Survey suggests most businesses reluctant to accept pennies

With the venerable penny being withdrawn from circulation beginning on Tuesday, a Chamber of Commerce survey suggests most businesses in town will no longer accept the copper-based coin.

“A few days ago, we asked local businesses what their plans were for the upcoming changes to the penny,” Chamber Executive Director Judy Goodman said in an e-mail to members. “Some businesses expressed concerns over consistency among all retailers, mainly due to the concern that customers may be confused if one business is accepting/giving pennies and another is not.”

As it is each business’ own decision whether they continue to accept pennies or not, the results of the poll are show what some retailers are planning on doing.

Information provided by the federal government and the major banks suggest that businesses should neither accept nor give out the penny as of February 4.

Some retailers have either committed to accepting pennies and giving them to a charity, or have expressed interest in doing so.

The Chamber received 20 responses to its survey:

  • 8 will not be accepting pennies after the 4th.
  • 6 will continue to accept pennies, mainly because they don’t want to inconvenience purchases or make it harder to buy
  • 4 wanted to stick with the majority of retailers, mostly to remain consistent
  • 1 respondent wanted to get more information from what the customers wanted before making a decision
  • 1 will accept pennies and then give them to a charity

The businesses were not named.