• December 20, 2014
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Queens Chronicle

Let Walmart in

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Posted: Thursday, June 12, 2014 10:30 am

Dear Editor:

“Craziness in the Council” (Editorial, June 5) makes sense.

Will NYC Councilmembers dip into their own pockets or program several million of taxpayers dollars to pay for pork-barrel member items to make up for the lost Walmart charitable contributions made on a voluntary basis? Any poll of ordinary New Yorkers shows support for the right of Walmart to open stores in NYC. Residents of New York State outside of NYC have had the option of shopping or not shopping at Walmart for decades. The same is true for virtually every other city and state. Only NYC is behind the times.

Construction of a new Walmart can provide work for construction contractors and their employees. Once opened, there are employment opportunities for many workers. Over 7 percent of New Yorkers are out of work, along with 7 percent who have given up looking for employment. The city would benefit by millions in tax revenue, which could help fund services everyone desires.

Walmart is the nation’s largest private sector employer with over 1,200,000 employees and growing each year. Tens of millions of Americans own stock in Walmart. The same is true for the various retirement and pension plans. Starting pay averages several dollars above the minimum wage for new employees around the nation. Promotional opportunities are common. Walmart may actually pay higher salaries and offer more benefits than some of its competitors such as Target, K-Mart, Costco and BJs, which are already here.

Several hundred thousand New Yorkers work off the books with no benefits. Many existing retailers pay minimum wage with no benefits. Public officials opposing Walmart never talk about these abuses.

Free enterprise made our nation great. Economic growth and the creation of wealth comes from businesses — small and large.

Many New Yorkers need the great prices, quality merchandise and affordable food, drugs and school supplies that Walmart offers.

Consumers have voted, with their feet, all over America, making Walmart the No. 1 retail merchant success story it is today. It is time to allow Walmart the opportunity to compete in the NYC marketplace as well!

Larry Penner
Great Neck, LI

Welcome to the discussion.