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I read your article about CVS’ possible interest in an Eminence location in the (June 22), edition. I was dismayed by the immediate negative response to the announcement. It seems every time any business shows an interest in Eminence, the reaction is the same: Eminence’s borders are closed to new business.
The argument is always the same. Any new business allowed to locate here “will hurt our local businesses.” The fact is our local businesses are already hurting. At this moment, there are at least 15 vacant buildings in Eminence that used to house businesses. Most of them are right in the middle of town. How many jobs have been lost as they, one by one, closed their doors?
I have lived in Eminence my entire life and I know most of our business owners personally. I want them to not only survive, but to thrive in Eminence. But all the vacant buildings on Main Street are a testament to the fact that Eminence is not thriving. We are hanging on by our fingernails. Every time another business closes in Eminence, or another service is no longer available here, another customer goes elsewhere to find it. Often, they do all their shopping there as well, taking more dollars away from the businesses still here.
The key to the survival of our remaining businesses is to make Eminence a place people come to shop instead of somewhere they pass through on the way to Shelbyville or Lagrange. New businesses will bring new jobs, new tax revenues and more customers to Eminence. We need to be encouraging new businesses to locate here every chance we get if Eminence is ever going to thrive again.
The argument that a CVS in town would put Cooks out of business is not realistic. Cooks has a diversified business and loyal customer base. They do not rely on one product line to support the business. As for the pharmacy, most people’s co-pays are set by their insurance regardless of what pharmacy they use. I have known the pharmacists at Cooks for years. I feel comfortable talking to them and asking questions. Why would I give that up to go elsewhere?