Here's the "rob Peter to pay Paul" deal.The city paid for the 150,000 sq. ft. building, parking lot and a 2 mile stretch of highway with municipal bonds ($45,000,000.00). The city also must pay for interior and exterior costs for the building and maintain the parking lot probably forever.
In return, Bass Pro agreed to a 20 year lease. The lease will generate approx. $8,000.000.00 in rent over 20 years. Also, it is projected to generate approx. $27,000,000.00 in sales tax revenue over 20 years. The land is tax free.These numbers are not static and leave approx. $10,000,000.00 to chance.
Bass Pro brags about receiving over $1,300,000,000.00 in local and state assistance all across the country.
Of course, big box stores funded by taxpayer dollars create a lot of jobs, but many of the higher paying jobs disappear when the projects are completed. (think the Peoria Riverfront Museum, RiverPlex and zoo expansion on track to lose at least $800,000.00 this year)
This blog copies part of what Nona Tepper wrote in the Journal Star while asking "with breaks like that, how are mom-and-pop stores supposed to compete? Bass Pro says business is business and you have to operate. City Administrator says Bass Pro helped bring in other businesses but he did not say what East Peoria committed taxpayers to to bring in stores like Costco, etc. and other business. Profiting is un- measurable.
I sure wish governmental bodies were handing out deals like this in the area when I opened in Peoria in 1964.
Not really. I think the competitiveness with taxpayer dollars against existing business stinks but the odor is here stay.