Missouri Minute: Cities see uptick in evictions; Bass Pro Shops nixes Sportsman’s Warehouse acquisition

Hello, MBA readers,

It has been more than three months since the end of the federal eviction moratorium that was enacted because of COVID-19. But with data just now rolling in from October, cities like St. Louis are starting to see an uptick over last year in evictions. The moratorium and pandemic rental assistance meant the number of evictions dropped drastically in 2020 compared to 2019, but now some residents are struggling to make their current payments. That’s causing some concern about broader economic effects and the possibility of prolonging the pandemic by forcing people into more crowded living conditions. In Springfield, Bass Pro Shops is cutting bait on its planned purchase of a rival outdoor sports retailer. The company cited regulatory roadblocks in calling off its $785 million acquisition of Utah-based Sportsman’s Warehouse. And another miss for Missouri business came with the news that Toyota will build a $1.3 billion electric battery production facility in Greensboro, North Carolina. Missouri had been viewed as a candidate to attract the plant because the St. Louis area is already home to a Toyota parts factory.


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Parson recommends wage increase for state employees The governor’s office has called for a minimum wage of $15 and a 5.5% cost of living adjustment for all state employees. The raises require legislative approval. (KOMU Bass Pro Shops terminates Sportsman’s Warehouse acquisitionThe Springfield-based outdoor sports retailer cited regulatory hurdles in nixing the $785 million purchase of the Utah-based company, which would have added more than 110 stores. (Springfield Business Journal Toyota chooses North Carolina for $1.3 billion plantThe St. Louis area had been suggested as a potential site for the electric battery factory because of an existing Toyota parts plant in the region, but the automaker chose Greensboro, North Carolina. (Associated Press) Jack in the Box acquiring Del TacoThe burger restaurant will purchase the taco chain in a deal worth $455.3 million. Jack in the Box has 60 locations in the St. Louis area, where its previous owner, Ralston Purina, was based. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch) Gateway Studios purchases two properties for planned studioThe 32 acres in Chesterfield were purchased for $11 million. They are envisioned as part of the $150 million development that would house practice facilities for large concert tours. (St. Louis Business Journal) Former Sprint CEO seeks billions in compensationMarcelo Claure, now the COO of former Sprint owner SoftBank, has said that he would like to receive $2 billion for the work he has done with SoftBank’s investments, most notably shared workspace operator WeWork. (Kansas City Business Journal)


Say that again

“Developers should no longer assume abatements and incentives into their capital stack — we need to have a conversation and they need to earn these incentives.”

That’s Nahuel Fefer, director of policy and development for St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Fefer and Neal Richardson, executive director of the St. Louis Development Corp., have directed a shift in how development in the city is approached. Both say the harder stance not only protects tax dollars, but also allows for more equitable development and policy throughout the city. On the other side of the negotiating table, the shift has left some feeling confused. Some developers say the targets they must hit to earn incentives and tax breaks are unclear, and they worry the changes could drive away investment.


Go figure

127

That is how many evictions occurred in St. Louis in the month of October the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. That compares to an average of 122 evictions per month for all of 2019 and 33 per month last year amid eviction bans. Evictions are on the rise again in St. Louis, following the end of the federal moratorium in response to COVID-19. More than 11,000 evictions were filed in St. Louis and St. Louis County since March 2020, and most haven’t been carried out. The slow trickle of pandemic rental aid has left some residents to struggle and has left others frustrated by the possibility of being evicted as a result.


Hello, my name is

Taco Bell Cantina

The upscale version of Taco Bell is coming to the Kansas City area in late December or early January. The Kansas City Star reports the restaurant comes with a DJ, VIP rooms, multiple bars, and drinks and decor infused with Kansas City themes. The first Taco Bell Cantina was opened in 2016 in Las Vegas. Diversified Restaurant Group, which owns about 300 Taco Bell locations in the Kansas City area and beyond, will open the new location, which is slated for Kansas City’s Westport neighborhood.


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