Business Track: Debunking economic impact promises large and small

  • Event: 2019 IRE Conference
  • Speakers: Austin Carr of Bloomberg Businessweek; Greg LeRoy of Good Jobs First; Noah Pransky of independent journalist; Karen Weise of The New York Times
  • Date/Time: Thursday, Jun. 13 at 9:00am
  • Location: Meyerland
  • Audio file: No audio file available.

Whether it’s Amazon and Foxconn megadeals, or the pro teams and corporations lobbying for your community’s tax dollars, you’re likely to come across robust economic impact claims. But are the politicians really landing great deals? Do the corporations even need tax breaks in the first place? How to find great stories amid the public relations garbage.

This session is sponsored by Bloomberg. IRE retains control of content, including the topic and speaker selection, for all conference sessions.

Speaker Bios

  • Austin Carr is a features writer for Bloomberg News and Bloomberg Businessweek, where he writes about technology and business. @AustinCarr

  • Dubbed “the leading national watchdog of state and local economic development subsidies” Greg LeRoy @GregLeRoy4 founded and directs Good Jobs First a resource center promoting accountability in the >$70 billion spent annually by states and localities for economic development. GJF is home to Subsidy Tracker, the only national database of subsidy awards. He, GJF’s staff, and their data-rich websites assist journalists every day.

  • Noah Pransky is an investigative reporter who collected national Cronkite, Polk, duPont, and Murrow awards for his watchdog work while at WTSP in Tampa Bay.  He recently brought his out-of-the-box government, consumer, and sports business watchdogging to New York City, a return to the region where Pransky began his career as a sports anchor/reporter.
    Twitter/FB/IG:  @NoahPransky

  • Karen Weise is the Seattle technology correspondent for The New York Times, covering Amazon, Microsoft, and the region's tech scene. Before joining The New York Times in 2018, she was a feature writer for Bloomberg Businessweek and Bloomberg News, and previously worked at ProPublica. She's on Twitter @kyweise.

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