The Baltimore Post filed a Public Information Act request regarding the county council’s recent decision to fund Tradepoint Atlantic’s request for $78 million for infrastructure upgrades.
The reason for the filing was the constant affirmation that this $78 million taxpayer investment is tied to Under Armor employing 1,000 people at its TPA-located distribution center.
Baltimore County officials touted the tremendous employment opportunities at TPA provided by UA. Among those was VP of Corporate Affairs Aaron Tomarchio, who claimed the lease was already signed and 1,000 potential jobs were on the way.
The Post felt there were several issues there were both disturbing and perplexing about the UA-TPA situation.
As we had reported earlier, Mr. Tomaricho stated the lease between the two has been signed. The only document that the Post found on file was a “Right of First Refusal.”
Folks, that is not a binding contract; it is merely an option.
Economists are already predicting a slowing in global trade, which is forcing companies like FedEx to rethink business predictions.
With the warning signs out there, why is there such a tremendous push to use critical taxpayer funds to ingratiate the bottom line for TPA, which plans on being the largest logistical hub on the East Coast. They are dangling the affirmation that this venture will be a job-creating bonanza.
To us, those words are simply part of a propaganda-filled smokescreen.
Given the recent turn of events in the stock market, UA is facing some tough times as Investor Place indicates:
Under Armour was coming off a strong earnings beat, analysts were upgrading the shares, and Under Armour stock was flying high near $25. But during that stretch, I warned time and time again that the enthusiasm surrounding Under Armour stock was both overstated and unsustainable.
On December 21, 2018, UA’s stock closed at $16 per share. Couple UA’s freefall in the market with the slowing global trade and you get an ominous sign. That is why the Post felt it was necessary to finally see a copy of a signed lease since the carrot that TPA is dangling in front of the taxpayers is critical to the issue of 17,000 jobs.
The Post is willing to bet that all those TPA cheerleaders at the council work session have never read the contract that contains the actual terms of the deal. The Post will point out specific issues within the agreement of which taxpayers should be aware, such as the following:
In addition, the County will need to construct a new fire station and police substation to meet the needs of TPA’s proposed development of the Property.
This kind of statement and agreement with Baltimore County and TPA is why the Post will continue to stay on top of this story to fight what we believe is an egregious fleecing of the taxpayers.
He have one more critical quote from a Johnny O press release regarding corporate cronyism:
“By engaging our communities and working in partnership with Tradepoint Atlantic, we took a good deal and made it even better,” said Olszewski. “Growing up in the shadow of the steel mill, I’ve seen firsthand how transformative this project can be and am proud to support this agreement which will expand opportunity for the community.”
We hate to say is, Mr. Olszewski, but the opportunity for the community is not an accurate statement because the county is broke and the only beneficiaries of this taxpayer ripoff are TPA. By the way, back during the days of Bethlehem Steel, the plant had its own Police Department, and the wages were higher than they are now at the TPA facility.
We’ll let you know whether or not the county responds to our PIA regarding the Under Armor lease.
The photograph below sort of sums up the wrong way this whole deal is being handled.
One would certainly think that a local truck driver would not cause as much havoc as was described in the comments from people who witnessed the incident.
This particular tractor-trailer was coming from the Amazon logistics center at TPA.
Folks, this is just beginning of a nightmare that will bring 30,000 such vehicles per day, coming to and going from TPA as they please.
Think of the traffic congestion, crashes, and overall pollution in the area. This deal with TPA is a disaster in every sense of the word.
The Baltimore Post numbers provided by Google Analytics:
Sessions – 581,310
Page views – 807,917