Stimulus: business

Local business owners anticipate the impact of the national stimulus package.

As consumer spending has plummeted during the recession, small businesses have been feeling the crunch. But with the passage of the recent stimulus plan, peopleâÄôs pockets will be fuller, which could translate into more money for local business. Minnesota Small Business Administration Director Ed Daum said his office is currently looking through the plan to determine how it will affect small businesses. He said they have made the stimulus plan a top priority, but it will take time to find specific details that correlate to business owners and their loan programs. Nationally, the SBA is determining how to make the quickest small business impact from the bill, according to a news release. The stimulus package gives the administration $730 million to make changes to its lending and investment programs in order to make them reach more businesses that need help. Although many of the problems this stimulus package aims to correct are short-term, Carlson School of Management senior lecturer Alan Fine said many of the benefits may not be seen for months. He also said many of the problems stemming from the recession will not be fixed until President Barack ObamaâÄôs long-term plan is passed. The major benefit businesses will see from the stimulus plan is that consumers will have more to spend, Fine said, but not all consumers will be immediately excited to use the money. âÄúI think part of the difficulty that we have is that every time people turn on the news, itâÄôs scaring people out of consuming,âÄù Fine said. âÄúWe need to get consumer confidence going that theyâÄôre going to have jobs and that there is a lucrative future for them.âÄù He said the stimulus package will result in more jobs, but since the package is time-released by state, small businesses do not know when they will begin to see benefits. But the Radisson University Hotel Director of sales and marketing Tim Ellis said he hopes the stimulus plan will free up money for more people to stay at the hotel. He said the Radisson has been hurt by the recession because a lot of the business people who use the hotel for meetings have turned to teleconferences during the economic downturn. âÄúWe rely on the business traveler, and when theyâÄôre not traveling, weâÄôre hurting,âÄù Ellis said. Other business owners do not yet know how they will be affected yet, Dinkytown Business Association President Skott Johnson said . Most of what Johnson said he has heard from business owners is their political opinion on the package, instead of the business outlook. As people continue to search for how the plan will affect them, Fine said this is the first step to help the economy. âÄúThe economy always comes back, so it will come back again,âÄù Fine said. âÄúEverything has its cycles, and this is just a little bit more of a severe cycle than weâÄôve had in a long time.âÄù