Monday, November 9, 2009

Latino Business Growth In Milwaukee's South Side



New Chupi's Beef food stand opens despite economic stagnation

November 9, 2009

Milwaukee (HNNUSA)-Last Friday, November 6, Eduardo and Leslie Velez owners of E&J Records, 1242 S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr. opened a portable Chupi's Beef food stand in front of their business. The new addition adds flavour to the S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr. predominately Mexican business district by offering hot dogs, tamales, Polish sausages, bratwursts, and pop corn along the strip.
Eduardo began his E&J Record business about 15 years ago with his brother Joselito Velez on the 1100 block of W. Greenfield Ave. After five years in business they bought a new building at the 1200 block of S. Chavez Dr. Joselito later sold his half of the partnership to Eduardo and since then, both Eduardo and Leslie who have their roots in Puerto Rico have been managing their growing business.

The predominately Hispanic South Side district is one of the primary districts for generating tax revenue, including fees for licenses, permits, violations, etc., for the City of Milwaukee. City officials cited, "the Near South Side consistently showed signs of robust investment, business, and property value growth. Between 2002 and 2006, sales price per building square foot increased each year and rose from $39 per square foot to $61 per square foot. The annual value of all construction investments increased from $37.8 million to $124.1 million and averaged $56.3 million. The value of land per square foot for residential, commercial, mixed, and industrial use increased and exceeded that for the City of Milwaukee as a whole," according to the City of Milwaukee market study.
A city economic study reported that the south side households in the predominately Latino community located inside Postal Zip Code 53204 in Milwaukee spend more than $91 million annually in retail goods, according to the 2006 Department of City Development statistics. In one day, they spent approximately $249,315.06. The biggest tax-generating base for the city comes solely from the south side.
In Milwaukee, over 850 Hispanic owned businesses generate more than $225 million in annual sales. It is abundantly clear that the immigration of Hispanics and undocumented immigrants to Southeastern Wisconsin is tied to a large degree to the available resources that Hispanics have in the area.
In Wisconsin, over 3,000 Hispanic owned businesses generate more than $800 million in annual sales, creation of jobs and available employment resulting in population growth as well as business growth. The Hispanic population increased by more than 4%, greater than the national Hispanic growth rate, and more than 271,000 Hispanics lived in Wisconsin in 2007. The population of Hispanics has grown by 40% since 2000, according to the U.S. Census report.
H. Nelson Goodson representing Taxpayers for Immigration Reform says, "Taxpayers for Immigration Reform based in Milwaukee has been advocating nationwide since last Summer for Latinos and supporters of immigration reform to continue to shop at Latino owned businesses and businesses which support our community." The Velez family business is a good example of small business growth, which depends on its area residents, businesses, immigrants, and tourists visiting the near South side to succeed. Goodson says immigrants spent their hard earned money on food, shelter, retail goods, and support small businesses like the Velez E&J Record business, and as taxpayers do pay taxes on just about everything on a daily basis. Taxpayers are not required to be U.S. citizens to pay them.
"We as Latinos and immigrants do have an economic impact in this nation, especially in the City of Milwaukee, and we need an effective strategy for financial management of our economic purchasing power which totals in the billions of dollars to influence immigration reform.
We should continue to invest, shop and spend our money in businesses and entities in our communities that respect us, do welcome us, and support immigration reform like the Velez E&J Record business," said Goodson.
There are three major factors for the 890 billion dollar boost of our economy that is generated by undocumented immigrants. Their economic contributions is a major boost to the U.S. economy with the combined value of their labor, their stimulus on our economy, and the taxes they pay, according to a University of California-Los Angeles study by Raul Hinojosa.
Undocumented immigrants from Mexico alone contributed between $154 billion and $220 billion to the Gross Domestic Product of the United States in 2000, and undocumented immigrants paid up to $20 billion in Social Security taxes between 1990 and 1998.
Immigrants paid $80,000 per person more in taxes during their lifetime than they received in public benefits as of 1998; due to immigrants' younger age profile compared to the "native" population, immigrants will contribute up to $500 billion to
Social Security from 1998 to 2022, according to a report by the Office of Migration and Refugee Policy and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
U.S. born children to undocumented immigrants are included and considered illegal in most studies.
However, they do contribute to our economy by paying taxes, working and buying homes, goods and services adding to the stimulus on our economy just as their parents do.
The City of Milwaukee continues to draw small Latino business growth along S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr. despite an attempt by some city aldermen in the Licensing Committee who were trying to pass a citizenship ordinance 090411 in late September. The ordinance was put on hold after three prominent Latinos, Tony Baez, CEO of the Spanish Speaking Council, Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Executive Director of Voces de la Frontera and H. Nelson Goodson, of Taxpayers for Immigration Reform from the South side protested the ordinance during the committee hearing. Alderman T. Anthony Zielinski moved to put the ordinance on hold that would require anyone applying or reapplying for a professional or commercial license or permits to have legal alien status in the country. The ordinance remains in committee while the City Attorney's office and Common Council President Willie Hines complete their fact finding concerning the ordinance. Hines confirmed that the Common Council will make another attempt to introduce the measure once again at a later date.
Mayor Tom Barrett said he opposed the ordinance, but Hines says the Common Council doesn't need Barrett's approval to pass the citizenship ordinance. Also, Maria Monreal-Cameron, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has sent a letter to Alderman Hines and the Milwaukee Common Council opposing the citizenship ordinance.

1 comment:

Rockz Solid said...

Awesome post. Thank you for highlighting financial growth in our community. Too many only highlight our community as ruined and poverty-stricken!