Restaurant Owners Say Sam's Club Closure Will Have Major Impact

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - For many people, including those in the restaurant business, the local Sam's Club was a cheaper and convenient way to get stock to their stores.
But with the closure of the Fairbanks store, prices are expected to go up.
Julia Laude takes us to meet these local business owners and see how this is impacting their livelihood.
Julia Laude; Reporting>>: A decision by Walmart, Inc. has left the Fairbanks community in shock.
Wayne Jiang; Owner, Chowder House>>: "I thought that it was a joke."
Steve Moody; Owner, Moody Brews and Barbecue>>: "It's quite the blow."
Bob Burcell; Majority Owner, Cookie Jar>>: "Well there ain't no running down to Sam's anymore to run and get it, they're not going to be there anymore."
Julia Laude; Reporting>>: For all of these restaurant owners, the majority of their stock is purchased at the local Sam's Club.
Wayne Jiang says he spends roughly 80-thousand dollars a year on Sam's Club alone for his restaurant.
For Steve Moody, it's about 50 percent of his stock.
Steve Moody; Owner, Moody Brews and Barbecue>>: "We were with another restaurant and then we left there and started this is North Pole especially because of the F-35's coming in and we thought it would be a good move and then something like this comes along and then you're going to throw a monkey wrench into it."
Julia Laude; Reporting>>: With so much of restaurant inventory being purchased from Sam's Club, the concern of all of the restaurant owners is the increase in price.
Moody has already contacted Safeway to see what their price on meat is.
Jiang also has to find another supplier, looking to even order stock from Seattle.
But there's also a concern for the now jobless employees.
Wayne Jiang; Owner, Chowder House>>: "This is a devastating loss for the local community. There's going to be a lot of jobs that will be gone."
Bob Burcell; Majority Owner, Cookie Jar>>: "Their jobs are gone and I know of know how that feels, I worked at Nordstrom here in town, when Nordstrom went out of business and it's a tremendous time of fear and uncertainty. You have to reorganize your life in the middle of winter and it was that kind of that situation with Nordy."
Julia Laude; Reporting>>: Residents have even taken to Facebook to try and get another wholesaler, Costco to come in a take a place.
As of early this afternoon, there were nearly 7,500 signatures on the online petition.
This is Julia Laude reporting.