“If a company says it wants to lease a cargo facility within the next 12 months for a 20-year period, the city would first have to put the project out to vote, which can only happen in May and November. Only after that, if voters approved the move, could officials secure financing and construct the facility. The 12-month window may have long passed by the time the city completes the process, he said.”
Put more succinctly: The airport is seeking authority to go into debt and enter the commercial real estate leasing business to construct tax-exempt government facilities for private businesses. Schools, cities, counties, highway districts and any other taxing agencies would suffer loss of revenue on any buildings constructed under this plan.
The GUARDIAN welcomes any business–or individual–to our fair city as long as they will pay a decent wage and their fair share of taxes. We simply don’t need to PAY them to come here. Let those states willing to speculate on real estate ventures “attract” those businesses.
The constitutional mandate that airports seek voter approval for debt is a safeguard against government competing with private investors, contractors, and other property owners to finance facilities destined for commercial use.
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