Shop local, get a break on your water bill, under Carpentersville incentive program

 
 
Updated 6/8/2020 7:18 PM

Carpentersville has launched an incentive program encouraging residents to spend their money locally as businesses begin reopening.

Any homeowner who spends a minimum of $200 at qualifying retail or service shops and $100 at local restaurants through July 31 will be eligible for a $50 credit on a future water bill.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The goal is to support struggling businesses and give the Carpentersville economy a much-needed boost as the state moves into the next phases of Gov. J.B. Pritzker's Restore Illinois plan, Village Manager Eric Johnson said.

"The No. 1 thing we've heard as we talk to our business owners is they're worried about keeping their doors open," he said. "We're just trying to support our businesses to make sure they're here after COVID is gone."

The program focuses on businesses that were deemed nonessential and required to close during the stay-at-home order the past few months, such as boutiques, clothing stores, salons and restaurants. Those establishments recently were given the green light to resume operations in Phase 3 of the governor's reopening plan.

"Those are more discretionary dollars," Johnson said. "People have an option to spend their money in different places, and we're hoping to encourage residents to keep their money local."

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Purchases at businesses that were considered essential -- grocery stores, fueling centers, home improvement stores, pharmacies -- do not qualify.

The incentive program stems from a similar concept being implemented in south suburban Frankfurt, Johnson said, noting he's been in touch with several municipalities looking to provide their businesses with some relief.

Carpentersville officials also plan to establish a special committee aimed at addressing the needs of the business community during the pandemic, he said.

To qualify for the $50 reimbursement, residents must submit their receipts to the village, along with an application, by Aug. 31. Multiple purchases from June and July can be combined to reach the $300 threshold.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

For every 1,000 homeowners who participate, the village would spend $50,000, while the local economy would receive at least $300,000.

Carpentersville has about 10,500 residential water bill accounts, bringing the maximum cost of the program to $525,000. Regardless of how many residents participate, Johnson said he believes the long-term benefit would outweigh any short-term expenses.

For a list of qualifying businesses, or to submit an application, visit carpentersvilletoday.com/free50.

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