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Billions of dollars of federal aid is on the way to small businesses across the country. Getting it into the hands of their owners will take precious time, though. Until it arrives, some city leaders in Pinellas County have no intention of sitting idly by while the lifeblood of their communities — small businesses and their employees — suffer. Here’s a look at how some communities are getting involved.

In past beach nourishment projects, the Army Corps of Engineers gave towns and cities some leeway if some property owners failed to cooperate. That won’t be the case this time, Pinellas County officials say. If even one shoreline property owner refuses to sign an easement for the Sand Key Beach Nourishment project slated for 2023, an entire town could forfeit its portion of the allotted sand. And plenty have not.

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