Thursday, June 4, 2009

Slacker Corporations

There is a lot of buzz in Dover as the legislative days between now and June 30th are getting dangerously few.

Word is that the Joint Finance Committee has their sights on raising the education funding unit count from 20 to 21. The cost savings is around $24 million. Also on the cutting block is tuition reimbursement for educators as well as the SEED scholarship program.

At last, there are revenue bills in the works. Next week the Governor's revenue bills will be filed. Without amendments to increase their yield, these bills will do nothing towards eliminating the salary cut. Both the personal income tax and the corporate franchise tax bills will have to be made more substantive.

Representative Kowalko's revenue bills should be surfacing next week as well. Unlike the Governor's bills, these are designed for maximum revenue with a goal of eliminating the need for salary cuts.

There will probably be legislation to tax lightering, the practice of offloading oil from supertankers onto smaller ships for transportation up the Delaware. The oil industry is prepared to pull out all the stops, including court action to stop this tax.
An interesting piece of information was floating around Leg Hall today concerning corporate taxes. It seems that there is around $531 million in uncollected corporate taxes in Delaware.

When does being corporate friendly cross the line to being corporate dupes? How does this fact mesh with the so called shared sacrifice being demanded of state employees?

DSEA will be closely monitoring this situation and asking questions in a lot of places. Speaking of asking questions, I asked a question of Governor Markell months ago at a Wilmington "Reality Check" presentation. After the Governor had repeatedly stated that "everything was on the table", I asked, "Does that include all revenue options being on the table such as asking our corporate 'citizens' to do more?"

Perhaps I should have asked, "Do our corporate citizens have to obey the law?"

What would Delaware look like if we put as much energy into making this state a clean, green, educated, family place as we do into making Delaware the corporate tax haven?

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