Good Jobs First Blog
A new report from three government watchdog groups reveals a stunning figure: companies controlled by private equity firms received approximately $5.3 billion in federal CARES Act funding. Sadly, PE portfolios are not the only beneficiaries with deep pockets that got money from a relief package that was supposed to help small, struggling businesses and keep workers on the job.
Right now, three tech companies—#1 and #2 microchip makers Intel and Samsung and electric-truck start-up Rivian—are staging secret subsidy auctions, playing states against each other for new facilities.
As part of the $2.2 trillion pandemic relief CARES Act enacted in spring 2020, states received $150 billion in general assistance via the Coronavirus Relief Fund. Within limits tied to the pandemic, the Relief Fund is meant to be flexible, and allowing states, U.S. territories, and tribal governments to direct money where it is most needed. So how is that money being spent? States have been inconsistent in reporting. One positive outlier: Alabama.
In a national study we issued in March 2021 on the harm of business incentives to school revenues, certain places stood out for their enormous tax abatements. A deeper analysis shows that the lost revenue falls disproportionately on low-income school districts, those with the most Black and Brown students, and those already suffering from regressive revenue systems.
My colleagues were digging into the state of economic development subsides in Ohio – as we here at Good Jobs First do – when they came across Cincinnati resident Michelle Dillingham. She's part of a group working hard to reign in tax abatements that divert significant pools of money from schools.