A huge govern­ment give­away

The Washington Post Sunday - - SUN­DAY OPIN­ION -

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) ad­ver­tise them­selves as small-govern­ment, free-mar­ket con­ser­va­tives con­cerned about govern­ment waste. But, as the July 27 front-page ar­ti­cle “Tech gi­ant, courted by Trump, to build in U.S.” re­ported, they have car­ried give­aways to businesses to a ridicu­lous low. Mr. Walker said the Fox­conn fac­tory he wants built in his state would cre­ate 13,000 jobs. The eco­nomic in­cen­tives to Fox­conn could to­tal $3 bil­lion, or $230,769 per job cre­ated. That as­tro­nom­i­cal amount of cor­po­rate wel­fare will have to be paid by Wisconsin tax­pay­ers and will leave every other busi­ness in the state ag­grieved that it didn’t get a sim­i­lar sweet­heart deal.

How big is the give­away? In Montgomery County, Mar­riott swung a deal with the county to move its head­quar­ters and 3,500 em­ploy­ees to down­town Bethesda in re­turn for $62 mil­lion in tax breaks, or $17,714 per job. That fig­ure is bad enough, but the Wisconsin deal is just breath­tak­ingly stupid and will boomerang on the state if it goes through.

Edward Ep­stein, Chevy Chase


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