Talbot Wilson: Lowe’s and Home Depot should pay their own way | SummitDaily.com

Talbot Wilson: Lowe’s and Home Depot should pay their own way

Talbot Wilson

The Summit Independent Business Alliance opinion piece “Let’s take a harder look at Lowe’s and Home Depot” (SDN Feb. 18) raises a good question.

Why should Silverthorne taxpayers subsidize the construction of these building sites through the Enhanced Sales Tax Incentive Program?

Roberts and Lilly note that any company with 1,700 stores and $50 billion in sales should pay their own way. If it is not feasible for Lowe’s to come to Summit County without a tax kickback, then they shouldn’t come. The same for Home Depot. They should pay their own way.

The very businesses that these chains will displace were founded on the free enterprise system. The owners and employees are the working taxpayers who will be funding this unfairly subsidized competition.

My question to Silverthorne’s government and people is … If the purpose of bringing in these stores is to increase your sales tax revenue, why should these wealthy corporations get a sales tax credit?

Roberts and Lilly suggest that in the fiscal impact analysis that Lowe’s and Home Depot will be required to make should include the impact the big stores would have on each other as co-competitors. This makes good sense and the analysis should be county-wide, not just cover Silverthorne. A total county study will give a clear picture of what will happen if both of these stores move into the county.

Personally, I applaud the work that the Summit Independent Business Alliance does in the county. They explain why shopping local is important to the county, they help prevent the loss of independent businesses, and they work for entrepreneurs. I look for the SIBA signs and shop local whenever I can. It makes good sense for Summit County.

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