Thanks to the Hometown Security blog, I saw thatÂ some Florida retailers had voluntarily lowered their prices on emergency preparedness supplies to encourage Floridians to prepare forÂ Hurricane season.
I’ve been anÂ advocate of gettingÂ the corporate sector far more involved inÂ advance public preparedness, such as providing moreÂ discounts and developing integrated marketing campaigns, so I’m happy to hear about Florida’s effort.Â One reason this happened is that the State suspendedÂ itsÂ annual “tax free” holiday on emergency preparedness supplies this year due to budget cuts.
As readersÂ may remember, IÂ have been pushingÂ my state of New York to adopt a tax free holiday on emergency supplies to coincide with the anniversaries of 9/11 and Katrina . And last month,Â my localÂ Assemblyman Jonathan L. BingÂ introduced legislationÂ to that effectÂ in the State Assembly as Bill A11206.
In addition to the tax incentive,Â state and local governments should be more aggressivelyÂ working with the business communityÂ toÂ createÂ marketing partnerships makingÂ preparedness supplies more accessible and less expensive. TheseÂ are win-win opportunities that will increase civilian preparedness while building traffic and sales for the stores and suppliers. TheÂ Florida initiative is aÂ good start.
Btw, I’ve added theÂ Hometown SecurityÂ to my blog roll. ItÂ describes itself asÂ ”Homeland Security news with a localÂ focus,”Â which means there is a lot ofÂ news on community and citizen preparedness like the story I linked to above. Written by John Bowen,Â a Senior Fellow at the National Institute for Strategic Preparedness (NISP), Hometown SecurityÂ offersÂ consistently interesting content. I recommend you checking it out atÂ hometownsecurity.blogspot.com/