Chamber to pursue ‘shop local’ speaker for Craig event

In other action …

At the Craig Chamber of Commerce’s monthly meeting, the board also:

• Approved, 7-0, September meeting minutes. Board members Don Jones and Audrey Anna Charchalis were absent for the vote.

• Approved, 7-0, the treasurer’s report. Jones and Charchalis were absent for the vote.

• Approved, 7-0, bids for crab and liquor from City Market and Eastside Liquor, respectively, for Crabfest on Oct. 29. Jones and Charchalis were absent for the vote.

• Announced results from the Chamber board member election. Incumbents Jones, Ryan Duran, Gail Severson and Jeff Smith were re-elected.

• Adjourned into executive session to discuss executive director Christina Oxley’s upcoming leave of absence.

• Elected Smith president, Renee Campbell vice president and Missy Bonaker treasurer. The board did not vote as there was one nomination for each position.

• Discussed its policy for non-Chamber members attending after-hours mixers and decided to not change its policy at this time.

• Discussed a board member serving as a liaison to the Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership’s business incubation program committee.

• Scheduled a board retreat for Dec. 16.

• Discussed Oxley’s upcoming leave of absence for the birth of a child.

• Approved, 9-0, adopting a six-week maternity leave policy for staff.

• Received a report from Oxley.

• Discussed a visitor discount card.

Note: Board members Missy Bonaker, Steve Herman and Ryan Duran were absent.

The Craig Chamber of Commerce Board approved Thursday pursue bringing Cinda Baxter, founder and president of The 3/50 Project, to Moffat County to present the program to small business owners.

The project, launched in 2009, encourages consumers to choose three independently owned businesses they would miss if they were gone and to spend $50 each month in those types of businesses.

Doing so, the project’s website and materials contend, would generate $42.6 billion in revenue, if half of the nation’s consumers participated.

The program aims to pull various business owners together to launch a joint effort to encourage residents to shop locally rather than at national chains or online.

“I think it’s an excellent idea,” board member Gail Severson said. “We do the spree dollars to keep people at home. Doesn’t this tie into that beautifully?”

The board unanimously approved Thursday spending up to $1,500 on the deposit to book Baxter, whom Chamber Executive Director Christina Oxley said is next available at the end of February or beginning of March.

The board agreed that the end of winter and beginning of spring is a good time to host such an event for small business owners.

“It would be a good service to local retailers,” board member Gene Bilodeau said. “… It seems like, potentially, money well spent.”

The board will seek partners and sponsors to help offset the total $3,000 price tag of the program, but agreed to host the event regardless of other agencies’ participation.

Baxter presented the program in Meeker in June 2011.

Oxley said the presentation was “very well received” and inspired a “shop local” campaign that continues to have momentum. She’s hoping for a similar reaction in Moffat County.

“I really hope that this gives local businesses and small businesses a starting point to develop a comprehensive community-based plan surrounding shopping local,” Oxley said. “I love the idea of businesses partnering so that they’re all delivering the same message and enhancing their reach and their marketing that way.

“So I’m hoping a group of businesses will take this plan and move forward.”

For more information about The 3/50 Project, visit www.the350project.net.

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