Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Letter to the Editor: Mayor Drew Job Creation Claims are False

Letter to the Editor:

Let’s get down to business. Not that I would go any other way, but specifically, Middletown Business. Dan Drew posted an interesting Facebook posting, claiming he was the keystone to having FedEx Ground come here to Middletown. I take issue with that, and while we’re going down that road, let’s hit a few more points as well. First, I agree, FedEx coming to Middletown will create jobs, which is great. How many jobs that is?

 Well, Dan Drew says 1,000. I say substantially less, and here is why: Fed Ex Ground for those that don’t know, is indeed owned by FedEx, however the trucks and drivers, are contractors and sub-contractors. Guy A comes along with a Truck, or Trucks, and signs a contract to haul packages for certain routes. Guy A either does it himself, absorbing all costs (Fees, Permits, Registration, Insurance, and Uniforms), and either hires employees through his business, or as stated, does it himself.  Most of these Owner/ Operators, are already established in New Haven County, because FedEx Ground currently operates out of Wallingford. Most are estimated to follow FedEx when they set up shop in Middletown. Again, the businesses and employees of those businesses, do not live or operate in Middletown. Some are even registered in other states all together. Nevada is a popular one. But alas, yes FedEx will have employees to work at the facility. Some may come from Middletown, but most will not. Ask Aetna, the previous resident of the property. 80-85% of the employees who worked at the facility, commuted from surrounding towns. One last area of concern to address: The Tractor Trailer Trucks, who haul double 28’ Pup Trailers from Hub to Hub, typically called Linehaul in the industry. Guess who owns them? Sure FedEx owns the Trailers, but the Trucks are again, Owner/ Operators, who mostly own a few trucks, and hire individual drivers who they pay by the mile. Many of these truck owners are not even from Connecticut, but other business friendly states, where they can keep at least some of the costs of business low. Finally, what is FedEx most guilty of? The jobs that will become available are Part-Time & Seasonal. Under 30 Hours, and no benefits. Some may pay $11 and higher, but in Connecticut, it’s been proven you have to make $24.44/ Hour to afford a 2 Bedroom Apartment. That all said, let me qualify: I am a CDL Class A License Holder, that has 1.2 Million Miles under my belt driving Trucks. It’s a lucrative business, but FedEx is not the way to a decent living. Kudo’s for the jobs, but Dan Drew, you did nothing to bring them here. The space was available, it fit their vision of a grander expansion plan, and they are a multi-billion dollar company that can absorb your crazy high tax structure.

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That folks is how Dan Drew can, and has sat back, and blown smoke up everyone’s ass! Look at the big picture of business expansion in Middletown, and you will see, since Dan Drew took office, Price Chopper, Big Lots, Petco, Dollar General all came to town. All are Multi-Million Dollar businesses, that took advantage of available space, because it fit their greater business plan of expansion, and because they are so large, they can absorb Dan Drew’s crazy high taxes, that the Local business owner cannot. The fact is that very few Local Business owners have prospered during Dan Drew’s administration. And here’s a shocker: Not all of it is Dan Drew’s fault. It’s not. The overall economy in America sucks, the unemployment rate is at levels that most of us have never seen, but damn it, I can’t let him off the hook completely, Dan Drew’s raising taxes has just made an hard situation incredibly more difficult, and thus it sends the message that we aren’t a business friendly City. Sure if you have a wallet so large you have to hire a guy to carry it for you, come on down, and we’ll help you build whatever you want. But if the SBA is involved and loans are being discussed, and you’re pulling money from every direction you can; don’t expect the City to help you. The businesses I mentioned have their own revenue which whether it comes from that store, or if that store needs help, all the bail outs are internal, and Dan Drew doesn’t lose any sleep at night if your boutique makes it or not. The bottom line is, this is wrong! We need to become a business friendly city, in spite of what the state or national situation is. If it takes tax abatements, or even deals where taxes can be suspended in favor of job creation (real job creation); solutions can be made when people get together and think positively for the betterment of the city they love.

If you are serious about creating jobs, and ending homelessness, and poverty in the City of Middletown, it’s going to take players that have a vested stake in the city that they love, that they grew up in, that generations of their families go back in and were involved in making what we are today. Dan Drew, that is not you, and from meeting with your “fellow Democrats” they are half-heartedly in this game too. Except two people, because I give credit where it is due. Hope Kasper, and Tom Serra. These are two individuals that the fire burns bright for the residents of the city of Middletown, and at least on the Council, there has to be a balance of Democrats and Republicans.

It’s getting down to the wire, and Dan Drew will tell you everything he possibly can to get your vote, even shockingly, yes, lying. He will deliver babies, and feed the homeless, and help the elderly cross the street, all in an effort to get your vote. Just so on Nov. 4 he’ll turn around, kick his feet up, and enjoy the next 4 years destroying a City he is not from, and doesn’t give a damn about.

On Nov. 3, Please Consider Writing In Brian E. Clark for Mayor, and Writing In Hope Kasper for Common Council. Also, Vote Row B for Council, P&Z, and Board of Ed..

I am Brian E. Clark, and I approve this message!

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