Alaska CHARR - The Magazine November/December November/December 2020 - Page 6



Letter from the President

In late September , Alaska CHARR sent out a sixmonth economic impact survey to hospitality businesses around the state . We received over 250 responses , representing approximately 15 % of the industry statewide . The responses were heartbreaking and terrifying . Some notable statistics are :

• On average , respondents reported that their yearover-year sales are down 72 % from 2019 .
• Even with dramatic declines in customers , 40 % of businesses report an increase in operating costs .
• 85 % of respondents do not expect sales to return to pre-pandemic levels within six months .
• On average , hospitality businesses only have 47 % of their normal employee count working .
• 76 % of respondents do not believe their businesses can survive more than a year under current conditions and / or restrictions .
• 81 % of respondents do not believe their businesses can survive more than a year without additional relief packages from the government .
When asked for ideas for ways in which local , state , and / or federal government officials can act to prevent businesses from permanently closing , the most common responses were : no more closures , providing more monetary aid ( another round of PPP or grants ), rapid and reliable testing , a vaccine , continuation of curbside delivery , improved communication , help finding a reliable workforce ( reimplementing the requirement for individuals to apply for jobs in order to obtain unemployment funds ), consistency in rules ( constant changes in rules is extremely costly and taxing on businesses ), getting tourism back to Alaska , and suspension of taxes and fees .
I would like to personally thank those who took the time to complete the survey . I have relayed this data to Governor Dunleavy , our congressional delegation , local governments around the state , and the media in hopes that it might help our elected officials make informed decisions that impact our businesses . We hope that you will

“ Alaska CHARR will continue to explore ways to better serve you and ensure that you survive this economic crisis .

also continue to communicate directly with your local officials to help them directly understand and appreciate how you have been and continue to be impacted .
Additionally , CHARR continues to roll out new benefits for our members , including a free program that will bring you hundreds or thousands of dollars in rebate checks for products that you routinely purchase for your businesses ; deep discounts on DirecTV and hospitality businesses necessities ; and access to discounted PPE , medical benefits for you and your staff , and other items to help you throughout both this pandemic and normal business operations .
We are working on a video campaign that highlights hospitality businesses around the state , the many ways in which we are working to continue keeping customers safe and happy , and reminding customers that they can – and should – continue to support our industry in any way possible because this state and the public need us as much as we need them .
Alaska CHARR will continue to explore ways to better serve you and to not only ensure that you survive this economic crisis , but that the hospitality industry will again thrive in this great state .
Together – now and always – we are Alaska Strong , and we will Recover .
At your service ,