Monday, May 30, 2016

Thinking Through The Big Box

So I sent the following Public Information Request to the City of Greensboro on May 29, 2016:

"In 2 parts.

1.Please send me the names of those who have applied for loans through the City of Greensboro's "Big Box" initiative?

2. And please send me all who have received loans under the "Big Box" initiative?


To prove I really sent it:

So I wait....

Could it be the "Big Box" initiative as approved by Mayor Nancy Vaughan and the Greensboro City Council back in 2014 was in-fact a one time favor for her dear friend and campaign contributor, Marty Kotis of Kotis Properties?

Yes, a few low paying retail jobs came to East Greensboro to a shopping center long owned by Mr Kotis but as Kotis continues to buy properties all over town with plans to develop years into the future why is it he couldn't afford to fix up the shopping center he already owned?

Kotis seemed to have no problem buying the City owned Dorothy Bardolph Building in downtown Greensboro since then.

Kotis is currently attempting to buy an East Greensboro property that belongs to Guilford County.

So I got to wondering, with Kotis spending all this money lately, opening restaurant after restaurant, building Midtown and all the other things he's into, why is it that just a couple of years ago he was so tapped out he had to borrow money from the City of  Greensboro to repair a property he already owned?

And is he the only one?

Just as soon as the City of Greensboro sends me a reply I'll tell you what they said.

Update: June 1, 2016, I get the following e-mail from the City of Greensboro:

Well, thus far Kotis is the only developer to borrow money through Greensboro's Big Box Initiative in 2 years but as Ms Carter points out in her e-mail the program is "dependent upon funding availability." I wonder why no other developers have applied for these market rate loans?

Also included in Ms Carter's e-mail was Greensboro's Urban Development Guidelines should you want to read how it all works.