To the editor:
Tuesday’s letter to the editor titled “No gain” says there is no economic benefit to adding a new business in Lawrence.
The main premise seems to be that economic growth is a zero sum where all financial transactions net to zero. If that were true U.S. GDP would not have grown by about 50 percent in ten years. Economic growth occurs by increasing the economic pie.
The arguments offered sound like “communist central planning” versus “free market” economics. There is a presumption to know Lowe’s demographic criteria better than they do. After all, Lowe’s is the one investing in and betting their financial future on Lawrence. Lowe’s sees future growth for Lawrence. We should be shouting hurray, an outside company has faith in Lawrence’s future.
If we have empty storefronts, ask why. Could it be the product offered is not desired by the public or could not stand up to competition, that Lawrence’s cost of doing business is excessive? Could it be the national economy?
For years Lawrence has complained about “sales tax shrinkage.” Lawrence’s sales taxes shrunk dramatically with the opening of the Legends in Wyandotte County. Why? Because they have sales outlets not available in Lawrence.
Many people also travel to Topeka to shop at Lowe’s. Lowe’s wants to come to Lawrence so they can be convenient to their local customers.
Lawrence has an opportunity to improve both our economy and our reputation as a welcoming community willing to work with businesses wanting to relocate here. Let’s not waste the opportunity.