Archive for Economic Development

Tampa Choo-Choo in the news

Posted in Hillsborough County, FL, Transportation with tags , , , , on June 7, 2013 by GoThere.com

“The push for rail is not about relieving congestion or getting people from point A to point B, but is rather about developing high-density communities that qualify for HUD affordable housing grants, EPA grants for supposedly improving air quality, Department of Transportation funds for mass transit, and Department of Energy grants for supposedly reducing dependence on oil”

Read the article

Hillsborough Economic Prosperity Stakeholder Committee

Posted in Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL with tags , , , on April 5, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

Hillsborough taxpayers paid many tens of thousands of dollars on County economic development studies to determine which specific industries should be targeted in order to create local high-paying jobs.

Those “target industries” included:

  • Biotechnology & Medical Devices
  • Medicine & Medical Management
    • Electronic Health Records
    • Medical Simulation & Training
  • Cross-Business Functions
    • Shared Services
    • Business Analytics
    • Information Technology
    • Headquarters Enabling Functions
  • Financial Services
    • Middle/Back Office Operations
  • Defense & Security
    • Security and Technology
    • Security/Intelligence Consulting

Question: how many of these target industries are represented on the new Hillsborough Economic Prosperity Stakeholder Committee?

Answer: none, they all went to the land development industry.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Ignoring our own

Posted in Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL, Job-creators with tags , on March 14, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

What happened to old-fashioned free market capitalism?

If Bass Pro Shops determined that it would be profitable for them to locate in Tampa, they would, with no incentives.

What happened to Hagan’s Economic Development Task Force recommendation that Hillsborough County incentivize only bio-tech, medical, manufacturing and high-tech businesses?

Adding “destination-retail” to the list to include Bass Pro ignores that few people south of Sarasota or east of Lakeland are likely to visit a Tampa store, with existing stores in Ft. Myers and Orlando; and none of them will stay overnight just to shop here. 

It ignores that most jobs will be low-wage, part-time and no-benefit.  

The County’s math calculates that taxpayers will be repaid in five years, but there seems to be no calculations as to how many existing mom and pop sporting goods business will fall off the tax rolls as a result.

What happened to growing our own?

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Hillsborough mobility to nowhere

Posted in Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL, Transportation with tags , , , , on March 12, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

 

To paraphrase a line from Lewis Carroll’s poem Jabberwocky, “…shun the frumious Bonder-snatch!”

How is it that “bonding” is so often proposed as a municipal funding source that supposedly does not raise taxes?

Selling bonds to pay for road construction is like charging home remolding to your credit card.

You get what you want now without waiting and you pay it back with future earnings; but the interest payments reduce your spendable income.

As we’ve seen with reduced county income from property and sales taxes, painful budget cuts have to come from somewhere else.

Hillsborough County is already nearly a BILLION dollars in debt in bond obligations, with crippling interest payments.

 Apart from the get-it-now-pay-for-it-later fantasy world we get to live in, who benefits from municipal bonding?

There are the attorneys who actually create the tax-free bonds that are sold by brokers to investors who re-sell them to someone looking for somewhere better than a bank to park their excess money.

Everyone along the line makes a profit, with the end bondholder receiving taxpayer money with no obligation to pay any income taxes.

 Perhaps instead of borrowing money to pay for new roads out to the hinterlands, we should give incentives to employers who build businesses near where people live, and incentives for home builders who build near employment centers?

That way, as we learn to pay as we go, we could also pay off the County debt and use the saved interest payments for something useful, like more buses that run on solar and clean natural gas.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Fourth strike for Hagan

Posted in Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL, Politics, taxes, Transportation with tags , , , , , on March 4, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan is batting zero in his attempts at hitting a task force home run.

His Transportation Task Force was formed to recommend a Choo-Choo for Tampa.

His I-4 Task Force was formed to recommend paving over east county farmlands at taxpayer expense.

His Economic Development Taskforce was formed to recommend tax breaks for Bass Pro Shop.

Now he wants an Economic Prosperity Stakeholders Task Force formed to recommend taxpayers footing the bills for new roads, sewers, water, and fire and police services in order to “attract new business”.

 All these task forces have simply cost taxpayers a ton of money in outside consultants’ fees.

To paraphrases a line from the movie Blazing Saddles: “We don’t need no stinking task forces.”

Commissioner Sandra Murman didn’t need a task force to start a very successful incentive program to encourage the actual creation of new jobs.

But then maybe we should save Hagan the time, expense and embarrassment of another failed task force and just give him a walk on this one?

After all, according to Hagan, with all the tax and fee cuts already approved by the BOCC over the past few years, The County isn’t bringing in much money from new businesses anyway, so what’s to lose?

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Rays on rail?

Posted in Ballpark, Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL, Transportation with tags , , , on January 23, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

Training wheels for Tampa Choo-ChooDid Mike Sasso (Tampa Tribune Jan. 23, 2012) ask San Diego Metropolitan Transit what it did to their budget when the Padres moved from the mixed-use QUALCOMM stadium they shared with the Chargers, to a new ballpark in downtown San Diego?

And…the Chargers are still talking about also moving out; leaving that stadium mostly unused, but with a terrific, light-rail station.

Maybe the seven West Central Florida counties that make up the focus of TBARTA’s Master Plan should get together with The Rays to determine the most economically advantageous location FOR EVERYONE for a new ballpark?

U.S. 41, 19 and 301 are looking pretty good, and there is lots of cheap land available. People commute on I-75, 275 and 589, but they don’t live, shop, work or go to school there.

Forget I-4, (not a true “interstate” anyway) which is only good for trips to visit The Mouse.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Where is the 1% Tea Party now?

Posted in Politics, Second American Revolution, Tea Party with tags , , , , on January 10, 2012 by GoThere.com


Waiting for the 99% to catch on?

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Planting seedlings

Posted in Economic Development, Hillsborough County, FL with tags , , , on January 10, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

Perhaps the Tampa Bay Area politicos could take a page from our agricultural community and understand that it is far easier to plant seedlings to grow an orchard than it is to replant full-grown fruit trees from someone else’s orchard.

 We should help entrepreneurs start and grow successful businesses in our own backyard while we attempt to attract out-of-town businesses to relocate here.

It is just that a successful homegrown business keeps more money within the community and is less likely to uproot and move elsewhere.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Rescue the poor and needy

Posted in Job-creators, Politics, Second American Revolution with tags , , on January 10, 2012 by verbumsapienti2

My whole being will exclaim,
“Who is like you, LORD?
You rescue the poor from those too strong for them,
the poor and needy from those who rob them.”

Psalm 35:10

The greedy need not apply.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

Tampa’s Mayor Bob snubs Tampa’s largest Job Creator

Posted in Economic Development, Ethics, Hillsborough County, FL, Job-creators with tags , , , on December 24, 2011 by verbumsapienti2

I read that the new Tampa Epoch newspaper is providing self-employment for over 200 Tampa residents selling papers who would otherwise be out panhandling.

Why is Tampa’s Mayor Bob looking down his nose at this enterprise? Does Mayor Bob not know what it is like to be homeless with NO money in his pocket?

Earning even $25 from selling papers goes a long way for not only a person’s self-esteem, but also goes a long way to closing that gap of having no money between meals.

Instead of looking for ways to close the “loophole” that allows Tampa’s homeless a way to make their own way in the world, maybe Mayor Bob should dig into his Business Relocation Incentive bag of money earmarked for out-of-town businesses, and see if he can find something more than a lump of coal for the entrepreneur behind the Tampa Epoch and for the 200 plus entrepreneurs out there on the street selling those papers.

“…and bless us, every one.” Tiny Tim

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