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Old 10-31-2011, 10:23 PM
 
6,907 posts, read 4,382,615 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike7586 View Post
If we are investing in our future and working on a solution, it will be much easier to convince companies to relocate here... we have low taxes, we have a great airport, we have the universities, we have amenities (shopping, dining, entertainment) other metros in the South don't offer... so what do you think is holding us back if it's not traffic/quality of life???

Fact is all of the metro areas we compete with have a transportation sales tax. These places are all expanding transit and roads, while we do nothing and it amazes me how many people are planning to vote "no" when we finally have the opportunity to do something.
It looks like Charlotte put together a better incentives package.
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:29 PM
 
4,387 posts, read 3,957,778 times
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Quote:
Yes, I realize other places have worse traffic than Atlanta, but these other places offer alternatives to traffic (mass transit) and/or are building new roads/updating interchanges, etc.
This is true, but you also have to think about the fact that when all things are equal, companies will probably tend to favor the location with less traffic. What we have to think about is all things are most definitely not equal.

What I mean is, say we were competing with Tampa and they had traffic just as bad. It's very likely that Tampa is still going to win. It has cheap labor, an even milder climate (okay, it gets slightly hotter in the summer, but they have beautiful winters to make up for it) and it's near the beach! There's also not a state income tax, so you can get away with paying employees even less. Whenever you look at jobs in Florida, they always defend the lower pay by saying, "but there's no state income tax here!"

What I am saying is traffic is only one piece of the puzzle. It's a very large piece, but just a piece. Atlanta can fix traffic, but we still haven't levelled the playing field when competing with a city like Tampa. We have to do even more. We have to stop resting on our laurels as being the hub of the southeast and realize that companies can and will move to other nearby cities. I'm not disagreeing that we have to fix traffic, I'm just adding that we have to a lot more than just that.

Just think, if you had to go back and tell 500 employees you were moving them to a new city, which do you think would be easier news to break....you're moving to Atlanta, or you're moving to Tampa? We simply have to be aggressive at making sure we remain competitive.
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Old 11-01-2011, 05:47 AM
 
11,135 posts, read 7,002,406 times
Reputation: 5582
Quote:
Originally Posted by MathmanMathman View Post
It looks like Charlotte put together a better incentives package.
I doubt it was drastically different than GA's. NC is pretty discriminating when it comes to incentives and doesn't just give up the goods for any suitor that comes along unlike some other Southern states. Being that these are high-wage white collar jobs we're talking about and not low-skilled, low-wage call center or distribution center jobs, I'm sure it was about more than just incentives.
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Old 11-01-2011, 06:56 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
969 posts, read 1,081,954 times
Reputation: 618
Quote:
Originally Posted by MathmanMathman View Post
It looks like Charlotte put together a better incentives package.
Yeah, I'm sure that had something to do with it... but you keep missing my point... this is from your original post:

"According to the ABC, Chiquita was concerned about Atlanta's quality of life. They wanted a smaller metro like Cincinnati and Charlotte fills the bill. They are also worried about Atlanta's traffic and the ability of their employees to commute in a reasonable amount of time."

They are not the first company to be concerned about the above either.
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Old 11-01-2011, 07:00 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
969 posts, read 1,081,954 times
Reputation: 618
Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
This is true, but you also have to think about the fact that when all things are equal, companies will probably tend to favor the location with less traffic. What we have to think about is all things are most definitely not equal.

What I mean is, say we were competing with Tampa and they had traffic just as bad. It's very likely that Tampa is still going to win. It has cheap labor, an even milder climate (okay, it gets slightly hotter in the summer, but they have beautiful winters to make up for it) and it's near the beach! There's also not a state income tax, so you can get away with paying employees even less. Whenever you look at jobs in Florida, they always defend the lower pay by saying, "but there's no state income tax here!"

What I am saying is traffic is only one piece of the puzzle. It's a very large piece, but just a piece. Atlanta can fix traffic, but we still haven't levelled the playing field when competing with a city like Tampa. We have to do even more. We have to stop resting on our laurels as being the hub of the southeast and realize that companies can and will move to other nearby cities. I'm not disagreeing that we have to fix traffic, I'm just adding that we have to a lot more than just that.

Just think, if you had to go back and tell 500 employees you were moving them to a new city, which do you think would be easier news to break....you're moving to Atlanta, or you're moving to Tampa? We simply have to be aggressive at making sure we remain competitive.
Personally, I'd prefer Atlanta. I'm not a fan of living in Florida... it's nice to visit though. I agree though that we need to stop resting on our laurels... because we are "the hub of the South" we think companies are automatically going to choose us (which was once true, but not anymore).
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Central FL
1,382 posts, read 2,032,306 times
Reputation: 1152
If you wanna play, you gotta pay.

Sometimes you need to spend money to make money.

The above post is correct: when it comes to attracting white collar jobs, you have to offer a high quality of life. I've seen Director and above level employees move to FL, and then go right back "home" up North because they couldn't adapt to Florida.
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:26 AM
 
Location: East Cobb
2,205 posts, read 4,310,892 times
Reputation: 873
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovedfromFL View Post
The above post is correct: when it comes to attracting white collar jobs, you have to offer a high quality of life. I've seen Director and above level employees move to FL, and then go right back "home" up North because they couldn't adapt to Florida.
This makes sense. I find both native Southerners and transplants who were personally highly motivated by weather considerations tend to overestimate the value of a mild winter to other prospective transplants. Weird as it may seem, a lot of people consider quality of life to have many ingredients, and saying goodbye to snow boots does not by itself translate to a lifestyle upgrade for everyone.
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:44 AM
 
Location: Sandy Springs, GA
1,010 posts, read 1,177,725 times
Reputation: 706
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovedfromFL View Post
If you wanna play, you gotta pay.

Sometimes you need to spend money to make money.

The above post is correct: when it comes to attracting white collar jobs, you have to offer a high quality of life. I've seen Director and above level employees move to FL, and then go right back "home" up North because they couldn't adapt to Florida.
This is so true. I am sure the citizens of metro Atlanta know this, but something is telling me that it is something deeper.

I keep hearing different individuals on this board complain about the tax rate, but why do areas that have higher taxes (i.e. NYC) have a lower unemployment rate than Atlanta? Because of the INFRASTRUCTURE AND QUALITY OF LIFE!

You people who plan to vote NO for the transportation tax better re-evaluate your decision or it will be "game over" for Atlanta.
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Old 11-01-2011, 11:40 AM
 
6,907 posts, read 4,382,615 times
Reputation: 1695
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeyondInfinity View Post
This is so true. I am sure the citizens of metro Atlanta know this, but something is telling me that it is something deeper.

I keep hearing different individuals on this board complain about the tax rate, but why do areas that have higher taxes (i.e. NYC) have a lower unemployment rate than Atlanta? Because of the INFRASTRUCTURE AND QUALITY OF LIFE!

You people who plan to vote NO for the transportation tax better re-evaluate your decision or it will be "game over" for Atlanta.
I think you are jumping to conclusions. The high growth places like Las Vegas, Atlanta, Charlotte, Orlando...have a lot to lose in the booming housing sector and it came crashing down. We just had more to lose than many other places. I mean Charlotte's unemployment, 11.1, is higher than Atlanta's 10.4.

I think the transportation tax supporters are more motivated by their love of rail transit and will use anything to justify it.
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Old 11-01-2011, 03:02 PM
 
2,832 posts, read 2,485,947 times
Reputation: 1250
Yeah, I think people are too quick to pin our current doldrums on things like infrastructure and QOL. I mean, look our neighbors unemployment rates:

Alabama 9.8%
Tennessee 9.8%
Georgia 10.3%
North Carolina 10.5%
Florida 10.6%
South Carolina 11.0%

As I've said over and over again, all of the recent (last 12 month) job losses can be attributed to three sectors: finance, government, and construction.


However, infrastructure and QOL are very, very important longer term, and things we seriously need to address.
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