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Comment about Lepage's Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program Deleted from Boothbay Register Candidates Discussion

I was not surprised to find another comment deleted in the Boothbay Register, identified as spam, in fact, I expected it, and so I took a screenshot of it in it's published state (see below). It was posted in a discussion about local political candidates, the people who want to be our representatives, making the decisions about what legislation is enacted.

spam Definition found on Miraim Webster
\ ˈspam  \Definition of Spam unsolicited usually commercial messages (such as e-mails, text messages, or Internet postings) sent to a large number of recipients or posted in a large number of placesspam
spammedspammingDefinition of Spam (Entry 2 of 3)
transitive verbto send or post spam tospammed customers with discount offersspamming a message boardintransitive verbto send or post spamThe company was accused of spamming via text messages.Spam
Definition of Spam (Entry 3 of 3)
used for a canned meat product

The deleted comment brings up the Pine Tree Zone Tax Exemptions, which are long overdue to be repealed but there is no existing public dialogue to even suggest the idea, except for occasional articles about or by OPEGA, which is the Maine State Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability, and so they have to be allowed through every once in a while!

OPEGA has been reporting for years that the Pine Tree Zone is not meeting its purpose, and costs the taxpayers more than it is worth to the taxpayers, but, based on what I have seen, in my research, the taxpayers are pawns to be played in a transactional exchange between the public and private sides of our state government. The taxpayers may lose, but special interests profit from the exemptions and so the Legislature keeps passing more Pine Tree Zone styled legislation such as the Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program passed last year, which I wrote about in my previous post.

The good news is that the Pine Tree Zone is entering into its sunset years but the bad news is that, as with the Seed Capital Tax Credit, there will most likely be a push to renew it complete with full media support.

In the latest OPEGA report on the Pine Tree Zone, OPEGA sounds quite frustrated with making reports which are never seriously considered, such as in this paragraph:

OPEGA determined that many of the approved evaluation questions for the PTDZ Program could not be answered without considerable effort because of the shortage of readily available program data. We believe the data necessary to answer these questions could be obtained. However gathering it, preparing it and assessing it would require a significant amount of time for OPEGA staff and potentially the staffs of DECD, MRS and business participants. Given that the PTDZ Program has already begun to sunset and new certifications will not be issued after next year, OPEGA decided not to pursue obtaining that data at this time

The Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program is Pine Tree Zone styled legislation so when the Pine Tree Zone is phased out, a bigger meaner Pine Tree Zone is already in place. I have searched the Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program and related phrases but have not found the Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program reported or discussed in the media, despite the fact that LePage's last attempt to pass a similar bill received a great deal of coverage, It is no wonder that the public-private government wants to keep this bill secret. Taking the giant step of creating a tax on the Maine people (see the last post) to cover free capital for global and national corporations might stir up some resistance, as it should, Imagine how this can evolve into the future!

The purpose of LePage's transformational Act is to lure global corporate business and culture to Maine. The lure is a 2% refundable tax credit, which in practice is arguably a tax levied on the people of Maine based on 2% of the global corporation's global investments  The wording is vague as to whether the 25% of total employment to be located in Maine still holds if the corporation employs more than 5000 employees. The Maine Legislature was very specific when it included the term "unitary business" in its description of a "qualified investment". The term "unitary" has a specific legal meaning, establishing that neither the specificity nor the vagueness of statutory language is an accident.
In Amoco Corp. v. Comm'r of Revenue, 658 N.W.2d 859, 865 (Minn. 2003), the court held that a business is unitary when the operation of the business within the state is dependent upon or contributory to the operation of the business outside the state. USlegal

What happens when the global business exceeds 5000 employees is important to know when projecting how the transformation will unfold in the future. The Act requires that the qualified business has locations in at least three other states or countries. If all four of those states or countries make a similar agreement with the global or national corporation- that would entail 100% of 5000 of the global corporation's employees to be employed in those four states or countries in exchange for the taxpayers in those state and countries refunding 8% of the corporation's capital investments, provided the other states or nations also offer similar PineTree Zone styled tax exemptions. This amounts to the people financing a corporation but not sharing in the profits. It will not take long for that percentage to leap from 8% to 10%. With that kind of free capital, the corporation can rapidly grow and soon will be hiring more than 5000 employees, anywhere in the world. Is the corporation then free to make similar deals with 4 more states or countries?  If so, eventually, the global corporation will have 100% (or more) of its ever-expanding corporate empire financed with free capital, from the people, thanks to their governments.

We should be able to bring up this issue in the public dialogue as we approach election season, but that is not the world we live in.Norms need to change or things are only going to get worse.

Here is the same post from my Disqus file after it was deleted: At first the Disqus message said it was deleted as spam, when I checked that it is not spam, the message changed to what is now displayed.

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    You have that backward. Take a look at the Seed Capital Tax credit- called by the Legislature the "Expanded and Improved Seed Capital Tax Credit" when it was renewed a few years ago. It was expanded and improved for the private capitalists who are the receiving end of the taxpayer burden. The credit is written in one act and the tax exemptions in another such as the Pine Tree Zone exemptions studied and reported to be a loser for the taxpayers for many years now.
    As Lepage was creating what amounts to new Pine Tree Zone exemptions for global capitalists, the OPEGA Report on the Pine Tree Zone for 2017 has a notice in large letters on the top of it which says "–Program Design Does Not Support Intended Goals; Whether Program Is Achieving Results Despite Design Is Unknown As Adequate Data Is Not Readily Available to Assess Outcomes" . This lack of government transparency has been reported for years, The media refers to the tax credit in the Seed Capital Tax Credit and Lepage's new Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program as mere "tax credits" but they are both "refundable tax credits" meaning if the holder owes no taxes, the public owes the holder the amount of the credit, Refundable Tax Credits would better be named a reversible tax credit because they reverse the roles of who owes whom a tax. Refundable Tax Credits allow corporations to tax the public and now we will be taxed 2% on the total business investments anywhere in the world of corporations in the Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program. The statute explicitly uses the word "unitary" which has a specific legal meaning that it is not restricted by state and global borders.
    These tax credits are available only to the Legislature's "targeted sector", not to the whole of the economy. These programs distribute free capital to the upper crust of the economy under the rubric of "job creation". This is requiring the workers, and all taxpayers NOT in the targeted sector to capitalize on privately owned businesses in exchange for creating jobs which the private business needs to be filled in order to make a profit. The state even pays for their job training, A few years back, a bill referred to in the media as "Jobs for Me", was pulling the wool over the public's eyes. Only 25% of the funding in that bill went to job training, which was barely needed because, through refundable tax credits, the public was already covering the costs of targeted sector job training.
    Private entrepreneurs not included in the public-private government's targeted sector take risks, but the risk-taking is removed from the State's targeted sector programs and passed on as a burden on the general public. It's outrageous. and has been since the public-private government was created in the 1970's. From what is reported on Bill Search, there was no opposition to the new Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program. That is why it is important to bring these issues up in respect to the candidates. I haven't found any coverage in the media on Major Business Headquarters Expansions Program. Maybe it exists but I have not found it.
Since I wrote the above, the status on the above Disqus post has reverted to Spam. I took another screenshot. If that changes, I will report, but historically it doesn't change.


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