“In pursuit of cheaper stuff, Vermonters need to be especially careful not to overload their winding roads and covered bridges, not to ruin their green rolling landscapes and not to empty out their small historic downtowns. More than a quarter of the state’s income comes from tourism, and nobody’s going to mail home a postcard of Wal-Mart.”
Dear Friends of Responsible Land-use and Local Economies,
As of October 16, 2013, Walmart is a reality in our little town. Now we recommit our efforts to monitoring its behavior and impacts, in order to share that information with all the other communities out there where Walmart seeks to do business.
It is our sincere hope that the more than ten years we spent attempting to prevent their location in our town and educating the community as to Walmart’s business practices have at least served to prepare the local economy for the challenge it now faces.
We are optimistic that our arguments were not completely wasted, since the developer has added landscaping and finish details to the project that were not in the original plans. We believe that he, at least, is anxious to make a better impression on St. Albans than has been made by Walmarts throughout the country.
If Walmart is wise, it will learn to do business here in what is, for Walmart at least, a completely revolutionary way; observing fair competitive practices with regard to the local economy; treating its employees’ well and respecting their right to organize ; putting their corporate money where their mouth has lately been, by redoubling their efforts to source from domestic and particularly local suppliers.
We know as Walmart does, that how Walmart behaves will be how the rest of large retail behaves. On their corporate shoulders rests responsibility for much of the U.S. economy…and now ALL of our local economy.
If Walmart disregards those responsibilities; if every claim of only positive impacts made during the permit process is not upheld in practice here in St. Albans, know that we will not rest until those violations of trust have been shared as broadly as possible.
We invite you to follow our “Editor’s Blog” to read how Franklin County changes after Walmart…and don’t forget to visit www.sprawl-busters.com to read all the latest news of Walmart resistance, together with legendary Walmart opponent, Al Norman’s powerful blog.