Good Jobs First (www.goodjobsfirst.org), a small Washington DC-based non-profit with a big footprint, now seeks a Project Coordinator responsible for a project that uses a database, reports and technical assistance to document how much revenue government bodies are foregoing to corporate tax breaks.
This month marks 10 years since Amazon opened its tax-break office. We’ve spent the last 10 days highlighting 10 deals that left communities worse off because of Amazon's relentless tax dodging. Our list highlighted warehouses of course, but also a fashion studio, a Whole Foods, a data center. Amazon seeks public subsidies for anything it does. As Sunshine Week kicks off, we call on Amazon to disclose what it has gotten and will get from the U.S. and abroad in economic development subsidies, and then, better yet, stop asking for them altogether.
Corporate subsidies drain billions from public schools. Companies fined billions by regulators – here and abroad. States hide billions in pandemic-relief… we’re on it! And we can do even more with your support.
Arlene here, wrapping up my first full year with Good Jobs First. I barely know where to start, so let’s dive in!
Opportunity Zones provide federal capital gains tax breaks, supposedly to encourage wealthy investors and corporations to invest their pre-tax gains in historically disenfranchised neighborhoods, help grow local economies and ultimately, improve the long-term prospects for zone residents. But as David Wessel shows in his book, Only the Rich Can Play: How Washington Works in the New Gilded Age, that hasn’t been the case. Despite limited data (the enabling legislation for OZs has next to no guardrails or meaningful reporting requirements), Wessel gives numerous examples of how the winners of the OZs have often been affluent communities and already-in-the-works projects.
In recent years, local and state governments have disclosed more information to the public about tax breaks, grants, and other subsidies they give corporations. But Alabama remains an exception. Unlike most states, it still fails to meaningfully track what the public is getting for the billions it gives to businesses to open or expand operations. We talked to former state Rep. Patricia Todd about what must be done to change that.