This article by the Dayton Business Journal was spot on.
Lt. Gov Fisher coming out with that childish statement “NCR stands for No opportunity to Communicate or Respond” was the icing on the cake.
His defensive posture belied the fact that his office has not done anything to attract or retain business in the local area. Just coming out on TV and saying that Dayton “has a lot to offer businesses” cannot deflect the fact that more are moving out than in. Strickland spent his stimulus dollars on other budget line items = all of those other 2009 budget considerations he could not pay for with current tax dollars. Stricklands’ “casinos in the sky” failed at the ballot box and thereby failed to rain cash from the heavens to save his budget crunch.
Enter Obama Stimulus Cash. Has any state stimulus cash been actually spent in Dayton yet? No!
Dayton’s residential and business community has collapsed around NCR and the tax incentives provided by Georgia were not the only consideration. The unfriendly business climate, declining property values, lack of funding for local schools and colleges, all were part of the overall equation.
While NCR will be identified as poor corporate citizens by those who have been negatively impacted by their departure, they truly must have had salient reasons for leaving Dayton in the way that they did. Picking up and leaving has an incredible cost for a corporation to bear in the near term. They responded to all indicators that pointed to even more troubling times ahead for Dayton.
My hope is that our leaders find a way past their childish, knee-jerk actions to identify immediate relief for the displaced workforce and substantive change for the Dayton business climate.