HERRIMAN, Utah — EDITOR’S Observe: This story was very first documented by Brooklyn Critchley and Lucas Welk previous tumble when they had been in the investigative reporting class at the College of Utah. Their teacher was FOX 13 investigative reporter Nate Carlisle.
The discount codes issued by Herriman in 2020 were being a massive help to Terri Rummel and her loved ones.
“I adore the Herriman Bucks,” Rummel reported this month in the parking whole lot of the Smith’s grocery retail outlet in Herriman, “I hope they do it all over again this year. We spent all ours appropriate in this article, right here at Smith’s.”
Herriman Bucks, also recognized as the Shop All around system, sent discount codes to Herriman residents that they could redeem at participating firms. The companies could then post the discount codes to the city for reimbursement.
The funds arrived from the CARES Act – the reduction Congress passed to aid People, their enterprises and regional authorities as the pandemic was setting up. An investigation by FOX 13 News and pupils in the investigative reporting class at the College of Utah uncovered most of the Herriman Bucks went to big stores.
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Meanwhile, in Salt Lake Town, the most significant one chunks of pandemic relief went to real estate developers, FOX 13 News and the college students uncovered.
Herriman invested $985,476 on Shop All around, in accordance to documents. Of that, $489,160 went to the town’s Smith’s.
It is owned by Cincinnati-primarily based Kroger, which reported a profit of $2.6 billion in fiscal yr 2020.
The up coming largest chunk went to the Herriman Walmart. It been given $220,900.
Arkansas-dependent Walmart reported a profit of almost $15 billion in fiscal yr 2020.
Herriman Bucks presented discounts this sort of as $10 off a $20 purchase. Tami Moody, a spokeswoman for Herriman municipal government, stated the system was well-known with the two people and enterprises.
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Moody reported there was a dialogue in the town of no matter whether to contain the big merchants, and lawful counsel claimed it would be ideal to open up Herriman Bucks to any company that needed to take part.
“We seriously desired to include [Smith’s and Walmart] for the reason that we understood that quite a few residents ended up also owning hardships,” Moody mentioned. “They provide groceries and groceries had been a actual have to have.”
Smith’s and Walmart had been the only grocers who participated.
American Burgers received $31,230.
“It assisted us retain personnel that we had,” mentioned Mary Manousakis, whose loved ones owns American Burgers, on a current afternoon in which the grill was scorching and hamburgers were being handed to buyers around the counter and out the generate-through window.
Manousakis, although, claims the funds would have meant extra to organizations like hers fairly than the organizations with “deep pockets.”
Of the 53 businesses outlined as collaborating in Herriman Bucks, some been given only a few hundred bucks. At the very least two have shut.
“I assume that if [Shop Around] was tailor-made much more towards the tiny enterprises,” Manousakis claimed, “and far more of the revenue was brought into the smaller firms, it would have aided some that did close stay open up.”
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Moody points out that Herriman also provided firms with PPE and other kinds of assist during the pandemic.
Salt Lake City gained additional than $100 million in pandemic aid. Most of that was designated for the airport, which was continue to beneath renovation as the pandemic commenced and missing travelers and the taxes they make. Other income was utilized to give companies PPE and unexpected emergency loans.
But the town also set apart cash to support firms that experienced contracts with Salt Lake City’s redevelopment company. Of that, the two most significant recipients were being genuine estate firms who each and every received $100,000.
One particular of them was a subsidiary of the business owned by Dell Loy Hansen, the previous proprietor of Real Salt Lake. His representatives did not return messages trying to get remark.
The other $100,000 receiver was the owner of the place of work tower at State Street and 300 South. The tower has an assessed industry worth of $54 million.
A person of the building’s entrepreneurs, Illinois-primarily based Hamilton Companions, reported in an electronic mail to FOX 13 News that it leases the adjoining parking garage from the town. With less folks coming downtown, $79,000 was made use of to offset parking losses. The enterprise mentioned it gave the remaining $21,000 to just one of its tenants, the Copper Popular restaurant.
“The aim is to preserve payroll and to keep functions heading, particularly when folks stopped coming downtown,” said Anna Valdemoros, who signifies downtown on the Salt Lake Town Council and was vice chair of the redevelopment board in 2020.
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Valdemoros said the council established the parameters for the pandemic aid it was up to employees to distribute it.
“Downtown was specifically challenging strike by the pandemic,” stated Dee Brewer, government director of Salt Lake City’s Downtown Alliance.
Brewer wasn’t acquainted with how Salt Lake Metropolis allocated its federal aid bucks, but explained the town was responsive to companies. It produced programs to idea hold out staff and shut most important street to accommodate out of doors dining.
“They acted pretty speedily to transfer dollars through to businesses,” Brewer said.
At one particular level, Salt Lake City also gave $100,000 to the Marriott on Gallivan Plaza. The lodge returned the funds.
The town in its place applied it to pay out firefighters, in accordance to a spokesperson for the redevelopment agency.