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From Sandy Hunt

By Staff | Feb 4, 2009

According to the national media the economy is in a mess. That’s not a true picture of the economic climate in our area, but the national media has caused the public to fear what might happen. That fear caused most small businesses in our area to see a 20 to 30 percent decline in business for 2008. For most of these small businesses, their money is not tied up in Wall Street, it’s tied up in Main Street our investment is in our businesses regardless of the street or route we are located on in Wetzel, Tyler, and Monroe counties.

There is a fairly simple solution but it will only work if we all work together, and by that I mean every business and every household in our area. In these three counties there are approx. 820 private, non-farm businesses that are also employers. There are also about 15,800 households in these three counties. About 17 percent of our households are below the poverty level, but that leaves at least 80 percent of our households with some sort of disposable income. The simple solution is to shop locally, spend just a little bit more every week with a local business to make a significant difference.

Stop into your locally owned business and spend an extra $10 or $20 or $30 this week. And don’t just shop the town in which you live shop the small businesses in neighboring towns.

If the 12,700 households each spend an extra $10 a week shopping locally, that becomes $127,000 weekly invested in our local economy, $508,000 a month, and $6,604,000 annually. It may be a huge number, but it is actually just a little bit more for each of those small businesses. If 400 of these small businesses are retail, that means you will be helping each one generate an extra $16,510 per year. That is enough to help pay the rent; pay a salary; help us continue to support local causes that we are asked to support every year. And if we could all spend an extra $30 a week I’ll let you do the math.

My appeal is to everyone who lives and works in these three counties. Let’s all join together and shop locally, just a little bit more than we do now.

Yes, business was down 20% last year. But if you ask me how I’m doing I’ll tell you I’m “Great!” Success isn’t measured in dollars, but the success of our business is.


Sandy Hunt

New Martinsville