Conventional Wisdom is Better Than None at All
The
Carlton Hotel is cutting back, Atascadero Ford is closing it's doors, and many other shops ranging
from book stores to restaurants are now closing. A cannot help but wonder if the delaying of Walmart
played a significant role in these economic disasters. Out of town People need familiarity in order
to take the time to pull of the highway and spend money. How many recognizable
business icons create the desire to stop in our town. It would seem to me that fear of economic growth
is the true lack of wisdom in this debate. The "size, power, and impact on retail" is going to be
beneficial and advantageous to our community, not detrimental.
It's a little presumptuous to assume Walmart will decrease the
wages of other establishments. It wasn't too long ago when the large food chains increased the
cost of employee health insurance to the point that many people had to leave. In some cases
there were families with over a $1000.00 a month loss in wages and benefits from the big three.
When You hear the opponents of Walmart speak of the "Big-Box Swindle" they neglect to mention these
facts.
Mr Comar complains about the business ethics of Walmart while neglecting to mention the tactics
of the food chains such as putting high sugar items at children’s eye levels and spending millions
of dollars a year on studying the art of human manipulation through scent, color, sound, availability,
and other environmental factors such as "not to beat items". I don't recall Walmart ever having
a regional lockout to put the squeeze on there employees neither. By not allowing Walmart in, we
might as well lock local businesses out of their own shops. Maybe we could be the whopping 31st
city to sustain growth without a Walmart, but the odds are against it and Tom Comar has yet to
offer a practical solution to these economic issues or an explanation to all of the businesses
that are dying or have already gone under.
Mr. Comar states "trips to the grocery store are at a far greater frequency than those for
general big-box or specialty retail, and even membership clubs like Costco." So in his
Own words, the decrease in mileage and fuel consumption appear to be tremendous. Not only that,
but while addressing the public in 2005, Walmart CEO, Scott Lee told the public Walmart was
Trying to eventually go 100% renewable energy, while decreasing waste and trying to sell items that will
sustain our resources. They are at least making an effort to decrease their environmental footprint.
It seems they are perfectly willing to work with the findings of the EIR before they break ground
on the project. This is evident by the fact that they have already decreased the size of the
original layout twice as well as footing the costs of the EIR.
Mr Comar claims "Under the lens of economists, environmentalist, academia, independent and small
business associations" that Walmart will negatively impact our community. Could it be that someone
needs to clean their specs? I was at the town meeting and was pleased to notice the
Chamber of Commerce, members of various city commissions, small business owners, firefighters,
and citizens were advocating for Walmart. I really do not believe all of these folks think
"the world is flat" or that they just came out of the "Dark Ages". Further more, very little
representation was there in opposition to Walmart.
Business will increase, revenue for schools, roads, emergency services, parks, and
recreation will increase. Walmart does not intend to build in the downtown area and will not
impact the old town feel of our community. look at the business district surrounding the
Walmart in Paso Robles. Look at all the business surrounding the Costco in San Luis Obispo.
Every attempt is being made by the planning commission and Walmart to minimize the environmental