Believe it or not, there was a time not so long ago, that businesses actually paid their own way. They did not expect, nor did they receive, any incentives from government. In this recent election, the County Commissioner's rejection of the TIF for Costco was an issue used by their opponents. We have come so far down the path of subsidies, that those who dare to oppose these giveaways, are accused of costing the community jobs, and taxes for the future. Over the years, Allentown gave out dozens of KOZ's that never produced one dime or benefit for the taxpayers. For example, the former Cata garment building on Linden Street was given a KOZ when it became a self storage facility. It was then purchased by the city for the arena, and is now part of the NIZ. Between the KOZ and the NIZ, the taxpayers are shortchanged for 41 years. It could even be longer, if down this road the NIZ turns into XYZ. All these programs have a very real cost to the taxpayers. The government units must make up this lost revenue in other ways, either by fees or taxes. When you buy a ticket for the new arena, what's it really costing you?
photo: Hamilton Street in 1956, before KOZ, NIZ, TIF, and CRIZ