Save SLV Small Businesses

0 have signed. Let’s get to 2,500!

Erin Keck
Erin Keck signed this petition

Governor Jared Polis

Capitol Building

200 E. Colfax Ave. Rm 136

Denver, CO 80203

RE: Alamosa County request for variance from PHO 20-28

Dear Governor Polis:

As you know, Alamosa County has respectfully requested a variance from the following restrictions in Executive Order D 2020 044 and/or Public Health Order 20-28., which would allow Alamosa County to implement a reopening plan that better fits the needs our rural community.

As the shutdowns linger, the disconcertingly high percentage of our business owners are desperately looking to this variance as a last hope. As community leaders and elected officials, we all have a duty to do everything in our power to protect our citizens from dangers. And yet, we are no longer facing just the threat of COVID-19, but the very real threat of lasting economic devastation.

The initial purpose of enacting closures and social distancing measures was to “flatten the curve” and slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Although, these measures were never expected to fully stop the transmission of the virus since it has long been recognized that simply isn’t possible. The critical metric has been the capacity of our hospital systems to handle an influx of COVID-19 patients, and ultimately that is not a blanket scenario for our state. Each community and its ability to provide adequate care is different, and our local hospital has voiced support for our variance requests.

We are not advocating for the immediate return to normalcy or for the freedom to ignore the dangers this virus presents, but rather for the acknowledgement that our communities are very different from the populated and condensed Front Range. We aren’t just rural, we are “rural rural” as we like to say, and social distancing is built into the fabric our daily lives. What we are advocating for is the right to be creative, to pivot and think outside the box on a community level to provide safe ways for our businesses to survive; for the chance to fight for the very foundation of our home- the survival of our small businesses.

Throughout this unprecedented event, our businesses have been compliant, and have accepted sacrifices they never could have anticipated. Many have not only dipped into, but have fully liquidated their life savings and retirement funds to keep their businesses afloat; and yet- even with such sacrifices they are reaching a point where an estimated third of our businesses could still be lost forever.

Without our businesses we have no community- and both need hope. We ask that you grant our counties the freedom to open according to our own carefully crafted timelines. Our key decision makers have been in constant communication with each other, and we believe the plan set forth in the variance Alamosa County applied for is safe and will be effective in keeping our community protected while giving our small businesses a fighting chance.

We hope that you will review this letter and truly hear all the voices that stand behind it. While it may not always appear so, we all want the same thing- survival.