Carn(e)y’s New Business Council Gives Company $474 K To Create…Maybe 20 Jobs

Filed in Delaware, Featured by on August 15, 2017

The founder has already had one big success. Which raises this question, among other questions, why the bleep does this company need taxpayer subsidies?

The company in question is Prelude Therapeutics, and the founder had previous success with Incyte. If Cerron Cade is to believed, this is extortion money to keep the company from even thinking of moving to Massachusetts. From the Philly Daily News:

“Dr. Vaddi has a proven track record of growing a biotech company here in Delaware,” said Cerron Cade, director of Delaware’s Division of Small Business, Development, and Tourism, which administers the grants. “In the biotech industry, there is pressure to take start-ups to a place like Massachusetts.” Subsidizing Prelude to keep it home “is a sign the state is a player in this space.” (A player in this space. The space of paying extortion.)

“It demonstrates to people who are here and may join the company that the state is supportive,” Vaddi said in a statement. “There’s more than just financial resources here. There is an economic and research ecosystem that we want to be a part of. It’s a close-knit community, where people take pride in the success of the companies that are founded here.” (Then why would you or anyone want to leave such a nurturing community?)

Same old wine in a brand-new bottle.  BTW, what’s up with this?:

Other recent grants went to Sallie Mae, the private student lender; General Refrigeration; and Independence School, one of a number of Delaware private schools that has lost students as the state increased support of taxpayer-funded charter schools under Carney’s predecessor, Gov. Jack Markell.

The state is funneling taxpayer dollars to a private school b/c the state has been funneling money to taxpayer-funded charters? I wonder whose bleeping kid goes to Independence School and what connection this person has to this panel. There has to be one. How can such a grant be justified? Are they threatening to move across the state line to Maryland?? What a fucking disgrace.  This state sucks. Crony capitalism at its absolute worst.

MAJOR ADDENDUM: I just spoke with Cerron Cade.  He said that the Philadelphia Daily News article is incorrect when it comes to the Independence School and that they will post a correction.  He says that the school contracted with the state for a Conduit Bond back around 2003 to build an auditorium.  The school and the state have renegotiated the terms of that bond, which has nothing to do with the new private-public partnership. It is a loan upon which the school pays both principal and interest to the State.

One final word: Turns out I hadn’t spoken with Cerron Cade for close to 10 years.  All I can say is that he comes across very impressively.  Knows state government inside and out.  We need a lot more public servants like him.

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  1. One more thing (rhetorical question alert): Why the bleep am I reading this in the Philly paper instead of the local whatever-you-want-to-call-it?

  2. I’ve never even heard of Independence School. This whole public-private partnership is just a big cha-ching for private companies while the public pays the price.

  3. It’s pretty much always been like that. Now, there will just be even less scrutiny of the cronyism.

  4. mediawatch says:

    The Independence School opened about 1978, in the Pike Creek area — for people who were seeking independence from desegregated education.

  5. anon says:

    and Independence School, one of a number of Delaware private schools that has lost students as the state increased support of taxpayer-funded charter schools under Carney’s predecessor

    This is Carney opening the door to (more) public funding of private schools. Period. This idea needs to be put down immediately and never resurrected.

  6. Yeah, MW, there were a few of those ‘private’ schools during the deseg era, many of course calling themselves ‘Christian schools’.

  7. alby says:

    I like the way the Independence School news was relegated to the “oh, BTW” line at the bottom.

    More transluscent than transparent.

  8. SussexWatcher says:

    Just wait til funds start flowing to Wilmington Friends, where Tracey Carney worked until recently.

  9. It’s a white flight (and Asian American) academy all right. 2.4% of the 470 students are African-Americans:

    https://www.niche.com/k12/the-independence-school-pike-creek-de/

    Hey, de facto segregated schools need money, too.

  10. Matt Smith says:

    I’m sure our proactive state auditor will look into this right away. If not, then maybe the next auditor. I guess we have not seen an official campaign announcement yet. Perhaps she is giving it a week or two after the Rehoboth election to tell her supporters that she has no intention of serving the full term she was just elected to fill.

  11. Look, she’s not the first politician to run for office while intending to seek another one before their term concludes.

    The problem is that she doesn’t appear to have any interest in BEING an auditor, a position that is best filled by someone committed to being the public’s watchdog. Many of the people she would supposedly ‘watch’ are falling all over themselves to support her.

  12. Another Mike says:

    At least Independence isn’t a publicly funded white-flight school.

  13. Paul Hayes says:

    That much money would be a boon to SW Sussex County. People here know of the “divide” in the county. You could almost say it is defined by U.S.113. SW Sussex has the least economic infrastucture in the entire state. Only wealthy farmers and everyone else is dirt poor. Use the money to develop economic infrastructure in the part of the state that needs it the most. Invest in the idea of “micro-manufacturing”. Basements, garages and backyards devoted to making a living with micro-scale development and assembly of products that fit niche markets using modern methods of manufacturing and marketing.

  14. Paul Hayes says:

    The General Assembly shall provide for the establishment and maintenance of a general and efficient system of free public schools, and may require by law that every child, not physically or mentally disabled, shall attend the public school, unless educated by other means.
    This is from our Delaware constitution. Free, public, schools. Not charters, not private-public partnerships. Free, public, schools.

  15. alby says:

    “That much money would be a boon to SW Sussex County.”

    Yes, I’m sure it would be a boon even in Greenville. But that’s not how it works, and you know it.

  16. john kowalko says:

    Corporate extortion = Corporate blackmail = Corporate welfare = Corporate hacks (running the new improved DEDO) = taxpayer money giveaways = $3 million takeaway from Pharmaceutical Assistance Program = NO MONEY FOR POOR, ELDERLY AND DISABLED DELAWARE CITIZENS = cut your pills in half, do not fill your life-saving prescriptions or stop eating (just die already) = NO APPARENT MORAL COMPASS OR CONSCIENCE affecting Delaware’s (Corporate dominated, Chamber of Commerce dedicated loyalists) Executive and Legislative membership. “SOLD TO THE HIGHEST (RICHEST) BIDDER” should be the State slogan.
    Representative John Kowalko

  17. john kowalko says:

    In case your readers have only gotten “Get Well” cards and never received a “Get Sick and Die” card from their local government here’s the version sent out to the eligible Pharmaceutical Assistance recipients in Delaware.

    Member Name
    Member Address 1
    Member Address 2
    Member city, state zip

    MID

    Dear Member,

    You are receiving this letter because you are a member of the Delaware Prescription Assistance Program (DPAP). You will no longer receive DPAP benefits because the program is ending on August 31, 2017.

    DPAP will no longer pay for any part of your drug costs after August 31, 2017.
    DPAP will no longer pay for your Medicare Part D premium after August 2017.

    You must begin to pay your Medicare Part D premium beginning September 2017. You must pay your premium to your Part D plan. Please contact your Part D plan if you have questions about your premium or other drug costs. A list of Part D plans can be found on page 2 of this notice. If you do not know what Part D plan you have or if you would like to change your Part D plan, please call Medicare at 1-800-633-4227.

    If you have any questions about DPAP, please call 1-800-996-9969.

  18. john kowalko says:

    Received from DHSS by Representative John Kowalko. It doesn’t get much more obvious than this re who will be the big “winners” (Chamber, Business Roundtable, every shameless, wealthy corporation, every politically connected entrepreneur who had a wet-dream about getting rich) or “losers” every poor, elderly or disabled citizen who must now choose life-saving medication or life-giving nourishment.

    From DHSS Chief Policy Advisor Joanne Finnigan:
    “DPAP is the Delaware Prescription Assistance Program. It was established with Tobacco Settlement Agreement funding to provide prescription assistance to older individuals and those with disabilities at a time when Medicare offered no prescription coverage for its beneficiaries. The program offered a capped benefit ($2,500 annually – later raised to $3,000 annually). Medicare Part D now offers a prescription benefit to Medicare enrollees. Consequently, the DPAP program now primarily assists with premium payments and some prescription costs for individuals who reach the Part D ‘donut’ hole. As the donut hole is phased out prescription spending in DPAP has lessened and the purpose for which it was created has largely been eliminated. In fact, 25% of enrollees received no benefits in 2016. The program is ending on August 31, 2017 because it was eliminated from the FY 2018 budget.”

    About 5,100 seniors and people with disabilities were enrolled in the program in 2017 before the program was eliminated. About 25% of those enrolled received no benefit, and 50% received $500 or less in 2016. The program will cover premium payments in August 2017, and previously enrolled individuals will be responsible effective September 1, 2017. Individuals assessed a Late Enrollment Penalty will still be responsible for this amount. For information about deductibles, DHSS says to contact Medicare and ask for the current status of your deductible and whether you have met it for the year.

    DHSS has informed recommended that individuals who cannot afford their Medicare Part D premiums: “You can change your Part D plan to a lower premium one by calling Medicare 1-800-633-4227. Tell them you are currently enrolled in a Qualified State Pharmaceutical Assistance Program (SPAP).” You are able to change your Medicare Part D plan outside of November annual enrollment because you are losing participation in a Pharmacy Assistance Program provided by your state.

    For individuals who cannot afford their medications when in the “donut hole” or coverage gap, DHSS has recommended: “Contact your doctor/pharmacy for alternative solutions.”
    Additional information about Medicare coverage is available here: https://www.medicare.gov/find-a-plan/questions/home.aspx
    You can also contact your Prescription Drug Plan by calling the phone number on the back of the card or using one of the following numbers:

    Medicare Part D Plan
    Contact Number(s)
    Cigna HealthSpring
    1-800-222-6700
    EnvisionRx Plus
    1-866-250-2005 or TTY 1-866-763-9630
    Express Scripts Medicare
    1-800-758-4574 or TTY 1-800-716-3231
    First Health Part D
    1-844-233-1938 or TTY 711
    Humana
    1-800-281-6918
    Magellan Rx Medicare
    1-800-424-3312
    SilverScript
    1-866-235-5660 or TTY 1-866-236-1069
    UnitedHealthcare-AARP Medicare Rx Walgreens
    1-866-870-3470 or TTY 711
    UnitedHealthcare-AARP Medicare Rx
    1-888-867-5575 or TTY 1-877-730-4192
    WellCare
    1-888-550-5252 or TTY 1-888-816-5252

    Information on Medicare plans offering Part D coverage under $50.00:

    2017 Plan and Premium Information for Medicare Plans offering Part D coverage under $50.00
    Organization Name
    Plan Name
    Contract ID
    Plan ID
    Part D Total Premium5
    Part D Drug Deductible
    Aetna Medicare

    Previously, the DPAP provided the following overview of the program:

    To qualify for DPAP, an applicant:
    · Must be a resident of the State of Delaware,
    · Must be at least 65 years of age or qualify for SSDI benefits,
    · Must be at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or have prescription costs that are at least 40% of the applicant’s annual income, and
    · Must not have or be eligible for prescription coverage through Federal, State, or private sources (regardless of any annual benefit limitations), excluding Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage.
    Individuals with Medicare (the majority of DPAP clients) must select a Part D Prescription Drug Plan and must apply for Extra Help (Low-Income Subsidy) through the Social Security Administration. The Low-Income Subsidy, or LIS, which is paid by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, provides financial assistance (at levels of 100%, 75%, 50%, and 25%) for monthly Part D premiums, annual deductibles, and prescription coverage through the Part D coverage gap to low-income individuals. Medicare Part D is primary to the Delaware Prescription Assistance Program.

    DPAP provides up to $3,000 in prescription benefit coverage per person, per calendar year. Cost-sharing, in the form of a standard DPAP co-pay of $5 or 25% of the cost of the drug, whichever is greater, is required of all DPAP clients. Medicare Part D co-pays are the responsibility of the DPAP client. For those clients with Medicare Part D coverage, DPAP benefits cover:
    · All monthly Part D premiums (minus any applicable LIS),
    · Prescription drug costs during the Part D deductible phase (minus the standard DPAP co-pay), and
    · Costs incurred in the coverage gap (minus the DPAP co-pay) up to the $3,000 benefit limit

    Delaware Prescription Assistance Program
    Utilization – Number of Clients

    CY 2015
    CY 2016
    CY 2017
    No Benefits Received
    1,214
    21.28%
    1,382
    25.10%

    Less than $500
    3,253
    57.03%
    2,792
    50.70%

    $500 – $999
    897
    15.73%
    976
    17.72%

    $1,000 – $1,999
    323
    5.66%
    348
    6.32%

    $2,000 – $2,999
    17
    0.30%
    8
    0.15%

    $3,000
    0
    0.00%
    1
    0.02%

    Total
    5,704
    100.00%
    5,507
    100.00%
    5,102
    100.00%

    Delaware Prescription Assistance Program
    Distribution of Spending

    SFY 2015
    SFY 2016
    SFY 2017
    Administration
    $534,671
    23.4%
    $515,588
    23.0%
    $368,006
    19.03%
    Premiums
    $1,327,498
    58.1%
    $1,337,120
    59.7%
    $1,288,307
    66.63%
    Prescriptions
    $422,718
    18.5%
    $387,164
    17.3%
    $277,269
    14.34%
    Total
    $2,284,887
    100.0%
    $2,239,872
    100.0%
    $1,933,582
    100.00%

  19. Paul Hayes says:

    Alby: I’m an idealist at heart. LSD has free and reduced lunch numbers that are off the scale. The money should go where it is needed most and could do the most good. Lining the pockets of the rich with more is how the system works, but I want to be a voice for something better. Don’t you?

  20. alby says:

    “The money should go where it is needed most and could do the most good.”

    Sure, but not to the point that I just type out idealistic wishes that have no chance of coming true. That’s just moral preening.

    This blog is about politics, the “art of the possible.” So I don’t have much interest in discussing the impossible.

  21. alby says:

    @kowalko: Maybe those seniors can get jobs at all those companies Carney’s cronies are giving the money to.

  22. john kowalko says:

    @alby: Maybe one of those start ups will produce “Soylent Green”. Solves the reduced and free lunch situation and can offer a painless alternative to starvation, diabetes complications, strokes and heart attacks resulting from failure to medicate.

  23. bane says:

    Paul Hayes, it looks like General Refrigeration is actually just south of Laurel which is about as South West Sussex as a business can get.

    Kowalko didn’t really talk much about the companies, Just about the decisions to cut health programs, which I don’t know how much these things are related. Was there some debate about Development or Health Care that I missed? (Asking for a friend)

  24. The issue is priorities. Carney doesn’t blink at cutting $30 mill for public education or cutting $3 mill for prescription assistance (my wife is a pharmacist and she’s already seen the impact of the prescription assistance cuts).

    But throwing money at companies is sancrosanct even though the state provides no empirical information as to whether we’re just throwing good money after bad. Why? ‘Proprietary information’.

  25. alby says:

    @bane: The dollar amounts match — $3 million cut from the drug program, $3 million in handouts to companies.

  26. Paul Hayes says:

    Alby, how do you know how to position yourself politically if you never bother to understand what you would ideally prefer first? I don’t think that consideration of the “whole” is preening at all, it is simply building a road map so you know where you are going. How else will you avoid getting tossed by the swirl of politics into an endgame you have a chance of understanding and winning. Ptuh!

  27. bane says:

    gotcha…

    Well hopefully they can bring some young people in here, because paying for old people and further making Delaware a senior destination state has to have an impact on healthcare costs. Their fixed incomes don’t provide much revenue via personal income tax or gross receipts tax. Without encouraging a younger workforce to come into the state, I fail to see how busting open the piggy bank to pay for increases in senior medicaid and property tax deductions ($25million) for a bunch of PA, MD, and New Jersey transplants, does anything but make me feel warm and gooey inside.

    Do these companies have to report whether they have met their hiring goals? I’m not sold that these incentives are the right choice, and I don’t know enough about the details of the agreement to support it, but what is the alternative solution to helping companies hire in Delaware today… And please, not the “Solve poverty and and education” answer which can neither be achieved by putting $3 million into anything that is listed above, nor can’t it be solved in under a generation. We should always strive for those long term goals, but its pretty condescending to tell the working poor and unemployed that they have to wait until we solve public education and poverty before they can count on us to be the party of jobs.

    (Full disclosure if I sound somewhat biased: I have a family member who works at General Refrigeration (which was why I was apparently the only person who knew that it was in SW Sussex) and if GR moved to Maryland she would have to look for a new job with great wages….. In Sussex County. Good luck with that)

  28. alby says:

    @paul: “how do you know how to position yourself politically if you never bother to understand what you would ideally prefer first?”

    I don’t position myself politically. I define myself politically by what I am not, not by what I am, because I have found nobody else’s politics represents me 100%.

    “I don’t think that consideration of the “whole” is preening at all”

    I don’t either. It’s typing it on a public blog that’s preening.

    “How else will you avoid getting tossed by the swirl of politics into an endgame you have a chance of understanding”

    My values prevent my getting tossed anywhere, as yours do for you. I don’t have to codify them to know what they are, or for all the world to see.

    “and winning.”

    There is no such thing as “winning” anything in politics, because nothing in politics is permanent. A government has policies, which can forever be pushed in the direction of justice because a condition of perfect justice is unachievable. There will always be more work to do.

    “Ptuh!”

    Do you have a pronunciation guide for that?

  29. alby says:

    @bane: “hopefully they can bring some young people in here, because paying for old people and further making Delaware a senior destination state has to have an impact on healthcare costs.”

    Ah, the vagaries of history. Before the crash of ’08, during the earlier part of that year’s election, Jack Markell released a long report on Delaware’s future in which he warned of exactly that. All those plans for dealing with it went out the window because of the crash.

    “Their fixed incomes don’t provide much revenue via personal income tax or gross receipts tax.”

    No, but seniors require a lot of services compared to working-age people. Much of that (yardwork, painting, handyman stuff, etc.) is done by young people, though at low wages.

    “Without encouraging a younger workforce to come into the state, I fail to see how busting open the piggy bank to pay for increases in senior medicaid and property tax deductions ($25million) for a bunch of PA, MD, and New Jersey transplants, does anything but make me feel warm and gooey inside.”

    If their minimal taxes replace land taxed at the farmland rate, it’s still an increase in revenue. The problem is more that they consume as much in services as they generate in taxes. Planners like 55-and-up communities because they ban children so no school building is necessary, but you still have to build out the roads and sewer systems to serve them.

    “Do these companies have to report whether they have met their hiring goals? ”

    The state apparently did not compile or disseminate such data, which is what Rep. Kowalko has been on about for nearly a decade now. Rather than give up that information, facing a call for accountability for the spending, the Freel Democrats/Carney administration instead pulled the plug on DEDO and switched to its public-private replacement, no data dissemination required.

  30. john kowalko says:

    @bane
    So is your family member now a “state employee” since they’ll be paid with taxpayer money?
    “And please, not the “Solve poverty and and education” answer which can neither be achieved by putting $3 million into anything that is listed above”.

    Are we (the taxpayers) “solving poverty”? by keeping your family member employed.
    And lastly:
    “Well hopefully they can bring some young people in here, because paying for old people and further making Delaware a senior destination state has to have an impact on healthcare costs. Their fixed incomes don’t provide much revenue via personal income tax or gross receipts tax. Without encouraging a younger workforce to come into the state, I fail to see how busting open the piggy bank to pay for increases in senior medicaid and property tax deductions ($25million) for a bunch of PA, MD, and New Jersey transplants, does anything but make me feel warm and gooey inside”.

    How about those old people and seniors who lived and worked here all their lives to help support your family with their taxes and the small business community with their spending. I know, let’s ship them out or euthanize, starve or fail to make pharmaceutical needs available to them. Better yet let’s implement the higher tax brackets for the wealthier earners who have feathered their nests thanks to those “old people” and “seniors”
    Representative John Kowalko

  31. Bane says:

    Good thoughts Alby.

    As for Kowalko.. So does my family member not matter in your equation Mr. Kowalko? She is a middle class woman raising two kids in Sussex county. The exact voter your party should be trying to reach if not for Newark elitists like yourself. How dare you look down on her because she’s not apart of your tea club. No she’s not a state employee, and I’m sure her cut of tax payer dollars will be much lower than yours hypocrite. I find it rich that your whole premise for why we should go broke being the Senior State is because some of them supported government during their working years when the state was actually wholly owned by DuPont and most of them were getting their checks from that unholy alliance. Now you dump on a 400k agreement to help more people pay into the exact same system in a county that could really use the economic activity.

  32. john kowalko says:

    @bane
    Quite honestly you are either devoid of any reading comprehension skills or a complete idiot. I have not said or implied in any way shape or form that your relative is looked down upon by myself, the Dem. party or the Newark “elitists” I find it particularly interesting and peculiarly stupid for you to not be able to distinguish between giveaways of taxpayer money to wealthy corporations and/or private businesses and support for a senior and elderly population of Delawareans who have contributed to this state and your families existence. Let me put this as simply as I can to penetrate the obvious bias and envy you have for hard-working families who have made Delaware successful and what obligations our government owes them.
    MOST OF “THEM” WERE NOT GETTING CHECKS FROM DuPont (and the small group that did “EARNED THEM”). THE STATE IS “NOT” GOING BROKE BEING THE “SENIOR STATE”. THE STATE IS GOING BROKE SUPPORTING CORPORATE WELFARE AND SUBSIDIZING PRIVATE (and often unproven) BUSINESSES. Get your selfish head out of your dark area and understand that Delaware cannot economically benefit from tossing hard-earned taxpayer money into the coffers of the Wall Street elites and subsidize every private business that asks for taxpayer money while denying necessary supports to its own citizens, families and seniors.

    Representative John Kowalko

  33. Tom Kline says:

    Keep in mind Kowalko is going to receive a big fat tax payer provided retirement check every month…

  34. Geoff langdon says:

    Lol, the hypocrisy is on display, Delaware has a payroll of like what 2 billion a year but it is the 25 million or so of grants to businesses which is bankrupting Delaware. We spend what 700 million on Medicare but it is 3 million that leads to a cataclysm of health care. Let’s remember, Delaware has to pay these companies because our state is not attractive on many fronts, you need them more than they need you. Try reality

  35. Nikola says:

    I love how Rep Kowalko (or his wife who does a lot of his ghost writing) insults Delawareans in public online forums like this.

    Right or wrong, its funny to see that we also have elected officials in Delaware who think it becoming and appropriate to tear into people and make lewd references. He has been doing things like this long before Trump was elected, but its still funny to see him do it when we know that most politicians would think it below them to do this.

    Rep Kowalko (or Mrs. Kowalko)–LOVE THE ALL CAPS. Really drives the point home. Keep it up. When you get a second, let us know all that you have done for the state’s economic development and all the companies you have convinced to expand here or grow here.

    Stay classy.

  36. Geoff: Wanna try reality? The reality is that the state refuses to share data that would show whether paying this extortion benefits the state. They claim ‘proprietary information’.

    The reality of cutting $30 mill out of public education or cutting people off from prescription assistance is there for all to see.

    Not to mention, there’s a lot of ‘Shoot the Messenger’ going on here.

  37. Jason330 says:

    “Let’s remember, Delaware has to pay these companies because our state is not attractive on many fronts, you need them more than they need you.”

    Geoff seems to be conceding a point here. We’ve turned the state into a shit hole with austerity, so we need to pay the worst, most mercenary companies to locate here.

  38. Bane says:

    I fail to see how a 400k grant to a company that actually creates jobs and economic activity in Sussex is bankrupting the state, however $25 million in property tax subsidies to seniors (mostly impacting education) is somehow a great investment. You fight for millions in subsidies to seniors whose population consistently votes against referendums for school districts and rarely vote for Democrats.

    And why do you always call people idiots when they don’t agree with you? It’s what my 15yr old does.

    Pop Quiz: What are your plans to generate jobs in Delaware?

    I get that you hate corporations and corporate welfare, which I completely understand. But what is your alternative plan? Democrats, especially Liberals, should probably have one by now. You don’t want to be like the Republicans were with Healthcare; the party of No…Ideas. As James Carville once said, “It’s the economy stupid” and it has proven to be pretty important to voters under the age of 65 and outside of Newark, you know, the vast majority of the electorate.

  39. jason330 says:

    What are your plans to generate jobs in Delaware?

    Speaking for myself.

    *Low-interest loan support for DELAWARE BASED expansion, or start up projects.

    *Direct investments in DELAWARE BASED entrepreneurship for start ups that don’t have access to conventional bank loans.

    Basically support businesses that have grown up as Delaware based, and stop trying to lure the worst, most mercenary companies to temporarily move here to take advantage of some tax breaks.

  40. Arthur says:

    What is the new tax revenue old people transplants bring to delaware v. the burden they put on delawareans with the increased costs they bring?

  41. alby says:

    @Arthur: I can’t spell that out on a person-by-person basis, but I can give you an outline.

    Retirees (assuming they are 65) do pay some property tax, just not the full rate. Depending on their sources of income, they do pay some income tax. The increased costs are mainly for roads and sewers, though of course there are smaller expenses like EMT service that they put an extra burden on.

    Think of it this way: A retired person pays less in taxes than a working person, so it’s fine (from a government planning perspective) to add them to the tax base. The problem comes if retirees are replacing workers in the tax base, because they pay less than a working person. This is because Delaware puts a much greater tax load on earnings vs. any other source of revenue.

    That’s why I keep calling for a statewide property tax for education funding. In a state with a relatively high number of land-rich but cash-poor residents, our property tax rates, local school taxes included, are lower than all but a handful of Deep South states. This keeps the tax burden low on those Chateau Country estates; owners lower the rate further by growing crops on some of it and pretending it’s “farmland.”

  42. Anono says:

    @Jason “Basically support businesses that have grown up as Delaware based, and stop trying to lure the worst, most mercenary companies to temporarily move here to take advantage of some tax breaks.” Is this like OVER supporting the worst investment of “tax” dollars to BLOOM ENERGY?
    Or to Fisker.
    Maybe, it would have been better to invest in smaller startups, instead of money to Sallie, who made $1.4 billion in 2013!

    @Alby, state wide education property tax? WOW, they already get 70% of the property taxes. They are ranked 13th highest in spending per student in the country! I think something is wrong, they don’t need more money. Their too top heavy!

  43. Arthur says:

    Alby – I was thinking of the burden of these new transplants who tax our Medicare system.

    If we don’t want money to go to out of state corps and instead go to home grown businesses why shouldn’t we tax transplants at a higher rate then burden our own residents?

  44. alby says:

    @anono: In many places schools get 100% of property taxes. The percentage isn’t the point, the total is. And in Delaware, it’s unusual for schools to get more than $2,000 per household in property taxes.

    The money you are talking about (60% of expenses in most districts) comes from the General Fund. Half of that isn’t paid by Delaware taxpayers but by banks and corporations; the other half comes mostly from income taxes.

    My proposal is that a statewide property tax replace those income taxes in school funding.

    Paw the ground twice to signify that you understand.

  45. Anono says:

    @Alby “it’s unusual for schools to get more than $2,000 per household in property taxes.”
    Really, then you are ill informed. I paid over $2900 in school taxes:
    Money to the local district and then money went to NCC Vo-tech.

    hope you enjoy. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDcNoENVbPA

  46. bane says:

    Jason

    Let’s be clear Sallie Mae is headquartered in Delaware and according to the NJ has 750 employees here. The other two companies are also existing Delaware companies, one is even a start-up (as you mentioned) led by the same guy who founded Incyte, which if you didn’t notice, is building that huge office in Wilmington off of Augustine Cutoff. So wouldn’t this fit what you say you want?

    I find it ironic that Kowalko is in favor of paying millions in tax payer dollars for over priced prescriptions drugs, but against paying $400k for a pharmaceutical start-up which will manufacture those same prescription drugs and hire Delawareans in the process.

  47. Anono says:

    @Alby: “And in Delaware, it’s unusual for schools to get more than $2,000 per household in property taxes.”
    OK, so maybe you should do your homework a little. I paid over $2900 to my district and to NCC Vo-tech, in property taxes.

  48. alby says:

    Don’t know where you live or what your property is assessed at, but look up numbers beyond your own and you’ll find I”m right. The vast majority of households in Delaware pay less than $2,000. I don’t live in a McMansion, but my taxes in Hockessin are about that much to Red Clay, and I’m in the top quintile in Delaware in terms of income. Therefore about 80% are paying less than I am. Your situation isn’t germane to the issue.

    Getting rid of Vo-Tech districts and folding them into the real districts would help, too. That actually should be Job 1 when we’re talking about savings on education.

    Also, I don’t get the video. Is that your yard?

  49. Geoff langdon says:

    You all conveniently skip over our state payroll is 2 billion and we spend 765 million on Medicare. I gotta laugh with do we get data proving corporate grants benefits the state. Do we get that data from the state spending programs. No. And the mercenary companies is ridiculous, like it or not, they pay taxes here, hire employees, fund non profits galore. You all just got your hate on for anything corporate. and it is so stereotypical that you want small start ups who can’t borrow money in the usual channels. There are numerous sources for legit start ups. But the state will fund a fry maker, you want to fund some restaurants? Good idea. Austerity hasn’t destroyed Delaware, inability to manage a huge bureaucracy, that’s the real problem

  50. alby says:

    “Do we get that data from the state spending programs. No.”

    Sure we do. It’s called the state budget and it’s publicly available. If that’s not good enough for you they’ll give you the state checkbook if you file a FOIA request for it.

    Your ignorance is not our fault.

    “And the mercenary companies is ridiculous, like it or not, they pay taxes here,”

    No, they don’t. That’s the whole point — the money we’re “giving away” is taxes we have agreed not to collect

    “hire employees,”

    Only when they have to. No company creates jobs that they expect to lose money on.

    “fund non profits galore.”

    And for that money, they convince idiots like you that they’re a net positive. They would be, if they paid those taxes you thought they paid.

    “it is so stereotypical that you want small start ups who can’t borrow money in the usual channels.”

    As opposed to giving it to multinational corporations that don’t actually need the money? Your slavish loyalty would make a golden retriever puppy blush.

  51. john kowalko says:

    All;
    Let me apologize for my intemperate words and sarcastic remarks that reflect a personal resentment with individuals who post in disagreement with my policy stances. That practice surely impedes the legitimacy of any argument I might make. So I am offering my sincere regrets for that attitude I have conveyed.

    I do, however, feel very confident that my economic considerations for the taxpaying public, working families, the elderly and the poor versus the interests of wealthy corporations and private businesses (when it comes to allocating sparse taxpayer dollars) is a legitimate and ultimately fair/just way to grow and sustain Delaware’s economy. We cannot afford to outbid our neighbors with dwindling available revenue reserves nor can we justify that money merely fattening the bottom line of corporations and satisfying shareholders. But perhaps more importantly we cannot afford to ignore the needs of all Delawareans and the certainty of a “return on investment” that putting those same dollars into the pockets of lower-asseted families will produce. No economy can survive without a strong base of consumer spending that stimulates and sustains economic growth.
    Representative John Kowalko

  52. alby says:

    “What are your plans to generate jobs in Delaware?”

    It is not the responsibility of government to create jobs. I would argue that it’s not even in government’s charge to create a “good business climate,” as that generally means weak regulations and low taxes (yet good schools!), priorities that come at the expense of the public, which is taxed at higher rates than businesses.

    If you want government to create jobs, then it should create jobs directly, not indirectly. Restore DelDOT’s budget so roads can be repaired. Hire more specialists at high-poverty schools so those kids are better educated. That, of course, would require making businesses pay more for the public good — as opposed to your method, with involves paying businesses in hopes that they’ll provide a public good.

  53. bane says:

    Thank you Representative Kowalko, I accept your apology and your point of view.

    Alby,

    It is true that Government does not create jobs, and any job that it does create (i.e. construction) will always be temporary and may even end up enriching out of state contractors as much as Delawareans. However, if you don’t even believe that government is responsible for creating a good business climate, then its pointless for me to continue.

  54. Dave says:

    “why shouldn’t we tax transplants at a higher rate then burden our own residents?”

    You mean you want to have classes of residents? Delaware’s “own” residents were the Nanticokes. So yeah, if that’s your frame of reference I’ll agree.

  55. alby says:

    ” if you don’t even believe that government is responsible for creating a good business climate, then its pointless for me to continue.”

    Why would it be? Why does it owe more to businesses than to others? And don’t give me the “people need jobs” line. The Founders were businessmen, and they did what all businessmen do — look for advantages for themselves that come at the expense of others. The “positive business climate” was inserted into the Declaration as “pursuit of happiness” because “pursuit of property” sounded too mercenary — and they were right about that. To think that the country was founded by businessmen who were angry about their taxes is 1)accurate and 2)not exactly glory-covered.

    The deification of business in this country is, after the genocides it was founded upon, its greatest sin.

  56. Arthur says:

    Yes dave I think that would be a good start. And then we should start removing the Christopher Columbus statues

  57. Paul Hayes says:

    “This blog is about politics, the “art of the possible.” So I don’t have much interest in discussing the impossible.”

    For someone who is not interested in mere “moral preening” you sure spent a lot of time on it. I think you’re merely into enhancing your ego. Where is that, relative to “moral preening”?

  58. Anono says:

    @ Alby: So sad to see a smart person, as yourself, stoop so low. Criticize someone’s opinion NOT the person. Grow up!

  59. alby says:

    @paul: Morality has little to do with my political positions, beyond the normal morality that you don’t kill other people. Also, I couldn’t care less what you think my motives are. I’ve been doing this for going on 40 years.

    @anono: I’ll criticize whatever I like. Since I dislike most people, they are what I criticize most often. In your case, since you’re conservative and can’t spell too well, you’ve going to come in for a lot of it.

    @arthur: The Columbus statues should be the first to go, since he kicked off the first genocide.