SAVING THE COUNTRY: Revitalizing Major Cities

PROBLEM: The US and it’s cities need companies to pay their taxes in order to continue providing valuable public services in a down economy. However, corporations tend to move into an area for tax incentives, and then abandon it as soon as that locale tries to impose tax of any kind.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately because the debacle that is Detroit’s situation has been in the news a lot and because I live in a city where so much industry has abandoned that the hospital has become the biggest employer we have left.

Now, let me say that I am opposed to federal government controlling more than it needs to, but this situation has grown to crisis proportions in so many areas that I think there are situations where a new view is needed and there is room for a hybrid federal-local approach that can make everybody happy.

What I propose is this: a federal law that says every company is subject to the same federal, state and local taxes as the people living in the same area. The Supreme court has already ruled (in a topic that I’ll address later) that companies are entities like individual people. I say if that is true, then they need need to assume some of the same responsibilities as people and not just the perks.

A law like I propose here would leave state and local governments the right to lure industry in with tax breaks, provided that it gave the same benefits to its citizens.

The localities get the tax revenue they need, the citizens get the comfort of knowing they’re on an even playing field with the companies in their areas, and the companies know that no matter where they go, they’re subject to the same laws.

Am I being way too simple about this, or does it make good common sense? I welcome the discussion.

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