Letter: Commissioners’ giveaway to big business

Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 23, 2022

Regarding the $27 million incentive being offered for Project Rabbit, Rowan County Commission Chair Greg Edds is quoted in the Jan 19 Salisbury Post as saying, “I’ll say we’re doing well financially as a county so we can go after companies like this …”

If the county is doing so well financially, why have our commissioners not reduced property taxes, which are 6.6% higher than those in Mecklenburg County and 9.6% higher than those in Wake County? Republicans are always saying that taxes are the people’s money and they should be allowed to keep more of it. So why does a Republican-controlled county have higher taxes than two controlled by Democrats?

I would ask our county commissioners to consider that by offering “incentives” like those described for Project Rabbit they are selling Rowan County short. It’s like offering the boy next door $100 and the use of your brand new SUV to take your daughter to the prom because you don’t think she can get a date on her own merits even though she is attractive, smart, well-liked and outgoing. Why can’t we just pitch the assets Rowan County has like quality of life, reasonable cost of living, infrastructure, educational resources, labor availability and proximity to recreational and cultural resources?

Years ago, I overheard a salesperson in my company offering a customer enhanced services at no cost if they would sign a contract immediately. When confronted about this by their sales manager, the salesperson claimed our company was incompetent and they couldn’t sell our services without lying and offering “sweeteners,” despite the fact that other sales people were doing exactly that. If you don’t have faith in the product you offer and don’t feel you can sell it on its merits, you should move on, as this salesperson was asked to do.

— Thomas J. Strini