Sunday, September 25, 2005

Working Together for Good Jobs

Mayor Ford, Councilwoman Grachek, Commissioners President Skeldon-Wozniak, and I are supporting the responsible, private efforts of the Westgate owners in their redevelopment efforts, including a potential Costco store. Research on the company yields an impressive track record of profitability, sustained employment, and respectful treatment of employees. A Westgate Costco store would mesh with the new design standards adopted in the Walk Westgate plan, and generate a huge increase in consumer traffic to sustain local small businesses. Over and above the dignity for 200 Toledoans in good jobs with above-average wages, longevity, vacations, a bonus, and health and pension benefits, the income taxes of 200 new Costco employees would help close our budget gap, assisting us in the delivery of city services, among other valuable community & economic benefits.

The Costco Way from Business Week Magazine

Jim Hightower

Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Carty Finkbeiner threatens Costco and Westgate redevelopment. At a Westgate forum tonight he rejected Costco in his opening statement and repeatedly throughout the evening. Carty's choice is Whole Foods, whose CEO has compared unions to herpes (click here). Whole Foods at Westgate would threaten the good United Food and Commercial Workers at Krogers. Click here for more info on how Whole Foods treats it's employees.

20 Comments:

Blogger liberal_dem said...

I find it curous that a group of politicians are discussing and suggesting which retail stores should be built on a private piece of property, Westgate.

Will the owners of the Westgate property be influenced in any substantial way by the remarks of politicians? It seems to me that the only way that the owners would pay attention would be if there were incentives offered to them to construct structure A rather than B. After all, businesses are most interested in THEIR bottom line.

That being said, one can only hope that Carty has more concern now for the concept of 'workers' living wage' than he did when he promoted union-busting Wal-Mart to locate in the Toledo area.

One needs to remember, just because Carty now calls himself a 'Democrat,' doesn't make it so.

7:36 AM  
Blogger !@#$%^& said...

The situation with Westgate is a perfect example of when government needs to stick to fixing potholes, and leave private business to take care of itself. The property is privately owned, and properly zoned, but the politicians will somehow get in the way and screw it up, and then find a way to blame any lack of progress on somebody else. Is this what passes for leadership?

10:33 AM  
Blogger billy said...

"I find it curous that a group of politicians are discussing and suggesting which retail stores should be built on a private piece of property, Westgate."

"That being said, one can only hope that Carty has more concern now for the concept of 'workers' living wage' than he did when he promoted union-busting Wal-Mart to locate in the Toledo area."

So we dont want politicians to dictate which businesses are put up on private property, but we DO want the government to dictate what said PRIVATE businesses are to pay their employees?

12:23 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

billy,
are you arguing that wages that do not allow a person to support a family should be ignored by government... and since when was Costco a govt. entity?

Dan

6:12 PM  
Blogger billy said...

"are you arguing that wages that do not allow a person to support a family should be ignored by government"

Yes I am. I do not believe that the government should come in and tell a private entity how much to pay or not pay their personnel.

A couple questions for ya

define 'a family'. Is this a couple? A couple with 2 kids? A couple with 5 kids and a set of parents?

Does this 'living wage' idea apply to all jobs?

6:54 PM  
Blogger !@#$%^& said...

Billy-

Would that be the living wage law that applies to projects funded by city dollars and therefore has nothing to do with Costco/Westgate?

7:30 PM  
Blogger billy said...

dunno - how 'bout you address the question to liberal_dem who brought up the concept of a living wage to begin with?

9:05 PM  
Blogger !@#$%^& said...

Thought you might have more fun with that than L/D.

7:18 AM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

And then? There is this

Here

9:32 AM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

I'd also point out this article on Whole Foods, it has a bit of a different view.

Here

As an example:
Mackey feels strongly that dramatic pay differences between the front lines of companies and the executive suites are corrosive over time: Executives and the employees who do the day-to-day work end up with completely different perspectives. At Whole Foods, executive pay is limited to 14 times the average pay of frontline workers. Frontline employees qualify for stock options, and the company says 94% of options go to nonexecutive staff.

However, I don't think politicans belong in the decision of which store goes into Westgate. Nor do I believe in whole neighborhood forum aspect of commercial development. Yes you should be a good neighbor and inform those around you what your intentions are but at the end of the day? The City nor the neighbors are the ones that own the property.

The whole concept of the living wage is great in theory, however if in the end nothing comes in? There is no wage. Sometimes I think forget that in our rush to demand things from companies who really don't have to locate here. If the wage market was high enough in the area then new companies would have to meet or exceed that to get qualified workers.

9:55 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

Lisa Renee, I appreciate the Whole Foods article - it adds perspective to a hot-button.

12:52 PM  
Blogger Robert B. Scott, esq. said...

Here is another article detailing Whole Earth's business philosophy.

http://www.reason.com/0510/fe.mf.rethinking.shtml

In the article, Whole Earth's founder and CEO, John Mackey, debates Milton Friedman and Cypress Semiconductor's T.J. Rodger on the social responsibilties of businesses.

What do have against Whole Earth, Frank?

1:32 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Billy, I am not strong on overly zealous government. Please remember that if government had not intervened, we'd still have slavery because it was good for many private businesses as they paid their personnel NOTHING. We’d still be selling asbestos, leaded fuels, and allowing 12 year olds to work 12 hour days… Sometimes the role of government is to help protect citizen’s basic rights which can be eroded by the power of wealthy business entities… what is good for business owners is not always good for the community. Its not that black or white.

Don't sound so stupid; you know darn well what most people think a family is. You sound stupid when you say things like "a couple of questions for ya,” You typically have a really strong idea of what a family is, in other postings. And since when is it your right to judge how many people or who constitutes a family? Bottom line is that if you cannot take care of your kids, it is not a livable wage. Maybe indentured servants would help the bottom line of a Walmart? I think we can and should expect better as Americans. The many should not serve and grovel for the few. I think that was called Feudalism ‘back in the day’

Dan

12:25 AM  
Blogger billy said...

so in your mind the kid at a grocery store who bags my groceries deserves a paycheck that could support a family? Or are there some jobs out there where the return does not justify what some group of people has decided what is a 'living wage'?

My second question on family size eluded to what criteria go into determining just what constitutes a living wage. some people can live on a lot less than others. And frankly, some jobs are not designed to be manned by someone who is looking for full time employment. At one time I worked my full time job and a part time job just to supply some extra bucks. I didnt demand the video store I worked at pay me some princely sum just so I could stand there and check out movies. I understood that the service I was providing didnt merit such a return.

when I was a teenager living with my folks and had no expenses, I had more disposable income while earning the minimum wage than I do now!

If you feel these questins are too stupid, feel free to ignore them. I post them in effort to stimulate honest debate, but if you only wanna name call, I can deal with it.

9:23 AM  
Blogger BrianInVero said...

I'm curious as to why you, Mr Democrat PAC, has allowed the Democratic Party of Toledo to endorse Carty "let me hold your wallet for you while I beat you with this coffee cup" Finkbeiner?

Why would Carty carry the endorsement if he was such a bad person for the job?

I'll say this, the endorsement told me a whole LOT about Jack Ford's presence as a Democrat now! And now, my dear Frank, what shall you do for your hero?

5:12 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

BrianinVero,

Great question, sincerely.

Carty was assured the endorsement in the summer of 2004 when the Kest gang, which controls the apparatus of the LCDP, changed the by-laws to deny any municipal candidate a pre-primary endorsement - upending decdes of traditional support for Democratic candidates. The Kest gang is trying to overturn the results of 2001, sadly.

The question before the voters is this...are they willing to put the same group that let Ray Kest and Carty Finkbeiner get away with everything, including breaking the law, back on 22.

Our side needs to work and win in November - it's just that simple.

8:18 AM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Kest is gone. I believe Carty gave him the nod to be successor, but beyond that I don't think he is related to the party anymore. If you have evidence otherwise Frank, please bring it out. Otherwise your constant "Carty and Kest gang" rhetoric only hurts you.

Now, given only the choice of two democratic parties in the final, I have to say the PAC seems to have more credibility when you see which elected officials bought into it, and that the official party brings ranting like this:

http://lucasdems.org/news/frontpagenews.htm

There may be some decent points in there somewhere, but it sounds like one man's diatribe. Who's editing this "news"?

11:30 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

Aaron, the obvious:

John Irish, longtime kest deputy, on Carty's website as grassroots coordinator - that's the least of his connections with both Carty & Kest. Literally, there are dozens of Carty workers who were Kest workers, ditto for contributors.

11:39 AM  
Blogger billy said...

Oh come on now - change one word and that last sentence is just as true: "Literally, there are dozens of Ford workers who were Kest workers, ditto for contributors."

9:05 PM  
Blogger BrianInVero said...

Frank,

Do you know if Toledo is the only community in the Democratic Party family that's divided? Especially at extremes like an "A" team and a "B" team?

Any word from Howard Dean over this?

How can a political party be focused on the needs of the community when this needless infighting distracts from the path of success for Toledo?

I wonder if the day will come when Ray Kest will be deleted from all references of Toledo Politics. He's become quite the successful time share salesman in Naples, Florida and I highly doubt he'll be rearing his head in Toledo anytime soon.

4:56 PM  

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