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Point Roberts businesses take a hit as border stays closed

Last Updated May 19, 2020 at 4:17 pm PDT

FILE - U.S. and Canadian flags fly in Point Roberts, Wash., on Tuesday March 13, 2012. President Donald Trump is confirming that the Canada-U.S. border will be closed "by mutual consent" to non-essential traffic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Point Roberts has felt the economic impact of the border staying closed

The fire chief says people were hoping for the border to reopen sooner, but most are understanding

POINT ROBERTS (NEWS 1130) — The tiny town of Point Roberts is still off-limits, and businesses are hungry for Canadians to return.

With no one crossing the Canada-U.S. border for gas, the town’s economy is taking a hit.

Point Roberts Fire Chief Christopher Carleton says businesses will feel the effect of the border staying closed longer than some people expected.

RELATED: Canada-U.S. border closure extended to June 21 amid coronavirus crisis

“I think that’ going to further impact our local economy for the small businesses trying to stay open, including fuel stations [and] postal stations. Restaurants are trying to do takeout and pick up orders, and it’s just going to negatively affect them even further.”

He says people in his community were hoping for the border to open again as soon as possible.

“You know there’s definitely some disappointment within the community to people I’m speaking with. They were hoping the border would be opened up by June 1.”

Even so, Carleton says safety is still key.

“The majority of our community understands and understands the protection that it provides us through that date,” he says.

RELATED: ‘Safest’ town in the U.S. just steps away

There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Point Roberts, which is home to about 1,300 people.

On Wednesday, the border closure was extended to June 21 for non-essential travel.

-With files from Tim James