21 December 2005
Memphis, Tennessee is in Shelby County. This county is bordered on the west by the Mississippi River and Arkansas. On the south it is bordered by Mississippi. It’s a city that is flagging in spite of superficial signs of progress.
Memphis is dealing with political corruption that is as bad as at any point in its history. Within the city limits we pay a county property tax as well as the city’s property tax. Poorly run government causes the tax rate to go up each year. Greed makes the property assessment go up as well. No one has been able to peg the level of taxation that is due to corruption. Whatever the case, people are fleeing.
The impressions have been there for a while. Now, the data is coming in. The local newspaper, called The Commercial Appeal, documented another round of citizens fleeing the city and the county. You can read about it in this article [free subscription may be required].
Here’s an example of just how bad it has become:
The U.S. Census Bureau on Tuesday estimated that Shelby’s median household income dropped from $41,048 to $39,099 between 2000 and 2003, while Tennessee as a whole and several surrounding counties had gains.
Those are 2003 numbers. Expect those trends to accelerate when 2004, 2005 and 2006 numbers are examined.
Filed under: Memphis