Economy

Where the heart is

Where the heart is

‘Eviction,” derived from the Latin word evictus means being subjugated or conquered by judicial means. It’s a harsh word. Eviction from a home is not a happy event. Eviction is no neutral institution, not a simple misunderstanding in a contract between two parties. Especially in poor neighborhoods, eviction is a process that often binds poor and rich people together in mutual dependence and struggle, writes sociologist and field anthropologist Matthew Desmond in his 2016 book Evicted.

Racism, more or less

Racism, more or less

Almost everybody, it seems, is, in principle, in favor of “fair share” housing, by which affordable housing choices for disadvantaged and poor people are geographically distributed. On practice,however, jurisdictions find no lack of justification for exclusionary policies.

A lot of big dreams

A lot of big dreams

What if an additional ten million dollars was spent in the immediate region with the focus on grants to demonstration projects and key intermediaries? The funds would go not for physical capital but for the strengthening of community-building human capital. What kind of transformation might that approach add to the mix? That could never happen, you say? You’re wrong. It’s already happening. Here and now.

Better rich than poor

Better rich than poor

In Ulster County, the top fifth of Ulster County filers had more income than the remaining four-fifths. Is that equitable? Like folks elsewhere, most residents would have a ready answer — probably based on their political beliefs.

Apples, oranges & anomalies

Apples, oranges & anomalies

What if you are uncomfortable with offering tax incentives to businesses to locate in your jurisdiction, worrying that the jobs you are competing for in exchange for those incentives might not be worth the losses in revenues to which you are agreeing? Worried about corporate welfare? What should we be doing differently to spur economic development? In Ulster County as elsewhere, the folks who give the tax breaks are pondering the answers to these questions.  

Scandinavian melodrama

Scandinavian melodrama

It’s ironic. Though discount carrier Norwegian Air is skating on perilously thin financial ice these days, its first full year of international service at Stewart Airport was not responsible for that red ink. On the contrary. Ending the year with a flourish, the airline’s year-end numbers signal an indisputable success at Stewart.

The world of inducement

The world of inducement

Governments at every level routinely offer consequential incentives to induce businesses to locate in the jurisdictions they favor. The premise is that these businesses will hire workers and help local economies. Sometimes these inducements pay off. Often they don’t.