Today's Poll: Should states offer tax incentives to lure businesses and create jobs?
As much as people complain about corporate welfare, I really thought the results of this poll would be 180 degrees opposite of what they are at this point.
Howard, I think the problem lies in the entrenched methodology. This has become such a mainstream way of doing business that if a community chooses not to participate in corporate graft, the next community will gladly do so. Unfortunately, there probably aren't counties, towns, or cities in a position to give up potential business growth in order to stand on principle. Only legislation outlawing the practice could end it. I can't see a public entity being the first to stand up and say no more only to watch the business income spring up in the next area.
Jeff, it is entrenched ... that's kind of the subtext of the poll question, not whether New York should do it or whether GCEDC should do it ... should it be done at all.
I answered no.
If the question were "Should GCEDC offer tax incentives to lure business to Genesee County," my answer would be yes, because if it's going to happen anyway, I don't want my community to lose out. You gotta play by the rules as written to compete.
And in New York we also have the special handicaps of too high taxes and over regulation to overcome, not just competing with the tax breaks offered in other jurisdictions.
I find it interesting, in days gone by businesses sold bonds and stock options to raise capital to finance development and expansion. The stock market has become a personal wealth roulette wheel and barometer of profitability. Why can't we fix the stock market so it serves its intended purpose? Say...a severe penalty on short term holdings? Instead of attracting businesses with public money, why not organize investment coalitions of private individuals willing to invest in start-up funding? If public money is going to be used to fund private enterprise, it needs to be paid back on a time table, corresponding to a contract and be documented. Tax deferrals need to be offset by specific, contractual terms pertaining to local hiring, job descriptions and salary. Field of Dreams was a baseball movie- not a model for public finance.
Give them the tax breaks and incentives, then let them foot the tax bill when the time period expires. Darien Lake = No Darien taxes for residents., even with the recent round of breaks for the loan re-mod.
Howard, it IS corporate welfare - and given to a select few. Why not just make NY competitive by revising ALL tax codes? Provide EVERYBODY with an incentive to bring businesses and workers TO NY instead of the exodus that began about 20 years ago?
Is that so far fetched??
First of all, local whether it be city, county or town tax breaks is NOT corporate welfare, Corporate welfare as defined is income tax breaks by the federal or state governments.
Secondly, this is basically the county being competative with other counties across the country, althogh Bob Harker is absolutely correct, a lower property tax rate across the board would in fact entice more business in itself, mandates from state and especially federal government do in fact make across the board rate decreases difficult in our neck of the woods without drastically reducing services.
C.M., tax breaks are NOT a company raising capital, that is still done the old fashioned way, but they are an enticement for a better business environment which makes raising capital easier for a business wanting to do business in a particular town or area.
Howard, GCDEC does not give tax incentives, it negotiates them with the county and at times the State, only a Government legislative body can grant a tax incentive.
You can not have your cake and eat it too, if you want business and industrial growth, you have to be competative, Darien Lake as citied before was a great example, incentives up front resulted in a Zero Property tax rate for Town of Darien Residents, and if I am not mistaken, helps keep county property tax rates a little lower as well (i.e. via sales tax revenue)
Mark, if property and sales tax abatements are considered tax incentives, which I believe they are, then GCEDC does give tax incentives.
I don't understand your statement that GCEDC negotiates these incentives with the County and the State. GCEDC has sole discretion and authority to grant these incentives.
I was wrong about that one point JoAnne, I called someone and asked, you are correct, (Sorry Howard) but my premise remains the same, it is about making the county competative, not Corporate welfare.