Three Subsidy Stories You Might Have Missed This Week


1. In Niagara County, a developer is seeking $2.6 million in tax breaks for projects that will produce 14 jobs – that’s nearly $200,000 per job, far beyond what experts say is a good investment for local governments (Investigative Post).

Check out Investigative Post and WGRZ’s video of the report here:

2. At Boondoggle, Pat Garofalo writes about the great corporate bait and switch: Companies win huge contracts promising many jobs, then amend the contracts to lower the job commitment. (Please also check out Pat’s new paper on corporate power!).

As Jensen and Thrall put it, “amending firms are pulling a bait-and-switch by publicly committing to create a number of jobs, and then privately walking back their commitments afterwards by amending their contracts. Amending firms would then have an incentive to keep their amendments private via challenging our records request, as a public release could hurt the firms’ reputations.” They found that an amended contract made the corporation in question 15-24 percent more likely to challenge their public records request.

3. In the war on corporate welfare, are corporations starting to lose? In an interview with Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR), Good Jobs First’s Greg LeRoy weighs in.

“In many cases, the tax break industrial complex has not been challenged. And it’s been in place so long, people just take it for granted because it’s been on autopilot all these years. It might actually be a lot more vulnerable than people think.”

If you got this from a friend, sign up here. Subsidy Sheet is written by Tom Speaker, Policy Analyst at Reinvent Albany. Please send questions and tips to tom [at] We look forward to hearing from you!