Friday, October 30, 2009

Fact Check, Keith Wilkowski Plan for Toledo

It was interesting reviewing the 39 page Keith Wilkowski Plan for Toledo; (see "Review") (at top of document, click on Review or Data) it became apparent that he has completely reversed his thoughts on effective government processes from when he was a county commissioner and member of the school board.

First he said no to incentives to spur economic growth and home improvements…
Now he says yes, it is a good policy

His plan is heavy in incentives to end blight in neighborhoods and to encourage business growth. However, as a school board member, he blocked every attempt to offer tax incentives to advance business in development zones and to homeowners.

11/4/88 Toledo Blade: Mr. Wilkowski says his opponent’s support of tax abatements for businesses has been wrong, too. “Tax abatement is counterproductive, it takes from the schools. And I question its usefulness in attracting business. … I would be opposed to any county-level enterprise zone that uses it.”

10/5/86 Toledo Blade: Keith Wilkowski, a member of the Toledo board of education, sees the tax breaks for home improvements in the enterprise zone as ill conceived. “[Tax abatement] is not an incentive for homes at all,” he said. … Mr. Wilkowski believes the school board should have some control over abatement requests.

First he said he wants more regulations to grant school boards control over incentive packages; now he says the Charter needs to be revised to cut the "red-tape" some of which he was directly responsible for creating!

Mr. Wilkowski Not only did he oppose tax incentives (abatements), but wanted the school board consulted when it was considered, so he pushed for legislation giving some control to the school boards when incentives were discussed.

6/19/87 Toledo Blade: Keith Wilkowski, a member of the Toledo board of education … wrote the report … limiting tax abatements in enterprise zones to manufacturing facilities.

Also heavy in this plan is a one directional approach to economic growth: Alternative energy. The majority of the plan directs incentives, efforts and regulations to Alternative energy with a minor consideration to technology -- which he event does a dotted line to Alternative energy. Though this is the word of the day, this is not a sustainable plan. Any economic plan in successful communities is directed to a diverse base of strategies for economic growth. Read through this outline of his plan, where does he show any effort towards anything but alternative energy? Why would he not embrace the Meta-plan established by the leading economic development minds in Toledo?

No comments: