Category Archives: Economic Development

Video: Sandy favors Scheels with $16.8 million tax deal

In January, we wrote about a special 25-year tax deal that Sandy has offered to Scheels, a sporting goods store. Watch this video report to hear what representatives from Sandy, Sutherland Institute, and a local business competitor had to say … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Video: Behind Costco’s Spanish Fork deal

  What if your next-door neighbor were able to pay zero sales taxes for 18 months ($2,000 for the average Utahn) and zero utility bills for four years – and you had to subsidize this arrangement? As we reported two … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Sandy favors retailer with a tax break – for a quarter-century

  Last Friday, we highlighted a special tax deal offered to Costco by Spanish Fork. Today, we highlight another deal offered in Sandy to Scheels, a sporting goods superstore, and analyze the rationale used to justify these kinds of deals.[pullquote]Government … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Costco deal unfair to other Spanish Fork businesses

  How would you like to pay no sales taxes for 18 months and no utility bills for four years? Sounds like a sweetheart deal, doesn’t it? Well, it is for Costco in Spanish Fork. The city has offered Costco, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

To grow Utah’s economy, start at home

  We have been critical of many of the state’s economic development programs designed to lure large corporations to Utah. For example, see here and here. But any legitimate critique of policy should be accompanied by a reasonable alternative. Today, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Government-created jobs? Pure fiction

  Jobs are a hot topic in politics these days. President Barack Obama is pushing his jobs plan; his Republican challengers are wrangling over who can create the most jobs; and Governor Gary Herbert has announced a goal to see … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Free market | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

KCPW brinksmanship shows how businesses dupe policymakers

  A very instructive interaction recently concluded in Salt Lake City between the city council and KCPW, a local nonprofit radio station. It helps illustrate how private-sector businesses can (and often do) dupe policymakers into giving them special, privileged deals … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Free market | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The price of a blender and the market economy

  The other day, I stopped at a yard sale with a friend. He had spotted a blender as we drove by and wanted to take a look at it. He picked it up, pulled out the glass jar and … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Free market | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Will the economics of nuclear energy work for Utah?

  This morning, during part three of Sutherland’s series of policy forums called “Is Utah Ready for Nuclear Energy?” a panel of experts discussed the economics of nuclear power generation. A Utah company is currently working to build a nuclear … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Energy | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Economic gardening: helping entrepreneurs grow Utah’s economy

  Last night, Ernst & Young presented Entrepreneur of the Year awards to nine Utah entrepreneurs who were recognized as being innovative and influential. This recognition is important because entrepreneurs are the engine of Utah’s economic prosperity. Entrepreneurs are creative, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Free market | Leave a comment

West Valley City to own $30 million hotel

West Valley City is providing a loan of $30 million to a private developer to build a hotel as part of the city’s Fairbourne Station project. If the hotel fails, then the city will be responsible for covering any losses. … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Economic Development, Free market | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Does Utah have enough water to support a nuclear power plant?

Yesterday, Sutherland hosted the second of three forums on nuclear energy in Utah. In this session, we discussed water requirements and water resources needed in the proposed nuclear power plant near Green River, Utah. Sutherland President Paul Mero interviewed three water experts, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Environment | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Sundance Film Festival brings much more than money to Utah — and you may not like it

  The Sundance Film Festival brings a lot of economic activity to Utah, but is the festival something the state should endorse using tax dollars and legislation? A recent report estimates that the 2011 Sundance Film Festival produced $70.9 million … Continue reading

Posted in Drugs, Economic Development, Family | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

GOED board meeting: 2 new subsidies, bratwurst and ‘economic gardening’

At this month’s meeting for the Board of the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED), the board approved two new corporate tax subsidies and discussed efforts to grow businesses in rural Utah through an approach called “economic gardening.” The … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Free market | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development gets a D+ for transparency

This morning, I arrived at the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) to attend a GOED board meeting at 10 a.m. No one was there. Apparently, the meeting had been postponed until May 26. The funny thing is that I … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Development, Transparency | Tagged , , | 2 Comments