About OUR Community Dollar

What exactly is an OUR Community Dollar™?

The OUR Community Dollar™, printed on paper, is commonly abbreviated as "OC$” and is positioned in front of the posted pricing (ie: OC$ 90) In today's times, businesses are struggling, and consumers are looking for creative ways to maintain a quality of living for their families and loved ones. Connecting family owned and creative home-based businesses with prospective customers is the aim of the program. The program will also assist local restaurants, retail, and service-based businesses. Creative systems of engagement with non-profits and cultural initiatives will be an integral aspect of our mandate. Simply stated... Positive connections produce positive outcomes!

How do I find places to use OC$?

Members can search the Give and Get Marketplace, the OUR Directory Online listings, the OUR Merchant Network, or find the participation window decal at participating locations. Garage sales and pop-ups can also promote the acceptance of OUR Community Dollars. As the program develops, local events will be set up where businesses will promote their goods and services.

Can I buy more OC$?

OUR Community Dollar does not sell currency. We are a membership product business where levels of membership are awarded complementary currency.

Is the OUR Community Dollar™ like a coupon? Does it save me money?

No. It is a form of currency. A coupon is a one time use instrument where a Local currency is used over and over again. When a vendor accepts a coupon, it is destroyed and not used again.

When a vendor accepts OUR Community Dollar™ they can then use that instrument to make a purchase at other participating locations. The next location accepting the currency can then locate other participating businesses.

The purchase price is not reduced but the buyer needs less Federal currency to make the purchase. The seller gets full value for their offerings. Part in federal currency and part in OUR Community Dollar.

Do all merchants accept OC$?

Participating merchants announce what percentage of a transaction they will accept in OC$. In some cases, the nature of the operation may not allow the acceptance of the OUR Community Dollar. As participating members, they may rebate OUR Community Dollars to the consumer of the transaction.

For instance, a member may purchase an item or service, and the seller may award a thank you in the form of OUR Community Dollars.

What does the back of the note indicate?

Each note shares the same artwork on the back side. We call this the Common Back. The concept is that each area represented by images on the front side of the note interact together. We all have an interest in growing prosperity in the catchment area. Possibly a second region may join our program at a future time. Expansion areas will share the Common Back concept as well.

What if I do not live in the Waterloo-Wellington Regions?

We may have individuals and businesses from outside our catchment area interested in participating in the OUR Community Dollar Program. They can join the program but will need to understand that they will need to conduct transactions in a creative way.

If I use all the currency I get with the OC$ Shopper membership how can I get more currency?

The OC$ Give and Get Marketplace is a great way to sell items that you have to offer. A minimum of 10% OC$ must be accepted on items posted but if you accept a higher percentage, you have a better chance of selling what you offer.

You can also offer to assist seniors with chores or appointments. Many people host garage sales. If you are having a garage sale announce it o the OC$ Give and Get Marketplace. Again, the higher percentage of OC$ accepted at your event the more OC$ you can receive.

About Community Currency

What's the difference between local & community currency?

The OUR Community Dollar Program is not anchored to federal currency. It is created to support local commerce and act in conjunction with our federal currency system.

Some currency programs are based on exchanging federal currencies for forms of local currencies. For instance, in Salt Spring Island, B.C, Canada, individuals can exchange federal money for Salt Spring Island notes. This type of system is referred to as a local currency system. The participants show a conviction to spend their money in their own community.

Is this legal?

There are over 3,000 community currency programs around the globe. Many individuals and business benefit from various forms of exchange. Many entrepreneurs access organized barter systems and local exchange systems. These systems of exchange are subject to government laws and regulations.

The OUR Community Dollar Program does not support any tax avoidance or activity that violates local or federal regulations.

OUR Community Dollar guidelines and activities are compliant with all applicable business and regulatory guidelines.

Are there other areas using community currency programs?

Communities all over the world are experiencing the benefits of launching local currency programs.

Systems of community currency can strengthen local economies, support charities, assist in creating new employment, and kick start community projects.

Salt Spring Island, Calgary, Toronto, and Ocean Side are just some of the examples of successful Canadian community currency programs.

How do I explain to my Book Keeper to track the OC$ transactions in my Business? Is it difficult to do?

Not difficult at all... Whatever program the book- keeper uses simply needs another column to track transactions. For instance, if you currently accept Cash, Debit, VISA, MasterCard and then you Join OC$, the book-keeper can add one more entry category and use that.

For example, if you accept 10% OC$ on a $100.00 order you would enter 10 in the OC$ section and 90.00 in the Cash or charge card section. Remember that HST would apply to the whole $100.00 transaction so your book-keeper would enter $13.00 in the HST column.

This sounds exciting but I still don't get it. Why wouldn't people simply use federal money?

Instead of siphoning profits into distant places, this keeps the benefits of your purchases local... your neighbours do better, and your community is safer, healthier, and more kind.

Is this program like a Chamber of Commerce?

That is not a bad comparison. We are a membership-based operation like a Chamber of Commerce. As our membership grows, we will be able to organize events similar to what a local Chamber might do. The main difference is we have a local shopper level of Membership.

Another difference is Chamber members are encouraged to surrender discounts to other members. We believe that by accepting local currency the business can receive full value in the transactions.

Also, the currency can be used for consumer interactions at garage sales and local exchanges. A Chamber of commerce is structure for business-to-business interactions and excludes the general population.

How does a merchant deal with accepting ten percent on odd amounts?

If it is a $30.00 transaction, the total amount of the transaction with Tax would be $33.90. The business may be flexible and accept 10$ OC$ on the whole amount or 10% on the before tax amount. Since the lowest demonization of OC$ Currency is a One OC$ note, it would be impossible to accept 3.90 OC$ so the business may round up and accept 4 OC$.

If the total amount resulted in ten percent being amount less than 50 cents the business might round down to the lower whole number.