Handing out multimillion-dollar subsidies to large chains has become commonplace in much of the country. But when governments use public money to woo national chains, economic growth and job creation are negligible, and independent retailers suffer, Stacy Mitchell argues in this commentary for Business Week.
In Missouri, a coalition of independent businesses and union members are backing a bill that would reform the state’s tax increment financing (TIF) law and put an end to subsidies for suburban big box stores, shopping malls, and other sprawling developments. TIF allows a municipality to issue bonds to pay for part of the costs of a new development. Future tax revenue from the development is then diverted from the public coffers to pay off the bonds.… Read More