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ADM and the satellite tax

Tuesday, Dec 3, 2013

* ADM wants its tax break to help open its Chicago world headquarters today

“We need a decision by the end of ‘13 so now is the time,” Gregory Webb, ADM vice president for state government relations, told the Lee Enterprises Springfield Bureau on Monday.

* But the bill is caught up in some last minute games

Lawmakers began considering a new set of tax incentives worth $92 million for Archer Daniels Midland Co., chemical distributor Univar and newly merged OfficeMax and Office Depot on Monday that includes a proposed satellite television tax.

The legislation — aimed at keeping companies in Illinois and creating jobs — recycles ideas considered this year after agribusiness giant ADM announced plans to move its Decatur headquarters. The plan calls for a 5 percent fee on direct broadcast satellite services, which is expected to generate $75 million annually..

Yes, the satellite TV tax could be back. It was tacked onto some amendments yesterday. I’m not sure whether it’ll stay on, but the idea is to use the money generated by the $55 a year tax to pay for the new corporate tax breaks.

The Senate approved the tax last year, but those revenues were supposed to go to education funding. Needless to say, some teachers union folks weren’t all that happy with the new plan to take potential education dollars and use them to pay for corporate tax breaks - on the same day that their members’ pension benefits are being cut.

Like I said, the idea may not survive.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


23 Comments
  1. - Dan Johnson - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 5:43 am:

    The best part about the idea to fund the corporate welfare is the acknowledgement that we’re spending real taxpayer money on these three companies. We’re buying these jobs. And they are very expensive. We don’t ‘get the money back’ with a return on investment. There isn’t a multiplier to speak of (that I’ve ever seen). We just send taxpayer money to some of the biggest companies in the country because…other governments will do the same thing. So I hope they keep the tax in to set a precedent that we need to pay for these special deals.

    It’s reactive policy and we can do much, much better with our precious few economic development dollars to build a better income-increasing climate for all of us.


  2. - Former Merit Comp Slave - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 7:14 am:

    Agreed Dan. In addition I find it personally insulting that on the same day they are voting to take away part of my pension I worked almost 30 years for to turn around and give money to big corporations. A bitter pill to swallow indeed.


  3. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 7:30 am:

    Quite a spectacle today in Springfield. Pensioneers get clipped while ADM, which had $2 billion in profits last year, wants a big sloppy kiss to move its execs closer to their favorite golf courses and restaurants in Chicago.


  4. - dang - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 7:47 am:

    It is truly stupefying that this bill would even be considered. I get the feeling including tge satellite TV tax is intended to be a poison pill. Let’s just hope the “medicine” works.


  5. - RNUG - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 8:03 am:

    If this bill gets passed at the same time as the pension reduction, it will be exhibit # 3 in the court case, right behind Cullerton’s remarks about no crisis and the State’s clear description in the Maag case appeal of the pension clause protection.


  6. - Plutocrat03 - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 8:33 am:

    Seems half baked to not only give tax breaks to entities who pay tax, but to allow them to repurpose money withheld from employee pay checks to their own purposes.

    Profitable companies should shoulder some of the tax burden in this state.

    What is to prevent each company to demand this kind of benefit?

    Pandering gets you nowhere.


  7. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 8:44 am:

    Pluto, it’s a bizarre program. I wonder if it would withstand scrutiny in court.

    I mean, the state can withhold taxes from your paycheck and give them to your employer?

    If Illinois taxpayers are going to be investors in all of these highly profitable companies, shouldn’t we at least get some stock — or something?


  8. - Sir Reel - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 8:55 am:

    The satellite tax would be, in effect, a transfer of wealth from satellite users to the 2 corporations. I suspect many satellite users live in rural areas and need their wealth.


  9. - Jack Handy - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 8:58 am:

    Let’s hurry up an pass this pension thing so we can continue giving that money to corporations.


  10. - walkinfool - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 9:02 am:

    Bad ideas abound.


  11. - flea - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 9:42 am:

    With Australia Government nixing ADM’s $3B offer for Grain Corp, you would think they would have sufficient $reserves to hold things together without relying on tax breaks from state coffers. Outrageous!


  12. - downstate hack - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 10:28 am:

    ADM’s request or demand is outrageous. Univar and Home Depot merely disgusting.


  13. - Irish - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 10:42 am:

    Hey GA, let’s hurry up and pass the pension bill to rip money out of the hands of hard working public employees, teachers, and set a precedence so cities can do the same to firemen and police. Because after we stomp on those folks we turn to to provide us with services, we can pass a second bill to give out millions to a couple large businesses so they can pay their CEO’s a few million more.
    I don’t think Rauner will be lonesome in Springfield if he is elected. Seems to me there are a lot of people already there who think just like he does.


  14. - reformer - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 10:55 am:

    When the 5% satellite TV tax passed the Senate last year, one GOP gubernatorial candidate voted for it. Guess who? (HB 5440)


  15. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 10:59 am:

    Can Springfield really be that tone-deaf?

    Passing this on the same day you try to slash pensions adds the ultimate insult to injury.


  16. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 11:06 am:

    Budgets don’t balance themselves. There’s a chance Illinois will need a satellite tv tax, but without earmarking its revenue for corporate tax breaks.


  17. - A guy... - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 11:50 am:

    It’s wash day. Might need some more bleach after doing consecutive loads like these.


  18. - Union Man - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 12:25 pm:

    If you raise my satellite tax, then pay down the debt!! Don’t give tax breaks to billion dollar corporations!! It’s time to storm the “new” capitol doors!!


  19. - Howard the Duck - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 12:35 pm:

    There goes my COLA. Hey maybe we public employees can start up a corporation then sit back and watch the money roll in.


  20. - Plutocrat03 - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 12:55 pm:

    So what about those State activities that were to be funded by the money deducted from the paycheck ? It seems like there is no thought given to the long term concequences of anything. Fire the lot of them….


  21. - eyewitness - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 1:56 pm:

    “Like I said, the idea may not survive.”

    Your mouth, God’s ears.


  22. - reformer - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 2:42 pm:

    The GOP gubernatorial candidate who voted for this new $55 tax last year is the Hon. Kirk Dillard.


  23. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, Dec 3, 13 @ 7:34 pm:

    Cannot believe the Senate passed this just moments before diminishing pensions.

    They either have no sense or no soul.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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