‘Bringing Back the Burg’ task force announces partnerships, economy metrics

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) — The Bringing Back the Burg task force on Monday released positive metrics of the local economy and announced several new partnerships.

Business leaders say the economy continues to move in the right direction. Unemployment numbers dropped slightly between June and July. Revenues from the local hospitality tax and penny sales tax were up.

“From the hospitality tax numbers to the one-cent sales tax, building permits, all way above where we projected — and had hoped to be — back when we started the Bringing Back the Burg Task Force,” County Councilman and task force co-chair David Britt said.

Task force members announced a new partnership with Luxor Scientific to make available rapid response COVID-19 testing for business partners. Marion Snyder, the company’s chief science officer, claimed during the conference the rapid testing will deliver results in 12 to 30 hours.

Also announced was a new series of face masks and RJ Rockers crowlers, which feature artwork from local artist Frankie Zombie.

“I’ve been blessed to create a few artistic situations for myself through this pandemic,” he said. “What other way to give back and show gratitude than find ways that I can help small businesses get back on their feet.”

Allen Smith, the president and CEO of the Spartanburg Chamber, also touted the Small Business Fund, a local effort to support businesses. Smith says the funds will help a diverse group of business owners.

“The makeup of those applicants is incredibly racially diverse because we know minority populations had some difficulty accessing federal funds,” Smith said. “That’s one of the reasons we set this fund up. So, 63% of the applicants are Black and 69% are female.”

To donate to or apply to the Small Business Fund, click here or text “BURG” to 345345 to donate.

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