Where is the Money Going?

1 to 16 of about 1349 News
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IRS Audit Rate Dropping Lower and Lower

In 2013, IRS auditors reviewed only 0.9% of returns filed by individuals earning less than $200,000 a year. That rate was the lowest since 2005. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told the Associated Press that the audit rate likely will go down even further this year. The chances of getting audited is much higher for the wealthy—about 11% for those making $1 million or more annually.   read more

Offshore Tax Havens Cost U.S. $184 Billion in Revenue Every Year

U.S. federal and state governments would have more than $180 billion in additional revenue each year if corporations and wealthy individuals didn't hide their earnings in offshore accounts. Without that revenue, each U.S. taxpayer on average would have to pay an additional $1,259 in taxes to cover this loss. "Ordinary taxpayers [are] picking up the tab [in]...higher taxes, cuts to public spending priorities, or increases to the federal debt,” said the U.S. PIRG report.   read more

Oklahoma Gov. Fallin Signs Bill Banning Minimum Wage Increases by Cities

The governor added that increasing the minimum wage would only hurt businesses and lead to employees being laid off. She insisted most workers would not benefit from a minimum wage hike. Critics said the bill was intended to circumvent an effort in Oklahoma City, where signatures are being gathered to put an initiative on the city ballot raising the minimum wage to $10.10. That is the level to which President Barack Obama seeks to raise the federal minimum wage.   read more

IRS Gave Arizona Non-Profit Tax Exempt Status despite Record Campaign Money-Laundering Disclosure

An Arizona-based political organization funded almost entirely by the conservative Koch brothers—and that was fined for laundering political contributions—was awarded tax-exempt status by the IRS despite the agency knowing this. “Social welfare” groups are not eligible for tax exemption if they spend the majority of their money on politics. But Americans for Responsible Leadership, which had received 98% of its money from a Koch group, received that status from the IRS.   read more

Affordable Rent Slips out of Reach for Majority of Renters

The U.S. is experiencing “the worst rental affordability crisis” in its history, said the HUD secretary late last year. The problem is unlikely to abate anytime soon. Since the 2008 financial crisis, demand for apartments has soared as millions of homeowners lost their properties while struggling young Americans have turned to renting. Developers are constructing new apartment buildings in many cities. But often the structures going up are for high-end, luxury rentals.   read more

Hillary Clinton Makes Money for Boeing

During her October 2009 trip to Russia, Clinton made no effort to hide her plans to help Boeing while meeting with the state-owned airline, Rosavia. Her persuasiveness paid dividends for Boeing, which secured a $3.7 billion contract for the planes only months later. Shortly after completing the deal, Boeing contributed $900,000 to the William J. Clinton Foundation to help rebuild schools in Haiti damaged by the 2010 earthquake.   read more

Maine Gov. LePage Vetoes Bipartisan Bill to Help Solar Energy Industry because of 69-Cent a Year Tax Increase

Efforts to restore a solar energy program in Maine have died at the hands of Republican Governor Paul LePage, who objected to the bill’s planned 69-cent annual tax increase on residents and business owners. The bill would have revived a solar rebate program to help establish more than 1,250 new solar panel and hot water projects in homes and businesses   read more

Day Care Costs More Than College in 31 States

Residents of some states, like New York, face budget-busting costs to put their kids into day care. There, such services average $15,000 a year. Meanwhile, the expense of in-state college tuition is only $6,500 annually. Massachusetts has an even higher average per-annum day-care cost: $16,500 Other states with significant gaps between the costs of day care and college tuition include Colorado, Maryland and Oregon.   read more

Nine of the Ten most Common Occupations in U.S. Pay less than the National Average Wage

Nearly all of the top 10 most common jobs in America don’t pay well, according to new figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nine of the 10 largest occupations produced an average wage below the U.S. average of $46,440 annually. The lone exception among top jobs was registered nurses, who make an average of $68,910 per year. The average for the rest ranged from $18,880 for food preparation and serving workers to $34,000 for secretaries and administrative assistants   read more

Labor Dept., for First Time, Intervenes on Behalf of Unpaid Interns

The plaintiffs allege that Hearst made them work full-time hours while receiving no income. The lead plaintiff, Xuedan Wang, says she was at Harper’s Bazaar between 40 and 55 hours a week while performing a variety of duties that paid workers perform, like handling expense reports and managing other interns. Under Labor Department rules, unpaid interns can’t replace regular employees or do work that provides an “immediate advantage” to the business.   read more

2% of Doctors Received 24% of Medicare Payments

The two highest-paid doctors listed in the Medicare data are being investigated by the government for improper billing. Salomon Melgen, the Florida ophthalmologist, and cardiologist Asad Qamar have both contributed heavily to the political campaigns of Democratic candidates in Florida.   read more

State Dept. Can’t Locate Files for $6 Billion Worth of Contracts

The State Department’s Inspector General (IG) says the agency can’t locate more than $6 billion in contracts, raising the specter of mismanagement by officials. The paperwork went missing during the past six years, during which Hillary Clinton ran the State Department as secretary of state for most of that time. The unaccounted funds represents a “significant financial risk" and “creates conditions conducive to fraud, as corrupt individuals may attempt to conceal evidence.”   read more

Creative Tactics to Give Public Funds to Religious Schools

Legal battles over taxpayer support for religious schools are taking place in both red and blue states. The ACLU is suing Hawaii over the Preschool Open Doors program, where it says tax dollars are being used to send kids to private parochial schools, with no oversight. A similar fight is underway in Georgia, where a state tax credit program results in public money going into scholarships so children can attend religious schools.   read more

Supreme Court’s Lifting of Campaign Donation Caps Ripples Down through the States

Thirteen states have some kind of restrictions on aggregate donations to candidates. Massachusetts was the first of these to strike its rule limiting donations to specific candidates to $12,500. Other states with aggregate limits are Maryland, Alaska, Connecticut, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.   read more

Anadarko Agrees to Largest Environmental Damage Settlement in History…and Its Stock Soars

Anadarko tried to get out of paying for Kerr-McGee’s mess by claiming the subsidiary, before it was purchased, set up a spinoff company (Tronox) that was legally responsible for all of the environmental liabilities. But a judge dismissed this argument after concluding that Tronox, which subsequently went bankrupt, was nothing more than a scheme to shield Kerr-McGee (or its new owner, Anadarko) from being liable.   read more

Why are Large Corporations Allowed Tax Deductions for Violation Settlements?

JPMorgan Chase agreed to pay $13 billion to settle its mortgage violations. But nearly $4 billion of this amount will be reclaimed through a tax deduction. BP, responsible for the worst oil spill in U.S. history, received a $10 billion tax break after writing off its settlement. “Americans don’t deduct their parking tickets or library fines from their taxes. Corporations like JPMorgan or BP shouldn’t be able to deduct their settlements for wrongdoing, either,” said Phineas Baxandall.   read more
1 to 16 of about 1349 News
1 2 3 ... 85 Next

Where is the Money Going?

1 to 16 of about 1349 News
1 2 3 ... 85 Next

IRS Audit Rate Dropping Lower and Lower

In 2013, IRS auditors reviewed only 0.9% of returns filed by individuals earning less than $200,000 a year. That rate was the lowest since 2005. IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told the Associated Press that the audit rate likely will go down even further this year. The chances of getting audited is much higher for the wealthy—about 11% for those making $1 million or more annually.   read more

Offshore Tax Havens Cost U.S. $184 Billion in Revenue Every Year

U.S. federal and state governments would have more than $180 billion in additional revenue each year if corporations and wealthy individuals didn't hide their earnings in offshore accounts. Without that revenue, each U.S. taxpayer on average would have to pay an additional $1,259 in taxes to cover this loss. "Ordinary taxpayers [are] picking up the tab [in]...higher taxes, cuts to public spending priorities, or increases to the federal debt,” said the U.S. PIRG report.   read more

Oklahoma Gov. Fallin Signs Bill Banning Minimum Wage Increases by Cities

The governor added that increasing the minimum wage would only hurt businesses and lead to employees being laid off. She insisted most workers would not benefit from a minimum wage hike. Critics said the bill was intended to circumvent an effort in Oklahoma City, where signatures are being gathered to put an initiative on the city ballot raising the minimum wage to $10.10. That is the level to which President Barack Obama seeks to raise the federal minimum wage.   read more

IRS Gave Arizona Non-Profit Tax Exempt Status despite Record Campaign Money-Laundering Disclosure

An Arizona-based political organization funded almost entirely by the conservative Koch brothers—and that was fined for laundering political contributions—was awarded tax-exempt status by the IRS despite the agency knowing this. “Social welfare” groups are not eligible for tax exemption if they spend the majority of their money on politics. But Americans for Responsible Leadership, which had received 98% of its money from a Koch group, received that status from the IRS.   read more

Affordable Rent Slips out of Reach for Majority of Renters

The U.S. is experiencing “the worst rental affordability crisis” in its history, said the HUD secretary late last year. The problem is unlikely to abate anytime soon. Since the 2008 financial crisis, demand for apartments has soared as millions of homeowners lost their properties while struggling young Americans have turned to renting. Developers are constructing new apartment buildings in many cities. But often the structures going up are for high-end, luxury rentals.   read more

Hillary Clinton Makes Money for Boeing

During her October 2009 trip to Russia, Clinton made no effort to hide her plans to help Boeing while meeting with the state-owned airline, Rosavia. Her persuasiveness paid dividends for Boeing, which secured a $3.7 billion contract for the planes only months later. Shortly after completing the deal, Boeing contributed $900,000 to the William J. Clinton Foundation to help rebuild schools in Haiti damaged by the 2010 earthquake.   read more

Maine Gov. LePage Vetoes Bipartisan Bill to Help Solar Energy Industry because of 69-Cent a Year Tax Increase

Efforts to restore a solar energy program in Maine have died at the hands of Republican Governor Paul LePage, who objected to the bill’s planned 69-cent annual tax increase on residents and business owners. The bill would have revived a solar rebate program to help establish more than 1,250 new solar panel and hot water projects in homes and businesses   read more

Day Care Costs More Than College in 31 States

Residents of some states, like New York, face budget-busting costs to put their kids into day care. There, such services average $15,000 a year. Meanwhile, the expense of in-state college tuition is only $6,500 annually. Massachusetts has an even higher average per-annum day-care cost: $16,500 Other states with significant gaps between the costs of day care and college tuition include Colorado, Maryland and Oregon.   read more

Nine of the Ten most Common Occupations in U.S. Pay less than the National Average Wage

Nearly all of the top 10 most common jobs in America don’t pay well, according to new figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nine of the 10 largest occupations produced an average wage below the U.S. average of $46,440 annually. The lone exception among top jobs was registered nurses, who make an average of $68,910 per year. The average for the rest ranged from $18,880 for food preparation and serving workers to $34,000 for secretaries and administrative assistants   read more

Labor Dept., for First Time, Intervenes on Behalf of Unpaid Interns

The plaintiffs allege that Hearst made them work full-time hours while receiving no income. The lead plaintiff, Xuedan Wang, says she was at Harper’s Bazaar between 40 and 55 hours a week while performing a variety of duties that paid workers perform, like handling expense reports and managing other interns. Under Labor Department rules, unpaid interns can’t replace regular employees or do work that provides an “immediate advantage” to the business.   read more

2% of Doctors Received 24% of Medicare Payments

The two highest-paid doctors listed in the Medicare data are being investigated by the government for improper billing. Salomon Melgen, the Florida ophthalmologist, and cardiologist Asad Qamar have both contributed heavily to the political campaigns of Democratic candidates in Florida.   read more

State Dept. Can’t Locate Files for $6 Billion Worth of Contracts

The State Department’s Inspector General (IG) says the agency can’t locate more than $6 billion in contracts, raising the specter of mismanagement by officials. The paperwork went missing during the past six years, during which Hillary Clinton ran the State Department as secretary of state for most of that time. The unaccounted funds represents a “significant financial risk" and “creates conditions conducive to fraud, as corrupt individuals may attempt to conceal evidence.”   read more

Creative Tactics to Give Public Funds to Religious Schools

Legal battles over taxpayer support for religious schools are taking place in both red and blue states. The ACLU is suing Hawaii over the Preschool Open Doors program, where it says tax dollars are being used to send kids to private parochial schools, with no oversight. A similar fight is underway in Georgia, where a state tax credit program results in public money going into scholarships so children can attend religious schools.   read more

Supreme Court’s Lifting of Campaign Donation Caps Ripples Down through the States

Thirteen states have some kind of restrictions on aggregate donations to candidates. Massachusetts was the first of these to strike its rule limiting donations to specific candidates to $12,500. Other states with aggregate limits are Maryland, Alaska, Connecticut, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.   read more

Anadarko Agrees to Largest Environmental Damage Settlement in History…and Its Stock Soars

Anadarko tried to get out of paying for Kerr-McGee’s mess by claiming the subsidiary, before it was purchased, set up a spinoff company (Tronox) that was legally responsible for all of the environmental liabilities. But a judge dismissed this argument after concluding that Tronox, which subsequently went bankrupt, was nothing more than a scheme to shield Kerr-McGee (or its new owner, Anadarko) from being liable.   read more

Why are Large Corporations Allowed Tax Deductions for Violation Settlements?

JPMorgan Chase agreed to pay $13 billion to settle its mortgage violations. But nearly $4 billion of this amount will be reclaimed through a tax deduction. BP, responsible for the worst oil spill in U.S. history, received a $10 billion tax break after writing off its settlement. “Americans don’t deduct their parking tickets or library fines from their taxes. Corporations like JPMorgan or BP shouldn’t be able to deduct their settlements for wrongdoing, either,” said Phineas Baxandall.   read more
1 to 16 of about 1349 News
1 2 3 ... 85 Next