What if they’re doing it wrong? What if their plans for economic development are based on false assumptions? What if their plans to make El Paso a tourist destination fail?
There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest that it might fail, or is already failing. Our population growth has flatlined since 2012 while the rest of the country has grown more than four percent. And sure, unemployment is down, but unemployment is down all over the country. We’re just witnessing the local manifestation of a national phenomenon.
A better indicator of the efficiency of the plan might be the absence of the successes we were promised. New companies aren’t flocking to El Paso. The downtown apartments aren’t all rented out. Our local businesses aren’t thriving, except for, maybe, the carpetbagging companies our city leaders have lured in with attractive tax incentives.
Is there a mechanism for evaluating our progress? A feedback loop? Evidence-based management?
Or is it all gung ho, stay the course, we’re off to see the wizard?
“One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results.” — Milton Friedman
People don’t leave healthy cities. When you’re in a hole, stop digging.