A solution to Nimbyism?


Machjo
#1
How would the following idea work to counter Nimbyism?

A municipality can declare itself a free economic zone. By doing so, it enjoys a tariff and quota free status on all imports and no business tax on certain categories of businesses, but it must also accept anything other municipalities don't want. Airports, sea ports, prisons, rehabilitation centres, nuckear plants, landfills, etc. Etc. Etc.

That would be deal, and any municipality would be free to take it or leave it. How would that work out?

Of courseI'm not talking about lowering safety standards, but merely that as long as the safety standards are met, the FEZ would be the NIMBY dumping ground.
 
petros
#2
Like Shenzen?
 
Machjo
#3
Quote: Originally Posted by petrosView Post

Like Shenzen?

Yes and no. Shenzhen is a special economic zone, but different SEZ around the world enjoy different privileges and responsibilities. I'm not aware that Shenzhen is used as a NIMBY dumping ground.

That said, it might not be a bad idea. After all, Shenzhen enjoys special privileges that other parts of China don't, so why not accept certain special obligations along with those privileges?

Though one thing in Shenzhen's case is that the central government and not the municipality of Shenzhen made the choice.

My idea would be that the democratically elected municipal council would decide whether to declare the municipality a FEZ. But without obligations, every town in Canada would declare itself a FEZ, but with an anti-Nimby provision, then a municipality would need to think harder about it.
Last edited by Machjo; Oct 24th, 2016 at 11:29 AM..
 
Corduroy
#4
How are you going to get the NIMBYs to agree to declaring their municipality a "free economic zone"?
 
Machjo
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

How are you going to get the NIMBYs to agree to declaring their municipality a "free economic zone"?

Tax breaks.
 
Corduroy
#6
Ah, that speaks right to the NIMBY heart.
 
Machjo
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

Ah, that speaks right to the NIMBY heart.

Some people would happily pay less tax to have a prison, nuclear power plant, sewer treatment facility, airport, military base, etc. in town.

And municipalities wouldn't need to squable anymore since everyone would know that all other factors being equal, the FEZ would host any undesirable industry since its businesses pay less tax.

Recessed municipalities might jump on such an offer to revive their stagnant economies.
 
Cannuck
#8
Good luck changing the MGA
 
Corduroy
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

Some people would happily pay less tax to have a prison, nuclear power plant, sewer treatment facility, airport, military base, etc. in town.

And municipalities wouldn't need to squable anymore since everyone would know that all other factors being equal, the FEZ would host any undesirable industry since its businesses pay less tax.

Recessed municipalities might jump on such an offer to revive their stagnant economies.

OK, but is this a problem? Maybe in small towns, but do major metropolitan areas have this problem?

Metro Vancouver has airports, seaports, sewage treatment plants and landfills all in the area. The main airport is in a suburb just south of the Vancouver, the seaport is right downtown, there are landfills both near and further away. One sewage treatment plant is right next to the airport and another is on an island in the middle of the river in the heart of the metro area.

Municipalities in Metro Vancouver have all the unwelcome services they need and a lot of them aren't reliant on industry within their municipality, but the economy of the region as a whole and property values. Property value in the suburbs depends on the absence of unseemly facilities. Surely we should add property value to the chief concerns of NIMBYs alongside taxes.
 
Machjo
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

OK, but is this a problem? Maybe in small towns, but do major metropolitan areas have this problem?

Metro Vancouver has airports, seaports, sewage treatment plants and landfills all in the area. The main airport is in a suburb just south of the Vancouver, the seaport is right downtown, there are landfills both near and further away. One sewage treatment plant is right next to the airport and another is on an island in the middle of the river in the heart of the metro area.

Municipalities in Metro Vancouver have all the unwelcome services they need and a lot of them aren't reliant on industry within their municipality, but the economy of the region as a whole and property values. Property value in the suburbs depends on the absence of unseemly facilities. Surely we should add property value to the chief concerns of NIMBYs alongside taxes.

Perhaps. I'm just brainstorming.
 
Corduroy
#11
It's not a bad idea. Special economic zones already exist to an extent. Even on a smaller scale than you're proposing, municipalities zone areas on the city according to what people want there and their future plans. Unfortunately, so many of our cities have grown without plans or plans that lag decades behind reality.
 
Machjo
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

It's not a bad idea. Special economic zones already exist to an extent. Even on a smaller scale than you're proposing, municipalities zone areas on the city according to what people want there and their future plans. Unfortunately, so many of our cities have grown without plans or plans that lag decades behind reality.

I think another problem is the good of all. For example, allowing high density mixed developments and building more walking and cycling oaths can significantly benefit the poor, but many insist on low density segregated suburbs and more highways to get to work far away because they don't want it close to home.

And then they refuse to pay higher taxes to help the poor. Yet we can say had we allowed more market freedom, the poor wouldn't be so poir in the first place.
 
Corduroy
#13
I think we're going to experience a cultural shift away from low-density suburbs. Cities are pushing density and Millennials are more amiable towards it. The strong insistence on raising families in a quiet and distant subdivisions is falling away to reality. In Vancouver new developments are being marketed as close to amenities and busy city life.

Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

Yet we can say had we allowed more market freedom, the poor wouldn't be so poir in the first place.

Oh don't you start with that.
 
Machjo
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

I think we're going to experience a cultural shift away from low-density suburbs. Cities are pushing density and Millennials are more amiable towards it. The strong insistence on raising families in a quiet and distant subdivisions is falling away to reality. In Vancouver new developments are being marketed as close to amenities and busy city life.



Oh don't you start with that.

Don't get me wrong. The rich do need to pay taxes to help the poor through education, housing, etc.

All I'm saying is that in some cases the reason for poverty is not a lack of government support but rather NIMBY or SOBBY (some other bugger's backyard) regulations. Not always, but it can be a factor in some cases.
 
Remington1
#15
Interesting concept to nimbyism actually. There are many things I don't want in my backyard, but I also don't want to pay for them not being there, plus it seems that nimby makes it okay to indirectly say 'I'm better than you', so I'm segregating out of my vision, no? My cure to living minus the homeless, half-way houses, prisons, etc.. is if in a city then live in a neighbourhood where the real estate is far to valuable for the feds or municipality to afford to buy anything there. Or you can always move if it becomes too much, otherwise, live and let live and accept the unfortunate.
 
Corduroy
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

All I'm saying is that in some cases the reason for poverty is not a lack of government support but rather NIMBY or SOBBY (some other bugger's backyard) regulations. Not always, but it can be a factor in some cases.

The causes of poverty are diverse. They are both situational and systemic. I've never really heard someone say NIMBYism is a cause of poverty. Unless you mean the NIMBYs tend to also be against government programs to mitigate poverty. I know in Metro Vancouver homeless shelters are opposed due to NIMBYism, but the impression is that they attract homeless people, while the reality is that the homeless people are already there.
 
Machjo
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by CorduroyView Post

The causes of poverty are diverse. They are both situational and systemic. I've never really heard someone say NIMBYism is a cause of poverty. Unless you mean the NIMBYs tend to also be against government programs to mitigate poverty. I know in Metro Vancouver homeless shelters are opposed due to NIMBYism, but the impression is that they attract homeless people, while the reality is that the homeless people are already there.

Governments caving to opposition to homeless shelters definitely is one example of zoning and ither regulations hurting the poor, though that hurts only the most destitute.

Another is opposition to higher density construction. It reduces housing supply and pushes house prices up. Another is opposition to allowing mixed development and so potentially forcing the poor to buy a car or travel farther to work and so have less time to study, work extra hours, spend time with family and friends, etc.

All of those are examples of NIMBYism in opposition to a freer market.

That said, deregulating the free market alone doesn't suffice. The poor need skills training, and hand up etc. too.

Even the minimum wage can hurt unskilled workers.

What I could see would be an officially recommended minimum wage. If you hire someone at below that wage, you must him of his right to quit and apply for social assistance without penalty. That way, an unskilled worker can choose the more generous offer between your offer and the government's. If your offer is better than the government's, why should the government legislate you into even greater poverty.

This way, if the government wants you to quit your job and seek social assistance, then the onus would be on it to offer you more generous social assistance.

Whereas an obligatory minimum wage can garm an unskilled workers, an officially recommended one can help him.
 
petros
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by MachjoView Post

Some people would happily pay less tax to have a prison, nuclear power plant, sewer treatment facility, airport, military base, etc. in town.

Of course, they create jobs that pay well. People who get paid well tend to spend more.
 
Machjo
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by petrosView Post

Of course, they create jobs that pay well. People who get paid well tend to spend more.

True. While others who already have good jobs don't want these institutions anywhere near them and so block the opportunities from those who could benefit. An FEZ situation could quell political opposition by saying, look, you'll tolerate all of these institutions around you but you'll get an FEZ tax break in exchange for it. Meanwhile, the unemployed around where you live will enjoy more job opportunities cheaper housing (due to less stringent zoning), etc.
 

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