Today's Nantucket

Economic Impact Study of COVID-19 on Nantucket Shifts into Phase II

ReMain Nantucket announced that the next in a series of surveys studying the economic impacts of COVID-19 on local businesses and organizations has been released. With the summer season concluding and the remaining economic uncertainty, the Town of Nantucket and the Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce are interested in learning how to best support business and non-profit sectors this fall and winter with a Phase II Economic Impact Survey.

The survey was developed by the Nantucket Economic Survey Team (NEST), which was formed in April and includes representatives from ReMain Nantucket, the Nantucket Department of Culture and Tourism, Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce, Nantucket Island Center for Entrepreneurship (NICE), and Community Foundation for Nantucket.

Phase II will focus on the current economic status of local businesses, pandemic-related challenges, and insights into post-season sustainability and needs. All businesses and organizations islandwide, including
members of Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce, Nantucket Island non-profit organizations, Nantucket Builders Association, and daycare providers sourced through the Public Health Department of Nantucket, are invited to respond.

“It is inspiring to see how businesses have reinvented themselves during the pandemic. It speaks to the entrepreneurial spirit of business owners on Nantucket,” said Cecil Barron Jensen, executive director of ReMain Nantucket. “Still, even though the summer was better than expected, there is an ongoing worry about how our neighbors and friends will fare this fall and winter. That’s why we continue to support the Town and Chamber leaders in their work to collect data in order to make better informed decisions to reinforce a steadier economy in the months ahead.”

The initial survey, conducted in April, gathered information from over 450 respondents and identified short- and long-term needs, including grants and loans, rent deferrals, delayed tax payments, permission to reopen, communication about available resources, marketing tools and business loss insurance.

“There was an abundant amount of information collected during the Phase I survey, and it helped shape our recommendations for how best to support our local businesses and organizations,” said Janet Schulte, director of culture and tourism for the Town of Nantucket. “With the COVID crisis continuing into the fall and perhaps beyond, we want to continue to measure the economic impacts. We’re hoping to hear from the same respondents again and expand this survey even further. We encourage anyone who owns a business, is self-employed, or runs an organization to take the survey.”

The Boston-based consulting firm EBP US, which specializes in evaluation and analysis to support economic development planning and policy decisions, will continue working with NEST to again administer the survey.

The estimated time to complete the survey is less than 10 minutes. Answers collected from the 32-question survey will be aggregated, and names will be kept confidential by EBP. The deadline for submission is Friday, Sept. 25. EBP US will release preliminary summarized findings of the study by Oct.
30, with an executive report to follow in early November.

To participate in the survey, please visit Phase II Impacts of COVID-19 on Nantucket Businesses and Organizations Survey on the Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce website. For a read-only copy of the survey in pdf form, please visit ReMain Nantucket.

ReMain Nantucket and ReMain Ventures were founded by philanthropist Wendy Schmidt to support the economic, social, and environmental vitality of the island of Nantucket. In addition to ReMain Nantucket providing grants and sponsorships to support sustainable and cultural initiatives across the island, ReMain Nantucket has worked in conjunction with ReMain Ventures to revitalize the downtown district year-round through the preservation of historic buildings that are home to a mix of nonprofit and commercial businesses.

The Town of Nantucket’s Department of Culture and Tourism’s mission is to support the continued development of Nantucket as a healthy community in which tourism is a significant contributor to residents’ economic stability and economic security and Nantucket’s natural, cultural, and historic
resources and quality of life are enjoyed by tourists and residents while being protected for future generations.

EBP US (formerly EDR Group) is an American company based in Boston that provides state-of-the-art economic analysis and research to support planning and policy in multimodal transportation, regional development, energy, and infrastructure. It is part of the EBP family of companies, with full-service offices in the United States, Switzerland, Germany, China, Brazil, and Chile.

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