Sequestration: Local D.C. businesses brace for financial impact

Crossfit D.C. is a dream come true for several friends. It’s a major investment in a new business. But just as the driving force of the local economy starts up, the federal government could take a big swipe out of its opening.

Right now, the owners fear for the unpleasant reality.

“We have taken a bit of a leap of faith in the economy,” says Crossfit D.C. owner Tom Brose. “Taking on a multi-year lease and building out a building is a big step, so we definitely are hoping the economy stays strong.”

Rebecca Hanely is a couple years into her own salon. Currently, about 40 percent of her profit comes from other than basic haircuts.

Hanely fears billions of dollars out of the local economy will have to take a bite out of her business.

“I certainly think it is going to affect us on a large scale,” she says.
In neighborhoods where you see a lot of mom and pop shops, tension runs high. These businesses rely of foot traffic and disposable income.

Across the region construction is booming again, and there is new investment. In D.C., an explosion of restaurants but will there be patrons with cash for dining out.

Aaron Steppe is out of work and worried about sequestration affecting private sector hiring. If it happens, he knows it will affect him.

"I would spend less, certainly,” Steppe says.