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(The New Republic)   The story of how inviting one distribution center to relocate to a small town has destroyed it   (newrepublic.com) divider line
    More: Sad, Temporary work, Employment agency, Will County, Illinois, abundant full-time work, Will County, Joliet, Illinois, Temp agencies, short years  
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4939 clicks; posted to Business » on 12 Jan 2019 at 4:48 AM (27 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2019-01-12 02:28:04 AM  
FTA: (Elwood overwhelmingly voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 election.)

Kinda explains their whole predicament, doesn't it?

WOMP WOMP
 
2019-01-12 02:32:39 AM  
And, to be clear, the point I'm making here is that they were swayed by big monied interests telling them what they wanted to hear in order to take advantage of them.

They played themselves.
 
2019-01-12 02:53:20 AM  
inability to collect taxes from the facilities

Sounds like you chose poorly.
 
2019-01-12 03:16:23 AM  
"We had problems with our baby monitor because it would pick up frequencies" from passing truck radios and warehouse dispatchers

Little Timmy's first words were "10-4, good buddy"
 
2019-01-12 03:19:50 AM  

fusillade762: "We had problems with our baby monitor because it would pick up frequencies" from passing truck radios and warehouse dispatchers Little Timmy's first words were "10-4, good buddy"



Sad Song Teddy Bear by Red Sovine
Youtube 5zoTLwrm9QE
 
2019-01-12 04:11:52 AM  
This is like the Kraft Singles rendition of Faust.
 
2019-01-12 06:13:52 AM  
I want to feel bad for them, but they made a deal to not collect taxes for 20 (!!!) years.

Nearly 100 speakers commented publicly; only four were in favor. Amid tears and a chorus of boos, the committee voted 3-to-1 to approve the new facility. If the people of Elwood wanted to save themselves and their town, they would have to fight for it.

So vote them out, and vote in people that actually care about what the people of the town think?
 
2019-01-12 06:15:52 AM  

veale728: I want to feel bad for them, but they made a deal to not collect taxes for 20 (!!!) years.

Nearly 100 speakers commented publicly; only four were in favor. Amid tears and a chorus of boos, the committee voted 3-to-1 to approve the new facility. If the people of Elwood wanted to save themselves and their town, they would have to fight for it.

So vote them out, and vote in people that actually care about what the people of the town think?


What...you mean vote for a Democrat?  That's just crazy talk.
 
2019-01-12 06:58:43 AM  
This is not just an Elwood problem, but this town seems to be a gross example of it.
Quit giving global corporations massive tax breaks. It never pays off.
One reason they love these small towns is that they can come in and run the table over their city council. Either by sending in an army of lawyers, or well placed bribes. A mere 50 or 100 thousand can get tax free status for decades. Saving hundred of millions.
And the use of temporary workers should be regulated. If it's "temp to hire" the contract shouldn't last longer than 90 days. Afterward, either offer them a job or send them packing. It's another scam to avoid paying people what they're worth.
 
2019-01-12 07:11:51 AM  
In a depressing article, this sentence proved a nice absurd break. Still depressing but at least "funny" in a sad way.

Reliable eventually rebranded: It's now called Dependable Staffing Group. McDonald now works at Wendy's.
 
2019-01-12 07:16:03 AM  

fusillade762: "We had problems with our baby monitor because it would pick up frequencies" from passing truck radios and warehouse dispatchers

Little Timmy's first words were "10-4, good buddy"


Was the dark of the moon on the sixth of June
In a Kenworth pullin' logs
Cab-over Pete with a reefer on
And a Jimmy haulin' hogs
We is headin' for bear on I-one-oh
'Bout a mile outta Shaky Town
I says, "Pig Pen, this here's the Rubber Duck.
"And I'm about to put the hammer down."
'Cause we got a little convoy
Rockin' through the night.
Yeah, we got a little convoy,
Ain't she a beautiful sight?
Come on and join our convoy
Ain't nothin' gonna get in our way.
We gonna roll this truckin' convoy
'Cross the U-S-A.
Convoy!
By the time we got into Tulsa Town,
We had eighty-five trucks in all.
But they's a roadblock up on the cloverleaf,
And them bears was wall-to-wall.
Yeah, them smokies is thick as bugs on a bumper;
They even had a bear in the air!
I says, "Callin' all trucks, this here's the Duck.
"We about to go a-huntin' bear."
'Cause we got a little convoy
Rockin' through the night.
Yeah, we got a little convoy,
Ain't she a beautiful sight?
Come on and join our convoy
Ain't nothin' gonna get in our way.
We gonna roll this truckin' convoy
'Cross the U-S-A.
Convoy!
Well, we rolled up Interstate 44
Like a rocket sled on rails.
We tore up all of our swindle sheets,
And left 'em settin' on the scales.
By the time we hit that Chi-town,
Them bears was a-gettin' smart:
They'd brought up some reinforcements
From the Illinois National Guard.
There's armored cars, and tanks, and jeeps,
And rigs of ev'ry size.
Yeah, them chicken coops was full'a bears
And choppers filled the skies.
Well, we shot the line and we went for broke
With a thousand screamin' trucks
An' eleven long-haired Friends a' Jesus
In a chartreuse micra-bus.
Well, we laid a strip for the Jersey shore
And prepared to cross the line
I could see the bridge was lined with bears
But I didn't have a dog-goned dime.
I says, "Pig Pen, this here's the Rubber Duck.
"We just ain't a-gonna pay no toll."
So we crashed the gate doing ninety-eight
I says "Let them truckers roll, 10-4."
'Cause we got a little convoy
Rockin' through the night.
Yeah, we got a little convoy,
Ain't she a beautiful sight?
Come on and join our convoy
Ain't nothin' gonna get in our way.
We gonna roll this truckin' convoy
'Cross the U-S-A.
Convoy!
 
2019-01-12 07:18:41 AM  
Two decades without collecting taxes? Whoever made that deal on the town council should be hung in the center of town. All the data around that this never works and towns still line up to screw themselves. They shouldn't given more than 5 years since in 20 years there will probably be a town full of empty warehouses.
And the 99 temp agencies that is just the cherry on top to screw them and they keep voting for more of this. They should GTFO if they can.
 
2019-01-12 07:20:23 AM  
(Elwood overwhelmingly voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 election.)

Methinks Elwood has a bit of a problem with its educational system. You invite the leopards, don't complain when they eat your face.

img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2019-01-12 07:22:40 AM  

Catlenfell: This is not just an Elwood problem, but this town seems to be a gross example of it.
Quit giving global corporations massive tax breaks. It never pays off.
One reason they love these small towns is that they can come in and run the table over their city council. Either by sending in an army of lawyers, or well placed bribes. A mere 50 or 100 thousand can get tax free status for decades. Saving hundred of millions.
And the use of temporary workers should be regulated. If it's "temp to hire" the contract shouldn't last longer than 90 days. Afterward, either offer them a job or send them packing. It's another scam to avoid paying people what they're worth.


I'll get the lights. Thread is complete.

Racing to the bottom is not a good strategy, folks.
 
2019-01-12 07:35:59 AM  
Hard to tell which is worse here, the big money corporations out to crush human dignity for the almighty dollar or the local government who do whatever the big money corporations tell them so they can raise their own profiles. I love the people making this political in this thread - Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning. That said, there are all kinds of local ordinances (*gasp* big government!) that could be put into place to clamp down on temporary workers and shipping in workers from outside of the town, but none of those seem to be pursued, because of course Republicans are going to kowtow to big business by default.

The sad part in all of this is the realisation that the people who serve in representative government have one skill, and that is getting elected. It doesn't mean they are good at governance or finance, that they have good ideas when it comes to bettering living conditions, or that they've even played one farking game of SimCity. They're just good at getting votes. There has to be something better than this kind of democracy.
 
2019-01-12 07:39:30 AM  
So they're 85% through the paying for it period.

Clearly, with only 3 years left, it's  time to do something drastic and stupid to waste what was built and almost paid for.
 
2019-01-12 07:54:34 AM  
Vampire capitalism, what can't it destroy?
 
2019-01-12 07:58:54 AM  

Shaggy_C: Hard to tell which is worse here, the big money corporations out to crush human dignity for the almighty dollar or the local government who do whatever the big money corporations tell them so they can raise their own profiles. I love the people making this political in this thread - Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning. That said, there are all kinds of local ordinances (*gasp* big government!) that could be put into place to clamp down on temporary workers and shipping in workers from outside of the town, but none of those seem to be pursued, because of course Republicans are going to kowtow to big business by default.

The sad part in all of this is the realisation that the people who serve in representative government have one skill, and that is getting elected. It doesn't mean they are good at governance or finance, that they have good ideas when it comes to bettering living conditions, or that they've even played one farking game of SimCity. They're just good at getting votes. There has to be something better than this kind of democracy.


Did you just scoff at the idea that government could help and then explain how government could help?

Do you usually eat lead paint for breakfast or do you skip straight to huffing airplane glue?
 
2019-01-12 07:58:58 AM  

Shaggy_C: Hard to tell which is worse here, the big money corporations out to crush human dignity for the almighty dollar or the local government who do whatever the big money corporations tell them so they can raise their own profiles. I love the people making this political in this thread - Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning. That said, there are all kinds of local ordinances (*gasp* big government!) that could be put into place to clamp down on temporary workers and shipping in workers from outside of the town, but none of those seem to be pursued, because of course Republicans are going to kowtow to big business by default.

The sad part in all of this is the realisation that the people who serve in representative government have one skill, and that is getting elected. It doesn't mean they are good at governance or finance, that they have good ideas when it comes to bettering living conditions, or that they've even played one farking game of SimCity. They're just good at getting votes. There has to be something better than this kind of democracy.


Exams for voters are considered bad, because they were historically used to discriminate against uneducated minorities. But there's no reason we can't have exams before peop!e are allowed to run for office. For instance, anyone showing admiration for Ayn Rand should never be allowed to be part of government, because they clearly have no critical thinking skills.
 
2019-01-12 08:01:13 AM  

Zeb Hesselgresser: So they're 85% through the paying for it period.

Clearly, with only 3 years left, it's  time to do something drastic and stupid to waste what was built and almost paid for.


Yeah, if you're 70% through being raped, you might as well let the rapist finish raping you. It's not like they have a history of murdering the victim when they're through. It'll all work out.
 
2019-01-12 08:01:22 AM  
This is a depressing read, and hugely prophetic of what's to come for the rest of the country. Race to the bottom.
 
2019-01-12 08:08:23 AM  
Living in shadow of New York City, my experience is that when corporations are given 10-year tax breaks as an incentive to move their headquarters into a particular city, after nine years the corporations tend to pack-up and move to another city - usually a city offering 10-years of not paying taxes.

If Elwood is expecting to finally start collecting tax revenue after the 20-year grace period expires, they may be very disappointed. They will more likely be sitting on empty warehouses and distribution centers. But don't take it personally, Elwood, because it's just a business decision.
 
2019-01-12 08:15:17 AM  

Shaggy_C: Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning.


So turn the zoning over to the corporations?
 
2019-01-12 08:27:13 AM  

bittermang: Zeb Hesselgresser: So they're 85% through the paying for it period.

Clearly, with only 3 years left, it's  time to do something drastic and stupid to waste what was built and almost paid for.

Yeah, if you're 70% through being raped, you might as well let the rapist finish raping you. It's not like they have a history of murdering the victim when they're through. It'll all work out.


Your rape comparative is nonsensical in a discussion about a bad business deal, that was made nearly two decades ago.

Better analogy, 26 years into a 30 year mortgage is thewrongtime to default.
 
2019-01-12 08:30:09 AM  
So...they thought a bunch of warehouse jobs were going to make everyone rich?

At least they only have 3 years until they can start getting paid.  Hopefully they don't try to go crazy with that and just drive the whole thing to the next gullible town over.
 
2019-01-12 08:32:20 AM  

Zeb Hesselgresser: bittermang: Zeb Hesselgresser: So they're 85% through the paying for it period.

Clearly, with only 3 years left, it's  time to do something drastic and stupid to waste what was built and almost paid for.

Yeah, if you're 70% through being raped, you might as well let the rapist finish raping you. It's not like they have a history of murdering the victim when they're through. It'll all work out.

Your rape comparative is nonsensical in a discussion about a bad business deal, that was made nearly two decades ago.

Better analogy, 26 years into a 30 year mortgage is thewrongtime to default.


It seems like a fine time to default if your house is going to skip town to find an owner who will pay more once you pay it off.
 
2019-01-12 08:34:05 AM  

Shaggy_C: Hard to tell which is worse here, the big money corporations out to crush human dignity for the almighty dollar or the local government who do whatever the big money corporations tell them so they can raise their own profiles. I love the people making this political in this thread - Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning. That said, there are all kinds of local ordinances (*gasp* big government!) that could be put into place to clamp down on temporary workers and shipping in workers from outside of the town, but none of those seem to be pursued, because of course Republicans are going to kowtow to big business by default.

The sad part in all of this is the realisation that the people who serve in representative government have one skill, and that is getting elected. It doesn't mean they are good at governance or finance, that they have good ideas when it comes to bettering living conditions, or that they've even played one farking game of SimCity. They're just good at getting votes. There has to be something better than this kind of democracy.


Yes, and CalPERS (California Public Employees Retirement System) was one of the owners of the first company and Buffet saw this and moved in. There's blood on all hands.

It's either unions come back and that will be a bloody fight that will look like the bloody fights to start unions or government is going to have to pass much better employment laws mandating better wages and conditions. Well, we could have much more citizen pressure on companies to not act like dicks, but that's going to be tough.
 
2019-01-12 08:43:10 AM  
LOL, welcome to Shenzhen, middle America.

Feeling Great Again yet?
 
2019-01-12 09:05:46 AM  
Elwood is a rail and interstate hub out side of the 3rd largest city in the USA and centrally located. the warehouses are not going anywhere. what is going to happen is the demographics of the area is going to change and the current residents don't like that.
 
2019-01-12 09:09:58 AM  

thurstonxhowell: It seems like a fine time to default if your house is going to skip town to find an owner who will pay more once you pay it off.


I don't think you understand how mortgages work.
 
2019-01-12 09:13:58 AM  

LeroyB: Living in shadow of New York City, my experience is that when corporations are given 10-year tax breaks as an incentive to move their headquarters into a particular city, after nine years the corporations tend to pack-up and move to another city - usually a city offering 10-years of not paying taxes.

If Elwood is expecting to finally start collecting tax revenue after the 20-year grace period expires, they may be very disappointed. They will more likely be sitting on empty warehouses and distribution centers. But don't take it personally, Elwood, because it's just a business decision.


Hey if weed is fully legal by then they can turn them into grow houses.
 
2019-01-12 09:18:40 AM  
The new economy only has room for one winner, and it's not you.
 
2019-01-12 09:21:50 AM  
First, to help seal the deal, the town had to offer the developer, CenterPoint, a sweetener: total tax abatement for two decades

I think I found the flaw in their cunning plan.
 
2019-01-12 09:28:20 AM  
And as the town of Elwood scrambled to pave its potholes, its inability to collect taxes from the facilities plunged it into more than $30 million in debt.

Tax cuts - trickling down.
 
2019-01-12 09:39:55 AM  
Reply All did a really interesting podcast about a similar scenario in Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin. Worth a listen.
https://www.gimletmedia.com/reply-all​/​132-negative-mount-pleasant
 
2019-01-12 09:47:36 AM  

Tyrone Slothrop: Shaggy_C: Hard to tell which is worse here, the big money corporations out to crush human dignity for the almighty dollar or the local government who do whatever the big money corporations tell them so they can raise their own profiles. I love the people making this political in this thread - Democrats all like "if only there were more government this wouldn't have happened" not realising that the government is precisely why this happened, because they own the zoning. That said, there are all kinds of local ordinances (*gasp* big government!) that could be put into place to clamp down on temporary workers and shipping in workers from outside of the town, but none of those seem to be pursued, because of course Republicans are going to kowtow to big business by default.

The sad part in all of this is the realisation that the people who serve in representative government have one skill, and that is getting elected. It doesn't mean they are good at governance or finance, that they have good ideas when it comes to bettering living conditions, or that they've even played one farking game of SimCity. They're just good at getting votes. There has to be something better than this kind of democracy.

Exams for voters are considered bad, because they were historically used to discriminate against uneducated minorities. But there's no reason we can't have exams before peop!e are allowed to run for office. For instance, anyone showing admiration for Ayn Rand should never be allowed to be part of government, because they clearly have no critical thinking skills.


Not allowing stupid people to vote or hold office, regardless of ethnicity, has not yet been tried in human history that I'm aware of though it was postulated by Plato.  Frankly, it can't possibly be worse.

Give Geniocracy a chance!
 
2019-01-12 09:56:05 AM  

Tyrone Slothrop: Vampire capitalism, what can't it destroy?


garlic
 
2019-01-12 10:18:56 AM  
img.fark.netView Full Size

the circled area is Elwood, they should have seen the urban sprawl coming. it's not some town out in the country.
 
2019-01-12 10:19:54 AM  

jjwars1: Reply All did a really interesting podcast about a similar scenario in Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin. Worth a listen.
https://www.gimletmedia.com/reply-all/​132-negative-mount-pleasant


As soon as I statrted reading TFA, I thought about parallels with Foxconn.
 
2019-01-12 10:20:59 AM  

Gordon Bennett: First, to help seal the deal, the town had to offer the developer, CenterPoint, a sweetener: total tax abatement for two decades

I think I found the flaw in their cunning plan.


That does seem to be the problem.

The town where I live (Needham, MA) gave a tax abatement for a recent development (TripAdvisor, SharkNinja, NBC Universal) but only partial and only 5 years. You can still argue that it might be a bad idea, but 5 years really isn't that long.
 
2019-01-12 10:24:24 AM  

Tyrone Slothrop: Exams for voters are considered bad, because they were historically used to discriminate against uneducated minorities.


You ended up with stuff like you got in Alabama, Georgia, and other states, where the literacy test for a white voter was "What color is the sky?" and the literacy test for a black voter was "Calculate pi to 500 digits.  Show your work."
 
2019-01-12 10:24:43 AM  
Keep giving it away to business and wonder why you're not getting your share? Idiocy.

Don't work cheap. Don't exempt them from taxes. Don't allow you and your community to be treated as a commodity.
 
2019-01-12 10:25:37 AM  

HedlessChickn: And, to be clear, the point I'm making here is that they were swayed by big monied interests telling them what they wanted to hear in order to take advantage of them.

They played themselves.


This IS illustrative of the harmful, poisonous "conservative" economic theory which sadly has seeped in to just about every locality across the country, whether red or blue.

The race to fark over your city/county/state by tripping over yourself to offer big businesses massive tax cuts which mean they are kneecapping their ability to raise revenue from the very business they're trying to attract which will generate new costs...

More privite profits and public costs. The "conservative" way.
 
2019-01-12 10:41:45 AM  
It sounds like a bunch of bootstrappy conservatives need to adjust to the needs of a changing marketplace and stop criticizing the glorious anti-union capitalism that created their glorious town.
 
2019-01-12 10:52:28 AM  

Bowen: The town where I live (Needham, MA) gave a tax abatement for a recent development (TripAdvisor, SharkNinja, NBC Universal) but only partial and only 5 years. You can still argue that it might be a bad idea, but 5 years really isn't that long.


Though in 5 years they will ask another town down the road for another deal and say 'Better give us 20 years so we don't move away in 5 years like we are planning in Needham'.
In the article, they talked about how the town had 18% or so unemployment. I am not saying selling out to a corporation was a good idea, but I understand why they may have felt they had to. The real problem is the companies cannot be held accountable. The article mentions multiple times that a company will contract out to a contractor, who will contract out to another or multiple subcontractors. If anything happens like unionization or a lawsuit, the contractor simply folds up and form a new company. I don't have an easy solution, but I think greater worker protections and ensuring that companies are liable for what their contractors do are good places to start.
 
2019-01-12 10:57:25 AM  
Sounds like progress to me.

At least we can still buy stuff online for cheap right?  But that would be assuming that as the customer, we are always right.
 
2019-01-12 11:07:49 AM  

groppet: Two decades without collecting taxes? Whoever made that deal on the town council should be hung in the center of town. All the data around that this never works and towns still line up to screw themselves. They shouldn't given more than 5 years since in 20 years there will probably be a town full of empty warehouses.
And the 99 temp agencies that is just the cherry on top to screw them and they keep voting for more of this. They should GTFO if they can.


The reason the local rubes go along with it is because they believe the corporate narrative.    The big companies set up shop, and 'good' jobs follow.   People settle in the area, and the the property tax base increases.  It's better to collect property taxes from residents than from a few big companies because it mitigates against profligate spending at the municipal level, which is what drives away business.

The reality is that most of the jobs are temp jobs that pay little.    Most of the workers are transients who don't stay long, and in any case the born and raised locals don't really want 'those people' moving in.   The results are predictable.
 
2019-01-12 11:14:03 AM  

haywatchthis: the circled area is Elwood, they should have seen the urban sprawl coming. it's not some town out in the country.



Cool, Elwood is next to Joliet. Where's Jake?
 
2019-01-12 11:15:27 AM  
So many things wrong with what happened there.

Removing farms that pay taxes to build warehouses that don't led to a decrease in revenue. Duh.

"No Trucks. fine: $500"  might limit all the trucks going into residential areas. If not, increase the fine to $1000.

The railroads and highways can't be relocated, so they were effectively sitting on a modern gold mine.

Sure. You can have a tax abatement. In 5 years we'll give you a 5% cut IF we can afford to. If your existence here is costing us money then forget it. Oh, and we're thinking of converting that road between the highway to a toll road for non residents. Be a shame if we had toll do that to keep the road maintained.

Part of the agreement should include what to do with the warehouses if the companies leave. Company pays to return the land to prairie or parks or something. Maybe designs that can be easily converted to other uses.

Should be public scrutiny of the town elected officials' finances.
 
2019-01-12 11:25:45 AM  

fusillade762: "We had problems with our baby monitor because it would pick up frequencies" from passing truck radios and warehouse dispatchers

Little Timmy's first words were "10-4, good buddy"


Mommy, what's a lot lizard?
 
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