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Saturday, August 2, 2008

Greenville's Bid for Fed Ex Could Boost Economy

Greenville SC Downtown and Skyline

The Greenville-Spartanburg area may win in the contest between it and Guilford County, NC or Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Gaining the new hub from FedEx could mean 470 new jobs, and an investment in our area of $110 million.

Each of the areas will bid for the giant employer, offering incentives such as a reduction in taxes to be paid by the company and other considerations. FedEx then decides which town to choose.

In the past, this kind of bartering backfired on several towns, once with an incredible offer to bring Google to Hickory, NC. There were no requirements as to the type of business the incoming branch would be, and after giving them every kind of tax incentive and cash awards you could think of, Google ended up building a huge warehouse full of nothing but data storing computers and a handful of employees to maintain them.

Guilford County has offered FedEx incentives worth almost a million dollars, but will make it contingent on a minimum amount of jobs and money invested in order to receive the payment. Greenville will have to make its package more attractive.

Let's hope we can win the bid and bring in hundreds more great paying jobs to boost the economy, and perhaps sell a few extra hundred Greenville SC homes.