Community currencies empower individuals and local businesses to take control of their financial futures back from central economic planners and Wall Street. That doesn’t just benefit producers and consumers. It benefits the community as a whole. Community leaders take note.
The clearest mandate from constituents to community leaders during tough economic times is for polices that will create jobs. That usually means getting local government out of the way of job creators. Encouraging community currencies is another way.
A community currency based on hard money multiplies the effect of capital accumulation. That’s because capital accumulated in constantly depreciating dollars loses its purchasing power as the currency is inflated. Purchasing power is transferred from the holders of U.S. dollars to whomever receives the new money created by the central bank. It’s like diluting a household cleaner. It spreads farther but the solution is not as strong.
A hard money currency cannot be inflated. It retains 100% of its purchasing power, which stays with whomever is holding it. It puts local capital on steroids, bringing its full job-creating power to bear locally. That means more jobs in a shorter period of time, built upon a sound money system that is less likely to fund unsound business plans.
The system also encourages people to use local vendors who accept the currency, meaning that more business is done in your community, rather than with big corporate retailers in town or on the internet.
More jobs and more local business means more tax revenues without creating new taxes or raising existing ones. That helps community leaders get their work done without further impairing local businesses and homeowners.
Community currencies can also help bring in outside commerce from visitors. Using a local currency creates a unique experience for visitors, who are more likely to return to have that experience again. Visitors will often keep some of the currency for its conversation starting value, giving them an incentive to return to use it with local vendors.
In addition to all of the economic benefits, a community currency fosters a sense of pride and ownership of one’s community for all who participate. Like local landmarks, a community currency is something that people can truly call “ours,” just like the old clock tower or the vintage movie theater in town.
For community leaders looking to boost the local economy, attract more outside commerce and build a sense of pride and ownership in the community, a community currency can be a powerful catalyst. It’s one way to truly lead their communities forward.