Survey shows impact floods had on business - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Survey shows impact floods had on business

CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -- Survey results released on Thursday show the impact the floods of 2008 had on businesses.

The Cedar Rapids Chamber of Commerce released the results of a survey done by the Kirkwood Small Business Development Center and it shows that the floods resulted in businesses closing and jobs being lost.

From a list of 1,281 Cedar Rapids businesses directly or indirectly impacted by the floods, 824 businesses met the parameters of the survey and participated.

The survey found that of the 1,281 businesses, 1,038 are open for business, 32 are not yet open, 80 are out of business and 24 moved out of Cedar Rapids.

There were 107 businesses that were unreachable so it is not certain if they are out of business, moved or are planning on re-opening.

Nationally, 320 businesses close within a year of a disaster and 440 fail due to non-mitigation, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

While Cedar Rapids is fairing better than the national average, another year may tell more of a story because according to the U.S. Department of Labor, 55% of businesses that re-open, close within 3 years of a disaster.

The survey also found that Cedar Rapids lost 1,865 jobs as a result of the flood.  1,324 of those were permanent jobs while 541 were temporary jobs.

The U.S. Department of Labor says nationally 7,500 jobs are lost as a result of a disaster.

Gary Ficken of the Small Business Task Force says, "While the numbers are vital and valuable it is the story behind them that speaks volumes. For instance, in the businesses that have returned 1,865 fewer people are now employed. That is equal to a major employer closing its door, but because it has happened slowly, in multiple businesses it is harder to grasp.  We hope that this information will bring discussions on creating an environment for long term success and stability in rebuilding and redeveloping flood affected businesses."

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