The Uneducable Must Be Replaced
With the legislature back in session, the press releases have resumed, and I’ll tell ya: If all Rhode Islanders received them in their emailboxes and gave each a moment’s thought, there might be more discouragement across the state. Those whom we elect don’t seem to understand cause and effect and the 1,000-papercuts principle.
So, here we get Rep. Joanne Giannini (D, Providence) conspiring to ensure another incremental increase in the baseline cost of health insurance:
Legislation sponsored by Rep. Joanne M. Giannini would require health insurers to cover the cost of donor breast milk for infants who are severely allergic to formula and whose mothers are unable to produce milk.
“For women who, for whatever reason, are unable to lactate, formula is usually the solution. But for those whose babies are allergic to formula, donor breast milk is the only option, and although it is extraordinarily expensive, the child’s life depends on it. That’s exactly the type of extraordinary but critical health expenses that insurance should cover,” said Representative Giannini (D-Dist. 7, Providence).
If the government is to the point of deciding every minute benefit that health insurance should offer, what need is there of a public option?
Then, we get Rep. Charlene Lima (D, Cranston) illustrating why Rhode Island’s strategy of “targeted” tax cuts for businesses is an extremely diluted method, at best:
Representative Lima is calling for an immediate halt to the distribution of more [business] tax credits until the state has a system in place that complies with the requirements in the law that was passed allowing the tax credits. She is also calling for a temporary halt to film tax credits until it is proven that the state is getting enough value in return and making the tax credit dollars worthwhile to Rhode Island taxpayers. …
To that end, Representative Lima will be submitting legislation today requiring any business applying for tax credits to sign a waiver of confidentiality and an affidavit stating they will turn over all financial records needed by the state to verify the benefit to the State of Rhode Island. Under the bill, before any tax credit can be issued to a business, those requirements must be met.
Additionally, any business already receiving tax credits would also be required to sign and comply with the waiver and affidavit or pay the state an amount equal to the tax credit previously given. Because the law already requires verification, any business not willing to turn over requested documents immediately would be breaking the law and would have to forfeit and reimburse the state for any tax credits given. Representative Lima said she will be asking the Attorney General to investigate any company unwilling to comply with the verification requirement.
So, the General Assembly passed targeted tax credits to attract and support economic development in Rhode Island, and because the government is having difficulty compiling data related to its targets, Lima wishes to shut the incentive down and hereafter require all businesses that wish to be developed to open up their books to the ravenous state. The next step, one supposes, is to have public battles over every bonus that a business receiving tax credits hands out.
What business would want to bind itself to a state in which this crew of clowns might swoop in on any given year and demand either financial documents or the return of tax credits already given? The state should stop with the “targeted” and stop with the presumed right to be invasive and just loosen its grip on the economy. Say it with me: cut taxes, eliminate mandates, lighten regulations across the board.