The more things change — corporate welfare edition | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The more things change — corporate welfare edition

Posted By on Sun, Feb 11, 2018 at 12:37 PM

A rueful blast from the past in today’s “Other Days” column in the Democrat-Gazette. It was timely given what I wrote here yesterday about Little Rock's continued handout of $300,000 to the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce to pay salaries of people who lobby against the wishes of many people whose sales tax pennies cosset them.

Feb. 11, 1968
• The Central Arkansas Labor Council says it will go to court if necessary to stop cities from paying dues to chambers of commerce. A resolution to that effect was adopted unanimously Wednesday, Lloyd Ringgold of Little Rock, the Council president, said Saturday. The resolution, written by B. J. Utley of North Little Rock, president of Amalgamated Transit Workers Division 104, called chambers of commerce unions of business interests supporting "union-busting laws with phony titles to fool the public and a good percentage of the legislators."

In the years since 1968, the chambers have worked to kill most unions and the state Constitution now protects shipment of tax money to chamber lobbyists for a multitude of corporate-friendly uses.  That the money is shipped by people (Little Rock City Board, for example) who depend on corporate campaign cash and other benefits is not coincidental.

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