US Congresswoman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, has said that small and locally-owned businesses “need the help of their communities now more than ever.”
While disclosing this on Sunday via her Facebook page, Ocasio-Cortez stated that her team has been meeting with small businesses to hear how the pandemic has impacted their livelihoods.
“First up, our team met some of the shop owners and street vendors operating in Jackson Heights alongside Chhaya Community Development Corporation,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote.
She added, “Many brick and mortar stores are facing challenges paying rent and other regular bills while working with shifting regulations.
“Street vendors have been impacted by decreases in foot traffic while continuing to face inflated prices on the black market for permits, paying upwards of $20k for permits that would cost $200 from the city.”
She said that the continued collection of sales tax and payment for ongoing permits had created additional burden.
“If you are able, support local businesses this holiday season by buying gift certificates or a meal, and by spreading the word!
“Thank you to Chhaya Community Development Corporation and Street Vendor Project for your collaboration on this! Connect with them to learn more about their advocacy efforts for more permits and less policing for vendors, and for commercial rent relief,” she said.