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Indiana Approves Income Tax Reduction

Indiana Approves Income Tax Reduction

May 14, 2013

Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) last week signed into law the state’s 2014-15 two-year budget. The approved budget keeps spending increases below inflation and cuts the state’s single-rate income tax, the corporate income tax, and eliminates the inheritance tax:

 

Current

2014

2015

2016

2017

Individual Income Tax

3.4%

3.4%

3.3%

3.3%

3.23%

Corporate Income Tax

7.5%

7.0%

6.5%

6.5%

6.5%

Inheritance Tax

Repealed, retroactive to Jan. 1, 2013

Repealed

Repealed

Repealed

Repealed

The corporate tax reduction preserves one enacted in 2011, but the others are new. Indiana’s well-structured income tax – broad-based and low-rate – gets ever closer to Pennsylvania’s lowest-in-the-country rate of 3.07 percent. (Pence had initially sought a larger reduction but ultimately negotiated these rates with legislative leaders.) The inheritance tax was being phased out by 2022, and the budget accelerates that to, well, now.

Source: Will County News

Democrats — the party of liars and losers

President Obama appears at Miami-Dade College to talk about the Affordable Care Act on Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016. (Pedro Portal/El Nuevo Herald/TNS)In blaming Russian President Vladimir Putin for the ills of the world, swinging the election and causing the mayhem in Syria, President Barack Obama has collected the trifecta.

First, Obama’s loyal minions in the mainstream media continue to hammer home that President-elect Donald Trump is Obama’s illegitimate successor.

Second, Hillary Clinton and her cry baby Democrats only lost the presidency because of saboteurs.

Third, for the neoconservatives who are frothing from the mouth to get into another war, Obama can be expected to build a post-presidency consensus that America will have to go to war with Russia.

It all starts with the election, or rather the results of the election. Without so much as a shred of real evidence, Obama has lectured us that we can be certain of one thing, that Russian President Putin is an evil dictator with global ambitions. Never mind that Putin has offered Russia’s help in fighting ISIS, Obama insists this is only a ploy of Putin’s to weaken America. Obama would no doubt call Putin, Machiavelli but the nitwits in his base wouldn’t know who that was. Obama can’t call Putin Hitler because the progressives in his party have already set that name aside for Republican President-elect Donald Trump.

This is the truth:
1) Hillary Clinton lost the election because she was a terrible candidate.

2) The blood of Syria is on Obama’s hands.

3) Regardless of the military facts Russia is not a dangerous adversary that demands our armed forces have the latest in expensive weaponry.

Let’s focus on Hillary Clinton’s loss because it makes the Democrats look exactly as I said, the party of liars and losers.

It’s unacceptable, say the Democrats. It’s just won’t do. Like the kids I wrote about two weeks ago in Trophy-toting progressives who are destroying the very spirit that made America great, the situation is worse now than even I thought. We are not talking about little dears expecting to be told they are winners regardless of how well they do. We have a 69-year-old woman who was counting on a coronation next month. It didn’t happen, and there are many reasons why besides the Russians, WikiLeaks, FBI Director James Comey or a giant right-wing conspiracy that tried to sully her husband, President Bill Clinton. (As it turned out it was Bill who sullied the White House intern’s dress.) But he was the Teflon president. Hillary was the flypaper candidate, mostly because she couldn’t hide her bitchy attitude, vendetta instincts and habitual lying.

Take the story that she landed “under sniper fire” during a 1996 trip to Bosnia. She should have checked one of her many mobile devices to know that war ended in 1995.

What developed was lie upon lie, like it was a video that caused a spontaneous attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012. Only God Almighty could have guessed that there were terrorists in Libya, a country of terrorists, and only He could have known that an attack might come, especially on that date. Never mind the murder of U.S. Ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.

We are supposed to forget the lies to Comey, including that Hillary didn’t send any classified emails. The truth: the FBI found at least 110 emails that were classified at the time Clinton sent or received them. And that’s just a start. The real indicator of criminal intent by Clinton was her installation of what Politico Magazine coined a “home brew” email server.

Clinton and her web of lies make former President Richard Nixon nothing more than a fibber. But I understand where the Democrats are coming from. All Hillary had was the laundry list of lies, the miserable personality, the lack of any message other than Donald Trump is a racist, a misogynist who doesn’t have the proper temperament to be president because he is likely to have a tiff and do a full scale nuclear launch on another nation. We never know what story is going to run the next day because we don’t know who is going to tell it.

But according to Princess Clinton, always a bridesmaid never a bride, most of the blame is on Putin because he ordered the cyber-attacks intended to give old pal Donald Trump the election.

On December 17 at a fund raising event that should have been titled — how Democrats need to pick better candidates Clinton said the Russians had undermined her candidacy because, and this is classic Clinton, Vladimir Putin’s “personal vendetta” against her.

“Putin publicly blamed me for the outpouring of outrage by his own people, and that is the direct line between what he said back then and what he did in this election.” These were her words as recorded by The New York Times.

Yes I can see it all; Putin is acting like Dr. Evil did from his secret volcano in the Urals where he was scheming to get revenge on Austin Powers. Substitute Putin for Evil and Powers for Clinton and you have an understanding of why a big mouthed upstart like Trump won the presidency. If you get caught up in another one of Clinton’s “stories” you may start to think Trump could be the Manchurian Candidate.

But that is not the whole story behind Clinton’s defeat. It took a troika of men to defeat her. She was not just going up against Trump and Putin to snap victory but also the Director of the FBI, Comey, who would risk his job, his reputation and even his freedom because what Clinton is saying is that Comey was involved in high treason. That only carries with it a possible death sentence.

Clinton and Obama’s evidence of their version of events that involves Trump wouldn’t hold up in court, kangaroo court. To think that Putin has the time, energy or inclination that might set Russia on a path towards a conflict or even a war because he likes Trump (a man he has never met) and dislikes Clinton is as ludicrous as believing that Comey would throw his life away and ruin his family all to see The Donald in the Oval Office.

Something else strange is that in September, when nobody gave Trump a chance at victory, Obama maintained that the electoral system was bulletproof and could not be hacked. Lo and behold, Clinton loses. Inside a couple of weeks the electoral process that Obama guaranteed was secure was then definitely hacked. From my reading of events nobody knows by whom exactly or for what reason. But as Obama has said, the reason it had to be the Russians was because this is the kind of thing the Russians have always done, which is a pretty lame excuse. The fact that it was undertaken because, as Clinton says, Vlad just doesn’t like her isn’t just lame, it’s a horse with no legs.

But this is the best, and something I am surprised not even conservatives who despise Clinton haven’t brought up. Do you remember throughout the election Clinton, her campaign staff and a multitude of influential Democrats said that Trump did not have the character or disposition to be president?

I have no idea where that came from, but some of the WikiLeaks I read said that her top staff knew she was a poor candidate.

In an intercepted email exchange in September 2015, John Podesta, then chairman of the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, warned that the campaign has, “taken on a lot of water that won’t be easy to pump out of the boat. Most of that has to do with terrible decisions made pre-campaign, but a lot has to do with her instincts. She’s nervous so prepping more and performing better. Got to do something to pump up excitement but not certain how to do that.”

It was the same John Podesta who looked like an idiot on election night when Clinton was too drunk, too depressed and too afraid to face the music and do what every losing president has faced since elections took place go out and calmly inform your supporters of the loss, but the principles they fought for, blah, blah, blah.

But Clinton couldn’t manage to pull herself together to do that. She had to ask Trump if he would announce that she had conceded the election to him. Then there was a recount for Clinton undertaken by her surrogate and Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who spent $7.3 million dollars that wound up giving Trump an addition 131 votes in Wisconsin. Then there was the ballyhoo that surrounded the December 19 vote by the Electoral College, which will be remembered as Clinton’s last stand.

That is the kind of garbage that is carried around by losers. Hardly the right stuff to be president, but the stuff the losers and liars are made of but in the end cannot hide.

Yours in good times and bad,

— John Myers

Source: Will County News

Illinois’ corporate handout program halted temporarily

Illinois Policy 12/20/2016

The expiration of the state’s EDGE program – which has given large companies more than $1 billion in tax credits the last 15 years – is good news for taxpayers and should encourage lawmakers to pass real reforms.

Illinois has given companies more than $1 billion in tax credits in the last 15 years, but the state’s corporate handouts are about to end – at least temporarily.

This is a perfect opportunity to end the Economic Development for a Growing Economy, or EDGE, program altogether. Propping up politically favored companies with taxpayer dollars is wrong, but the problem is even worse with EDGE as the state isn’t getting a return on its investment. Though the program has doled out $1.3 billion since 2001, Illinois has lost 113,000 jobs over that time period.

The EDGE program is set to expire Dec. 31, as Gov. Bruce Rauner and legislative leaders haven’t agreed on a plan that would keep it in place. Tax credits will still be available to companies under existing agreements, but new tax credits cannot be issued under the program if it expires.

Todd Maisch, CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, told Greg Hinz at Crain’s Chicago Business that losing the EDGE program “is not a plus, there’s not a question about that.” But that perspective ignores taxpayers, who certainly should have questions about the program, starting with why the amount of tax credits has increased so drastically each year.

In 2001, the state gave out just $6.5 million in taxpayer handouts to companies. That number steadily increased over the years, before ballooning under former Gov. Pat Quinn. The state increased the EDGE credit program by nearly $140 million under Quinn, peaking at more than $206 million issued to companies in 2014 alone, the year he left office. In October 2014, a month before Quinn was up for re-election, he authorized $37.4 million in major grants to companies and even used those examples as part of campaign ads suggesting there was jobs growth under his administration.

But handouts to large companies do not equate to jobs growth. Since the EDGE program began in 2001, the state has lost 113,000 payroll jobs on net, despite the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, or DCEO, citing 34,000 jobs created and another 46,000 retained from the program. The statistic on retaining jobs is even legally suspect: The law that created the program specifically says the credits can only be used to create new jobs, and a lawsuit was filed against the DCEO in 2015. That lawsuit, filed by the Liberty Justice Center, claimed the EDGE program used as much as $500 million in tax credits to retain current jobs, a blatantly illegal practice.

And beyond illegal practices, DCEO, which runs the EDGE program, has cut more special deals for corporations over the years than just what the tax-credit program offers. Amazon – an internet, retail giant worth more than $250 billion – is receiving $2 million in annual tax breaks over the next decade because it added 2,000 full-time jobs to Joliet, Ill. That agreement – made under Quinn and expanded by Rauner – follows a 2014 agreement the state made with AAR Corp. for $15 million in tax credits in exchange for 500 jobs, and a 10-year, $12 million with eBay for 360 jobs.

More recently, the EDGE program was part of a major headline when the state used as much as $1.3 million to bribe ConAgra Foods to relocate to Chicago from Omaha, Neb.

The state shouldn’t shuffle taxpayer money to corporations and hope for jobs growth. Instead, it should create an environment that allows all companies to thrive.

That means reforming Illinois’ workers’ compensation system, which is uncompetitive with the rest of the Midwest; and freezing its highest-in-the-nation property taxes. Those two actions alone – as part of a responsible, balanced budget – would attract new businesses to the state and encourage those eyeing a move out of the state to remain.

Businesses like Hoist Liftruck, a forklift manufacturer that moved its operations out of Illinois and into Indiana in 2015, specifically cited both the state’s unfair workers’ compensation system and burdensome tax climate as reasons to ditch the Land of Lincoln.

“Forget incentive money,” Hoist Liftruck CEO Marty Flaska said at the time of the move, “when you look at the pure cost for me to do business in Illinois, the choice is clear.”

For every taxpayer-funded deal bringing handfuls of jobs from ConAgra, Amazon or eBay, there are several more stories like Hoist’s and others who are moving high-paying, blue-collar jobs across borders to more pro-growth states.

But even with mounting evidence of out-migration of jobs from Illinois, politicians in Springfield for too long have favored special deals instead of real economic reforms. Even now, upon the likely expiration of the EDGE program, state Sens. Pam Althoff, R-Crystal Lake, and Melinda Bush, D-Grayslake, already moved to file a bill keeping the program, Crain’s Chicago Business reported. Meanwhile, legislative leaders refuse to budge on passing any sort of real, economic reform that could make the state more competitive with pro-growth neighbors like Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa.

The EDGE Program is unfair for taxpayers and small businesses, and does nothing to create a better business environment in the Land of Lincoln. Upon its expiration, lawmakers should get to work on pro-growth solutions that would make Illinois a truly competitive state.

TAGS: cronyism, DCEO, EDGE, jobs, tax credits

Source: Will County News