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Featured Article, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by Nick Stumo-Langer | No Comments | Updated on Oct 19, 2017

San Francisco Breaks the Chain Stores, Strengthens Neighborhood Economies (Episode 31)

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/san-francisco-chain-stores-episode-31-of-the-building-local-power-podcast/

San Francisco has one-third as many chain stores as the national average. That’s thanks in large part to a city ordinance that restricts “formula” businesses. In this episode of our Building Local Power podcast, we talk with AnMarie Rodgers, Senior Policy Advisor to the City of San Francisco Planning Department, about how the city implemented the policy, how well it works, and what advice she has for other cities who want to do it too. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Jul 5, 2017

Formula Business Restriction — Jersey City, NJ

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/formula-business-restriction-jersey-city-nj/

In May 2015, the City Council of Jersey City voted to restrict formula businesses in the downtown area by limiting where they can locate to a maximum of 30 percent of ground floor commercial area on any single lot. The restriction applies to retailers, restaurants, bars, and banks, though there is an exception for grocery stores. Jersey City is the second most-populous city in the state of New Jersey, with more than 260,000 residents. The City Council voted to uphold the restrictions in June 2017. Continue reading

Featured Article, Testimony filed under Independent Business | Written by Olivia LaVecchia | No Comments | Updated on Oct 10, 2016

ILSR’s Testimony at New York City Hearing on Retail Diversity and Neighborhood Character

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/ilsr-testimony-new-york-city-hearing-on-retail-diversity-and-neighborhood-character/

At a recent New York City Council hearing, ILSR submitted testimony examining the importance of locally owned businesses to the City, the crisis affecting them, and examples of effective and proven policy strategies to level the playing field for these businesses. Continue reading

Photo: San Francisco Starbucks
Featured Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on Mar 5, 2014

Faulty Study Ignores Small Business Benefits

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/bogus-chain-store-study-ignores-small-business-benefits/

Last month, San Francisco’s Office of Economic Analysis issued a new study concluding that the city’s policy restricting the spread of chain stores is harming the local economy. But the OEA’s sweeping conclusion rests on bad data and a deeply flawed analysis that misses many of the benefits of independent business. In this article for the San Francisco Bay Guardian, we detail exactly how the study gets it wrong. Continue reading

San Francisco's Cole Valley Neighborhood
Featured Article filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | 6 Comments | Updated on Aug 30, 2012

How San Francisco is Dealing With Chains

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/san-francisco-dealing-chains/

San Francisco is home to more independent businesses than other big cities, thanks in part to a 2006 law than gives neighborhoods the power to reject “formula” retail stores and restaurants. But the policy has major gaps, which have opened the way for chains to slip into the city. City leaders are now looking to beef up the law. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Dec 9, 2010

Formula Business Restriction – San Francisco, CA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/2321-2/

Throughout most of the city, including all of San Francisco’s Neighborhood Commercial Districts, formula retail stores and restaurants are considered conditional uses. This means they must be approved by the Planning Commission on a case-by-case basis. In evaluating whether to grant a permit for a formula business, the Planning Commission considers several criteria, including the existing concentration of formula  businesses within the neighborhood, whether similar goods or services are already available, and the balance of neighborhood-serving versus citywide- or regional-serving businesses. In additional, formula retail and restaurant uses are prohibited outright in several neighborhoods. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Jul 21, 2009

Formula Business Restriction – McCall, ID

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/2863-2/

In 2006, McCall, Idaho, enacted an ordinance that limits formula restaurants to only 10% of the total number of restaurants and limits formula retail businesses to no more than 10% of the total number of "like businesses" in town.  Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Dec 9, 2008

Formula Business Restriction – York, ME

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/2326-2/

At a town meeting in May 2004, residents of York, Maine, voted to amend the town’s zoning ordinance to prohibit formula restaurants. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Dec 9, 2008

Formula Business Restriction – Solvang, CA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/2325-2/

One of the first communities to enact a formula business restriction, the town of Solvang prohibits formula restaurants from locating in its village center. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Dec 9, 2008

Formula Business Restriction – Sausalito, CA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/rule/formula-business-restrictions/2324-2/

Sausalito treats both formula restaurants and retail stores as "conditional uses" that require a special permit to open or expand.  Continue reading