(AP) The owner of a popular barbecue joint in Arkansas is trying to help his customers pay off their debts, including nearly $100,000 in unpaid credit card bills, as his company struggles.
Jack Stack has offered a variety of savings programs, including a $1 million-a a year retirement plan and a $25,000 cash-only credit card.
His restaurant has a total of 15 employees.
In addition to offering the cards, Jack Stack has started offering free barbecue for the next three weeks.
“We’re trying to get customers to come back and see what we can do to help,” owner Michael Stokes said.
Stokes said the business is struggling because the bill collectors have gone out of business.
“I know there’s going to be a lot of bad people that get into it,” Stokes added.
Stoke is asking his patrons to make payments by making a cash withdrawal from their bank account, sending cash to a bank account they own, or sending a check to a Chase bank account.
He said the cards are not being used to pay debts.
Stores bills include:• $100-$200 a month in credit card debt• $1.1 million credit card balance• $25-$50,000 personal loan• $250-$500 a year in credit cards• $3,000-$5,000 a year credit cards and car loans• $2,500-$4,000 an annual home loan• Up to $1-million in student loan debtStokes has also offered a $50,001-a-$100,001 tax deduction for his business.
Stacks wife has been helping him pay off the bills, but he has not been able to get them paid off.
Stills wife says she has a hard time making ends meet.
“She’s a hard worker.
She’s a great cook.
She doesn’t want to leave.
I think she’s going through a lot,” Stoke said.
The restaurant has been operating for nearly 50 years.
The owner says he has taken some money out of his business account.
The bills are the biggest, but Stokes is also worried about his credit rating.
He said the bill collector’s business is not going to die.
“They’re going to stay in business and keep doing what they’re doing, and we’re not going anywhere,” he said.