Visalia allies ‘Take Care of Business’

The Sun-Gazette

Visalia Chamber of Commerce, Groppetti Automotive Family and Momentum Broadcasting create Taking Care of Business Fund to help struggling small businesses

VISALIA – Small businesses have been teetering on the brink of ruin since the pandemic started last year. Small stimulus programs have been helpful, but these businesses are in need of something more.

Fortunately, a new group of Visalia stakeholders are attempting to step in so they can “take care of business.”

Last week, the Visalia Chamber of Commerce announced their partnership with the Groppetti Automotive Family, and Momentum Broadcasting, to create a funding mechanism to assist small businesses struggling to survive during the pandemic.

“Don and Shelly [Groppetti] approached us to see if we could collaborate on a fundraising mechanism to assist small businesses and they provided a very generous donation to act as matching seed money,” Gail Zurek, president and CEO of the chamber said. “As a result, we’ve formed the Taking Care of Business Fund to assist small businesses that may be on the verge of having to shut down.”

“We know this is not an easy problem to solve,” Groppetti, president of the Groppetti Automotive Family said. “But too many of our friends and neighbors are struggling to stay in business at no fault of their own. However, if we can pull together as a community and reach out to help our neighbors, we have the ability to make a significant difference in the community we live in, every donation, big or small, helps.”

Momentum Broadcasting, the four-station radio group (106.7 KJUG, HITZ 104.9, Classic Rock 99.7 and MY 97.5) headquartered in Visalia, will lead the promotional effort; “We want to get the word out that anyone can contribute to this cause and we’ll use the radio stations to communicate that message,” said Bill Lynch, general manager of Momentum Broadcasting. “We also want to share with those who need help how they can apply for assistance.”

An oversight committee has been formed to administer the distribution of the funding. “We know that certain sectors of our local economy have been hurt more than others, and we want to provide help to as many employers and employees as possible, especially small businesses,” Zurek said.

Interested business owners will have the opportunity to submit their requests for assistance via the Visalia Chamber of Commerce web site visaliachamber.org.

“Whether it be the dining sector, travel and entertainment, or personal services, those are the parts of the local economy have been hurt the most.” Zurek said.

For anyone interested in contributing or finding out more about the Taking Care Of Business Fund, go to visaliachamber.org or call the Visalia Chamber of Commerce at 559-734-5876.

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