Like most states, Colorado has a bureaucracy dedicated to doling out taxpayer-subsidized “incentives” to politically favored private businesses that don’t actually need a subsidy in the first place. The most recent example is a “consolidated” corporate welfare pitch to Amazon to bring its coveted HQ 2 to the Denver area.
Several years ago, the New York Times put Colorado’s corporate welfare spending at just under a billion dollars per year. But putting taxpayers on the hook for corporate favoritism isn’t just a state government problem. More and more, such cronyism is being practiced at the municipal level as well.
You might reasonably think that when fees and taxes are paid to a city government, that money is going to pay for city services. But in some Colorado cities, the fees and taxes paid by privileged businesses along with citizen-paid sales taxes actually get “rebated” to those very same privileged businesses for a specified period of time. In other words, the government collects the money, and then gives it to the business.
Read the whole article originally published in The Hill on January 24, 2018.