Seattle has been falling apart for weeks now. CHOP has taken over the city. There have been shootings. And, the mayor is doing nothing about it. Did the mayor really think that the companies feeding into the economy would stay for all of this?
Now, companies are looking to take their business elsewhere. They don’t want to have their headquarters in a city of political unrest.
One of the biggest to announce that they’re moving not only out of Seattle but out of Washington is Smead Capital Management, a billion-dollar investment firm.
They’re taking their money with them and heading down to Phoenix, Arizona. One of the reasons why they’ve chosen to move is because the city of Seattle no longer offers a “downtown community.”
The Capitol Hill Occupied Protest (CHOP) has been more than a disturbance. If there have been shootings, robberies, rapes, and even a death reported within the autonomous zone. Meanwhile, law enforcement has been unable to respond to any of it.
President and CEO Cole Smead says that Seattle may have lower taxes but Phoenix offers lower cost-of-living and easier candidate recruitment. He explains, “My colleagues can pick the socio-economic rung of life that they want to live their lives, build their households, and have a family if they’d like… Where we’re coming from just wasn’t like that.”
According to the firm’s annual report in 2019, they manage over $1.3 billion. The taxes from that will certainly be missed in Seattle, but Mayor Jenny Durkan is still cowering in fear and allowing CHOP to run the city…right into the ground.
It’s only a matter of time before other companies start to see the writing on the wall. After all, it’s hard to proudly call Seattle home right now. Even for residents, it’s more of a mutter when being asked where they live. Seattle is the laughing stock of the country because of how long CHOP has been allowed to stay. No one expected it to still be going on.
Seattle is home to a number of Fortune 500 companies including Alaska Airlines, Starbucks, Nordstrom, and others. There are plenty of other companies of notable size there, too – Trident Seafoods, F5 Networks Tableau Software. The list goes on and on.
No company wants to be in a city where there are murders and robberies happening on a regular basis. It’s bad for business. Additionally, the “community” is gone from the downtown area.
CHOP has taken over, and not in a good way. There are tents all over the place. The city is literally being run by criminals at the moment. And, they’re ruling by fear and by extortion.
No company is going to stand for that for long. The companies that occupy downtown Seattle know the same thing that Smead Capital Management knows – their taxes may be lower, but their taxes make a big difference within the way that the city is run.
Companies aren’t going to continue to pay taxes, especially when they know that law enforcement isn’t going to show up if there’s a robbery outside of their front door.
Countless other cities throughout the West Coast would welcome these companies with open arms. While the taxes might not be lower, the cost of living could certainly be lower. Oh, and there won’t be an occupied protest taking place along with a weak mayor who is choosing to allow the protest as opposed to calling back the police and having the problem dealt with once and for all.
Rats, when faced with floods, will figure out a way to survive. They don’t want to drown. They’ll emerge – and that’s what we’re seeing with the Seattle companies. They’re being faced with floods.
If Seattle can’t figure out how to get it together in the next few weeks, they may need to prepare themselves for losing a significant amount of tax revenue as more companies choose to move and look elsewhere for their headquarters.