Comptroller Franchot promotes Shop Local

Dorchester Banner/Paul Clipper Joining Comptroller Peter Franchot at Simmons Center Market in Cambridge are Cailey Locklair Tolle of the Maryland Retailers Association, proprietor Ricky Travers, Rick Jr. and Gavin, Comptroller Franchot, Calvin Travers, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley and Rosie Travers. Comptroller Franchot plans his shopping trip annually to promote Shop Local in Maryland.

Dorchester Banner/Paul Clipper
Joining Comptroller Peter Franchot at Simmons Center Market in Cambridge are Cailey Locklair Tolle of the Maryland Retailers Association, proprietor Ricky Travers, Rick Jr. and Gavin, Comptroller Franchot, Calvin Travers, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley and Rosie Travers. Comptroller Franchot plans his shopping trip annually to promote Shop Local in Maryland.

CAMBRIDGE—Maryland state Comptroller Peter Franchot visited Cambridge on Friday, November 30, to meet with Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley and visit Simmons Center Market to promote Shop Local in Maryland.

Regarding the meeting, Comptroller Franchot stated, “We had a nice lunch over lobster, at Rock Lobstah, by Patrick, who also has High Spot. A nice little restaurant. I asked the Mayor to come up to the next Board of Public Works meeting, and say something nice about Cambridge, and the fact that it’s got a plan for moving forward. I’m very excited about that.”

Comptroller Franchot is a tireless promoter for Cambridge, and also a huge proponent for Shop Local in Maryland. Mr. Franchot always stresses the importance of supporting local stores. “Well, there’s 750,000 Marylanders, who are directly or indirectly related to brick and mortar retail stores,” Mr. Franchot told us. “They just can’t survive if everybody’s shopping on the internet. By the way, the internet is convenient–I understand that–but it’s no longer as inexpensive as people think.”

“What happens when you come downtown to these wonderful stores in Cambridge and other cities and municipalities? You get good products, good service, quality care, customer service, but then you end up with a vibrant community because the brick and mortar stores hire people. They pay utilities, they have lawyers and accountants and other folks who work for them. Shop local because the money stays local!”

We suggested that also, you can’t get Maryland beaten biscuits and locally made molasses from Amazon.

“Exactly,” agreed the comptroller, “Well, I wouldn’t be so sure…it seems like you can get almost anything from Amazon, but the point is, that money’s going out of state, and why not keep it in state? During the holidays, you just can’t overstate that these mom-and-pop stores depend upon the holiday season to make it for the rest of the year. Do the patriotic thing. Come on downtown, and shop local. That’s why we’re at the Center Market right now supporting that concept, but it applies wherever you live on the shore. There are wonderful establishments and I just hope people realize how important they are to the state’s economy.”

To help the local economy in his own way, Mr. Franchot loaded up his car with poinsettias from Simmons Market, explaining he was on orders from Mrs. Franchot to bring back some nice poinsettias, “but no white ones, only red!”

Speaking to the crowd that attended the afternoon visited, which included Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley, former mayor Dave Wooten, City Commissioner Dave Cannon, Police Chief Mark Lewis, Maryland Retailers Association President Cailey Locklair Tolle and more, Mr. Franchot also announced a new annual award he’d present next year.

The Cornerstone Excellence In Business Awards will be awarded in each county in Maryland, and will highlight local, independently-owned businesses “that are innovative and also involved in the community, strengthening the community,” said Mr. Franchot. “It doesn’t have to be necessarily mom-and-pop retail. It can be a big company as long as it’s independent.”

Mr. Franchot explained that the award will be a sort of people’s choice award. “People can go to Marylandtaxes.gov, and there’s a little icon to push on, a button, and you can nominate a business. If you work for the business, or a family member works for them, or you just know of a good business that is active and supportive of the community,” the Comptroller asks anyone to go to the website and offer a nomination for that company, for the annual Cornerstone Excellence In Business Award.

So saying, and with a nod and wink, and his sleigh—uhh, sorry, state-issued SUV—groaning under the weight of a large number of red poinsettias for the missus, Comptroller Franchot was whisked back to Annapolis. As he faded back into the evening we could still hear him crying “Ho ho ho, shop local!” through town.

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