Candidates Corner

Dion releases statement on LD 1781

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Senator Mark Dion

Statement on LD 1781, “An Act to Encourage New Major Investments in Shipbuilding Facilities”

I opposed LD 1781 on Wednesday when it came to floor. It would provide up to 15 years of new tax credits to Bath Iron Works, and pay General Dynamics, its owner, up to $3 million a year.

The union representing the vast majority of shipyard workers did not endorse this new tax credit. In good conscience, I cannot support excusing BIW’s parent corporation from paying their fair share of Maine taxes while their chief executive’s compensation exceeds $200 million a year. I find it very difficult to explain the benefit of this tax credit for the shipyard while Maine small business owners struggle to meet their tax responsibilities.

BIW is now privately held, and company officials have released almost no new financial information that would allow us to assess and evaluate their claims.

Many union workers believe, and I agree, that simply issuing another tax break will not make the shipyard more competitive, nor more likely to win new federal contracts.

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