PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) – For many locally owned businesses, like Navis Pack & Ship of Portland, the last few years have been difficult in the city.
“It’s been tough,” said Michael Angelechio, the owner and operator of NAVIS Pack & Ship. “The crime rates have increased. We are having to deal with that both financially and emotionally. You combine that with the increase in taxes and regulations, it’s just making it very difficult as a small business owner to turn a profit because we already operate on pretty thin margins.”
Angelechio says catalytic converters have been stolen, windshields broken, vehicles broken into, thousands of dollars’ worth of tools stolen and more. They’ve resorted to putting their trucks and other vehicles inside the business, taking up valuable space usually used for storage, costing them thousands each month.
“We have a small U-Haul operation we are likely to shut down now because we just can’t keep them operational because of the vandalism and theft,” said Angelechio. “On Monday I saw a gentleman who was siphoning gas from one of the U-Hauls. I assume he drilled a hole into it so it is now nonoperational.”
The man took off, leaving a hose and bucket behind.
“We’re getting no help and that’s where I think the frustration boils over,” said Angelechio. “You can’t get a police response. If you try, you’ll wait on hold for hours only to be told to just fill something out online and hope. That hope is dead. What do we do? Where do we turn?”
His message to the city: the cost is much more than the money going towards repairs.
“Beyond the financial it’s personal,” said Angelechio. “I’m working 50, 55 hours a week just trying to make it and here are these individuals that have nothing to lose I assume and are willing to take everything from you. We have charged and available tasers for the safety of our employees. We have to protect our employees and our business and we are getting no help. It’s not just us. I represent one of thousands of businesses in this area. If they don’t turn the tide, there won’t be any small business left.”
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