrictions are causing a “trickle-down effect.”

“This has affected our business because we serve almost every other business in every other industry and the ones that are being affected by the lockdowns,” Kershner told Fox. (RELATED: Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary Says ‘There’s No Science’ To Recent COVID Lockdown Rules)

Kershner told Fox that as other businesses get shut down due to the pandemic, “it trickles over to us.”

“Even as an essential business it’s very hard on us because of the impact to our customers. Our customers have been shutting down since March 20,” Kershner told the Daily Caller’s Jorge Ventura, noting his company only services small businesses. “As of late we’ve had just a lot of customers coming in and saying they have to leave the state.”

“It’s a very scary thing what’s happening here, is the solution better than the problem?”

“I don’t know many businesses are going to be able to survive another intense lockdown like we’re in right now,” he told Fox.

Most of Southern California, the San Francisco Bay Area and areas in Central Valley are under a new three-week lockdown after the area’s intensive care unit capacity fell below the 15% threshold that automatically triggers the lockdowns, according to the Associated Press (AP).

The new measures have strict closures, forcing nail salons, movie theaters and other businesses to close while instituting a ban on both indoor and outdoor dining for restaurants, according to the AP. Social gatherings are limited to individuals from a single household. Meanwhile retailers like supermarkets can operate with only 20% customer capacity.

Other business owners are thinking of fleeing the state following lockdowns that began in March and have reportedly crippled small business owners.

“The pandemic was the last straw because they shuttered businesses that could stay open,” Lauren Prichard told ABC 7 in May when she was preparing to move to Florida. Her husband, Mike Prichard, who owned a film to digital transfer service, echoed her statement, saying COVID-19 restrictions have been “challenging” for businesses to navigate, according to the report.

Celebrity chef Andrew Gruel, who owns Slapfish Seafood restaurants throughout the state, told the Daily Caller Friday that he was considering moving his business to Florida due to the lockdowns.

Elon Musk also threatened to leave the state in May and head to Texas if state health officials wouldn’t allow Tesla to open. The county eventually struck a deal with Musk that allowed Tesla’s plant to open as long as they followed specific safety measures.