Management & Operations

States fail to connect development, transportation

Posted on September 18, 2003

A 50-state study released last week finds that not one single state coordinates its economic development spending with public transportation. The study, "Missing the Bus: How States Fail to Connect Economic Development with Public Transit," also finds that 46 states fail to even collect data on subsidized corporate relocations and therefore cannot determine if their economic development incentives are undermining job access for low-wage workers. "Our findings are deeply troubling," said Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First, a non-profit research center that released the study. "They also suggest a wasteful lack of coordination between state development and transportation agencies." Although states have more than 1,500 economic subsidy programs and states and cities spend more than $50 billion a year for economic development, none encourages or requires companies that receive the subsidies to locate at transit-accessible places. The study recommends Location Efficient Incentives, or using development subsidies as a carrot to get companies to locate jobs where they are accessible by public transit. The full report can be viewed at www.goodjobsfirst.org.

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