Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Making the groceries

It takes a lot of public money to build a boutique grocery store. Robert needs a little more, in fact.
Robért’s Fresh Market is asking for a tax break for the store it plans to reopen at St. Claude and Elysian Fields avenues, telling city officials that renovations have been costlier than expected.

Representatives for the company on Tuesday asked the city's Industrial Development Board for a 10-year freeze on the site's property taxes, which otherwise would likely rise sharply after the store is back in business. They said that without the freeze, the store wouldn't even break even until its fourth year of operation.
They're asking to do a $33,000 PILOT which would mean about a $2 million per year tax break over ten years. They'll probably get it. It's how everything gets done in this city. Notice, though, they've already gotten plenty. 
The 27,000-square-foot grocery store and 14,000 square-foot retail outparcel are being funded with a mix of federal and state historic rehabilitation tax credits and financing from the HOPE Federal Credit Union, which specializes in fresh food initiatives.
It's a good thing the city and state aren't hard up revenue or anything. Not when there are so many of us poors running around paying the highest sales taxes in the country. We're a generous people. We take care of our landlords and business leaders first.  Somebody should tell Amazon about this. Maybe they'll figure it out. They do groceries now too, right?

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