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When is a port pork?

Paying for up to 20% (i.e. $40 million) of the costs of Goodyear’s Fayetteville plant upgrade was apparently not good enough for Goodyear.  Now the company is asking the state to slash NC’s port fees for rubber import companies by 30%.  Is this a savvy public-private partnership or legalized extortion? The line gets blurrier every day. Even the guy who runs our ports called the request “exorbitant.”

Goodyear might not be a pioneer in showing other US tire makers how to make a profit without handouts but it sure is showing other corporations how to get their fair share of public greenbacks. The slope is now officially slippery and other giant corporations will be sliding down in short order no doubt.

On Thursday, Good Jobs First released a report grading state business subsidy disclosure policies.  NC managed a "D" grade.  Let's hope that NC leaders will take note and take action! Good disclosure is the first step to overcoming this addiction.

4 Comments


  1. Max

    November 19, 2007 at 11:52 am

  2. Colonel Dennis Nielsen

    November 19, 2007 at 9:23 pm

    The handouts to Dell and Google will be over $250 million to each. Google will employ about 210 people and Dell another 1,200. These companies hold no loyalty to NC and if they get a better offer they will be gone.

    There are 778,000 small businesses in NC that bring in over 17.7 billion dollars to the economy. This money stays in our communities and turns over 7 times.

    I believe we should try to attract businesses to NC but first we should do what we can to help our own small businesses. Tax relief and a tax credit for health care would be a great start.

  3. Dave Jerrido

    November 20, 2007 at 9:38 am

    I wholeheartedly agree with Colonel Nielsen. I’m sure one of the main reasons these “big businesses” came to NC is the same reason there is such a population boom – land is cheaper and the incentives were good.

    We need to be careful about throwing all this incentive money to these corporations to get them to stay because basic economics should tell you that as soon as things get more expensive here and cheaper elsewhere, they’re packing up hitting the road – possibly overseas taking all the jobs with them. As mentioned, this incentive money would be better spent in small businesses who plan on staying local for the long haul.

  4. Louise

    November 21, 2007 at 1:12 pm

    Check out our plan for reforming the corporate incentives game at http://www.orr2008.com

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