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Keeping money in Bemidji goes for businesses, too

The consensus is shop locally. Keep the money in Bemidji. What about the big stores that notoriously underpay their employees $7-$9 an hour? Statistically this is not a living wage. Especially now with the high prices of gas, utilities and numerous government fees such as taxes being so high, no extras like show tickets, eating out and shopping can be purchased.

Some of these employers sock huge sums of money for themselves and they also give huge sums to charities not even located in Bemidji; yet this community supports their lavish lifestyle. An employer's tax deduction is wages to employees the same as contributions to charities. The businesses need to support our own people here, not overseas. Every charity supported has governing fees where the administrators take fees for themselves as wages. Give it to your employees!

Wake up employers! Give your employees a living wage so they can support their families and spend more here. Save on employee turnaround (training, paperwork, etc.). Establish loyalty and support your home town. I grew up without many things that I regret not having to this day due to low wages for my parents. A show ticket was 15 cents and popcorn 10 cents and to this day I still do not have popcorn at a movie. I never got used to it. Clothing had to be handmade if I wanted anything different to wear to school. School activities were too expensive, therefore, we seldom got to go.

Talk to your employees if you know you have a surplus of funds. Find out what they are sacrificing due to you trying to save a dime so you can play big shot with charities out of our area. You as business owners know who you are, Shame be on you!

I recently moved to Bemidji and looked for work and found astonishingly low wages being offered.

On the scale found on the Internet, Bemidji does not meet the median for wages across the nation in many fields.

Nancy M. Rassumski