Isthmus on Edgewater

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Huckleby
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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby Huckleby » Sun Sep 04, 2011 1:13 pm

snoqueen wrote:Subsidizing the expansion of a business that largely creates sub-living wage jobs supports the expansion of the sub-living wage sector in Madison. Better to support educational programs to lift people out of a condition of dependency and offers them more choices, instead of furthering the employment race to the bottom -- which is doing quite well on its own.
philisophically, I tend to agree with you. but as a practical matter, you present a false choice. not building hotels is not going to free-up money to turn unskilled workers into computer programmers. Unemployment among unskilled workers remains a problem, opposition to "expand the sub-living wage sector" means you want to keep the rift-raft out of town or on the dole.

Huckleby
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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby Huckleby » Sun Sep 04, 2011 8:10 pm

gargantua wrote: If setting priorities and wanting to get the most value from our limited TIF dollars makes one an elitist.....put me in that camp.
Nobody suggested that such a calculation was elitist. Assigning zero value to jobs for unskilled workers is elitist.

We've been talking about getting bang for buck for TIF money. You also have to consider the total amount of private investment that the TIF brings in, and the edgewater project is a big draw.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby green union terrace chair » Mon Sep 05, 2011 7:44 pm

snoqueen wrote:I've never figured out why other hotel owners didn't cry foul when Edgewater was offered a city subsidy others didn't have, or why conservative council members didn't say this TIF put the city in competition with private business, or why the city was funding a project that contained a bunch of luxury condominiums on top. (You can't persuade me the hotel budget could be separated meaningfully from those condos so they weren't subsidized but hotel rooms were.)

If the convention center needs another hotel, it should be put where guests can walk back and forth from their rooms to their meetings conveniently.

Other hotel operators DID cry foul. Reps from the Concourse and a number of other hotels (Concourse is the one I remember for certain) attended several community meetings and talked about how unfair it was. The Concourse and Doubletree spent millions on renovations in the last few years without public assistance. There was TIF used in the Hilton, but it was for the skywalk that connected it to the Monona Terrace.

We don't need to be spending TIF dollars subsidizing a $300/night hotel and luxury condos.

Every tax dollar spent on TIF is a dollar not spent somewhere else (or otherwise untaxed). We should be spending those dollars on smart projects with a real benefit. If we're going to spend TIF on a hotel project downtown, it ought to be one that directly benefits the Monona Terrace and makes it more competitive.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby other i » Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:29 am

"The thing that everyone forgets is that the $16 million of TIF funds does not make anyone's tax bill go up or down," said Alderwoman Bridget Maniaci, who voted to approve the Edgewater's $16 million TIF funds in the spring of 2010.

http://www.channel3000.com/news/29113608/detail.html

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby snoqueen » Thu Sep 08, 2011 8:59 am

The problem with Maniaci is she way oversimplifies. TIF delays the collection of taxes on the relevant properties. Your taxes don't go down or up by a measurable amount in a good year, but in bad years what's the point of delaying the collection of taxes? Our rates will be going up this coming year regardless.

And why should we be increasing the amount of the city's debt? According to Soglin it already got much too bloated under the past administration. While reasonable people may disagree on how much is too much, certainly not to add more debt subsidizing questionable projects would be prudent.

TIF is too complex for sound bite reasoning.

SimonBonadventure
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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby SimonBonadventure » Thu Sep 08, 2011 9:46 am

I hope Soglin shit cans this project. Let's use TIF for it's actual legal purpose, which is to address blighted areas.

Use TIF on that ugly area of E. Washington that is a bunch of abandoned car dealerships.

The city should help finance some light industrial companies that could create some real manufacturing jobs in that area.

We have enough restaurant jobs in this city already.

We need to start companies that actually makes things.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby Huckleby » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:41 am

SimonBonadventure wrote: We have enough restaurant jobs in this city already.

We need to start companies that actually makes things.

We only have enough unskilled jobs if you don't care about the high level of unemployment among unskilled workers.

Canceling this project is not going to cause a manufacturing company to spring up.
BTW, who is the "We" that is going to start those companies? What is needed to help those people?

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby Huckleby » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:48 am

green union terrace chair wrote: We don't need to be spending TIF dollars subsidizing a $300/night hotel and luxury condos.

Every tax dollar spent on TIF is a dollar not spent somewhere else (or otherwise untaxed). We should be spending those dollars on smart projects with a real benefit.


The Edgewater is a smart project with real benefits.

I don't understand your reasoning at all. If a project helps the economy, and the public is in favor of the change to the city, who cares what the nature of the business is? Does it matter if it is a $5000 per night luxury hotel or a $.50 per taco food stand?

I think some people don't want a big hotel sitting at that location. Fine, that's a valid aesthetic choice. But then the rest of their thinking gets fuzzy - anything to kill the project.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby SimonBonadventure » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:56 am

Huckleby wrote:Canceling this project is not going to cause a manufacturing company to spring up.


I never wrote that canceling this project would cause a manufacturing company to spring up.


Huckleby wrote:BTW, who is the "We" that is going to start those companies? What is needed to help those people?


The "we" is the public/private sector partnerships. TIF is an example of this. Government loan guarantees would be another way that the public sector could partner with private interests to help small companies.

Huckleby wrote:Workers need to be trained to meet the skills that employer's demand. I believe that given the opportunity to work most people will work. Most people don't want to be a bum and leach off of society. Being poor is no fun. But the system we live is in a harsh one no doubt...

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby SimonBonadventure » Thu Sep 08, 2011 12:01 pm

At a certain point it does make a difference what type of jobs are created.

We are maxed out on restaurants and hotel gigs in Madison. We need labor intensive jobs that actually produce products that are in demand and can be sold at a profit.

Let's start making some stuff. Let's start making clothes, furniture, electronic gear, lawnmowers, golf clubs, musical instruments, and what have you.

Let's get our asses in gear.

I don't need another place to have lunch. We need some real businesses that actually make stuff that people need and want.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby SimonBonadventure » Thu Sep 08, 2011 12:10 pm

I have insider information that unless the Edgewater can become affiliated with a major hotel chain that it will continue to flounder.

A huge part of hotel reservations now come from the internet. The Edgewater has virtually zero presence online. Of course, under better management this could be corrected, but having a partnership with a major hotel brand is a tremendous help.

Among professional hotel managers,who run the largest hotels in the city, The Edgewater is a joke. The only thing the Edgewater has going for it is its magnificent view of the lake.

This is a bad project for the city.

We can do better. Much better.

I vote no on the Edgewater project.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby Huckleby » Thu Sep 08, 2011 12:41 pm

SimonBonadventure wrote: Let's start making some stuff. Let's start making clothes, furniture, electronic gear, lawnmowers, golf clubs, musical instruments, and what have you.


How does the canceling of a hotel project further this goal?

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby rabble » Thu Sep 08, 2011 1:14 pm

Huckleby wrote:
SimonBonadventure wrote: Let's start making some stuff. Let's start making clothes, furniture, electronic gear, lawnmowers, golf clubs, musical instruments, and what have you.


How does the canceling of a hotel project further this goal?

Did you read the part just before that where he says we have too damn many hotels?

"Let us stop making new hotels, move away from the service industry, and begin moving towards local small-scale manufacturing."

Somewhere along the line, we have to stop making places where rich people can go to feel rich. I'm fine with drawing that line at the Edgewater.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby jjoyce » Thu Sep 08, 2011 1:25 pm

So you favor an isolationist view of the world?

Sorry, but what a crock of crap! Madison needs downtown hotels if Madison hopes to attract people to travel here for play OR work. Do you really think that building hotels benefits the rich only? Have you ever been in a downtown hotel? Have you ever spotted the rubles rolling out of these joints?

They ain't rich.

As I pointed out elsewhere, ask the LOCAL BUSINESS OWNERS (you'd probably consider them "the rich") what they think about the new hotel in their neighborhood.

Maybe if they made it a hipster-tel people might like it.

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Re: Isthmus on Edgewater

Postby rabble » Thu Sep 08, 2011 2:12 pm

jjoyce wrote:So you favor an isolationist view of the world?

Sorry, but what a crock of crap! Madison needs downtown hotels if Madison hopes to attract people to travel here for play OR work. Do you really think that building hotels benefits the rich only? Have you ever been in a downtown hotel? Have you ever spotted the rubles rolling out of these joints?

They ain't rich.

How the hell many hotels do we need for cryin out loud? We're turning the whole damn town into one big fucking hotel! You like sucking rich dick? Fine. GO AHEAD! Don't feel bad because I ain't down there with ya.


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