Are campaign stops worth it?
Fri, 28 Sep 2012 02:20:13 GMT —
When politicians are in campaign mode, the cities they visit end up paying out thousands.
A Franklin County, Ohio sheriff recently billed the Romney and Obama camps $26 and $49 thousand, respectively. The bills were never repaid.
But some local businesses in Toledo, like Pizza Papalis, say that the cost is well worth it for the foot traffic.
Jeff Kesselring, Pizza Papalis Assistant General Manager says, "We had a ton more street traffic downtown. It was healthy, it was vibrant. It felt good. We had all these people from Perrysburg paying a little more attention to a downtown venue in the downtown area that's in need of that money."
He says once visitors are here, they'll want to come back.
"It's an opportunity for us to reclaim some of that [new business] and bring people into downtown. If it's just for the restaurant, that's great. Once we get them in the door we can talk about the other great features downtown Toledo has to offer."
However some businesses say that these visits, which come with limited notice, are more of a hinderence.
"The roadblocks they put up which make it almost impossible, for me personally, to get to the restaurant," says Daryl John Schmitz, owner of Fine Things Bistro, which is located in South Saint Claire Village.
He says that while he welcomes the campaign stops, it does nothing for the smaller niche businesses.
Schmitz says, "I'm losing money. Every second i'm losing money... It's because everything is blocked off. They can't get through. They can't find us, theres no parking."
He says a solution would be for visiting parties to promote the local shops. Because the owners of these shops are the very vote that the politicians are trying to win over.
"Niether party is winning my vote," says Schmitz.