MEDIA ADVISORY: IN THE WAKE OF IBM LAYOFFS, BALL URGES LEGISLATION TO END TAX INCENTIVES FOR COMPANIES THAT OFFSHORE JOBS

 

    Brewster, N.Y. – (2/29/12) – In the wake of the news that IBM is laying off more than 1,000 jobs nationwide— 200 here in the Hudson Valley— Senator Greg Ball (R, C – Patterson) is holding a press conference to discuss his legislation that would end tax incentives for companies that offshore jobs. Senator Ball will also renew calls for the state to get a guarantee from IBM that they will keep jobs in New York, and be transparent in their reporting practices.

     “A few months back I stood alone, warning of my fears of relying upon promises from IBM, a global outsourcing giant, without getting those guarantees in writing. These new reports are deeply troubling and once again show why my demands that NY state demand specifics from IBM were legitimate. We must hold IBM accountable for any direct or indirect benefits they receive from NY taxpayers. They have already received hundreds of millions of dollars from New York State taxpayers. And, we know IBM has a history of cashing checks from taxpayers while simultaneously patenting a new technology specifically designed to outsource our jobs in America,” Senator Ball said. “Back in October, I warned our leaders that we should not reward these global giants with an even larger giveaway of corporate welfare. But, IBM was handed another $400 million. That money could have been divided into 1,600 or more small business loans, spreading opportunity to new businesses and entrepreneurs statewide. In fact, a portion could have immediately went to fix bridges, roads and crumbling infrastructure, putting thousands of New Yorkers back to work. Instead, we have once again made a deal, evidently without written guarantees, with a global outsourcing giant and the taxpayers are now left holding the bag as employees get pink slips. I don’t care if I have to continue to be the sole voice on this, this is unacceptable.”

    Going forward, Senator Ball’s legislation would guarantee that when New York state taxpayer dollars go to companies for economic development, the companies must:

    • Stop shipping NY jobs overseas.
    • Create permanent jobs in New York.
    • Physically locate all NY jobs in NY instead of overseas or out-of-state telecommuting jobs.
    • Provide full transparency in their reporting about their worldwide employee population.
    • Not mixing NY state taxpayer dollars with private sector dollars to create overseas jobs.
    • Disclose all attendees at the bargaining table when deals are negotiated.

    Somers resident V. Gordon Sears was dismissed from IBM in 2009 after 40 years of employment. In this round of layoffs, he said he is watching friends lose their jobs. Sear said he fully supports Senator Ball’s legislation.

    “They are getting benefits for moving jobs out of the county. Why?” Sears said. “That’s why unemployment is so high. No longer are American companies, American companies.”

    Brewster resident Dan Armstrong, who sits on Senator Ball’s Economic Development Advisory Council, believes this legislation is a must before anymore taxpayer dollars are handed over to corporations.

    “It seems to me if they take the money, they have an obligation. That’s no brainer,” Armstrong said. “If taxpayer dollars are given to them to maintain their presence and their employment in this region then that’s a commitment. It’s philosophical, it’s not something you have to think twice about.”

    Who:   Senator Ball
    Former IBM Employees
    Local Business Leaders

    What:  Senator Ball will discuss his legislation that would end tax incentives for companies that offshore jobs, and he will also renew calls for the state to get a guarantee from IBM that they will keep jobs in New York and be transparent in their reporting practices.

    Where: Senator Ball’s District Office
    1441 Route 22 Suite 205
    Brewster, NY 10509

    When: 3/1/2012, 4p.m.
    Media that can’t make it to the District Office can join Senator Ball via conference call: (605) 475-4000 and enter the code 591038.

    For more information or to speak with Senator Ball, please contact Brittany Serra (845) 200-9716.

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