Friday, April 1, 2011

Too Little......Too Late?

Belmont looks to spur new development

     Here I go, beating that dead horse again, well he is already dead anyway.  For the past 20 plus years, cities and towns have been moving business out with their re-zoning and tax increases.  No one wants a business in their town but they want lower taxes.  It is still happening in the Solar and Wind alternative energy business the President speaks of daily.  Ya can not have both, lower property taxes for the home owner and no businesses in town.  It was thought 30 years ago to build these huge industrial parks to move the industry from the center of towns.  Well, those buildings are also now empty.

Belmont is mounting a full-court press to spur new development and roughly double the town’s commercial-tax base over the next few years. But potential developers beware: The town is, well, a bit particular when it comes to the size and scope of proposals within its borders.
It remains to be seen whether Belmont, not to mention dozens of other Bay State communities feeling the budget squeeze, will ultimately bend to the whims of developers whose blueprints contrast with existing planning and zoning requirements. But efforts to offset the financial pain are gaining traction statewide, especially among bedroom communities that for decades have catered to upper-income residents at the expense of their business districts.
         We have given many a tax break in Massachusetts only to see companies still not able 'to make' it and head to other countries where it is much cheaper for labor and to do business on a whole.  Can we compete in this country with minimum wage and labor unions calling the shots.....I think not.

Talks to potentially buck the status quo are already are taking place in Belmont, where two thirds of the town’s revenue is generated from residential property taxes and the two largest employers in town — McLean Hospital and Town Hall — don’t contribute a dime to the annual tax levy. Among the options being discussed are potential changes to the zoning and permitting, namely through the creation of special economic-development districts.

These jobs cost the town also when employees leave and the obligations of pensions remain a cost for many years to come.


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