LETTER TO THE EDITOR: A letter to the community


Since most businesses are open while a targeted group remains closed, we need to do something for those closed businesses. I’m going to ask the county board for assistance to suggest a Regional Stimulus Fund. Here’s my idea:

  • Each bank in town could set up a depository account that everyone can deposit into.

  • Since we are all in this together, I suggest that everyone not affected by the shutdown contribute whatever amount they can by depositing into a bank fund.

  • No IRS credit, no write off, just a complete donation from those of us not affected directly to those who need it. They don’t need another loan, this is a grant, no strings attached.

  • I will suggest that the county contribute $2,000,000 from our general reserve fund, no rainier day that I can envision than what is upon those targeted businesses right now.

  • The banks can then transfer each of their funds to businesses in need, via a process yet to be determined -- a special committee, community organization -- I am open for ideas.

  • We need to act as soon as possible. These businesses are being shut down almost completely; carry out will not weather the shutdown and the weather doesn’t allow outdoor seating and some of those targeted businesses, not in the hospitality sector, don’t have any income.

  • We need anyone that can add ideas and assistance to doing something. Please don’t respond with why we can’t do it, we need solutions. If we need to change rules, then let’s do so.

I continue to hear that we are all in this together, yet, the last time I looked at the governor's executive order, 70% to 80% of all businesses are not included or can attain “Essential Need” to not be shut down. While the targeted businesses are almost completely shut down.
So, that majority should dig into their collective pockets to fund those businesses that are being shutdown. I suggest 5% of your yearly salary, but it is up to everyone to make that determination, to help our fellow business people. I am willing to commit to $10,000 personally. If ”we’re all in this together” then let’s act like it. We can’t wait for congress to do something, we need to take action now for our community.

Please contact me at any time on my cell at (218) 556-5944 or email me at

Jim Lucachick, Bemidji, is a Beltrami County Commissioner for District 5.

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