Letter to the editor: ‘Abracadabra poof’ – 500 New Jobs at Waterview!

parsippany focus

lettersDear Editor:

On Tuesday, August 20, the Parsippany Council will again discuss a new proposed ordinance to rezone the 27 acre “Waterview property” located on the corner of Route 46 and Intervale Road. The rezone will permit commercial strip malls, big box retail and high density residential townhomes to be built on the property.

The Parsippany administration supports this rezone since they have been told by the developer it will be good for the economy and will bring in 500 new jobs.

Previous letters from Citizens for Health, Safety & Welfare stated concern that an objective fiscal economic impact study has not been provided to Parsippany tax payers. Studies (http://www.ilsr.org/wp-content/uploads/2008/12/bbtk-factsheet-jobs.pdf ) have shown that local big box jobs are created at the expense of taxpayers and local small businesses, resulting in negative ratables and job loss (from small businesses within 5 miles).

Municipal officials mistakenly believe big box is a form of economic development (http://www.economics.missouri.edu/working-papers/2002/WP0215_basker.pdf). A newly constructed mega strip mall does not increase the amount of money a community has to spend. Sales at these stores often result is sales losses at existing small businesses and elsewhere. Furthermore, there is a false perception that hundreds of new jobs have been created, since the new employees are very visible wearing fresh smocks, . . . while layoffs are occurring throughout the small business community as they quietly disappear.  Small businesses typically provided better pay and health insurance compared to most big box jobs, . . . jobs that are part time and without benefits. It has been well documented that big box retail does not provide spill over to the local economy since big box have their own wholesale distribution systems, web designers, advertising professionals, accountants, lawyers, and they do not buy locally (http://www.ilsr.org/key-studies-walmart-and-bigbox-retail/#4).

If this proposed Waterview zoning change goes through, developers all over town will be asking for the same accommodation.  This would not only change one neighborhood for the worse – it will change YOURS, too!.

Come to the public hearing at Parsippany Hills High School, 20 Rita Drive, Tuesday, August 20 at 7:30 p.m.  Demand to see an independent fiscal analysis, before the Town Council votes on this “Overlay Abomination.”

Citizens for Health, Safety and Welfare
John Beehler, Parsippany
Len Cipkins, Parsippany
Dave Kaplan, Parsippany
Dick Young, Parsippany
Jackie Bay, Mountain Lakes
Nancy Du Tertre, Mountain Lakes
Gretchen Fry, Mountain Lakes
Margaret Gossett, Mountain Lakes
Ron Owens, Mountain Lakes