During the debate about the Mayor’s veto yesterday District 1 Representative and reported candidate for Commissioners Court Peter Svarzbein said that the street beautification projects and other quality of life amenities were to help entice former El Pasoans to return.
No one with a life someplace else is going to move back to El Paso because we put some yuccas on a median. No one with a wife and family in Austin is going to move back to El Paso because we have AAA baseball. No one with a job in San Diego is going to move back to El Paso for the water parks.
They’ve got a real ocean right outside of San Diego, with real beaches.
And attracting industry to El Paso is a hard sell.
If Mr. Svarzbein has ever been out of town, he’s probably noticed that El Paso is long way from anywhere. For manufacturers, El Paso is a long way from the suppliers of raw materials and a long way from commercial markets.
Of course, transportation isn’t the only consideration for relocation experts. There’s also labor. Rents. Taxes.
Right. Taxes. I understand that taxes are high in El Paso.
The City of El Paso is more than $3 billion in debt. The interest alone on all that debt runs to more than a billion dollars. We don’t get anything for the interest we pay, except maybe a sinking feeling in the pits of our stomachs.
It’s not impossible, but getting a company to move to El Paso is a hard sell.
There are a lot of places in the world, a lots of them have professional sports, and landscaping, and lower taxes than we have in El Paso. Professional sports and landscaping aren’t going to convince anyone to move to El Paso, not even back to El Paso.
And taxes. To get any company to move to El Paso, the City will give them tax incentives. Giving tax incentives doesn’t do anything to relieve the tax burden the rest of us are carrying.
Those people on City Council foisting higher taxes on us need to come up with a better excuse.