Yesterday Newry BID Manager Eamonn Connolly met with Deputy Sinn Fein leader Michelle O Neill, with other stakeholders, and businesses in the flood-hit areas of Newry.
The BID is lobbying hard, on behalf of members, for a package of financial support to assist with the clean up operation and reopening process.
Eamonn Connolly said, “Newry BID conducted a survey amongst members impacted and to date out of 33 respondents the value of stock and equipment lost comes to almost £3.2 million; while the estimated cost of reopening these businesses is close to £3.8 million.
“These 33 businesses and the others impacted need urgent support as they must continue to pay a collective annual rates bill of more than £2.8 million; rent; mortgages; and staff costs for the 328 staff impacted. It is estimated that more than 80 staff in these businesses will be temporarily laid off, only weeks before Christmas, while closed or seeking alternative premises.”
Eamonn continued, “These are only the figures for the businesses who have, to date, responded to the survey. There are many others in and outside the BID area who have been affected across our District. We need to see urgent support for each and every one of these businesses, which are the lifeblood of our local economy.”