The largest problem in Fort Wayne today is the fact that our wages are 83% of the national average. We need to attract more and higher paying jobs to Fort Wayne and we need to retain those that we have. If we can improve wages and employment in Fort Wayne then we can deal with some of our other problems.
The low wages in Fort Wayne hurt us in several ways:
1. Residents of Fort Wayne pay a greater percentage of their income in taxes then most other states. I have posted about this before. Fort Wayne residents pay a higher percentage of their income in taxes then the average California resident. This leaves us with less disposable income.
2. Many younger people are leaving Fort Wayne due to a lack of opportunities. This will cause us large problems down the road.
3. Residents do not have a lot of disposable income to spend.
4. Property taxes are rising rapidly and it is really hurting our ability to attract new businesses. This has to be resolved.
In my opinion we need our elected officials to focus on local jobs and wages. There is nothing else that is as important as this issue.
I think that we can attract and retain jobs by doing the following:
1. Lower taxes on businesses. I want to do this across the board. I am tired of granting tax abatements to a few businesses and ignoring small businesses. We need to lower taxes. The best first step would be to abolish personal property taxes in Allen County.
2. We need to streamline our permits and our regulations we put on business owners. Several businesses have left Fort Wayne because they did not want to deal with the "red tape."
3. We need to stop spending money and increasing the debt our local government has incurred. We should only incur debt if it will draw new jobs and money to this area. Extraneous projects need to be put on hold.