Fair because the taxes that are being lost could be used to bolster the schools and other services in the distressed, predominantly African-American communities that many of those construction workers will likely come from.

“That’s the problem for a very revenue constrained place like Memphis,” Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First, told me. “We looked at the PILOTs in Memphis…we found that 14 percent of the property tax base is lost to PILOTs…

“To make up for that, you have to raise (property tax) rates on everyone else, or you have to cut services…”

And as far as struggling places go, a lot of people are living in them.

According to Economic Innovation Group – an organization that examines ways to improve the economic and social fortunes in communities – 66 percent of Memphians live in distressed neighborhoods.

By: Tonyaa Weathersbee, The Commercial Appeal

Read the full article here.

Distressed Communities Index (DCI) 

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