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California small businesses struggle while waiting for stimulus aid

Ebone Monet | California Black Media

M’Dears Bakery & Bistro fills the air in its South Los Angeles neighborhood with smells of fried chicken, French toast, and homemade desserts. “It was very serendipitous,” said 66-year-old restaurant owner Carrie Reese about how she transitioned from a vendor at jazz festivals to opening a dine-in restaurant at 77th and Western Avenue.

“You could see through the window, piles of chicken. And people started saying, ‘can I just buy a plate,’” said Reese.

Eighteen years later, M’dears recently renovated dining room is empty during what would normally be its busy lunchtime rush,