That's a big box.

The Planning Board recommends that any new investor who is willing to spend enough money to open a store of at least 100,000 square feet needs to first pay for an "economic analysis study" to "analyze what impact a large store would have on the local economy, including smaller stores."

"Um, we have a business plan. We think it will work. But we've spent $25,000.00 on consultants to prove that, while we can make money and compete in your economy, we won't be too good at it. We'll only compete enough to make the profit you think is ok, and we'll make sure not to compete enough to harm any existing businesses. So, if you would please review our $25,000.00 consulting report, and run it by your PRO-BUSINESS GREAT FALLS committee, and let us know if it's ok to spend this $2,000,000.00 burning a hole in our pocket, we'd really appreciate it. Thanks. We'll just be waiting over here in Helena."

We have 300 to 400 years of political thought backing up our system of free enterprise and private property. The "invisible hand" has been around for over 200 years.

But our local officials know more. They'll tell us what's good for us and what isn't.

Man, we're lucky.


david said...

Holy cow -- I heard this on the TV news last night and my jaw dropped. How on earth can our "pro business," "pro growth" community tolerate this?

Anonymous said...

I drove by Walmart the other day. I don't shop Walmart-because the place drives me nuts--but I would guess that the impact on our community is:
1. They employ a whole bunch of people who are willing and happy to work for the pay and benefits they are getting and;
2. A whole bunch of people shop there because they provide products and services at prices they can afford.

Damn those big box stores!!!

free thought said...

Another stupid idea which promises to hurt the economy and consumers. If a business wants to spend its money, let it. If other businesses cannot compete, they lose out. However, my economic analysis of the City's practices is that that small businesses would not need paternal protection by the City (protection which comes at the expense of the consumers/citizens of the City) if only the City would not keep trying to run the small guys out of business before the competition even shows up.

GeeGuy said...

Do you mean like bending over backwards to let a Hilton open, while two bed and breakfasts go out of business because they cannot get the required permits?

free thought said...

Yup. That is pretty much it. It seems disingenuous to say they intend to look out for the little guy, when they will not even cooperate with him enough to be allowed into (or to say in) the market.