Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Ear X-tacy sent out a press release yesterday announcing they would hold a press conference at 10 AM Friday to discuss the future of the record store. You can read the full story from the CJ here: Owner of ear X-tacy voices concern for future of store The Courier-Journal

Owner John Timmons noted that his current lease expires in March as part of his statement. This could mean the store is closing immediately though manager Rebecca Cornwell said the store isn’t closing its doors yet.

Ear X-tacy is located in the Highlands and is considered a landmark for many here in Louisville.

The leaders behind the Keep Louisville Weird project tried to push the small business buy local agenda with limited success. As a kid and young adult I would go to ear X-tacy when I wanted to find hard to find music that most name stores did not carry. They didn't have what you were looking for? No problem. They would special order it. The world is different today and for many it is better for some of us it many ways worse.

The advent of the internet and the immediate availability of goods such as music have made it harder and harder for niche business like ear X-tacy to keep their doors open and though Cornwell may be right for now I think the writing is on the wall soon ear X-tacy will draw its final breath.

Hard to imagine going in the Highlands with no ear X-tacy but it is on the radar. In recent years I have visited ear X-tacy occassionally to browse for music of days gone by and honestly was a bit surprised. The old ear X-tacy as I remember it was different somehow. It seemed it was fuller than I remembered of stuff I didn't remember as well. One would even say perhaps cluttered.

Music has changed so that part was no surprise but it seemed that in some ways X-tacy was trying to make time stand still and stay the same as it used to be and perhaps that is part of the problem. In business you either adapt or fail and X-tacy seemed to have problems adapting when I last saw them. With the world of music moving so much faster, and the availability almost instantaneously, X-tacy seemed to be caught up in the past.

Additionally, I am left to wonder just how many more small businesses can take a hit from our own government's greed. Occupational taxes should be eliminated immediately as one form of abatement to help small business survive and there are many others. By eliminating just this one tax and working to reduce others we will attract more andmore entrepreneurs with small business and fill the gap in the "lost" revenue.

Metro Louisville is one of the highest taxed cities in the Nation, and we all know how many jobs are hemorrhaging out of Louisville in the manufacturing segment as well, so I am left to wonder just what is the plan for Louisville and the future of our families and small business.

Small business employs more people in this Nation than any other period. It literally is the backbone of our economy. Here in Louisville we continually raise taxes, give corporate handouts to folks like Cordish, and then tell our local backbone employers sorry we have no room for you here.

This has to stop.

Until we get serious about helping small business survive, and it is a matter of survival, by giving them what they need to do so we will continue to see landmarks like ear X-tacy close their doors
across the entire Metro and that is something we can ill afford.

Until we start working with small business and easing their burdens this will become the norm and not the exception. We are slowly losing more and more of our local flavor in favor of "name brand" competition and that is unacceptable.

Perhaps with the National recognition that ear X-tacy has earned through the years we may finally address this injustice. I certainly hope so before it is too late for all......

Your thoughts?


  1. What was the last tax raised by Louisville Metro Government? The only recent one I can think of that wasn't exactly a tax was an increase in Louisville Water Company rates, and the Metro Council I don't believe had a say in that.

    I don't think we can complain about continual rising taxes if it's not actually occurring.

  2. It is actually occurring Steve. Louisville Water Co is not the only entity that is a form of tax increase. The LWC is whollyowned by Louisville and makes profits which in turn go into the tax pool to pay for services. each time theymake a profit itis in essence a tax.

    With that said MSD is another one. Remember the 32% rate hike a couple of years ago? Additionally they have raised rates each and every year. These raises are also an additional "tax" as MSD funnels money to the City for City projects.

    Knowing that a tax increase would not fly by we the people this is one example of how they "tax" us without "taxing" us.

    This makes it harder and harder for families to meet their most basic obligations and is a burden that must be corrected.

    From a business perspective businesses pay far more at rates different than we as homeowners do and it affects their profitability which makes it harder for the small business like ear Xtacy to stay in business.

    These are just a couple of examples. We need to restructure our tax system that hurts small business that provide local jobs and help the local economy instead of favoring handouts to folks like Cordish.

    Thanks for writing.

  3. I was there today and wrote this


  4. OK, that's as I thought. We have experienced rate increases from services, but no actual tax increases.

  5. Well it depends on your perspective. Yes there have been no "tax" increases per se but many view these rate increases as a form of illegal tax increases.

    When MSD gets increases of 32% in one year because of no oversight and they knowingly are funding Louisville projects that we already pay taxes for they have a point.

    Just sayin'

    Thanks for writing Steve


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