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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Want to do business in Portland?

You'll have to negotiate your way in with Mayor Creepy.


Comments (12)

Oh sorry, you said that.

Looks like the Q Center is going to be getting a check from Target ...

THIS is exactly why Portland is a horrible place to open a business. You must accept "Mayor" Creepy's ideals or you won't be allowed to come here. It's disgusting and wrong, especially when many would love a job at a Target right now...

I thought a comment on the Oregonian site was spot on. Basically asking if we want a mayor who can't manage his own finances negotiating business deals with large corporations wanting to locate in Portland.

"With all the hatred in this world , in this good
world , let us be kind to one another ."

"You must accept "Mayor" Creepy's ideals"

100% agree. If Target is running their business illegally, that's one thing.

Requiring the businesses to have the same pure thought Sam does goes beyond the pale.

First off, think of what would happen here if everybody thought the same way Sam/Randy did.

What would be the difference if any Portland mayor wanted to talk to a potential company coming to Portland about having a moral, religious bent on their company's endeavors? Wouldn't the gauntlet be thrown down about even suggesting such an agenda and all hell would break out? The same goes to Sam and his call for "diversity" with Target. It's none of his business. He isn't representing the entire citizens of the city by such actions.

Eh, I don't know. I'm sure Sam's bending over backwards so far to get Target into downtown that he can kiss his own a**. He's desperate to get big retailers downtown, especially in this dismal economy and with Sacks decamping for Bridgeport Village. Do you really think he's going to raise a big stink with a potential major employer and anchor tenant, especially when Target has some deniability (they claim they were supporting Emmer's pro-business views, not his antigay ones)?

This is probably how the conversation will go:

Sam: So. . . about that Minnesota thing . . .

Target rep: A complete misunderstanding. We are firmly committed to our LBGT customers, and here's what . ..

Sam (interrupting): Good enough for me! Now, let's talk about incorporating an ecoroof and bike lockers into your design . . .

Thirty seconds tops, no more. Not that that will keep Sam from tweeting about how he gave Target a stern tongue-lashing and made them bend to his will . . .

My concern is that we do not provide incentives to a big box retailer that does little beyond give a debatable net boost to all retail downtown; provide low wage, low benefit jobs; if those incentives reduce the net tax gains to local government. Big box retailers continue the same old low price/low wage interdependencies (see Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture). Sustainability-clean energy, RnD-manufacturing centers, small business are where the high-wage jobs of the future are, and that is were we should concentrate our incentives. I do not think our Mayor is the person to negotiate an incentive giveaway, if the political upside of a ribbon cutting is his priority more than a smart investment strategy. H&M, Ikea and Target are just sexier, better designed Wal Marts in terms of their social and economic benefits.

Why not entice Target to locate downtown with incentives?

Portland taxpayers subsidize low wage/no benefit jobs for The Timbers, and we remodeled their stadium with public funds. At least Target provides downtown residents with lower prices on lots of products they NEED to buy, instead of something the soccer spectators WANT, like beer and hotdogs. Do progressives understand the difference between needs and wants?

You don't have to shop at stores that don't share your political philosophy. Your objections to their "social and economic" purity shouldn't keep them from locating in Portland. Your opinions shouldn't limit my retail options anymore than my religious opinions should close down gay bars.

Well said Mister Tee! Perhaps Mr/Ms Anon fails to realize that most big box stores prefer to locate in the suburbs and in shopping mall location in part to avoid dealing with politcally motivated agendas.
And the financial illiterates on the City Council should be thrilled that any major employer is willing to locate in Portland and put up with their various taxes.

most big box stores prefer to locate in the suburbs and in shopping mall location in part to avoid dealing with politcally motivated agendas

I think that's an overstatement. Businesses locate wherever they think they can make the most profit, either by being closer to their customers (to increase sales) or to their suppliers (to reduce costs). A suburban mall offers both -- easy visibility and marketing to thousands of captive potential customers motivated to buy (to increase sales), and often large square footages to allow more productive sales per square foot (to reduce costs).

Political and regulatory considerations may be a factor for some -- like Columbia Sportswear leaving for Washington County after feeling stonewalled by CoP bureaucrats -- but most will tolerate taxes and regulations and grandstanding politicians if the increased sales or reduced costs make up for it. Why do big retailers clamor to build stores in NYC, with its suffocating bureaucracy and taxes and a benign dictator of a mayor that's blocking off streets and building bike lanes even more voraciously than Sam? Why is WalMart still trying to build another store in Portland despite Sam's public opposition to it? Because they feel the access to the kind of customers they want is worth the trade-offs.

And politicians may talk a good game publicly to appease their constituents, but behind closed doors are often more than willing to cut a deal beneficial to a big employer or retailer. Which is why Sam will make public noises about forcing Target to conform to "our values", but will not press Target to do anything more substantial than make some sort of statement or, as Garage Wine said, some token contribution to a local gay-rights organization.

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