Should Shreveport Print Its Own Money?
Before you dismiss the idea of printing our own money and start the paperwork to have me committed - hear me out. If Shreveport takes the bold (and, yes, slightly crazy) step of creating our own currency - it could really help out some local business that are currently suffering due to the Coronavirus crisis.
Tenino, Washington has re-instituted a local currency in order to bolster their local economy in a way the federal stimulus check could not. City leaders have issued $300 dollars to each resident. Here's the kicker - these wooden dollars must be spent with a local business. The businesses turn them in to city hall at the end of the week, who trade them out with an equal amount of U.S. Dollars.
According to Reuters, the money comes in the form of $25 wooden bills. Each have the name of the town (Tenino), and the words "COVID Relief" superimposed on the image of a bat bearing the Latin phrase "Habemus autem sub potestate" (We have it under control). This program helped pull the town out of economic hardship once before - these wooden dollars were also rolled out during the Great Depression.
According to the report, anyone who can demonstrate that they have lost money during the pandemic qualify for the wooden stimulus. The dollars are accepted by most of the businesses on main street for everything but alcohol, tobacco, cannabis and lottery tickets.
I don't know what we would call them here, but I'm thinking MudBucks. Sure, Ratchet Bucks would fit Shreveport better, but I'm hoping that if this idea gets off of the ground - Bossier City might get involved.