Staff Photo: Erin Evans
Law enforcement and banking officials urge residents to be extra vigilant in using credit cards to pay for holiday shopping. Rockdale County District Attorney Richard Reed said that even with more sophisticated security measures set by credit card companies residents need to keep a close eye on their cards and be aware of who is using the information in transactions.
There's only two weeks left until Christmas and some local chamber of commerce officials are asking people to buy their gifts locally instead of travelling to larger cities.
Officials say this will help communities during the recession.
Becky Preece just recently opened her new store, Blue Bee Quilting Fabric and Gift Shop in downtown Pikeville.
She depends on the community to stay in business and says every person who buys from her, makes a difference.
“For every dollar that is spent in the local area it's going to go back into the local area, so it's crucial, I think for us,” Becky Preece said.
Chambers of Commerce in the Big Sandy region are asking people to buy their Christmas presents here instead of larger cities.
“It's quite frankly a necessity when it comes to what it means to the local economy,” Brad Hall said.
Officials say spending money here helps local businesses stay afloat and open in the struggling economy, and say shopping local keeps jobs and tax dollars at home.
“If you drive to Lexington and shop in Lexington that money is not going to be used here in eastern Kentucky at all. In fact, what you're doing is continuing to build cities like Lexington or Louisville instead of your own communities,” Hall said.
“You don't need to go to Lexington, you don't need to go to Huntington. You can shop right here and support us, support your community,” Preece said.
Officials say money spent locally will keep on giving in eastern Kentucky after the Christmas season is over.
Officials point out shoppers can also save gas money if they buy at