The Problem With Tax Incentives

Phoenix Mayor, Phil Gordon, explains why tax incentives for retailers is a poor public investment strategy.
August 10, 2004, 1pm PDT | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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"The use of tax incentives to lure retailers to one city rather than another has resulted in inequities for existing retail businesses and a significant reduction in funds for vital public services. Ultimately, it does not generate wealth and does not produce good jobs."

"The time has come to stop putting our existing retailers at a competitive disadvantage and our budgets in jeopardy. If incentives for retail are to be considered, it should be to benefit the region by bringing in next-generation, high-tech, high-knowledge firms that generate wealth and good-paying jobs. Indeed, strong cases can be made for using incentives in the core areas of a city, environmentally affected properties or development critical to the economic health of a city. But the exceptions should be rare and never become the rule, as has been the case lately."

Thanks to Tom Christoffel, Regions Work

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Published on Monday, August 2, 2004 in The Arizona Republic
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