WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — A surge in stimulus check spending is stimulating some pointed words from a local leader.
West Memphis Mayor Marco McClendon is urging his citizens not to waste the $1,200 checks on things like television sets and rims.
Tuesday, he posted on Facebook:
“Please use your stimulus checks wisely for mortgage/rent, utilities, food & etc. WE ARE IN SURVIVAL MODE! Don’t waste it on tv’s, phones, name brand items, rims & etc.”
McClendon said he’s noticed an increase in frivolous spending since the checks were issued last week.
“Our Walmart was completely sold out of TVs—completely,” McClendon said.
“One guy, I saw him and personally talked to him. He told me he just bought a new pair of rims with his stimulus. I said, ‘That was not what that was for,’” he added.
Shoppers at the West Memphis Walmart appeared to be taking McClendon’s advice.
School nurse Kierre Sturdivant said some of her stimulus check money went to bills, and the rest is going into her savings account.
“Schools are closed, I’m at home, and had I not saved money, I would be looking pretty crazy right now,” Sturdivant said.
“People are gonna do what they’re gonna do,” Qualyn Reed said. “At the end of the day, the government can’t always be there to bail them out, so they will have to live with the consequences of their actions.”
Last week, McClendon garnered attention for a blunt Facebook video in which he urged West Memphians to “stay your a** at home.”
“Sometimes, I’ll have no other way but to give it to them just the way that it is,” McClendon said.