Everyone, including Deval Patrick, knows that these give-aways don’t influence business decisions; he told me so himself, he said so in the newspapers. Even Ranch Kimball, who presided over the corporate feast under Romney, is quoted as saying that “Fidelity never told him of a single factor that would make a difference in their job-location decisions. There was nothing we found that was the key. Obviously, keeping a healthy, vibrant city matters a lot. But other than that, there was no magic bullet.”
These corporate bonanzas do the opposite: they starve budgets for the services that make cities and states attractive to businesses — as well as to residents, which we are losing. I know that Patrick knows that. Why is he even considering this boondoggle? This is very alarming.
The “business incentive” pit is the first place to look for the $700 million of misspent money he promised to find for his programs.
He should say, “Note to Fidelity: The big Massachusetts give-away is over. Take your package in Westlake, Texas; have a good time out there. When you want to be in a vibrant environment, with plenty of decent housing and good public schools and public transit and well-cared-for natural and cultural resources, with an educated labor force and good markets for your products, where everyone plays by fair rules and everyone pays their fair share, we’ll be creating exactly such a place, right here, and your business will be welcome.”
I hope the BMG community, having helped elect him, will take on responsibility for keeping our Governor true to the values he professed, and we ascribed to him, during the campaign. So far, I see that we’ll have a full-time job doing so.