by Cameron Crowe
The Florence Chamber of Commerce is urging people to support small businesses during this uncertain time.
The President of the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce Mike Miller spoke about Florence’s small businesses and some of the government assistance they need.
The U.S. Small Business Administration approved Governor McMaster’s request Friday morning to offer disaster assistance to the state’s small businesses.
Miller believes that several businesses will likely take advantage of small business loans, but he is not sure yet to what degree since it is unknown what the total economic damage will be or how long this crisis will last.
He said that all assistance from the federal and state governments will be critical in helping small businesses in Florence.
“The one thing we have to keep in mind, is all resources that are available and the ones yet to be announced are going to be critical because these small businesses are again the backbone of our community and we want to come out of this when it wanes and this slows down, we want them there,” Miller said.
Miller is also urging the public to support local businesses in the Pee Dee however they can. He said over 50% of the local economy is made up of small businesses. Restaurants are now take-out only and the city has designated locations throughout Florence for curbside pick-up.
Many restaurants are using delivery services such as WAITR to give customers the ability to receive meals without having to leave their homes.
Miller said people can support retailers by shopping online or purchasing gift cards. He also said the community needs to support our non-profit organizations at this time as they are in need of food and other household items that are getting bought out of stores.
“What we should all be looking for is an opportunity to continue to do business with them in the best way possible during these times. The restaurants have adapted somewhat to it by offering take out and delivery services and that is something we need to take advantage of,” Miller said.
Miller said he and the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce stand with all small businesses in the Pee Dee and look forward to patronizing them as soon as possible.