Store closures worry city officials

Businesses closing concerns city...

BRAWLEY, Calif. -

The closing of a local major chain restaurant and other businesses in Brawley is making city officials take emergency steps.

Brawley city officials said on Tuesday the city is not in bad shape even if many stores, including a major chain restaurant, are closing.

Council Member Sam Couchman said, “No, Brawley is not dying. Brawley is a vibrant city. Brawley has businesses coming and going.”

Couchman said the closing of any business is not the city’s fault, referring to the recent closing of the local Burger King restaurant.

“When a business has been in operation for over a year here in Brawley and then they cease operation, usually that’s due to other reasons. There’s either it’s not profitable, they’re not getting enough customers to come in or there’s something else going on within their business structure, especially a large chain like burger king,” Couchman said.

He said city regulations are not to blame. He said the local regulations are not any stricter than those in other county cities.

“I think in some cases, people don’t like the rules and regulations, but they have to be followed in most instances and as long as they follow those they can be successful here in business, but they do have to be profitable,” Couchman said.

Mayor George Nava said the city’s actually quite healthy.

“We currently have over a thousand business licenses of active businesses here in the City of Brawley. And so we have some that are here operating for decades and some that are recent,” Nava said.

All the same, they’re calling an emergency public meeting to find a way to give local business a helping hand.

 “I’m hoping to bring a very radical plan. It’s being crafted. And i hope to bring that, present it to the city council for support and get some public input on it,” Nava said.

Couchman saids businesses closing is just business as usual.

“It’s always of concern, I think, to the city when a business closes. However, we have new businesses coming in and we do have businesses that close and go out,” Couchman said.

The public meeting will be announced soon. The public is urged to attend.

We reached out to Burger King officials but they were not available for comment.

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