Excuse the title of this post, but I just read the lead story in the Indianapolis Star about Litebox–the company that was showered with praise and promises of tax breaks just yesterday by both Mayor Ballard and Governor Daniels.
In my post yesterday, I questioned whether the obviously strange owner had been adequately vetted. Today’s news makes it abundantly clear that the answer is no. In fact, today’s story makes it clear that the company and its proprietor had not been vetted at all.
What sort of process awards tax incentives to a man who not only has no history of entrepreneurial or business success, but who also has multiple unpaid tax liens and judgements against him in his home state? As a policy matter, I have qualms about the practice of “helping” businesses financially in order to lure them to one’s city. But if we are going to play that game–and it is a game–the least we can do is insure that the businesses favored by state and local government are real, and that they pay their bills. If the rationale for these programs is job creation, the least we can do is ensure that the companies that benefit are capable of producing jobs.
This fiasco is a good example of why I keep harping on the issue of competence.
Didn’t anyone bother to check on this charlatan? Or were they so anxious to announce “jobs” that they didn’t bother?