Lunch Links: Under Amour Wants Baltimore to Finance Transformation of Area to House New Headquarters; Wisconsin Governor, Fellow Republicans in Legislature Announce Tax Reform Proposals; New Tax Foundation Tool to Compare Congressional Tax Plans

September 7, 2016

Today is September 7, the date in 2012 when the national debt passed the $16 trillion mark. Today it stands at $19.5 trillion.

Here are some interesting links I came across:

Puerto Rico Defaults on Another Bond: Puerto Rico’s Government Development Bank, which the island loaded up with debt as it ran out of money, defaulted on a $9.9 million interest payment on September 1. The previous day, President Obama named seven members of a federal control board to restructure the island’s finances. (Bloomberg / The Washington Post)

Ohio Avoids Another Unemployment Tax Increase with Loan Payoff: The Ohio unemployment insurance system went bust during the recession, forcing the state to borrow $3.4 billion from the feds and triggering cascading tax increases on employers. The final $271 million repayment occurred last week, leaving just California and the Virgin Islands with outstanding loans from the feds. (Dayton Daily News / U.S. Department of Labor)

Wisconsin Governor to Propose Sales Tax Holiday: Tom Evenson, a spokesman for Gov. Scott Walker (R), says a temporary sales tax holiday for back-to-school supplies will be in his budget next year. Legislative Republicans are due to announce some tax ideas today as well. (Sheboygan Press)

New Jersey Targeted Incentives on the Rise: New Jersey struggles with high tax rates and a complicated tax system, and rather than addressing it for all taxpayers it’s focusing on new targeted incentives. Since 2013, the state has handed out $3.5 billion, some to lure firms into the state, some to keep firms from leaving. The state will add only about 20,000 jobs this year. (Asbury Park Press)

Baltimore TIF Plan Gets a Hard Look: Under Armour wants to build a new headquarters on Baltimore’s Port Covington peninsula, less than three miles from downtown. Under Armour wants the city to borrow $535 million to pay for roads and parks in the area, repaid by new property taxes on the project. Critics say the project will happen anyway without the tax-increment financing (TIF). (The Wall Street Journal)

More Coverage on Christie Pulling New Jersey Out of the Tax Compact with Pennsylvania: From Reason, quoting yours truly. (Reason)

Compare Congressional Tax Plans: We have a new online tool up to compare the specifics and the effects of proposed congressional tax reforms. Right now we have five plans up: Chairman Dave Camp’s proposed overhaul from 2014, Senator Ben Cardin’s progressive consumption tax, Congressman Devin Nunes’s American Business Competitiveness Act, Speaker Paul Ryan’s A Better Way blueprint, and Congressman Jim Renacci’s Simplifying America’s Tax System plan. (Tax Foundation)


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