INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (March 1, 2016) – Indiana House members approved an amendment today that would penalize corporations like Carrier that abandon Indiana to move to foreign countries. This amendment comes after Carrier announced last month they were moving 1,400 Indianapolis jobs to Mexico.
State Rep. Karlee Macer (D-Indianapolis)authored the amendment that would enable local units of government to claw back property tax incentives granted to a company that leaves our state and prevent them from taking any more advantage of corporate tax breaks enacted by state government.
Representatives approved the amendment by a margin of 60-34. The amendment was attached to Senate Bill 308.
Senate Bill 308 is now eligible for final consideration in the House.
“Today’s vote represents a chance for the members of the Indiana General Assembly to tell companies that they do not have the right to take full advantage of taxpayer-funded assistance to locate in our state, only to abandon us to move out of the country when they get a better deal for their shareholders,” Macer said. “They cannot do it without repaying us for some of what they have taken.”
“Considering that federal, state and local governments have provided millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded assistance to Carrier and United Technologies in recent years, only to see the company make it clear they intend to take our money and run to Mexico, I believe it is imperative for our state to take the lead in telling these companies that they owe us for what they have taken from us,” Macer said. “They simply cannot get away and just walk out the door.
“Carrier’s Indianapolis plant is located in the 92nd House District that I represent,” she continued. “More than 1,400 people who work in that plant are losing their jobs, just so the company can squeeze some more profits from its operations, either by using cheaper labor or machines. I know many of the men and women whose lives and families will be permanently disrupted by this decision. They want to know why it happened. More importantly, they want to know what can be done to keep this from happening again.”
Macer said her proposal reflects a growing public dissatisfaction with companies that insist upon taxpayer breaks, then show little compunction about relocating elsewhere for greater breaks.
“We continue to lag behind in the types of good-paying jobs that can enable Hoosiers to provide for their families, and those efforts continue to suffer when companies take our money and run,” Macer said. “Today, Democrats and Republicans in the Indiana House joined together to say they cannot do what they want without giving us something back.
“I realize that we still have a long way to go before this legislative session is over, and I’m sure there are corporate interests who will work behind the scenes to get this provision taken out of the bill,” she added. “I will keep a very close eye on Senate Bill 308 to make sure that taxpayer protections that are demanded by the public remain alive.”