Small Businesses Booming in Fort Stockton

By Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

FORT STOCKTON - Businesses are popping up left and right in Fort Stockton and it's boosting their local economy.

Much of the Basin is seeing an oil boom but in Fort Stockton, they're seeing a small business boom.

Doug May with the Economic Development Center said over the last six months, more than 30 new locally owned businesses have popped up across town.

"Our sales tax revenue is up," May said. "We were up about 11% percent for the year."

Not only is it good for the economy but it helps the owners and West Texas residents.

"When the community south of here, Alpine, Fort Davis, Marfa, they come up and buy groceries and it also gives our smaller entrepreneurs a chance to grab that traffic instead of them going on north," May said.

Jill Foster's pack and mail shipping service is one of them.

"There's not a lot of places like this around town," Foster said. "I also provide notary service, FedEx shipping, which is our main source of income, and gift wrapping. Last week, I was wrapping gifts until I thought I could wrap no more."

Laura Flores owns a flower shop.

"She persevered through a fire, has reopened her business and continues to flourish," May said.

Her phone hasn't stopped ringing with holiday orders.

"We wire pretty much anywhere in the United States," Flores said. "Pretty much anywhere in the world."

Flores even works with others florists in town.

"If I have something they need, they borrow, if I need something they're really good about things like that," Flores said.

But these local entrepreneurs said they're all working towards the same goal.

They can offer unique services and a personal feel that big box chains don't.

"They can use me as their physical address and have their packages delivered here that way it's safe and secure and they can pick it up on their own time," Foster said.

"You know what they like and what they don't like," Flores said.

That's something the city of Fort Stockton is proud to support.

"The small stores have the personal touch and face of the community that puts us out there in a very good light," May said.

The Economic Development Centers said they've helped some of these businesses get started with financing.

They're expecting even more small businesses to open in the coming year.