To the editor:
Plans to further restrict retail development in Lawrence are foolhardy and unnecessary. Retail businesses do not fail because someone else provides a similar product. They fail because they do not offer the buying public the products it wants at the time or the price it wants to pay.
With the "proposed" retail restrictions, City Hall may as well hang out a big sign saying "Retail? Do not come to Lawrence."
How many new jobs have come to Lawrence paying $10 per hour or more in the last six years? How many new employers has the city enticed? The Legends and Nebraska Furniture Mart are now hiring all the people they can find starting at $10 to $11.50 per hour. Where in Lawrence can our recent high school graduates and Kansas University students get jobs in retail or food service industries paying that amount?
Recent analysis of sales tax revenues and school levies show that Lawrence is headed in the wrong direction. How is it neighboring counties can lower their property tax levies and their school districts can pay better wages to their teachers?
Large retail stores pay a large share of our tax revenue, unlike four of the five largest employers in Lawrence, who pay no taxes. The city should reject this "proposal."