Archive

Archive for the ‘Taxes’ Category

Future Of Casinos

24 June 2013 Leave a comment

Back in the day when casinos were coming to the Mississippi Coast I wrote a piece about the Law of Diminishing Returns to argue against an unlimited amount of casinos….it seems that they were building casinos to have something to do……..

Law of Diminishing Returns simply put is if there is a finite amount of casino revenue, say $10 million, then the more casinos there are the more diluted the revenue will be…..now with the slowdown of the economy the casinos have suffered the same fate……when the bill passed the state legislature the deal was that the tax revenue would be used to sure up the sagging education system……well we stilkl have one of the worse systems around and the funds found there way into the “general fund”…….

But could the casino become a burden on the state?  Under normal conditions they should not……but there is nothing usual about the Mississippi gaming system……what could be a possible result of a casino failure?

Well, let’s look at Delaware, shall we………

Lawmakers appear ready to support Gov. Jack Markell’s plan to use $8 million from higher-than-expected state tax collections to bail out the state’s casino industry. But it’s not clear if the state aid will forestall layoffs threatened by casinos that have seen revenues plummet from intense regional competition.Sen. Robert Venables, who chairs the General Assembly’s join Bond Bill committee, said Tuesday $8 million is “better than nothing” for the industry, which has pleaded with lawmakers and the governor in recent weeks for help to reduce its tax burden.

If the proposal makes it into the final draft of the Bond Bill, tied in with hundreds of millions in school and infrastructure spending, it’s likely to pass the General Assembly without debate.

Now how is that?  An industry that makes obscene profits could get a government bailout…….could this be the future of the failing casinos of the Gulf Coast?

Take Me Out To The Ballgame

11 June 2013 Leave a comment

Biloxi on the Mississippi Gulf Coast is getting a new minor league baseball stadium!

There is one small problem with the good news…..we DO NOT have a minor league baseball team…..a minor setback, I am told.

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant on Thursday said the state would kick in $15 million in BP oil disaster money to help build a professional baseball stadium in Biloxi.  Bryant said, Ken Young, president of Ovations Food Services and an owner of several minor-league teams via Maryland Baseball Holding, LLC (Triple-A Norfolk Tides, Double-A Bowie Baysox, and Single-A Frederick Keys) and Albuquerque Baseball Club, LLC (Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes), is leading the franchise ownership group and is “in the process of purchasing an existing minor league team and relocating them to Biloxi.”  Read more here.

We are told that it will seat up to 25,000 persons……that it will be used for not only baseball but concerts and other special events…….which is a pretty good promise but we already have the Gulf Coast Coliseum which acts for these things but the baseball thingy…

Personally, I think the BP disaster funds could be spent in a much more beneficial way than a ball park…..all this will do is make a few more low paying jobs for the people of the Coast……and after 5 years will be for sale or a great place to graze goats…..

The questions I want answered is….who benefited for the sale of that chunk of property?  And what will the tax base be?

Open Letter

This is a letter I sent to the city council awhile back….of curse there was no reply…I did not expect one….this is a valid proposal and would do alot to raise the much needed funds of which the city is in desperate need……..

Open Letter To The City Council Of Gulfport, Mississippi

The city has been having its problems with the generation of much needed funds for programs that will benefit its citizens. There is a way to generate these funds and that course is called Land Value Tax. For years I have been advocating this form of taxation to no avail, but with the economic situation getting worse by the day, I believe this idea can save the city from massive cuts in services.

According to the Mississippi Economic Policy Center, any tax reform should conform to a 3 principle outline.  These are:  1—Be balanced and make work pay, 2—should create opportunity for economic growth and 3—be accountable to the taxpayer.  The Land Value Tax (LVT) addresses all three of the concerns put forth by the MEPC.

Land rent means taxing land. Not buildings, not work, not commerce, just bare land. Or if land has buildings (as most land has) then the equivalent value of the land if it had no buildings.

Land gets its value its improvements (buildings etc) and from its location. The improvements were made by the hard work of the owners. But the location has value because of what society does, because of roads and schools and good neighbors.

If society taxes buildings and improvements, it steals people’s hard work, their time and energy, their life. Most taxation is therefore theft. But if society taxes the location, then it simply claims back the value it creates. Land rent distinguishes between the individual’s property and society’s property.

Land rent creates fairness in the most basic of all issues: who controls the ground beneath our feet.

Land rent is the only rational tax, because it is based on a sound theory of property (you create it, you own it).

Land rent means an end to every other tax. So it becomes much cheaper to create additional jobs and manufacture goods. So wealth increases.

If you tax work, the amount of work goes down, because some work becomes less profitable. But if you tax land, the amount of land remains the same. So if you want to encourage work, you should tax land, not work.

Land rent is the only guarantee of fair property rights. If people can charge rent but they pay no rent themselves, eventually one person or one elite will own everything and nobody else can have any property unless it suits the elite. To see why, play the game Monopoly. Monopoly is based on “The Landlord’s Game,” invented by Lizzie Magie as a way to show why we need land rent.

Land rent is the most efficient way of creating wealth because it gives resources to those who can use them best (that is, those who can generate the most wealth from the land).

Land rent creates economic justice, by ensuring that everyone keeps the wealth they create, and any extra is given back to society. So nobody has unfair privileges, and everyone has an equal chance to succeed.

Land rent provides a fair system for all, because it generates wealth for society, yet it is so simple that corruption and inefficiency have nowhere to hide.

It is as simple as that….it would not take a massive bureaucracy to change the taxation of the city…

If further information is needed I may be contacted at:

CG Streuly

2605 Demaret Drive

Gulfport, MS 39507

Email: chuqalam@gmail.com

SB 2288–Speculator’s Dream

29 January 2010 2 comments

There are times when the state legislature does something that is a blatant disregard of the people it represents and SB2288 is such bill….which states:

AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF A COUNTY AND/OR THE GOVERNING AUTHORITIES OF A MUNICIPALITY TO GRANT A PARTIAL AD VALOREM TAX EXEMPTION FOR AGRICULTURAL PROPERTY THAT IS BEING CONVERTED TO A RESIDENTIAL USE IN AN AMOUNT EQUAL TO THE DIFFERENCE IN THE ASSESSED VALUE OF THE PROPERTY FOR AGRICULTURAL USE AND THE ASSESSED VALUE OF THE PROPERTY FOR RESIDENTIAL USE; TO PROVIDE THAT THE EXEMPTION SHALL END WHEN THE PROPERTY IS OCCUPIED BY A HOMEOWNER; TO PROVIDE THE MANNER IN WHICH A REQUEST FOR SUCH EXEMPTION MUST BE MADE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

This appears to be a boon for the purpose of land speculation….

A case could be made that land speculation is the cause of almost every major recession/depression that has occurred whether nationwide or statewide…..The 19th century economist Henry George describes it:

That land speculation is the true cause of industrial depression is, in the United States, clearly evident. In each period of industrial activity land values have steadily risen, culminating in speculation which carried them up in great jumps. This has been invariably followed by a partial cessation of production, and its correlative, a cessation of effective demand (dull trade), generally accompanied by a commercial crash; and then has succeeded a period of comparative stagnation, during which the equilibrium has been again slowly established, and the same round been run again. This relation is observable throughout the civilized world. Periods of industrial activity always culminate in a speculative advance of land values, followed by symptoms of checked production, generally shown at first by cessation of demand from the newer countries, where the advance in land values has been greatest.

This bill is just another attempt to help the land speculators while depriving the state of much needed tax revenue…in these days any reduction in revenue can only lead to a cut in needed services….

Once again, the state legislation is dealing the people of the state a bad hand, just as they do every session…the people need to stop sleeping through the day and wake up politically…they are paying these people to do nothing but screw them at every session….

Fixing Mississippi’s Economy

18 January 2010 Leave a comment

State after state after state is reeling from the results of the recession……mostly because they have cut taxes to the bone….a promise to get elected……and now the revenues are NOT there……almost all are scrambling to find money for the few services left in the state’s budget….

A report in the Clarion-Ledger:

With the economy continuing to deplete tax revenues, Gov. Haley Barbour said the state is considering some kind of credit assistance that would help small businesses without duplicating programs offered by banks and other agencies.

As the governor and others talked about how the lack of credit is forcing some businesses to close, Jerry Host, president and chief operating officer of Trustmark National Bank, reminded those gathered that the country’s economic problem is complex and needs a multi-faceted solution. Just as other businesses have not gotten expected contracts, Host said banks also are missing anticipated income because businesses have canceled expansions that would have required loans.”The return of a healthy economy is not just dependent on bank lending, it requires the recovery of consumer spending, which in turn increases revenues and leads to healthier businesses – large and small,” Host said in an e-mailed statement sent after the meeting.

The governor repeated his commitment to attracting new jobs as another method of replenishing lost taxes.

Okay there is just so much wrong with this whole approach……first, cutting taxes to be elected is why the state is suffering with low income….second, the state is notoriously always the worst state for employment….none of these “job creation” schemes has panned out in the past…..why would it in the middle of a recession?…….third, “replenishing taxes” cannot be done by cutting more taxes or giving more tax breaks….I have said the demand is the answer liquidity means NOTHING to anyone…..

One question….why are churches tax exempt?  Sorry…I digress…..may I suggest that a new way of thinking about taxes should be considered……why not try Land Value Taxation (LVT)?…….this would be a good way to generate new taxes and if done corrctly all other taxes could possibly be eliminated……

But sadly….NO one in Jackson has the guts let alone the cajones to even consider this…their longevity in the legislature could be in jeopardy…God knows we cannot live without their worthless, do nothing butts…..(in case you missed it..it was sarcasm)…..

Whose Idea Is It?

13 January 2010 Leave a comment

We all have heard the stories of how the state is suffering from this recession….that the revenues of the state are reaching record lows….sad to say we are not alone…..all states are suffering from the same problems in their budgets….but I will focus on Mississippi…..

I keep bring up that fact that the state’s revenue comes from the imposition of taxes….without taxes there is NO services that the state is required to offer the people…..and yet every time the legislature meets there is some that want, including the governor, to cut taxes, almost ALL taxes…..do they NOT see what that does for their budgets…..or is it they do not care and need the cuts to pad their political resumes for their next campaign?  IMO, it is the latter!

Property taxes?  And sales taxes?  You do realize that this is the most important tax?  Why?  The collection of property taxes is one of the chief sources of revenue for state and local government and then the collection of state sales tax……and now the new legislative session has a couple of bills before it:

First there is SB 2288 which states:

AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF A COUNTY AND/OR THE GOVERNING AUTHORITIES OF A MUNICIPALITY TO GRANT A PARTIAL AD VALOREM TAX EXEMPTION FOR AGRICULTURAL PROPERTY THAT IS BEING CONVERTED TO A RESIDENTIAL USE

And then there is HB 4 which states:

AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 27-65-17, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REDUCE THE SALES TAX RATE ON RETAIL SALES OF MOTORCYCLES FROM SEVEN PERCENT TO FIVE PERCENT;

Just those two bills would decrease the amount of revenue that is coming in…,…state legislators will have to deal with the budget shortfalls by cutting the services and programs that it funds….you have that right?……first, programs for the poor and disadvantage will suffer, i.e.  Medicaid and then once that sector is officially killed they will move to such other programs as educational and so forth……all that is just fine for some but they have NOT looked at it realistic……once all the other programs have been cut to the bone and there is still a shortfall then cuts will be made to programs that effect the white people the most….like fire and police….and then the voice of the people will be heard at least if the politicians want to be re-elected……

But will the people finally realize that to keep cutting taxes is NOT the way to fund programs that benefit ALL Mississippians?

To answer my own question….maybe finally the people of Mississippi will be open to the idea of land value taxation (LVT)…….this could go a long way to solving ALL of Mississippi’s financial problems….it is worth a look…so why waste time BS-ing the people and find the cure…it is there just grow a set of cajones and try it…..it could not be as bad as the crap you put us through yearly…..Just a thought…..

More Diabetes For The State?

11 January 2010 5 comments

The state is the fattest in the country and in being so has a disproportionate amount of diabetes and with the state being the poorest in the country, that means that the state Medicaid program is hit hard by diabetes and diabetes related diseases…..

On to another subject…the state has raised taxes on tobacco with the hopes that it will cost so much that people will quit smoking and become much more healthy…..and there is the rub of this post….

A study by U.S. researchers found that people who stop smoking have a 70 percent increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the first six years without cigarettes as compared to people who never smoked.

The researchers said they suspected the increased diabetes risk comes from extra weight gain common in people who quit.

The researchers found that people who quit smoking had a 70 percent increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the first six years after stopping compared to people who never smoked. The risks were highest in the first three years, and returned to normal after 10 years.

Among those who did not stop smoking the risk was lower, but the chance of developing diabetes was still 30 percent higher compared with those who never smoked.

Type 2 diabetes — often called adult-onset diabetes — is a common disease that interferes with the body’s ability to properly use sugar and insulin, a substance produced by the pancreas which normally lowers blood sugar after eating.

Overweight people and those with a family history of the disease have an increased risk of developing it, as do smokers.

Diabetes is reaching epidemic levels, with an estimated 180 million people suffering from it around the world.

Diabetes cases are forecast to triple in the United States in the next 25 years to 44 million with the costs of caring for them rising to $336 billion a year.

So there you are…..will any extra tax money received through the taxes collected on cigarettes be off set by an increase in the number of diabetics that it could possible create?