20th March 2020
Ennis Chamber – here for our members
Ennis Chamber Newsletter March 20, 2020
It seems like a lifetime ago when we were celebrating member businesses winning national awards, new jobs and social events. So many seismic shifts in so little time. The landscape, both business and personal has changed utterly in a few short days.
What follows is our first Friday News Digest to focus on Covid-19 impacts. It gives an update on key issues that affect our membership base, an update on local lobbying by Ennis Chamber and national lobbying by Chambers Ireland, together with outcomes to date.
Firstly, please note Ennis Chamber is open for business, we continue to process Certs of Origin, so vital to our local exporters, and we answer any queries sent out way. We are also fulfilling Ennis Gold Gift Vouchers payment for members of that scheme and are selling vouchers to the public. For the most part we are working remotely. Therefore the best channels to contact us are Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch with CEO Margaret O’Brien on: email@example.com
We regularly update the ‘News’ section of our Website www.ennischamber.ie and we ask you to please subscribe on this link https://www.ennischamber.ie/email-newsletter-sign-up/
We are active on Twitter, posting timely updates. Please follow us:
No question too big or small! Please get in touch.
What we are doing for our members
Locally in Ennis
- Ennis Chamber met and had very positive engagement with senior Clare County Council officials on Thursday March 19, regarding rates payment. Our immediate concern is for member businesses that have been forced to close – Clare County Council acknowledged that these businesses are not in position to pay rates and offered assurances that they will not be billed or chased for rates payment. Both parties (Ennis Chamber and Clare County Council) agreed to further and regular communication as the impacts of Covid-19 unfold.
- Aware that this will create a funding issue for our Local Authorities throughout the country, Ennis Chamber, through Chambers Ireland is lobbying for central government to step in, to support our Local Authorities by bridging the expected rates returns gap.
- Ennis Chamber has called for landlords to support tenants who have had to close their business. Banks are offering supports to landlords, we ask them to access those supports and to pass the benefits on to tenants. We are urging landlords to provide stable and sustainable solutions for the future of business tenants and the future viability and vibrancy of our beautiful town.
- Ennis Chamber continues to liaise with DEASP on behalf of members keen to resolve staff payment issues. We were delighted to help member business faced with closure over the past week by furnishing correct social welfare payment applications (to suit individual circumstances), by liaising with DEASP on behalf of those member businesses and their staff all of which resulted in swift processing of welfare payments.
- We continue updates via social media and our website, the latest relevant information from the HSE and Irish Government including practical supports like up dated Covid-19 posters
National Advice and Actions from Chambers Ireland
- Chambers Ireland has direct access to, and is lobbying daily at the highest government levels on behalf of our members.
- Ennis Chamber together with representatives from the 41-strong network share information and raise issues of concern, via regular communication. Together we agree key lobbying issues, immediately communicated for action to the Department of the Taoiseach and other key and appropriate ministries.
- Chambers Ireland has actively lobbied for those who cannot pay, and urges creditors to show forbearance and flexibility in this unique situation.
- All businesses are urged to engage with their banks to ensure they access supports that become available.
- We urge all Government Departments, agencies, Local Authorities, State and Semi-State bodies to pay on invoices at the earliest opportunity, even more quickly than their prompt payment obligations make necessary.
On a lighter note we have decided to keep running our Fabulous Friday promotion on Ennis Chamber Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/EnnisChamber/Birthdays and anniversary anniversaries will still happen over the coming weeks. We have taken the view that bringing a little joy into peoples lives through this weekly competition is a good thing and in absence of member businesses providing prizes we will offer Ennis Gold Gift vouchers and well promote the 75+ businesses that participate in that scheme.
If any of you want to offer a voucher from your business as a Fabulous Friday prize over the coming weeks please advise Margaret O’Brien via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
It is in everyone’s interest to ensure that each of us helps mitigate the worst of this crisis.
It is only through working together that we can find solutions