The city of Vancouver, Canada, has banned big-box stores in one neighborhood and is studying the possibility of a citywide store size cap . Continue reading
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During the week of July 4th, thousands of independent businesses in a dozen cities around the country celebrated Independents Week—seven days of educational and promotional events designed to draw attention to the importance of supporting locally owned businesses.
"The trend of chains displacing our hometown businesses will continue unless communities realize what’s at stake," said Jennifer Rockne, director of the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA), which organized Independents Week.
As we celebrate our nation’s independence, thousands of small businesses, led by the new and fast-growing American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA), are drawing attention to the importance of small-scale, local enterprise in guarding against economic tyranny. Continue reading
In March, voters in Scottsdale, Arizona, overwhelmingly rejected a plan to provide a massive public subsidy for a 42-acre big box development anchored by a Wal-Mart supercenter and a Lowe’s Home Improvement store.
The plan, which was approved by the city council last year, allowed the developer to keep 49 percent of all the sales taxes generated by the shopping center over the next 40 years. Accounting for interest and inflation, the total value of the subsidy is estimated at$183 million.
Citing Wal-Mart’s failure to provide a decent wage and health benefits for most of its employees, the Albany (New York) County Legislature voted in March to decline a $1,000 donation from the corporation. Continue reading
RKG concluded that Middlebury consumers are spending nearly $7 million elsewhere each year and recommended that the city stem the leakage by enticing Wal-Mart to build a supercenter. But many Middlebury residents refuse to accept the inevitability of the low-wage retailing giant. They have their own ideas about solving Middlebury’s dilemma. They want to open a community-owned department store in the center of town. Continue reading
Three years ago, after learning that Borders Books & Music planned to open an outlet in Corvallis, Oregon, Jack Wolcott, who has owned a local bookstore, Grass Roots Books & Music, for more than thirty years, contacted Bob Baird of The Book Bin and several other local business owners whose stores were likely to be affected by the chain. They began meeting, at first discussing a possible legal challenge to Borders and ultimately deciding instead to organize local businesses and launch a public education effort. Continue reading
Taxpayers are picking up the tab for Wal-Mart’s low wages and meager benefits, according to a new congressional report.
Prepared by the Democratic staff of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce and released by Rep. George Miller in February, the report concludes that the federal government is providing an average of $2,100 annually in public assistance per Wal-Mart employee.
Under a city law adopted in March, chains seeking to locate in San Francisco could be required to undergo a public hearing and meet certain conditions before being granted a permit to open.
Sponsored by Supervisor Matt Gonzalez, the ordinance passed on an 8-3 vote by the Board of Supervisors.
In a stunning upset that made headlines around the globe, voters in Inglewood, California, overwhelmingly defeated a ballot measure on April 6 that would have opened the way for a massive Wal-Mart supercenter. The final tally was 7,049 against and 4,575 in favor.
The unprecedented measure would have given Wal-Mart complete control over a 60-acre site, allowing it to bypass the public process and build a supercenter and other chain retail stores without any of the normal environmental, traffic, or zoning reviews.