What if thinking regionally can benefit CC and Douglas?
The competition between Douglas County and Carson City for retailers seems to be intensifying, but it leads to the question of where it will all end.
Competition is normally a healthy force, but what if, as Carson City suggests, working together on a regional tax sharing plan would result in more revenue for both counties?
First off, it would have to be determined if that is true, and we like the city’s idea to bring in a private consultant to find those answers. The state has a complicated sales tax distribution system under which Carson City relies on sales tax produced within its boundaries. The situation is different in Douglas County, which draws sales tax revenue from a statewide pool.
Still, Douglas County, with all of its open land and millions in redevelopment funds at its disposal, seems to be holding most of the cards in attracting new retailers. The most recent examples appear to be Kohl’s and Sportsmen’s Warehouse. Yet both Carson and Douglas are spending a lot of money and energy competing with each other for retailers. Those resources might be better spent elsewhere.
Sharing and cooperation, for the mutual benefit of both parties, would have benefits beyond money. It would also help defuse the animosity between the two entities and perhaps could lead to more cooperative efforts beyond attracting retailers.
That’s why it’s important to know on a factual basis what, if anything, can be gained financially from thinking and acting regionally. And it’s why both Douglas County and Carson City owe it to their residents to agree on a consultant who can deliver those answers.