Ed Butts driven for funds

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It seems negotiations between La Puente’s largest sales tax generator and city officials have really gone south.

I have this story running in today’s paper about Ed Butts Ford owner Tom Iannone’s frustrations with the city, and his unsuccessful bids over more than six years to get assistance from the city to keep his Hacienda Boulevard dealership afloat.

The company has been getting by and has avoided massive layoffs by dipping into its reserve funds. But as the economy continues to tank, they need help. They’ve been asking the city to approve some sort of earn-out program, where the city would loan some of Ed Butts’ sales tax revenue back to the dealership.

Ed Butts brings in about $300,000 annually to city coffers.

City officials, however, contend they just can’t take the risk given the economy and the fact the Ed Butts Ford can’t guarantee the city they will stick around.

“If every city felt that way about their businesses, their largest sales tax providers, they’d be folding right now,” said Michael Hastings, a consultant to Iannone.

Ed Butts Ford is one of the few area Ford dealerships that haven’t shuttered or moved amid a slumping automotive sales market. But that’s not to say Ford Motor Co. hasn’t tried – Tom Iannone said that on several occasions Ford has offered him “millions” of dollars to leave La Puente. He wouldn’t specify how much exactly.

Iannone said he’s shown proof of those offers to city officials before, in hopes they would take his commitment to the community seriously.

Councilman John Solis said he had never seen the offer, but was blunt about saying that
“Ed Butts is very dumb if Ford is offering them that kind of money to go near a freeway and they’re not taking it. Their sales are down 30 percent.”

Solis also blamed Ed Butts for being slow to come to the table on several occasions when negotiations were near finalization.

Iannnone said the city has “all the public’s money tied up,” and accused the city of turning its back on much of the business community in La Puente.

“They’ve closed their doors and walked away from the business owners,” he said. “Not just me, a lot of us.”

  • LP Taxpayer in Need of Bail Out Too.

    When do these bail out requests stop?! I hope the city does bail them out. I can barley afford to put food on the table after my lay off. Now Ford expects La Puente to bail them out.

    I am sick of big business expecting government to bail them out.

  • Chuck

    Iannone is right when he says the City has “all the public’s money tied up.” What he doesn’t say is millions of dollars of that money was spent by the City to foolishly buy the land next to his dealership expressly so Iannone could expand. It was a sweetheart deal for Ed Butts and a stupid deal for the City. After the land was bought, Iannone walked away. Now he wants La Puente to bail him out and upgrade his old, outdated dealership? What a joke! What a bunch of crap.

  • Need Help

    Just another failure for Mayor Louie Lujan.

  • Jose Medina

    Ionne is a local example of a greedy fat cat business owner wanting a bail out while the rest of us are losing our jobs.

    What a freaking joke!

    See f-in kidding me?! He wants the city to cut him a deal in the millions? I’m sorry but this really angers me. I just lost my job last week. I have been looking for one for weeks now. I wish it we’re that easy for the rest of us! I wish I could go to the city for a bail out.

    This is absolutely ridiculous! I hope the city is not going to bail his butt out. When do we just say enough is enough?!! No more bailouts!

  • anonymous

    Hmmmmm….give no incentive for the dealership to stay and they will simply leave. Then the City will be out $300,000 plus each and every year.

    Butts will be welcomed in almost every other city in the valley with an attractive OPA agreement which will give them motivation to simply leave their current location.

  • Anonymous

    I agree with Anonymous: NO MORE BAIL OUTS! No to Butts.

  • Anonymous

    NO MORE BAILOUTS…NO MORE IFs..NO MORE ANDS…..NO MORE BUTTS!!!!

  • La Puente Watcher

    Ed Butts Ford can’t go nowhere, West Covina has Clippinger Ford and City of Industry has Puente Hills Ford under California State law Ed Butts can’t move within 10 miles of these dealerships unless they agree. Ed Butts is going nowhere unless it goes out of business!

  • annonymous

    Jose,

    Read the article he didn’t ask for MILLIONS>

  • THE MIDDLE CLASS

    Where is our bail out?

    Forget ED BUTTS Ford, we need help when we are barely making it and getting laid off.

    The city is smart for not caving in to big business.

  • Hell with WC

    Ed Butts Ford has stuck it out with the worthless city through the good and the bad. I hope Ed Butts finds a better place to relocate and let the city implode. Good job biting the hand that feeds you LP.

  • Hell with WC

    John Solis can bite me.

  • annonymous

    La Puente is going to be La Empty if the city keeps treating their business’s the way they do. Take a look
    around and see the empty strip malls. Maybe the city should take a look at the way they have already ran off small business people. Can they really afford to lose any more??

  • Just Laid Off

    Forget big business! Right now the city is doing the right thing by NOT bailing out Ford.

    Its unfortuante that the middle class are barely making it. This country fearevers better. We already had enough of the Bush big business bail outs.

    No more bail outs. Ford can make it on their own for a while. We, the people are suffering. For the city to bail them out would be terrible.

    Greedy business owners like the owner of Butts are the erson why we are in recession.

    I applaud the City Council for saying NO to Butts and holding their ground.

  • worker

    ed butts has helped the community with children $ sport program which city doesn’t have money for it.
    city did make sure that northgate market thatwas 2nd largest tax base to leave, make sure city manager in la puente makes more money than city of los angeles city manager go figure, mr solis doesn’t spend money in the city. ask him why

  • Its Politics

    Ed Butts Ford gave thousands of dollars to Mayor Louie Lujan for his campaign. It is no wonder they want a bailout. What did Mr. Lujan promise them in exchange?

  • Its Politics

    Ultimately the key question is this: why shouldn’t these Butts be treated like any other business whose management has displayed bad judgment and lost a great deal of money as a result?

    Capitalism works because we insist that businesses bear the cost of their own losses, a process that gives them strong incentives to make good decisions and transfers their wealth to others with better judgment if they persist in screwing up anyway (as the big banks have done).

    Perhaps Butts is somehow special and deserves a bailout. I think not.

    The City Council is doing the right thing. NO TO BUTTS.

  • Anonymous

    I like Ed Butts…

    And I cannot lie…

    But his bailout deal ain’t fly…

  • Anonymous

    I fear Butts will merely stick to us end. The fact the he’s in desperate arrears is no reason to allow ouselves to be backed into this thorny deal or ramrodded into submission. I seriously doubt Mr. Butts would share his booty with any of us if roles were reversed. Whe you get right down to the bottom of it, this Butts deal simply gives-off a bad odor.

  • Anonymous

    Yes let’s loose another $300.000.00 a year in tax revenue in La Puente and lay off even more city workers in La Puente, just what we need more lay off’s.
    maybe if the mayor works for free and then close city hall down we wont have to worry about loosing even MORE tax revenue than the city already has.
    The city had blown out North Gate market to West Covina now maybe Ed Butts Ford will move to city of San Gabriel were they are looking for another Dealer.
    Ed Butt’s is not looking for a bail out if you read the news there looking for a loan back on the $300.000.00 that they ALREADY pay the city it’s a LOAN, what happens when they leave and take the $300.000.00 in tax revenue with them. Hum let’s see, loan them some of the money back that they give us or just loose it all together!

  • Anonymous

    La Puente should not give them money and say good luck to Ed Butts. Take a look around as dealerships are closing everyday, the car industry is not doing to well. This is probably a ploy to help them out and then they leave. NO WAY!

  • Anonymous

    La Puente should not give them money and say good luck to Ed Butts. Take a look around as dealerships are closing everyday, the car industry is not doing to well. This is probably a ploy to help them out and then they leave. NO WAY!

  • anonymous

    Yeah don’t give them any assistance – then over the next few years we can look at an abandoned lot (most likely filled with graffiti), the city can lose about a million bucks in tax revenue and the city can lose the jobs to whatever city Butts decides to move to..

    Sound logic indeed…

  • Butts Kickin

    Get outta’ town Butts. We don’t need ya’ go to san gabriel or el monte. You’ll be closer to downtown LA either way. Sorry it didn’t work out here in La Puente but good riddance.

  • Anonymous

    dear butts kickin:don’t you think you should learn about the subject before you open your mouth ?
    or may be you & solis are from the same dumbo”s school

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous, just shut up. who are you anyway. Butts is no good for la puente and I can’t wait to see him go out of business or just leave.

  • worker

    why do you think $300,000.00 A YEAR IS NOT GOOD FOR LA PUENTE.
    70 PEOPLE EAT LUNCH FROM THAT STORE IN THE CITY EVERY DAY.
    MY BUSINESS AND A LOT OTHER RESTURANTS IN THE AREA DEPENDS ON THEM

  • Butts Insider

    Ed Butts owner Tom Ionne was arrested on child open charges in 2001.

    He is no good for LP.

  • worker

    i work for the man , what but insider said is not true too many people talk about what they don’t know

  • Butts Insider

    Yes, he was arrested in 2001 on porn charges.