1 July 2003

Ellman To Soak Scottsdale for Millions

What a shrewd financial operator Steve Ellman is. While cities across Arizona, including Phoenix, Glendale and Peoria, beat back plans for new Wal-Mart stores, Scottsdale wants to toss a subsidy worth $150 million or maybe more to Mr. Ellman so that a Wal-Mart can be built on the old Los Arcos Mall site. The Scottsdale City Council will cast votes Wednesday on the proposal.

Ellman has held the site hostage in retaliation for the Phoenix Coyote arena fiasco and has threatened to leave it a bare eyesore or worst, giving the land to Sheriff Arpaio to turn into an alternate "tent city" jail facility. Nearby residents are understandably miffed at the whole ordeal.

Ellman's position is further strengthened by recent changes in state law that make it more difficult for the city to condemn and acquire the property via eminent domain laws.

What is risible is KFYI Charles Goyette railing against the evil of corporate subsidies and welfare to be doled out to a flimflam developer. I imagine if the city dared to apply the eminent domain laws, he'd be wallowing against the oppressive thug tactics of a local government disregarding any respect for treasured property rights. I suppose a story like this is a win-win deal for any naysayer radio talker.


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