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Idaho business leaders urge folks to find ways to support local

Posted at 3:49 PM, Mar 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-16 17:49:41-04

BOISE, Idaho — This article was originally written by Don Day from BoiseDev.

With much of society winding down, the future of many local businesses could be on the line – as well as the people they employ.

While guidance says to avoid crowds, there are ways to support business with minimal or no human contact.

Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce CEO Bill Connors hopes people will seek ways to support Idaho’s local economy.

“Support your small businesses,” he said. “Buy gift cards, use take out, reschedule events instead of canceling them outright. By rescheduling events, those hoteliers and the people who work at these hotels can have some revenue stream and bank on that revenue stream going forward.”

The Nampa Chamber of Commerce echoed Connors’ sentiment.

Last week, Greater Boise Auditorium District Executive Director Pat Rice said many of the events set for Boise Centre in coming weeks will be rescheduled.

“All the local events for the next couple of weeks – we’ve actually moved them to future dates later in the year,” Rice said. “We’re working with them and rebooking. That’s really positive.”

Connors also said the Boise Chamber’s national partners at the US Chamber are looking at ideas on how to expedite emergency SBA loans. The SBA announced some support for businesses impacted by COVID-19.

“How can the government make it easier? Maybe we could waive some of the regulatory rules there,” he said.

Downtown Boise Association Executive Director Jennifer Hensley posted a list of ideas on how to support local merchants on LinkedIn. A few of the ideas:

  • Shop online with merchants the offer that option.
  • For those that don’t, call them by phone and make purchases to pick up.
  • If you typically order wholesale products with retailers later in the year, look to move those purchases up.
  • Buy gift cards now for use later