I was listening to the morning talk show on KMOG this morning; it was Tuesday Town Day, and Mayor Ken Murphy and Town Manager Fred Carpenter were the guests. A caller, who said he relocated from an area with "real" shopping, asked if we were cultivating retail companies to come into town to compete against Wal-Mart, say, Target or J C Penneys.
The mayor explained that there was always the new Target in Fountain Hills, just 45 minutes away.
Is there something wrong with this attitude: Is his true interest in supporting local businesses? Or, does he sound like a certain candidate in the recent election who claimed, "Of course, I buy local! I have $10,000 in receipts from Wal-Mart!"
What a shame.
Debbie Stanton, Pine
(Editor's note: Mayor Ken Murphy offered the following response to the letter writer: "I appreciate the opportunity to respond to statements taken out of context. When I was asked about large retailers, like Target or Home Depot, locating in Payson, I responded stating that these businesses will look at demographics, labor pool, cost of development, etc. when they make a decision to open a store. I stated that I had heard many rumors of these businesses locating their operation in Payson, but have never had any hard evidence of this rumor. I would doubt that Payson would meet the population requirements for these businesses at this time.I have always been pro-business and would like to see more shopping opportunities in Payson, however, the retailerakes the decision to locate anywhere. I was simply pointing out that if someone wanted to shop at a Target, there was a new one in Fountain Hills.")