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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
June 26, 2013     Hays Free Press
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June 26, 2013

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Jr + "!i! CLASSIFIEDS PUBLIC NOTICES SERVICE DIRECTORY June 26,2013 I= BY MOSES LEOS III From television commercials to billboard advertisements, the saying is one in the same: "what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas." However, for Buda Economic De- velopment Corporation (EDC) execu- tive director Ann Miller, information gathered from a recent trip to Sin City was more than worth breaking the Ve- gas code. During the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) National Conference May 19-22 at the Las Ve- gas Convention Center, Miller learned from the biggest and brightest retail companies how Buda can better at- tract more business. At the conference, Miller and a retail study team hired by the Buda EDC, The Retail Coach, met with nu- merous national retail businesses. According to Miller, The Retail Coach had already planned to attend the conference and set up a booth. The city currently has a contract with the company, with the outcome of investment of attracting retailers and developers to Buda. "The contract with The Retail Coach was for $15,000," Miller said in an emailed response. "These ser- vices included developing a list of retailers whose site selection criteria is a match to the area market analy- sis, competition assessment, demo- graphic and psychographic profiles, and Retail Gap/Opportunity Analysis and are a good fit for Buda." In addition, The Retail Coach will compile a retail feasibility package for retailers met at the conference. The company also helped with identifying developers in the area, and helped create a "developer marketing pack- "We at the EDC do not want to build structures over three stories. We want to make the best use of our land, but at the same time, continue to keep the charm of the city." -Ann Miller, Buda Economic Development Corporation (EDC) executive director age" to help present development opportunities in the city. The Retail Coach also helped analyze retail sites for usage and made recommenda- tions for them. However, retail businesses' mes- sage to Buda was the same: the town needs more space. "Buda must de- velopmore areasof re- tail space to take advan- tage of retail I e a k a g e," Enclosed Miller said, in the black r e f e r e n c - line is the ing a recent study done Trade area by the Pe- gasus group, which was presented to the Buda City Council on May 7. Pegasus found $247 million dol- lars of annual retail leakage - resi- dents of a town spending their money elsewhere - which the city has yet to take advantage of. A few of the largest areas of leakage are through eating establishments ($63.2 million) and radio, TV and computer stores ($39.9 million). As such, many retailers see the Buda area as a prime location for business development. With the help of The Retail Coach, . .... Miller hopes to quell the retail leakage ,m in Buda. : "Ideally, we'd like to try to recap- ture 10% of the leakage over the next 3 to 5 years, which would increase Bu- da's sales tax revenue by :' ,; '~=overS370,000 .:,~,~ annually," Miller said. However, she realized a lack of retail space. keeps many companies from making their way to Buda. A complaint from a few companies was the cities' lack of vacant commercial structures. "We [Buda] need to work with de- velopers to bring in more commercial and retail space," Miller said. An additional problem is being landlocked in an overdeveloped area. With Kyle and Austin Extra Territorial Jurisdictions (ETJ) impeding outward expansion, Miller said the city has to find ways to develop responsibly. Even with the prospect of adding more businesses, the EDC does not want to expand vertically, a decision seconded by the city council. "We at the EDC do not want to build structures over three stories," Miller said. "We want to make the best use of our land, but at the same time, continue to keep the charm of the city." Despite the challenges, Miller be- lieves the city has positive aspects go- ing for it. She thinks retailers will be enticed by the relatively high incomes of residents in the city. According to numbers provided by Miller, 2013 es- timates show the average household in Buda as making $79,748; median households bring in $68,220, with the per capita income at $22,792. The primary retail trade of the city, along with the rapid growth of the area, also pushes retailers to consider Buda. In 2000, the population of Buda was roughly over 3,500 residents, with the retail trade at 22,068. By 2013, both numbers grew significantly, with the current population estimated at more than 8,700 and retail trade at 63,318. By 2018, the EDC estimates the population will top 10,000, with retail trade exceeding 70,000. Miller and the EDC are in a race against other cities to get the atten- tion of retailers. While she would not comment on specific retailers, she did say any retailer to make their way to Buda would not come from Kyle or Southpark Meadows in Austin. See LACKING COMMERCIAL SPACE, 4D $1.1 BY ANDY SEVILLA An entertainment center featuring a movie theater complex, bowling lanes, video arcade, meeting rooms and a restaurant may open in Kyle as soon as next summer. The cost of the project to Kyle residents is estimated at $1.1 million in property tax and sales tax rebates, as well as in waiving city development fees. In a special city council meeting June 20, Kyie council members unanimously approved entering into a development agreement with Schulman Partners, LTD, for the construction of the entertainment facility, offering up the financial incentives over a 15-year period. "We are so excited to be able to bring this amenity to our residents," Mayor Lucy Johnson said. "Our community is vastly underserved in the entertainment sector and this new business will go a long way to fill that gap." City officials have painted the proposed entertainment center as a "tremendous attraction" that will bring visitors into Kyle and Hays County, though the million-dollar financial incentives gift comes on the heels of the passage of a $36 million road bond. In May, Kyle voters approved a road bond package set to reconstruct Bunton Creek, Burleson, Goforth and Lehman Roads, as well as extend Marketplace Avenue. That project is expected to cost $36 million and conservative city estimates projected a potential property tax increase of 21 cents. City officials, however, put out several potential future growth scenarios that illustrated how incoming businesses and homes would help reduce the tax cost of the road bond through increased sales tax and property tax revenues. With the Request for Proposals for engineering the five roads already advertised, the city is setting wheels in motion to improve the road bond streets. It is slated to be about a six- year project, but the bonds will be paid over a 20-year period. The financial incentives council members approved for the large-scale entertainment facilitywould rebate sales and property taxes over a 15-year timeline. Specifics to the agreement, such as how many jobs the development would have to create tO qualify for receipt of financial incentives or what the total investment cost would need to be, were not released. "The details of the development agreement will be made available once the document has completed legal review," expected sometime this week, said Kyle Economic Development See THEATER TAX INCENTIVE, 4D FINANCIAL Every year in early July, thousands of people 'run with the bulls" in Pamplona, Spain. While the event is exciting, it is also hazardous, and many runners have gotten badly injured over the years. As an investor, you may find that running with the herd is dangerous to you, too - because if you're con- stantly following what every- one else is doing, your own financial goals could end up getting "trampled." The urge to run with the herd, or follow the crowd, may have been hard-wired into our psyches, according to anthropologists. In prehis- toric times, running with the pack may have helped people minimize danger or increase their chances for finding food. But today, there are far fewer rewards for following a herd mentality- especially in investing. For example, consider what happens when the financial markets go through a period of volatility. Virtually every time this happens, many investors flock to gold, appar- ently believing that the shiny yellow metal will always be valuable and that its price will never drop. Yet, the fact is that gold prices, like those of other financial assets, do fluctuate. Furthermore, certain types of gold-based investments can be quite risky in their own right. What other "follow the herd" movements should you avoid when you invest? For one thing, try to stay away from "feeding frenzies." If you look back about 15 years ago, you may remember the buzz surrounding speculative tech- nology stocks - many of which were companies that had futuristic names but lacked some useful elements, such as profits or business strategies. For a few years, the prices of these companies soared, but in 2000 and 2001, the "dot- com" bubble burst, splattering investors with big losses that were either irreversible or, at the least, took years from which to recover. The herd mentality often applies even when investors know the right moves to make. To illustrate: One of the most basic rules of investing is "buy low, sell high" - and yet many investors do the exact oppo- site. When prices drop, they sell, so that they can cut their losses - even though they may be selling investments that, while temporarily down, still have strong potential. On the other hand, when an invest- ment's price has shot up, these same investors will often keep buying more shares, hoping to reap even bigger gains - even if the investment has now become quite expensive, as measured by the price-to- earnings ratio, and has little upside potential remaining. Instead of emulating other investors, think about your own financial goals and create a viable strategy for achiev- ing them, taking into account your risk tolerance and tim p horizon. Look for quality investments and hold them for the long term. Don't be discouraged by the inevitable market downtums, but be ready to adjust your portfo- lio as needed. Above all else, be patient and disciplined, always keeping your eye on your ultimate objectives. It can feel comfortable when you're in the midst of a herd - but it can lead you to places where, as an investor, you don't want to go. Steer clear of the crowds and go your own way. This article was written by Edward lones for use by your local Edward lones Financial Advisor.