Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Beacon’s 2019 Pork Report. The "winner" is Murfreesboro's Richard Siegel Soccer Complex.

by Rod Williams - The Beacon Center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, conservative think-tank and is one of those organizations I support by my end-of-year giving.  Beacon cares about the issues I care about: government waste, overreach and inefficiency; occupational licensing; criminal justice reform; property rights; educational choice; corporate welfare; and more. It was Beacon that discovered the State was sitting on a $732 million reserve of unused TANF dollars that could have been being used to fund programs to help lift people out of poverty.

Every year about this time the Beacon issues their "pork report," calling attention to examples of wasteful spending by local or State governments.  They feature one example as "Pork of the Year." This year it was a $14.5 million renovation to Murfreesboro's Richard Siegel Soccer Complex while at the same time the city officials raised property taxes by 36%. Beacon Center says Murfreesboro loses $150,000 each year on the complex, and it will take at least 127 years to pay off the debt.

Other example of wasteful spending highlighted in the 2019 Pork Report were this:
  • Memphis gave Evil's Graceland $75 million in incentives after Graceland threatened to relocate. 
  • Memphis gave Fed Ex $2 million to move its headquarters from one part of Memphis to another. 
  • Metro Nashville Public Schools paid $1 million to Performance Matters to help students prepare of test taking. The contract was illegal and no one knows what we actually got for the money.
  • Nashville's Tax Increment financing. The example to illustrate the folly of the program is that the owner of a condo in the Veridian high rise downtown would pay $2600 in property taxes but only $l15 of that would go to the city
To read the full pork report follow this link. To learn more about the Beacon Center, follow this link.  Please join me in contributing to this fine organization. Contribute

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