Saturday, March 10, 2007

Nationwide Auto Dealer Consolidation? Carbondale City Council vote

I caught the Brad's idea of trying to give Auto dealers a tax break if they add a new brand/line in Carbondale. At the time, I didn't know what to make of it. Looked like it was going to pass and then got voted down 1 to 6. OK, I filed it away for future reflection.

Yesterday, I read the big feature article in the Business section of the Post Dispatch (I would give you a link, but the stltoday.com webpage isn't working for me right now and I have to move on soon) about how car dealers are consolidating in to mega dealerships. I had heard this before and if my brain was working I would have understood what Brad was up to right away.

If the dealerships are going to merge into fewer in number, and more brands under one roof, do we want those dealerships to be located in Carbondale? As you know, car dealers contribute heavily to the sales tax base of Carbondale (or any city for that matter).

Where I didn't understand this at the time, I think what the Post article has just told us, is that Brad's idea is a sound one. If one of our auto dealers merges and moves to Marion, we are going to lose quite a bit out of the city coffers. If the same merger happens and the dealer moves to Carbondale instead, we will have a big gain in sales tax.

I'm a few weeks behind on my business magazine readings, but I'm trying to catching up. I wonder how Brad figured this out? Wish I had understood this a week earlier.

Maybe it isn't to late to act? Oh yeah, we have an election. Any good idea needs to be voted down until after it is over. :)

Once again, Brad's idea is ahead of the curve on how to improve Carbondale.

Your comments are welcome.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Heh, if it was such a good idea than why did all the local car dealers (who you say are going to benefit from this) speak against it at the council meeting?

Peter in Carbondale said...

No clue, but you are thinking the auto dealers care about Carbondale or are anything more then salesmen with big wallets? They are looking at today's sales and profit, next year is next year.

If salesmen ran the world, we would all be in big trouble.

Anonymous said...

They were against it because they did not want another competitor in town. If any one of the naysayers was in a growth mode, they would have been on board. The Ward guys are going to cause some competitive pain to the other complacent car dealers. They have physical room to grow. The other dealers in town do not. I think sometimes that this community does not want to recognize the market realities and be complacent. Think about where the new car sales growth is? It continues to go to the east of town. Anyone ever think about that? At least your community has a leader that does. Too bad his elected counter parts don't get it. Carbondale is funded by user taxes. Without continued growth of businesses that generates such, we might have to reinstate the city property tax as the other mayoral candidate has suggested. Don't let another HOT ROD run local goverment. The community will die from being nice!

Gary Walkup said...

Well, if car salesmen ran the world, we might be in big trouble, but if software engineers built cars, we might discover...


1. For no reason whatsoever your car would crash twice a day.

2. Every time they repainted the lines on the road you would have to
buy a new car.

3. Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason,
and you would just accept this, restart and drive on.

4. Occasionally, executing a maneuver such as a left turn, would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would have to reinstall the engine.

5. Only one person at a time could use the car, unless you bought "Car95" or "CarNT." But then you would have to buy more seats.

6. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, reliable,
five times as fast, and twice as easy to drive, but would only run
on five per cent of the roads.

7. The oil, water temperature and alternator warning lights would be
replaced by a single "general car default" warning light.

8. New seats would force everyone to have the same size butt.

9. The airbag system would say "Are you sure?" before going off.

10. Occasionally for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the
door handle, turned the key, and grab hold of the radio antenna.


11. Everytime GM introduced a new model car buyers would have to learn
how to drive all over again because none of the controls would operate in the same manner as the old car.

12. You'd press the "start" button to shut off the engine.

(Those are not original comments, they were attributed to the CEO og GM..but golly, I sure agree!)

Peter in Carbondale said...

In response to comment #3 -
I have often thought that ineffective governments go into meetings unprepared, so whoever comes to the meeting and yells the loudest gets what they want. A case in point is the Carbondale Park District.

Good comment.

In response to Gary's comment -
I heard about this list or something like it years ago and heard that Bill Gates started the whole thing. I found this link about Urban Legands http://www.snopes.com/humor/jokes/autos.asp

Wouldn't you know it, a good joke, but not true.