1. Tell us about the last 3 purchases you made at locally owned, independent businesses.
I bought office supplies at Wigon, which I always choose instead of Staples if I can help it. I had my Lapchick for Mayor signs (and other collateral) printed at Dale Rand. I ate at the Green Elephant. Ummmm junk food at Colucci’s…
2. What do you think are the most important resources or programs available to independent businesses in Portland?
The buy-local campaign has been the best resource for local independent businesses from what I can tell. It took many years to get the message out. I first heard Mary Allen L. talk about it 12+ years ago and now the message is everywhere.
3. Are there any policies or initiatives you think the city should adopt to better support local businesses?
YES. Add a .5% local option tax on all chain stores, if someone could get that to fly… But seriously. the city needs to get behind this effort by doing some major outreach. Even the most conscientious people are still forgetting about Maine Hardware when they go to the Home Depot. They’re not shopping at local appliance stores first. Then there are all of the non-conscientious people who don’t even understand that buy local is in THEIR best interest.
4. Do you think the city should move its bank accounts out of large national banks and into locally owned financial institutions?
We need to create a state bank that all municipalities could use. As well as the state. We would save so much money that way. I’m not sure if the City could start its own bank, but if so, yes. Failing all that, we should be using a local bank or credit union, absolutely! (To give the city credit, their accounts are at TD which was People’s, a local bank, when they opened their account(s).
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