The presently occurring estimated recurring tax losses of $115M contained in this site to Memphis/Shelby County taxpayers when benchmarked against peer community averages, publicly funded grant timelines and fundamental accounting procedures suggests a need for the consideration of the following solutions related to Memphis Corporate Community Leadership Initiatives:

  • Effective measurement and a sense of urgency in support of the customer taxpayer
  • A focus on small business development
  • Effective research based demand driven workforce development programming to facilitate, retain and ATTRACT economic development


With a Sense of Urgency, converge community assets, non-profits and government funding to ATTRACT above average economic growth through improved measurement while becoming the  National leader in career education and workforce development using a return on investment approach.

Measurement Recommendations

  • Centralized reporting, data repository and promotion of local government funded non-profits to include government grant submissions forwarded directly to publicly available web based repository. This allows public and policymakers direct 24/7 instant access to progress reporting without having to go through governmental requests for documentation. Consider using the local Momentum Nonprofit Partners for repository.
  • Business mentoring and oversight of government funded non-profits in support of a business sense of urgency and execution
  • Provide more complete accounting on retention PILOTS that should result in significantly lower PILOTS with incentives on expansion jobs while providing a realistic measure of the success of the program.
  • Evaluate multipliers for low wage warehousing jobs. Recent study from The Economic Institute suggests only a 1.0 multiplier should be used for warehousing jobs and 2.57 was recently used on EDGE Amazon PILOT when considering both the multiplier and the higher Shelby County wage applied for indirect jobs
  • End retention PILOTs and PILOT renewals like Pfizer and Technicolor in favor of investments directly back into the community.

Small Business Development Recommendations

With a clear delineation between The Memphis Chamber of Commerce and EDGE related to economic development, The Memphis Chamber of Commerce would leverage its local membership base to support local small business development in order to reverse the trend as shown in this graph. At the same time, as long as there is clarity and resources to support organizational assigned functionality using this letter as an example, economic development efforts will be optimized for Memphis and Shelby County.

Greater Memphis Alliance for Competitive Workforce Recommendations

With a clear delineation between WIN that focuses on out of school audiences and GMACW focused on in school audiences, it is recommended GMACW do the following:

  • ASSETS – Inventory and align GMACW regionally available technology and partnership assets while eliminating redundancies to promote economic and workforce development opportunities for in-school audiences
  • LEVERAGE – Efficiently leverage aligned assets, non-redundant technology and partnerships in all activities in order to maximize return on investment while connecting in-school job candidates with employers
  • DATA  – With GMACW as the regional authority, publish employer demanded skill and knowledge requirements and labor studies to align, connect, drive and convene regional learning, educational, training, career pathways and workforce development opportunities
  • CURRICULUM – With GMACW as the regional authority, adopt and deploy a specific set of research and standards based career assessments and curricular activities to support employer aligned individual learning, career pathways development, student portfolio development, increased and accelerated completion rates and employer workforce recruiting needs. Opportunities to partner with FedEx to inform the curriculum on customer service and ServiceMaster on entrepreneurship should be considered.
  • PROMOTION -With GMACW as the regional authority, drive and promote regional in-demand career pathways opportunities.
  • PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT – With GMACW as the regional authority, drive, promote and convene regional career pathways professional development opportunities for regional stakeholders to include educators, counselors, employers, parents and policymakers
  • COACHING – With GMACW as the regional authority, support on the ground school site  based career pathways coaching for educators, counselors and workforce development professionals
  • PROGRAMS – Grow and help facilitate the development of after school and summer programming for in-school audiences
  • BUSINESS – Fundraise and recruit volunteers from the business community to support work-based learning and mentorship opportunities
  • PARTNER – Aggressively support the Workforce Investment Network in their workforce development efforts of out of school individuals.
  • MARKETING – Publish a GMACW regional career pathways marketing plan
  • EXPLORE – Explore workforce development partnerships with world leading entities such as Research Triangle Institute.