EDGE Public Comment – 06/20/18
As I oppose some of these projects, there is nothing against the companies represented here today. In fact, in their shoes I would do the same thing as the EDGE Board rolls out the Green Carpet of the taxpayer for them. This is what I would like to ask of this EDGE Board
- Shelby County is the only County in the State doing residential PILOTs. This points to excessiveness. While using analyses loaded with multipliers, I would ask the Board to amend both the Broad and Thrive at the Park projects and require each to have a minimum 1.0 benefit cost ratio thereby reducing the abatement on each by approximately 50% . I would like to see zero abatement but at least an adoption of the amended proposal lets the taxpayer breakeven as an equal partner on the abatement which in any other part of the state would be excessive. Regardless of a zero abatement or a reduced abatement both of these projects are going to happen and these developers are going to make money.
- Deny the $650K Hollywood Feed increased abatement amendment which has already been secured with an 8 year PILOT Term and been amended upwards once. Hollywood Feed states in their amendment request “we just did not know how significant our growth would be”. That growth is occurring right here in Memphis, TN. with 70% store location growth since 2016. They do not need additional help from the taxpayer. In fact, with growth like that, we should be asking them for money !! And Congratulations to Hollywood Feed for their success !
- I would ask any of you that have served more than 4 years on this board to do the right thing for the community and resign after today’s meeting. You will be giving back to the community by filling gaps in a badly written ordinance that did not provide for EDGE Board Term Limits and adequate legislative oversight.
- Madam Secretary, record this public statement as stated, because whoever prepares the minutes often guts substantive public comment from the EDGE minutes that the Board approves at every meeting.
- As a needed vital system check, to the press, you should report retention PILOT accounting as incomplete resulting in a significant overstated “Total New Tax Revenue Generated” on the EDGE Scorecard. I say its bogus and press you can say that if you like with an approximate $900M overstatement.
- So just for today and just for kicks, pretend that you are making economic development decisions for the customer taxpayer and have some deliberative discussions and don’t rubber stamp everything before you while unnecessarily using taxpayer money for so called “economic development”.
- In summary, this proposal is pro-business and pro-economic development where everyone makes money and saves taxpayers approximately $9.5M. So again, 1) approve amendment of minimum 1.0 Cost / Benefit Ratio on Broad and Thrive 2) Deny Hollywood Feed Amendment and 3) Resign all which will improve corporate responsibility for a community in need.
City Council Planned Public Comment – 6/19/18
The below content was prepared for public comment but was not heard by the City Council for unknown reasons at the time of this post as of 6/21/14. As a result the following email was sent out to local leaders which contains the planned but unheard public remarks:
From: firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>
Sent: Tuesday, June 19, 2018 11:16 PM
To: ‘Richard Smith’ <firstname.lastname@example.org>; ‘Heidi Shafer’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>
Cc: ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘Worth.Morgan@memphistn.gov’ <Worth.Morgan@memphistn.gov>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘Martavius.Jones@memphistn.gov’ <Martavius.Jones@memphistn.gov>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘Phil Trenary’ <firstname.lastname@example.org>; ‘email@example.com’ <firstname.lastname@example.org>; ‘email@example.com’ <firstname.lastname@example.org>; ‘email@example.com’ <firstname.lastname@example.org>; ‘Brian Stephens’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>; ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ <email@example.com>
Subject: Public Comment – THIS County Commission Needs to Fix EDGE
Today, I was prepared to make public comment in City Council that would link Madam Chair Shafer’s County Commission statement of Berlin Boyd’s planned Joint Council/Commission EDGE Meeting up with Council business. But complications arose that prevented the public comment from being made in a somewhat long and interactive Council Session. At County Commission at 2:59:25 I being my remarks and at 3:02:35 Madam Chair Shafer begins her remarks. See Commission video – http://shelby.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=4&clip_id=1446
THIS County Commission NOT the next needs to act to fix EDGE after 7 years of delayed oversight. Below is the statement that I was going to make today at City Council but was unable to make:
Chairman Boyd, yesterday in County Commission Madam Chair Shafer indicated she was ready to go for the Joint EDGE Committee and is waiting on you to call the meeting. Currently, a legislative leadership opportunity that rarely exists awaits you.
As we speak, like the alcoholic screaming for but not asking for help, that is exactly what the confused local economic development bureaucracy is doing in seeking your legislative hand in crafting and curating local economic development planning and policy.
Chairman Boyd they do not know what economic development is; they think economic development is tax incentives
Here is why your intervention is needed. They are considering a company that is already secured with an 8 year PILOT term that has grown store locations by 70% since 2016 for a $650,000 increase of their already existing PILOT. An awesome company that does not need taxpayer help.
At this point, I am just trying to get vital systems in the City to work like the press reporting that the EDGE accounting for retention PILOTs is bogus and this Joint Council / Commission meeting called for THIS County Commission; not the next. Vitality displaces stagnancy.
In the Joint Committee meeting I would hope individual heads of the Chamber would go on record like Brian Stephens, Phillip Spinosa and Phil Trenary to discuss their ideas for economic development among other items.
As far as EDGE goes, suspend the rules now and end their abatement authority. The EDGE ordinance is weak and did not have oversight provisions or Board term limitations. You have 7 EDGE board members that have been on the Board for 7 years. They need to resign now or rotate off. The EDGE Board should not be like a Supreme Court life appointment.
Chairman Boyd please seize this once in a lifetime legislative leadership opportunity to represent the public voice and better chart economic planning and development for years to come. Thank you
County Commission Public Comment – 6/13/18
EDGE restructuring and course correction. Mr. Robertson of Community Lift states need to identify who’s on first at 4:21:25. My comments start at 4:38:50.
Shelby County Commission Economic Development Committee 6/13/18 at 4:38:50 –
City Council Public Comment – 6/5/18
Concerns over the lack of public voice in economic development planning. Chairman Berlin Boyd comments at 1:44:20.
City Council Public Comment – 3/6/18
This public comment goes to the ineffective oversight of the use of taxpayer funds regarding local corporate community leadership and Memphis Tomorrow endorsed initiatives and areas of focus. The resulting tax revenue shortfall is estimated to be $115M resulting from deficient leadership and oversight.
County Commission Public Comment – 5/17/17
This public comment is about a rigged system that is contributing to slow economic development efforts led by the Memphis Corporate Community Leadership (MCCL) Complex.