Can Memphis grow in a bubble while its people are disconnected from reality in a global economy ? No Way ! Institutions across the board continue to fail Memphis/Shelby taxpayers. The press, university community and legislators on the left and the right refuse to confront the indefensible products of the FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow complex. So how does a community improve without needed checks in the system ? It doesn’t; it stagnates into a rigged condition.
That’s what has happened to Memphis after 20 years under the backwards and visionless FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow bully hack complex. The only checks on real power are coming external of Memphis institutions such as ProPublica, Beacon Center of Tennessee and from blogs such as this one.
Example checks on real power made by non-traditional media outlets include: Methodist Hospital, botched from the top workforce development system, bogus EDGE projection accounting, excessive EDGE abatement awards, deficient economic development growth as expressed through credible measurement and EDGE apparent misuse of Depot proceeds. The cost to taxpayers uncovered soars into the billions.
Without the above, the community is left blind in a rigged stagnant condition without the information to inform needed improvement, growth and evolution in a global economy.
See the Excess in PILOTs ?
One example of this type of information regarding excessive PILOTs is below. Memphis/Shelby taxpayers are not going to see information such as this anywhere else. This blog, whose rhetoric has been questioned states that the FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow complex feeds on a community in need. How else would one describe the information below where the five PILOT projects of existing companies in Nike, International Paper, Technicolor, FedEx and Valero that total $207M exceed the total job PILOTs each for Nashville and Indianapolis?
This is what happens when an elitist system is designed and incented to award large corporate abatements for the benefit of the small few in an already low cost business environment with Memphis ranking 13 out of 100 metroes. This is not economic development; its economic devolution and community disinvestment. See below table:
At the same time the proposed PILOT reform solution of this blog, would have still awarded the 5 above companies PILOTs based on their new capital investment and jobs, just not $207M. And that’s even though most of the companies are in reality going nowhere like Valero. The applied formula is 50% of new capital investment and 1% abatement on total wages for new jobs.
As for overall implementation, existing companies would likely get less than a 50% abatements to compensate for larger abatement packages exceeding 50% for new industry recruitment and operational relocation costs. In the end, the proposed system is designed to award 50% overall for new capital investment while maintaining EDGE investment and term requirements. The 1% abatement for new jobs would apply for new and existing companies.
To that extent, for example purposes only, 50% abatement amount was applied to show revised abatement amounts using the proposed reform model for existing companies mentioned above:
Memphis can’t grow in a bubble while listening to FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow propaganda. Legislators know that tax incentives are beyond excessive and that EDGE appears to have engaged in the misuse of $1.7M Depot funds. Legislators would be best served to send the FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow complex a $500M invoice payable immediately while getting to work and when needed engaging a new brand of corporate community leaders.
FedEx/Memphis Tomorrow lacks the capacity and vision to propel Memphis forward. Their vision has been realized over 20 years and it’s a Memphis community left behind in a global economy with massive imbalances. So sad as it was authored from the top of the Memphis ecosystem. Tuff n Cool Man, Tuff n Cool to feed on a community in need……