BRING IT HOME! is a program focused on educating the community about the benefits of spending money locally, rather than traveling out of town for personal and business needs. Local businesses display a window sticker reminding the public to “Bring It Home,” and a committee works to emphasis the importance of each dollar spent at a locally owned and operated business. Each April we host the Bring It Home Family Fun and Business Expo. See the community calendar for more details!
Here are a few reasons to keep your dollars at home:
- The taxes paid by local businesses help to support our community! According to the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, 42% of the local and state tax burden in Minnesota is paid by businesses. Without their support our property taxes would be higher! It is likely that we would have less to spend on important operations like our schools, police department, fire department and many other programs that depend on tax dollars!
- Spending $100 at a locally owned independent business keeps $68 Dollars within the local economy!*
- Spending $100 at a national chain keeps $43 Dollars within the local economy!*
- Shopping online keeps ZERO Dollars within our community!
- Shopping locally saves you gas and time!
- Local businesses make up a significant portion of the employee base, providing more jobs to you and your family!
- Community groups and non-profits are heavily dependent upon local business for charitable donations!
- You typically get more knowledge and friendlier customer service locally!
- Help Hutchinson stand out from the crowd! Our business owners are largely responsible for attracting people, more business and opportunities to our community!
- If we do not support our local businesses, they will not survive!
Shopping locally is not difficult or particularly burdensome, while the benefits are enormous!
Just How Much Money Are We Talking About?
Our objective is to have residents and local businesses commit to keeping an additional 5% of the money currently spent outside of Hutchinson local!
An estimated 31 Million Dollars of ‘leakage’ was experienced in retail sales alone for Hutchinson in 2007! That is a 3.2% decrease in local sales since 2004. We are talking about massive influences on our local economy and the community as a whole! **
If we were to return just 5% of that $31 million; we would create an influx of $1.55 million dollars to Hutchinson annually!
Keep in mind that these figures do not include lost sales in our service industry community! We are really talking about significantly larger numbers for total sales in Hutchinson!
What Can I Do?
People may think they are not able to make a difference; that they are too small to influence numbers that big . . . Not So! The $31 Million leakage was created one sale at a time, and we can fix it one sale at a time. Your contribution is vital and each and every one of us is important to the success of a healthy local economy!
Here is an abbreviated list of things to consider in accomplishing our goals:
- Think when making a purchase online, “Can I buy this product locally?”
- Examine your perceived value in shopping outside of Hutchinson!
- With an online sale, does the cost of shipping and potential difficulty in getting good customer support outweigh the perceived savings?
- Does it really make sense to take the time and spend the additional money driving to another community to buy something you could get locally?
- When comparison shopping are you comparing apples to apples?
- If you can save a significant amount of money outside of the community, have you considered talking to a local resource and asking them to match the price?
- When calling on a service provider from another community, stop and think. “Can I hire a local company to do the work?”
Bottom line, there are going to be times that we need to shop outside of our community. There may be products we cannot find here, a need may arise when we are on a trip and we cannot use the services of a local provider. But there is a lot of room for improvement!
A Decrease in the amount of money we spend outside of Hutchinson by 5% really isn’t much individually . . . but the accumulated effect it will have on our economy is huge!
So the next time you are unhappy with your property taxes . . . stop and think, “Did I do enough to help our local economy?”
*Source for information is from the 3/50 project. www.the350project.net
**Source for this information came from the 2007 Retail Trade Analysis Report created by the University of Minnesota Extension’s Center for Hutchinson.