Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Make Yourself an Informed Citizen

Learning about city government isn't really enjoyable for most of us. It can be very confusing and dull. However,  it is something we must do if we don't want other people wasting our money.

If you don't learn about government, you are trusting that people you don't know will act in your best interests. More often than not, the interests of government are to expand while becoming more intricate and complicated. Look at the biggest cities like Dallas, Los Angeles, or Houston. No one citizen could ever get a handle on those big monsters.

Economic development and how best to stimulate the local economy is something we all need to understand because so many cities try to bring in business while wasting a lot of citizen money (please read about the Gateway in the sidebar for an example).

Learn about the various economic development / corporate welfare tools available with this TPPF guide.

Read pp 44-55 on the local programs to get a good overview of the tools McKinney is using, like TIRZ, property tax abatements, 380 agreements, MEDC, MCDC, and hotel tax. The guide also gives the pros and cons of each tool, as well as ways the state can tweak the tools to be more citizen-centric.

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