Target: Jay Inslee, Governor of Washington State
Goal: Demand that Washington end its subsidies for a major manufacturer that pays no federal income tax
Many corporations manage to avoid paying income tax while receiving subsidies and other perks. But the worst offender may be Boeing Co., an airplane and missile manufacturer awarded more than $10 billion in state and local tax subsidies since 2009 despite paying no federal income tax for the last twelve years. The company typically gets a multimillion dollar refund.
With one stroke of his pen Washington State Governor Jay Inslee helped cement Boeing’s status as a king of corporate welfare. Inslee signed into law tax breaks totaling $8.7 billion through 2040. This wasn’t the first time that a Washington governor gave Boeing billions in subsidies. The company is infamous for threatening to move its manufacturing operations elsewhere if state and local governments don’t give in to its demands.
Boeing depends on services like roads, schools, air traffic controllers and law enforcement yet refuses to help pay for them leaving average Washingtonians to foot the bill. Tell Governor Inslee to end his support for Boeing’s tax dodging and end the company’s lavish subsidies today.
Dear Governor Inslee,
Boeing Co. is one of Washington’s major employers, and your state has gone to great lengths to keep it that way. In 2013 you pledged to extend the company’s tax breaks through 2040 allowing it to make billions in revenue while failing to contribute to the local tax base. Not content with the $8.7 billion in subsidies Boeing wanted to cut plant employees’ pensions and health benefits in exchange for continuing operations in Washington. In contrast Boeing CEO James McNearney Jr. took home $27.5 million in total pay in 2012.
Whatever you and other elected officials might give Boeing will never be enough. The company will keep threatening to move elsewhere to secure outrageous subsidies and other giveaways. And it isn’t just Washington that’s on the hook. While your local economy continues to struggle Boeing reports billions in profits and pays zero federal income tax. To reward its lack of commitment to the community with yet more tax breaks only guarantees that Boeing will continue to demand more of, and pay less into, the system that keeps it so profitable.
Boeing may employ thousands of Washington workers but it makes a lousy corporate citizen. I must insist that you end the company’s tax breaks without delay. Padding corporate profits while neglecting infrastructure and other essential services is no way to run such a beautiful state, and can never hope to boost Washington’s economy.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Jarred Trost via Wikimedia