Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Chattanooga Corporate welfare goes to the next level

This is almost unbelievable but not so much anymore I guess. Our elected officials are quite happy to represent themselves as solving "problems" created for the benefit of real estate developers. I guess that is what a few good lobbyists get you....plus the inevitable campaign contributions.


Earlier this month, CBL hired a five-member platoon of lobbyists from Miller & Martin law firm to push the bill, according to Tennessee Ethics Commission records. The lobbyists are Mark Smith, Dan Elrod, Holly McDaniel, Mandy Young and Dale Allen.

CBL’s tax proposal has received favorable support from some local politicians.

“The city has no reason to delay it,” said Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield. “We want the mall to be updated as soon as possible.”

In addition to the new fee, CBL has considered borrowing funds through the Chattanooga Industrial Development Board, Mr. Littlefield said.

Chattanooga City Council Member Jack Benson, who represents the Hamilton Place mall area, praised CBL’s plans and predicted the new development should help raise property values and generate more tax revenue for the city.