Monday, February 8, 2010

54. DuBose Porter says: "Stop protecting the Cheaters."

DuBose Porter’s battles to stop corruption and give the people back their government are getting statewide coverage as he runs for Governor and changes are beginning to happen.
Just like DuBose’s six year battle to defeat the Hawk system (To read more on the Hawks scroll down to blog#19), campaigning state wide is bringing DuBose’s message of anti-corruption and efficient government to light. Imagine how much of your government he could clean up and make efficient if he were your governor.
DuBose is still advocating for the "point of sale" bill. The coming inevitability that some version of HB356, the "point of sale" bill, will make it through this year, is the perfect example of what true leadership, combined with the people’s voices can do. By adding your voices to DuBose’s, and those who are working with him to stop the corruption, the truth about Georgia’s government is coming out of the darkness.

"It has shown that about 25% of the businesses that have business licenses do not have sales tax certificates," Rep. Porter says, "That's how much cheating is happening." *

Are Millions In Georgia
Sales Taxes Missing?*
Yes, Georgia.
That’s what DuBose Porter has been saying for years.

Also as reported in the AJC by Aaron Gould Sheinin:

‘House Minority Leader DuBose Porter (D-Dublin), who has said for years that the state loses hundreds of millions of dollars a year in uncollected sales taxes...’

And now that DuBose is getting a statewide audience others are being forced to honor the obvious truth: As reported this morning by Paul Crawley:

‘Rep. Porter is being joined by a growing number of Republican lawmakers interested in his bill that would share state sales tax records with local governments to compare with their business licenses.’

If Crawley had been reporting on the debates, he might have added Democratic candidates are jumping on to DuBose’s bill as Sheinin added in his report later:

‘...That proposal also was seconded by Attorney General Thurbert Baker and former Gov. Roy Barnes.’

DuBose has kept the battle going for you to get your paid sales tax back as emphasized by this report from Tom Baxter of Insider Advantage:

‘...But as was evidenced again Tuesday night in the first televised debate of the Democratic candidates, he has given his party what is so far its defining issue. Porter’s rivals have endorsed... (HB356).’

This video from 11Alive explains
DuBose’s “point of sale” bill further:

With your support there is no way they can choose to furlough teachers and state employees, instead of passing this bill, this year.
Stay Informed. Get engaged. Georgia cannot financially afford to continue its corrupt policies. The results, that Georgia and our entire country are now experiencing, are self-evident.
Last year the Republican leadership killed HB356 in committee because they are operating under some misguided idea that when you vote for smaller government you mean “phase out” public schools and furlough teachers. ( As you know Georgia is already #1 in its population in the correctional system. You can predict that number on 3rd grade reading scores. You can’t afford to phase out public education. Don’t let blind allegiance to any one party keep you voting rich and living poor. Staying at the bottom of education and at the top of the correctional system percentages will keep jobs and industry away from Georgia. All the U.S./Ga. jobs of the future will go to the well-educated. DuBose Porter wants Georgians in the front of the well educated line, not the unemployment line.)
DuBose Porter knows when you voted for smaller government, you were voting for efficient government, government that maximizes your hard-earned money and puts it to work for you, not against you. Corruption in your elected politicians has allowed up to 25% of your already paid sales tax to stay in the hands of unscrupulous business owners, as discovered in the new pilot study. It is time to put your voice back in your government.

*Are Millions In Georgia Sales Taxes Missing?

COLUMBUS, GA - This is a tale of two cities, separated by the Chattahoochee River: Phenix City, Alabama and Columbus, Georgia.
It's a story of how these two cities collect their sales taxes, or as the case may be here in Georgia, don't collect a big chunk of them.
Georgia's legislature is wrestling with more than one-billion dollars in budget cuts again this year, but some argue millions of dollars of uncollected sales taxes are falling through the cracks.
Like other Georgia cities, Columbus has no idea how many of its businesses are actually paying their sales taxes.
That's because the money goes directly to the State Department of Revenue in Atlanta, who then sends back a single check to Columbus each month.
"We just want to know where it's coming from and that we're getting all that's due us," Columbus City Manager Isaiah Hugley tells 11 Alive News.
"We don't know where that money comes from, what area of town, what sectors it came from; we don't know anything," he adds, "All we know is that we're on an honor system where the State of Georgia puts $3.3-million into an account (each month)."
Across the Chattahoochee River sales taxes flow more smoothly and accurately.
That's because Phenix City's businesses pay them to a private company that cross checks those tax records against local business licenses to make sure there's no cheating.
Some estimates say Alabama cities have increased collections more than 10% under their system.
"They pick up several dozen every year where they found people that weren't paying sales taxes here...and they collect that," Phenix City Finance Director Stephen Smith tells 11 Alive News.
State Revenue Commissioner Bart Graham has admitted to state lawmakers that Georgia may be missing out on as much as 5% of sales tax collections, perhaps more.
Georgia State Representative DuBose Porter (D-Dublin), the House Minority Leader, claims collecting the missing taxes could mean an extra $250-500-million right away, enough to eliminate more furloughs for teachers and state employees.
The gubernatorial candidate also points to a pilot program in Georgia that indicates a lot is missing.
"It has shown that about 25% of the businesses that have business licenses do not have sales tax certificates," Rep. Porter says, "That's how much cheating is happening."
Rep. Porter is being joined by a growing number of Republican lawmakers interested in his bill that would share state sales tax records with local governments to compare with their business licenses.

"We need to do everything we can to perfect the sales tax system," admits Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock).
"Some of the things Alabama has done have been very beneficial to them," he adds.
Some, including Revenue Commissioner Graham, fear a change might mean far more local audits for companies with stores in several counties, instead of one statewide audit.
But others are talking about a system where several local governments could combine those audits to make it easier on large companies.

Because DuBose now has the opportunity to run a statewide campaign his fight against corruption in Georgia’s government is reaching a larger audience. You are hearing, you are listening, and your voices are having an impact. Get your money back from the cheaters.
With the Internet it is possible for the people to win the war against the big donors who do better when the middle class lives poor. Join DuBose Porter and help stop those who want to keep Georgia’s financially unsustainable status quo. Click here to volunteer to help us spread your word.

Put your voice back in your government
and your money back in your pocket.
Vote for DuBose Porter: an Independent Mind
in the Democratic Primary, July 2010.