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Home business permit requests on rise

August 19, 2010
SOUTHBRIDGE — In what seems to be becoming a trend locally, the Planning Board approved two businesses being done out of people's homes Wednesday night. And more are coming down the pike.

"There are a lot more home-based businesses out there than we know of," Economic Development Director Cassandra Acly said. "If they're doing a bona fide business, sooner or later they find they need a business certificate, usually because a supplier requests a company check for payment."

In Eric Wilhelm's case, the idea has been a hobby for years. He was approved to formally open ECW Clock Repair at his Vista Lane home, in which he plans to work on old-style clock innards of various types.

"It's probably my father's fault, I guess," Wilhelm said when asked how he developed such an interest. "My dad gave me plans for how to make a wooden clock in college."

He said he has spoken to some area antique dealers and people who own such clocks and concluded, "It's really a dying art," in part because today's clocks are often electronic.

Although he currently works for Hyde Tools, and plans to continue doing so, Wilhelm said he hopes the new effort will supplement his income and help support his young family. In time, he said, he might expand it to repairing clock cases and/or similar devices, but for now he's "not expecting to have more than one customer a week."

See Friday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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