The way my travels fell meant I got back to back posts for sales tax because of the release schedule. So the question is: what have we learned? Well if somebody can explain to me the way the city is breaking out the report and why that makes sense, I would appreciate it.
The big month is finally here! We now have a month with sales tax numbers reflecting the increased sales tax rate for the Grand Forks. We are all so happy that we could… Alright, enough of that. The results are somewhat to be expected. From the May 2018 total June was down over $200,000. Costs go up with the sales tax increase and people and businesses adjust if they are able. The more problematic part really is that June 2018 is down almost 1% fro June 2017, more than $120,000. These are not outcomes we particularly like even though they are somewhat predictable.
Travel the last few weeks left me with little time for blogging unfortunately. I presented a paper at the Western Economic Association meetings in Vancouver and then there was some travel in the Midwest. I’ll rant about erratic internet connectivity in Canada later. I’ll be blogging tomorrow about the Midwest Big Data Hub Meetings at the UND campus held today and tomorrow, including my presentation so stay tuned.
Trade policy is a hot topic right now with the global system clearly moving away from a more open system to a more closed system rife with tariffs and retaliatory tariffs, and I am sure pre-emptive retaliatory tariffs (if you see this out there I claim ownership of the term). Rather than some abstract reasoned argument, which typically favors free trade in my opinion, I thought we should look at the data. I know, I know. What do I hope to accomplish by bringing facts into the discussion.
I am forgoing the typical numerical analysis for the purposes of the current post and just trying to reason through the problem that is economic development and economic development policy in Grand Forks. I got to spend some time in other cities over the last few days and so I have some fairly fresh points of comparison in mind.