DaimlerChrysler get sent to the high court for perk problems

by Jim Longworth

An Ohio lawsuit has finally made it to the US Supreme Court, which, if upheld would prohibit states from offering tax incentives as a lure to land new industry.

‘ The landmark case was sparked by perks given to DaimlerChrysler, but a federal ruling could also affect hundreds of other similar economic development deals around the nation, including the Dell package here in North Carolina.

‘ Plaintiffs and their supporters argue that tax credit deals violate the interstate commerce clause in our Constitution.’  Defendants and their faithful say that offering such packages amounts to nothing more than an investment in new jobs.

But incentives don’t really create jobs so much as they shuffle them from one state to another, or, in some cases, replace jobs taken overseas by these same greedy companies who continue to demand perks here at home.

‘ In reality, most’ public officials hate corporate welfare and would like nothing better than to stop giving away the farm to every company who threatens to take their business across the state line.’ The problem is none of the states wants to be the first to say no to these pirates.

But if the high court should find for Ohio taxpayers, it would put an end to industry extortion everywhere, and restore integrity to our economic development system.

‘ I’m all for offering a helping hand, but I don’t condone sleight of hand by corporate bullies who prey on local economic woes.

Now, I just wish we could offer the court an incentive to do the right thing.


Jim Longworth is host of ‘“Triad Today’” which can be seen Friday mornings at 6:30 a.m. on ABC45 (cable channel 7), and Sunday nights at 10 p.m. on UPN48 (cable channel 14).