Though it's called a "Neighborhood Improvement Zone," Allentown's tax incentive is just another gimmick designed to make the rich richer on the backs of those who can least afford to pay. The housing that surrounds this publicly financed construction is still a third-world wasteland. But that may change.
At a recent meeting in the Butz conference room that attracted about two dozen suits, like flies to shit, the rich have been shamed into contributed about $1 million. This meeting apparently included a DCED Deputy Secretary.
It's not all philanthropy. With a neighborhood partnership tax credit, the suits can write off somewhere between 75-80% of whatever they kick in, while looking like they give a shit. Detials are supposed to be announced sometime in May, from what some of the suits say.
I'll believe it when I see it.
Two of the rich guys you'd expect to be there, NIZ twins J.B. Reilly and Joe Topper, were strangely absent.