OLIBA says local businesses are holding their own during recession

Omaha, NE – The president of an Omaha business alliance says local businesses are holding their own in the economic recession.

The Omaha Local Independent Business Alliance, or OLIBA, is a group of mostly restaurants and retail shops. OLIBA president Ellen Scott says the rise in national chains and so-called big box stores poses a challenge to small businesses.

"The challenge for us is to publicize ourselves to the public and to impress on them that if they purchase things from local independent merchants, more of the money stays in town, more of us, local merchants, pay taxes here in town, we use other goods and services that are generated here in town, so the money circulates better," according to Scott.

Scott says the economic recession has forced small businesses to become more efficient and flexible. She says OLIBA has lost some members over the last two years due to the recession.

President Obama called on Congress Wednesday to pass legislation that could extend more loans and incentives to small businesses.