UPDATE: interesting op-ed published today in the Business-Journal on the topic. The debate continues:
"... participation in the program by Niles, Warren and other government entities represents some of the worst public policy we’ve seen locally in years. And we’ve had an arena-side seat at some of the worst.read more of their perspectives here.
The Regional Chamber’s decision to accept a donation from the Cafaro Foundation to write another $250 check to eligible autoworkers also is bad policy. The chamber’s participation – and public trumpetting of the incentives – contradicts its mission to promote regional economic development by steering new residents to buy homes in Trumbull County but not in the other counties that the chamber also represents."
"Ultimately, however, the program smacks of unfairness – picking a select class of workers to benefit. Are the hundreds of workers a large employer might occasionally bring to this area more deserving than the employees – whether handfuls or dozens – added regularly by smaller businesses?"
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Today it was announced financial incentives would be given to GM employees relocating into certain jurisdictions within one of the counties in the five-county Mahoning/Shenango Valley metro region.
Described here, the Eastwood Mall is giving $250 in cash to anyone moving into Trumbull County (other malls are in the non-trumbull counties), with another $250 from the Cafaro Corporation (who owns the eastwood mall). An additional $500 tax deduction could also be taken if the third-shift factory workers decide to live in either the cities of Warren or Niles.
So while this post won't delve into the larger philosophical argument of using financial incentives to pit jurisdiction against jurisdiction, I would also encourage any individual of family considering a move to the Mahoning Valley to check out the city of Youngstown as well.
While in six months you may have a couple hundred in your pocket, in Youngstown you could every often get double the home for half the price.
The Youngstown metro market is a simple case of economic supply and demand.
A region with a shrinking population = more chances to live in houses which in other markets would be ridiculously expensive.
I ride my bike though Youngstown's neighborhoods all the time and the quality and craftsmanship in these houses are unbelievable.
Stone. Brick. Stained Wood. Arches. Pillars.
Here are some photos from the neighborhoods of North Heights and 5th Avenue on the north side, Boulevard Park and Handel's on the south side, etc.
I know people who have lately moved into the city after relocating from other places in the U.S., and they are just amazed at the quality of houses (and the vibe of the neighborhood) which they are able to afford. Other cities did not provide the same opportunities.
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But, setting apart the material wealth of the city's housing stock, it's the people that really make neighborhoods valuable in addition to the homes.
For that additional reason, I choose Youngstown.
If you want to become a part of one of the beautiful neighborhoods in the city, then welcome in. Especially if you want to be a part of a passionate community who feels their better days are still ahead of them.
I can walk to the rose gardens in the city everyday.
I can walk to campus and listen to jazz concerts.
I can bike to the Chevy Center for events.
I can walk to downtown and eat at the restaurants.
I can stroll though our beloved and enormous Mill Creek Park every single day in the city, taking a different path each time:
So while a couple hundred bucks in the pocket would be nice, an ever sweeter deal is surrounding yourself with both physical beauty and good people.
I choose Youngstown.
Thousands others choose Youngstown.
care to join us in our city?