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Local Self-Reliance

Photo by Rick Bonetti

Photo by Rick Bonetti

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance offers these Top Ten Reasons to Support Locally Owned Businesses:

  1. Local Character and Prosperity – In an increasingly homogenized world, communities that preserve their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character have an economic advantage.
  2. Community Well-Being – Locally owned businesses build strong communities by sustaining vibrant town centers, linking neighbors in a web of economic relationships, and contributing to local causes.
  3. Local Decision-Making – Local ownership ensures that important decisions are made locally by people who live in the community and feel the impacts of those decisions.
  4. Keeping Dollars in the Local Economy – Compared to chain stores, locally owned businesses recycle a much larger share of their revenue back to the local economy.
  5. Job and Wages – Locally owned businesses create more jobs locally and, in some sectors, provide better wages and benefits than chains do.
  6. Entrepreneurship – It fuels America’s economic innovation and prosperity, and serves as a key means for families to move out of low-wage jobs into the middle class.
  7. Public Benefits and Costs – Local stores in town centers require comparatively little infrastructure and make more efficient use of public services relative to big box stores and strip shopping malls.
  8. Environmental Sustainability – Local stores help to sustain vibrant, compact, walkable town centers- which in turn are essential to reducing sprawl, automobile use, habitat loss and pollution.
  9. Competition – A marketplace of small businesses is the best way to ensure innovation and low prices over the long term.
  10. Product Diversity – A group of small businesses, each selecting products based, not on a national or international sales plan, but on their own interests and needs of local customers, guarantees a much broader range of product choices.

From the ILSR website: “Over the last 25 years, a handful of giant retailers have grown to dominate the U.S. economy. ILSR challenges the wisdom of this market concentration. Through research and analysis, we have built a compelling case that places that are home to numerous locally owned businesses are more prosperous, sustainable, and resilient than those in which much of the retail sector is controlled by a few big chains. For more than a decade, ILSR has worked with elected officials, community organizations, and business groups to implement policies that constrain the market power of larger retailers, eliminate tax loopholes and public subsidies that give them an unfair advantage, revitalize neighborhood commercial districts, and strengthen and rebuild independent businesses.”

Redding Voice urges you to support our local businesses.