Flying High since 1998.

No Corporate Welfare for Cootie Brown's Bristol Tennessee

by Lewis Loflin


June 25, 2015 Bristol Tennessee: local press reports are hopeful that Cootie Browns restaurant will soon open. Located on the Volunteer Parkway at the location of the old liquor store the project has been stalled and limping along for over two years. The press report notes that they don't even have their certificate of occupancy.

There is already a Cootie Brown's in Kingsport and Johnson City. What the real celebration is are 150 high-paying high-tech jobs. Oh, excuse me I meant part-time low-paying jobs. What makes this interesting is no corporate welfare package from the city.

Unlike several restaurants in Bristol Virginia including an ice cream stand that got $25,000 no taxpayer money is going into this project. It seems Bristol Tennessee is a little more sane than Bristol Virginia.

Compare this to the Cabela's retail store being located at exit 5 in Bristol Virginia. This project is costing the taxpayers $100 million in subsidies and grants. In one case a $17 million check to the company.

Now they have finally announced that we will be getting 150 mainly part-time and seasonal jobs. What am I missing here? Think about it - $100 million for 150 low-end part-time and seasonal jobs. And all of this was started mainly to compete with Bristol Tennessee to pull tax revenue away from its Pinnacle Development.

The Pinnacle has done nothing more than shutting down the existing Bristol Mall about a mile away. Parks Belk has relocated there in Tennessee while officials are claiming the creation of new jobs. This is just part of the ongoing lies and conceit passing for economic development.

Reference Bristol Herald Courier June 25, 2015.

Quoting Ed Barlow before the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce,

"Seniors create low-wage service jobs. They tend to withdraw from working, and they generally don't create new wealth. A retirement community strategy has long-term negative economic consequences unless there is a diverse economic base of other employees around it...A significant component of your economic future in Sullivan County is recruiting Hispanics, making sure they get highly educated and integrated into the community."

In 2011 Bristol-Tri-Cities was ranked number 5 in the 10 poorest cities in America by