Sprawl-Busters Newsflash Blog - Anti-Sprawl news since 1998.
Subscribe to Sprawl-Busters Blog Follow Sprawl Busters on Twitter
Occupy Walmart & Order Al's Books Movies Newsflash! The Case Against Sprawl Home Towns Not Home Depot Victories Your Battles About Us Contact Us  

recent news

List articles
by the month:

2018
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2017
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2016
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2015
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2014
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2013
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2012
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2011
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2010
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2009
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2008
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2007
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2006
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2005
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2004
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2003
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2002
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2001
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2000
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

1999
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

1998
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC


Search database by text:

2005-04-24
Murphysboro, IL. Support For Anti-Wal-Mart Resolution Grows

My first contact with residents from Murphysboro came in mid-March, when a local resident wrote: "Walmart has a store in Murphysboro, Illinois. The town is in deep trouble financially and can not afford to lose the tax revenue from Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart wants to close their existing store (more blight for our fair city) and build a new superwalmart at the edge of town in a residential area (think curving country roads, wooded lots, golf course, deer). The Mayor wants it and won't even listen to us. Wal-Mart refused to comment on the rumors but now 1 or 2 weeks before the sale they are finally confirming it." Two weeks later, I received a second distress email: "Wal-Mart is trying to buy out our local golf course to build a supercenter. The place they are trying to put this supercenter is outrageous. This is a country club. This is the best part of town. This is were hundreds of people live, and now Wal-Mart will be in their back yards. Murphysboro is filled with small time shops and Wal-Mart will destroy this small town. HELP." A group called Friends for Fair Growth was created, and began holding garage sales to raise money to fight the world's largest retailer. They have also been circulating petitions to stop the superstore from locating in what The Southern newspaper describes as "heavily wooded, rural family neighborhood." The Friends has gathered more than 1,000 signatures of support -- and Jackson county officials are starting to notice. Two of the County Commission's boards, the health and safety and judicial and law, have both written resolutions indicating that the county does not favor a Wal-Mart Supercenter moving to the proposed location. "The location being discussed is not the optimum location," the Chairman of the health and safety committee chairman told the newspaper. "We see that (store) as a potential safety issue." The Jackson County Sheriff's office has also gotten involved, warning county officials that policing that area and the traffic congestion on the surrounding county roads will be difficult. These county resolutions will have no say in the ultimate decision, which will be made by Murphysboro, not the county. And there's the trouble, since Murphysboro Mayor Ron Williams is a Wal-Mart cheerleader. Williams sees Wal-Mart as a revenue-generator, apparently ignoring all the studies done that show most of Wal-Mart's sales have come from existing merchants. The Mayor is worried that Wal-Mart will move out of town, build its superstore somewhere else, and shut down its existing discount store in Murphysboro. "It would cripple us economically," the Mayor was quoted as saying. "I have to protect the city of Murphysboro." But how did the Mayor allow his small community to become so dependent on one retailer? And how much has the community lost in property and sales taxes from small businesses hurt by Wal-Mart? How many local grocery jobs will be lost when the supercenter opens? The Mayor has painted his town into a corner, and Wal-Mart is holding the paint brush.

What you can do: Murphysboro is a great example of what happens when you let one company dominate your retail sector. The Mayor is a hostage to Wal-Mart, and he has to beg them to stay. Without Wal-Mart, he says, the community is crippled. This is the consequence of years of bad municipal planning, when your tax base is dependent on a retailer that changes stores as casually as most people change shoes. If the Mayor has a broader economic development plan to help Murphysboro, he's not sharing it. He is "alarmed" at the prospect of losing his cash cow. In the meantime, how did his economy become so dependent on one merchant, and what happened to the rest of his retail tax base? Some residents at this point are wishing that the Mayor and Wal-Mart would leave town on the same train. For local contacts in Murphysboro, contact info@sprawl-busters.com










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

info@sprawl-busters.com
Strategic Planning ~ Field Operations
Voter Campaigns 
21 Grinnell St, Greenfield ~ MA 01301
(413) 772-6289