From the Neighborhood Retail Alliance:
The City's Economic Development Corporation keeps doing these silly deals - or, at times, wasteful ones-and then proceeds to trumpet them as part of the so-called five borough economic development plan. All of this horn tooting, it should be pointed out, is occurring simultaneously with horrific job loss and store closings; which makes you wonder what kind of good all of this planning is really doing.
The latest mega deal is as follows-according to the EDC's press release: "The Board of the New York City Industrial Development Agency (NYCIDA) today approved a sales, real estate, and mortgage recording tax incentive package to assist Best Mounting Corporation, a new company and an affiliate of AFC Industries, to locate their headquarters in Jamaica, Queens. Best Mounting will make a $3.65 million private investment to acquire and renovate a 55,000-square-foot facility in Jamaica to manufacture workstation fixtures primarily for the media, healthcare and security industries, creating 15 new jobs over the next three years. The project is expected to return about $3 million in new net tax revenues to the City over 25 years."
What tickles us even further is the sub-head on the release: "Helping industrial companies grow is a vital part of the City’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan." Well now, let's see how the city really treats manufacturing. In 2005, the Bloombergistas drove a stake into the heart of the old Bronx Terminal Market where 23 companies were employing over 500 people without the aid of as single penny in city money.
And then there is Willets Point where there are ten times the number of businesses and five times as many workers as there were at the BTM. Big retail developments, projects that will only really shift jobs from neighborhood stores to peripheral malls, are the linchpin of the phony five borough economic development strategy. Making a bad situation that much worse, is that these projects so often replace indigenous employment that is sui generis - unlike the retail cannibalization.
So when we hear that the latest EDC deal will create 15 jobs in three years in a plant in Jamaica, all we can think is that, at this rate, it will only take 830 years to replace the jobs that Bloomberg wants to forcibly evict at Willets Point. Some strategic plan!