Strengthening local economy with a card

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By Kirsten Laskey

There is a new program in town bringing benefits to local nonprofits, businesses and consumers through a consumer card.The Locals Care Card program offers shoppers community or reward points when they shop at designated businesses. Every 1,000 points is converted into a $10 credit at qualifying businesses.Additionally, consumers can select a non-profit organization to receive a percentage of their sales revenue.William Underwood, co-founder of Locals Care, explained when people make a purchase, 50 percent of the gift goes to them, 40 percent goes to the non-profit and 10 percent goes to a default nonprofit, called community fund for children and the arts.Kevin Holsapple, executive director of the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce and Los Alamos Commerce and Development Corporation, explained there is a trend in retail where loyalty programs have shown good results in helping businesses promote themselves.However, this trend is usually found in bigger stores and franchises. Locals Care, a small company in Santa Fe, was created to bring this trend to small, local businesses, Holsapple said.The company started about a year ago.

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