Friday, January 15, 2010
A Zero-Sum Game
This Post-Dispatch article talks about a proposed new Wal-Mart store in Bridgeton, one that would result in the closing of a Wal-Mart that is partially in neighboring St. Ann, thus reducing the tax base of an area that's already struggling financially. Bridgeton, of course, is looking to offer TIF to Wal-Mart in order to lure them to this big new location. The whole piece is a perfect example of why it's bad to have the St. Louis area divided up into so many little municipalities. According to the article, the Missouri legislature changed TIF laws not too long ago, "taking some authority from the cities and adopting a regional countywide approach." It'll be interesting to see how this plays out. How successful can the regional countywide approach be when the county is still divided up into all these autonomous "cities," each looking out for itself?