PROMOTE LOCAL BUSINESSES
I know how small business owners feel right now because as a child my family lost their small business in Naperville. Closing our video rental store financially devastated us, and took years to get back on our feet. We must actively help our small businesses survive right now. Small businesses are the lifeline of our community. Local owners know that they only succeed if everyone succeeds so they invest in us. They support each other, charities and local organizations in many ways. Their unique offerings bring non-residents to Naperville to spend their money, thereby lowering resident’s tax obligations.
I will work to:
- Create a public/private partnership that combines both grant money and a long term low interest repayment loan. The City must proactively invest in local businesses because the City collects more revenue from food, sales, and beverage tax than it does from residential property taxes. This means that if small business revenue growth decreases, our residential property taxes increase.
- Explore changing our procurement code to give preference to local businesses when purchasing items for the City. The Naperville Development Partnership already adopted this practice, and so we have a model from which to use. This idea keeps local money local, which helps the whole community, and it lowers our carbon footprint.
- Waive the various fees that the City charges through 2021 which includes outdoor dining permit fees, liquor license and permit fees for on-site consumption businesses.
- Evaluate landscaping and sign requirements for strip malls, especially for our South side businesses. Often times required landscaping blocks driver’s views of the businesses inside which cannot be made up by signage.
- Highlight a small business of the month. With the City's various communication methods to residents, businesses and visitors, we should leverage those methods to promote local businesses who have demonstrated commitment to excellent service and value that enhances our City's value.
- Create a one-stop shop on our website for small businesses that include City resources, non-City resources, and practical tips on how to navigate and survive the changing rules regarding COVID.
- Work with community partners and residents to find non-traditional ways for small businesses to reach and service its customers.