Tulsa, OK made the news recently for trying to tempt remote workers with the offer of a housing stipend for a furnished apartment, a desk at a local co-working space, and—oh yeah—$10,000 in cold, hard cash, if they’ll only move to Tulsa for one full year. While far from the first place to try it—other cities and even states have lured telecommuters with everything from cash to cover relocation costs to outright student loan forgiveness—the move is still pretty novel in an age where economic development usually involves tax credits for big corporations and massive, landscape-altering construction projects. But are Tulsa’s direct-to-worker payouts a fresh, new strategy to seed their local tax rolls with rising stars, or are they just a silver-bullet boondoggle in another package?
Chuck and Kea take that exact question on in the most recent episode of Upzoned. And while Kea starts out on the fence, Chuck has an immediate and decisive gut reaction—and he’s also got some big ideas about what Tulsa and other cities considering schemes like this should do to build from here.
Then in the Downzone, Chuck and Kea talk about their December reads. While Chuck’s been neck-deep in Christmas cookie baking, he’s been indulging in his other favorite holiday hobby: adventure novels on audiobook while he rolls out the dough. And Kea’s getting a jump on her New Year’s resolution to write more fiction by studying up on the work habits of famous creative minds.