Locals encouraged to spend $20 on the 20th

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 18, 2011

NATCHEZ — Consider it self-rewarding community service, local leaders say, and spend $20 in the Miss-Lou this weekend.

By spending $20 on the weekend of the 20th, area residents can not only get the food, gas, groceries, gift item, clothes or trinket they want but can help out the cities around them.

The Natchez Democrat and area businesses are partnering to promote $20 on the 20th as a means of stimulating the local economy.

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A number of area businesses are offering special deals Saturday and Sunday in exchange for a bit of extra foot traffic in their stores. A complete list of participating businesses and specials will be published in Saturday’s edition of The Democrat.

Spend and your $20 will quickly multiply, Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland said.

“Every dollar you spend turns over seven times is the old saying,” he said.

“And it does, it helps the city and it helps other people.

“Anytime anyone spends any money locally it can be a big shot in the arm as far as the town is concerned.”

Natchez Mayor Jake Middleton said remembering to spend your dollars at home — especially when dollars may be tight — is key.

“We want everyone to spend their money in Natchez; we want you to shop local,” he said. “It increases our sales tax, and it gives people who are working hard in the retail business a good feeling that people in Natchez are supporting then.”

Sales tax dollars in Natchez, Vidalia and Ferriday fuel street repairs, police and fire salaries and more.

Middleton said retail shopping is a form of economic development.

“We want to see a real effort to fill up every storefront in downtown Natchez,” he said.

But to do that, stores must see customers, he said.

“Retail business is important to the city just as industrial development is. You’ve got to have a viable downtown.”

And, if you save $20 on the tank of gasoline you’d spend to get out of town, you’ll have $20 to spend on something in town, Copeland said.