To the editor:
Do we think about how and where we spend our money? Think of it as “local loot.”
The economic impact of spending locally is really quite amazing. A study done in Grand Rapids, Mich., and reported on by Business Week (www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/running_small_business/archives/2009/02/yesterday_we_as.html) showed that a 10 percent market shift to local in a city the size of Grand Rapids would add $137.3 million to the local economy, create 1,614 new jobs and generate $53 million in additional wages.
To put the impact another way, the study showed that for every $100 spent at nonlocally owned businesses, only $43 remained in the local economy. However, for every $100 spent locally, $68 remained in the local economy. More information about the study can be found at www.civiceconomics.com/localworks/.
Buying local means buying at your farmers’ market, hiring a local plumber, eating at locally owned restaurants, buying your car or tractor in town and spending your money at locally owned mom and pop businesses.
In a city the size of Lawrence, a 10 percent market shift to local would mean $22.9 million to the local economy, 268 new jobs, $8.85 million in new wages.
These to me are very meaningful numbers. Think of your community before you spend your money. Recycled money comes back to all of us.