Sprawl will kill us all.
In the final act of a three act play, orchestrated by corporate chieftains and played out by foolish bureaucrats, the series of tax breaks and “development deals” finalizes with the CEOs laughing- and the taxpayers not getting what they were promised.
Reynolds & Reynolds used to be entirely in Dayton. Then a rift between then CEO Dave Holmes and then Dayton Mayor Mike Turner started Holmes on a shopping trip for a new location. Kettering offered a great deal- and Reynolds first spun off “Relizon” (now “WorkflowOne”) to Kettering- then got a deal from Dayton to move them back to the old Sears location across from Riverscape (2 tax break deals and counting) – then the deal with Dayton Public Schools to buy the HQ and the buildings on Washington Street (Deal three) so that they could then move everything to Kettering. The city begs- and gets a bone thrown to them- the former Elder Beerman store will become the TAC- funded by CityWide (Deal four)- only for Reynolds to now bail on location- figuring that paying lower income taxes in Kettering- not having to deal with parking- or the City is cheaper than staying the course. 400 jobs move out- and the city stands with yet another empty building with almost new class A space (maybe CareSource will sublet it- if their building isn’t done on time).
Reynolds and Reynolds Co. told Dayton city officials Wednesday morning that it is leaving downtown Dayton, moving 400 jobs to its campus in Kettering.
The company intends to relocate its Technical Assistance Center (TAC) operations from leased space in downtown Dayton to the Reynolds and Reynolds headquarters at the Research Park in Kettering.
The move will occur gradually during the next several months. Dayton city officials did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
The move will bring the total number of employees working in Kettering to about 1,500….
In February, Steve Budd, CityWide president, said that Reynolds still has 11 years left on its lease at Courthouse Crossing and would more than likely try to sublease it if it decided to move operations to Kettering.
Otherwise, Reynolds would have to continue to pay for the space, Budd said.
“It’s the energy the employees project that makes the downtown vibrant,” Budd said. “If they were not in the space, that would have repercussions.”…
Courthouse Crossing is owned by New York-based ACG Equities LLC, which bought it from CityWide Development Corp. in 2004 for $16.2 million dollars.
CityWide still manages the property, which also houses a CVS Pharmacy, the United States Postal Service, Boston Stoker and Roly Poly sandwich shop.
The zinger on this story- maybe if the City had spent as much time and money on the basics: schools, streets, safety, recreation- and found ways to live on less than the 2.25% income tax- maybe companies would want to locate in Dayton.
An architect/builder told me long ago- “you can’t build anything good on a bad foundation.”
Dayton’s problems aren’t going to be solved by “economic development”- they’ll be solved when we take care of the basics better. It’s time to shut the slush-fund CityWide Development down, and work on doing government 101.
Reynolds & Reynolds TAC: 2001?-2008 R.I.P.