Sunday, June 28, 2009

Council Member Cuts Through Growth Myths of May Town Developers' Scare Tactics

If you need some prep work in the run up to Metro Council's July 7 public hearing on the May Town Center proposal, look no further than CM Emily Evans, who turns over some stones in the developers' report and unpacks their numbers. As with most data, it must be mined to come to a well-informed interpretation free from the bias of Giarratana salesmanship:
We need to do the best possible job we can attracting and retaining employers but I have always found the argument that Williamson County was stealing our tax base to be a little misleading. A friend of mine says it is sort of like comparing the growth of your 18 year old with a 3 year old. Given that skepticism, I wanted to take a closer look at the question of tax base growth ....

Of ... $5.158 billion [growth in the last 15 years], $3.651 billion was a result of growth in residential and farm assessments. That's right, 70% of the growth in Williamson County's tax base is attributable to home and raw land values. The growth in commercial and industrial assessments accounts for $1.261 billion during the 15 year period or about 24% of the total. Their growth in the commercial area is certainly significant but not to the degree that May Town developers would like you to believe.

Of course, I doubt you would find Williamson County's theft of our subdivisions to be that terrifying.

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