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ERACC Partners with More Than 70 MN Chambers of Commerce to Send a Letter to Gov. Walz

Yesterday, ERACC partnered with more than 70 MN chambers of commerce to send a letter to Gov. Walz on behalf of thousands of small businesses across the state. The letter stresses the importance of small businesses and urges Gov. Walz to consider a more rapid and equitable approach to safely reopen businesses of all sizes.
As we continue to adapt to these times, please remember that ERACC is here to advocate for you and your businesses.

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Letter to Governor Walz from Chambers of Commerce across Minnesota

May 5, 2020

Dear Governor Walz,

Small businesses are the economic fuel of our state’s future. Nearly half of Minnesotans own or work for a small business and create two out of every three new jobs each year. On behalf of hundreds of thousands of small businesses and more than 70 local chambers of commerce across Minnesota, we urge you to consider a more rapid and equitable approach to safely open businesses of all sizes.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the business community has shared your concerns for the importance of balancing health and economic impacts. Businesses that have remained open throughout this crisis and those who are preparing to reopen and are taking steps to protect employee and customer health.

Small businesses are subject to financial and operating challenges that many of their larger counterparts are not.
  • While many large companies or chain stores offer a mix of products, smaller, main street stores specialize in fewer types of similar products. For example, a community’s flower shop may sell plants and arrangements, but the grocery store in the same community sells those items in addition to food.
  • While many large companies may already offer online ordering or curbside delivery, small, main street stores will have to adjust their business operations to accommodate customers during this time. All at an additional cost.

Small businesses are innovative, nimble and adaptable. The sooner they are given a chance to fully reopen, the sooner they can start implementing their workplace practices and preparedness plans. And the more equity that is given to who is deemed “essential” will help them survive and compete in their communities. We believe all businesses are essential. We know you do too.

Easing Minnesota’s stay-at-home order for retailers was a step in the right direction. However, DEED Commission Steve Grove acknowledged last week that small businesses have borne a disproportionate amount of the economic burden. Businesses throughout the state are preparing to fully return to work and taking steps to do so responsibly and expeditiously. We urge you to continue to recognize that businesses can and have designed plans for safe work environments and allow more businesses to fully return to work.

As chambers of commerce, we stand ready to help ensure our members are prepared to open – that they have instituted health and safety protocols for their workers and customers and have a preparedness plan in place. We are confident in their ability to do the right thing and are working with them, each and every day to understand and employ best practices. In fact, we believe if allowed, will do it equally as well as their larger counterparts.

It’s time to get Minnesota moving again, in the safest way possible for employees and customers, while protecting businesses of all size. Minnesota’s long-term economic future is counting on it.

LOCAL CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE IN SUPPORT OF SAFELY OPENING SMALL BUSINESSES
  • Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce
  • Austin Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Bemidji Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Big Lake Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Blooming Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce Brainerd Lakes Chamber
  • Buffalo Area Chamber of Commerce Burnsville Chamber of Commerce
  • Cannon Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Cottage Grove Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Crookston Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Cuyuna Lakes Chamber of Commerce
  • Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce
  • Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Eden Prairie Chamber of Commerce
  • Edina Chamber of Commerce
  • Elk River Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Fairmont Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Faribault Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism
  • Fergus Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Forest Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Glenwood Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Greater Mankato Growth, Inc.
  • Greater Stillwater Chamber of Commerce
  • Greater Wayzata Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Hastings Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau
  • Hermantown Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Hibbing Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Hutchinson Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism
  • International Falls Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce
  • La Crescent Chamber of Commerce
  • Lake City Chamber of Commerce
  • Lakeville Area Chamber of Commerce & CVB
  • Laurentian Chamber of Commerce
  • Leech Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Litchfield Chamber of Commerce
  • Long Prairie Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Lonsdale Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Madelia Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Marshall Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Melrose Area Chamber of Commerce
  • MetroNorth Chamber of Commerce
  • Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
  • Moose Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Mountain Lake Area Chamber of Commerce
  • New Prague Chamber of Commerce
  • Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism
  • Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism
  • Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Pipestone Area Chamber of Commerce & CVB
  • Princeton Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Redwood Area Chamber & Tourism
  • River Heights Chamber of Commerce
  • Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Sauk Centre Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Shakopee Chamber & Visitors Bureau
  • Sleepy Eye Area Chamber of Commerce
  • SouthWest Metro Chamber of Commerce
  • Springfield Chamber of Commerce
  • St. Cloud Area Chamber of Commerce
  • The Chamber Grand Forks & East Grand Forks
  • Thief River Falls Chamber of Commerce
  • Twin Cities North Chamber
  • Twin West Chamber of Commerce
  • Waconia Chamber of Commerce
  • Waseca Area Chamber of Commerce
  • White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Willmar Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Windom Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Winona Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Woodbury Area Chamber of Commerce

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