'It's heartbreaking for us': Business crippled by theft
WITH the interchange works still crippling Tinana businesses, Samantha Martin is counting every penny ahead of her looming liquor license payment this month.
Now, the theft of alcohol from her family-owned hotel The Tinnie is a kick in the gut.
Ms Martin, who runs the business with her husband Peter, says two bottles of liquor were stolen from the hotel's bottle shop on Saturday night about 8pm by a young man in a hoodie.
She reported the incident to police.
While the bottles are only worth about $70 wholesale, they represent hundreds of dollars in profits the hotel could have made in individual drink sales. An upcoming liquor licence payment is due to set the business back about $4000. This is on top of the pain already felt by the ongoing closure of the main entrance to the Bruce Hwy.
Ms Martin said she had been forced to stop stocking the bottle shop to make ends meet.
"It's a hard month for us and we're not as able to retrieve the money to replace stock at the moment," Ms Martin said.
"This (theft) couldn't have happened at a worse time... they hurt a lot more, considering all the circumstances we're under.
"It's heartbreaking for us, we work so hard and so long just to survive."
Theft from small businesses remains an ongoing issue on the Fraser Coast, with nearby Tinana business Pastry Creations Patisserie targeted in May.
Hervey Bay Chamber of Commerce president Sandra Holebrook said the community needed to keep a watch over each other.
"It just stops everything from moving forward, they have to go through days of just sorting out their life," Ms Holebrook said.
"For something that takes two minutes to happen, there can be hours and even days of stress for the business to get back on track financially.
"They (businesses) have better things to do than deal with vandals or theft."