October 30, 2009

$50 million in tax credits for Johnson Development

Johnson Community Development Company of Racine will receive $50 million in New Market Tax Credits from the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund.

The tax credits from the Treasury Department's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund will provide financial backing for local businesses and organizations to support low-income community development.

“These tax credits will help provide the backing many local businesses need to get off the ground and establish themselves in low-income communities, leading to a revitalization of these downtrodden areas,” said Sen. Herb Kohl, D-WI, in announcing the grant.

Kohl said the tax credits will provide below market financing to community development projects and facilities, real estate, and businesses in communities and regions hit hard by the recession and job loss, for use in projects like affordable housing for families and seniors, as well as revitalization of blighted neighborhoods.


  1. I hope someone tracks the expenditures of this fund to evaluate the percentages of funding for anything but low income housing. Developers hang like vultures over these credits, because they make a killing building these warehouses.

  2. To the anti-Wax crowd:
    You're a bunch of uneducated idiots who know NOTHING about business, how business works, or how business can benefit a community. But by all means, keep working your union jobs where non-reality keeps you steeped in jealousy and envy.

  3. 50 Million to help destroy Racine, I think. More for rich white ten year backers.

  4. What was it our mayor referred to Racine as, "A low-income community?" When he confirmed that with his own voice he set this up. I wonder what the hidden price tag for this is going to cost the taxpayers of Racine. Is it going to be like the "bailout money" from the Fed that comes with a 4% - 5% payback interest rate? Is more low-income housing or anything else what Racine really needs? Is this $50 million going to help ease any of the tax burden off the shoulders of the property owners in town? Unlikely, at best. But, I don’t think we have enough information here to discern it properly.

    "The (CDFI) Fund will provide financial backing for local businesses and organizations to support low-income community development."

    OK, so a few low-income jobs will be created in low-income areas of town. The vast majority of the people living in these areas aren't going to be able to afford to use these businesses because their incomes will not increase, unless they are additional bars and corner stores, so what's the point? This will not lead to the revitalization of these communities. It will only lead to more low-income businesses failing in these areas over, probably, a very short time.

    This is the Democrat answer to everything: just throw money at it. That has been proven time and time again not to work. If you REALLY want to revitalize these neighborhoods, use tax incentives to entice manufacturing, service and high-tech businesses back to this city so that those in the low-income areas that are willing to work can get decent paying jobs. Then with the re-establishment of pride, self-esteem and income, these industrious people will revitalize their neighborhoods on their own. REAL jobs is what’s needed, not more low-income jobs!

    Anon 9:09 comes pretty close to the mark with his comments. You can hate J-Wax all you want, but you’d hate it even more if they closed up shop and relocated to the sun belt. I believe it is true that the vast majority of the J-Wax bashers posting on this blog have no clear understanding of how big business works. All they see is someone making more money than them and figure they are evil and corrupt and should share the wealth. What they don’t understand is the cost of doing business. They don’t understand about the large percentage of profits that are put back into the companies for expansion or research and development. Face it folks, businesses are in the business of making profits. Without that there would be less and less jobs, little or no company paid health benefits, no new jobs through expansion, no money to pump into the local economy to sustain it, and on and on. You have the right to come onto the blogs and bash whoever you want for whatever reason, but the problem is that “reason” is so often what’s missing from your remarks.

  5. Hold on conservatives!

    A business just got a tax credit. You crybabies are always all over that. Now that a company gets one, you say the town is ruined. Hypocrites.

  6. Anon 12:12 I did not say that at all. I am asking for more information and for the city council to exploit even more tax breaks to lure business back into town. I also think targeting low-income areas only is not a wise move. There are so many people in so many neighborhoods all over this town that have lost jobs or been laid off that their neighborhoods are in jeopardy of becoming low-income themselves. This entire town needs a shot in the arm, not just low-income neighborhoods.

  7. Will the $50 MILLION be used for Uptown,Lakefront,State St. Douglas Ave. ?? Or what ?? More art ?? Will my taxes go down because of this ??

  8. 1:45

    Our taxes never go down when companies get tax incentives. In fact, you as the taxpayer paid for it!
    A tax incentive is spending.

    Conservaties cannot have it both ways. You cannot be free market advocates and at the same time complain about J-Wax power and influence. Your ideaology leads and cheerleads for this very thing.

  9. I laugh out loud when I hear so-called conservatives talk about the need for less government, less welfare, less tax and less regulation.

    What’s made business and industry succeed in this country? Oh, just little things like protective tariffs, government subsidies for railroads, free government land, protectionist legislation for auto and steel (and pretty much any other industry you can name), elongated protection for drug patents, consistent corporate welfare for business and industry … the list goes on and on and on and on … throughout our history.

    So long as the business and industry get their bennies from government, everything’s fine.

    But let anyone else suggest that government should work for the benefit of others … workers, mothers, children, and uninsured people … oh, well then, all hell breaks loose. It’s “socialism,” or “welfare,” and it’s decried.

    “Let people stand on their own two feet and pull themselves up by their bootstraps,” it’s proclaimed. “All this government assistance is ruining the country, making people lazy, supporting welfare cheats. Keep government’s nose out of everything …”

    When, in reality, it’s those interests that just want all the gravy to come only to them. So long as the government subsidizes their profits, well, then it’s OK for government to be activist.

    Let it benefit anybody else, though, and it’s somehow un-American.

    Puleez, give me a break!

    At least be honest about the largesse. Say out loud it’s meant to benefit the “haves,” and that the “have-nots” are unworthy because they’re simply beneath you, and not as important as your own interests.

  10. I laugh out loud when so-called liberals, whose SOLE purpose in life is caring about and helping others, blog from their computers in the office of their big, beautiful homes. Sell your place, rent a two bedroom apartment (in the hood, where you specifically profess to want to help people), and contribute the rest to the causes you tell "rich people" to pay for. Stop sitting at your computer kvetching about greedy people not helping others and do a little more yourself.

  11. Randolph, you’re part right and part wrong. Please don’t continue, as so many do, to confuse "conservatives" with "Republicans." Being a Republican is not synonymous with being conservative, nor is being a liberal synonymous with being a Democrat. The Republicans have become a bastardization of conservativism. When people say conservatives are the hard right, over-religious, all-for-business, extremists of the Republican party, or that Democrats are all liberals and union thugs, that is completely wrong. The truth is that not all Republicans are conservatives and not all Democrats are liberals.

    As a conservative I find it equally appalling that the Fed bails out and rewards huge corporations and their, either incompetent or criminal, managers for bad business decisions and the money spent on welfare and assistance to those who DO NOT TRULY need it. The hundreds of billions of dollars spent by Congress previously (under the Bush's and Clinton, and now Obama), has escalated that to trillions of dollars. It’s breaking the back of the middle-class in this country. So yes, I bitch and moan about taxes and go to the TEA parties because I'm sick and tired of the overlords in Congress (note I didn't say representatives) giving our money away to big corporations that should be let to fail. If that money was redistributed to those who have verifiable physical or mental disabilities, we’d be a lot better off, the middle-class would not be going broke and the managers of these companies would be held accountable for their actions. And think about this; the liberal/socialist bozo in the oval office right now is doing exactly what you are accusing the conservatives of doing. He's bailing companies out, even taking them over, and pushing for the One-World-Government just like every other previous president that is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations

    Think about this, you condemn us conservatives because we want less government in our lives, but you say it's our fault that "business and industry get their bennies from government." YOU can't have it both ways. A true conservative wants government out of our lives. If bad business decisions by management cause a company to fail (no matter how big it is), then it should fail. Someone else will pick up the pieces or the company can just be gone. Instead of bailout, use that money to save the employees' health care benefits, 401K's and pensions and help relocate them to other jobs. On the other hand, the people that are currently getting welfare of one type or another, should be scrutinized under a magnifying glass to insure that they are truly deserving of it and not fraudulently receiving it. They should be required to submit to random drug testing, just as the hard working employees that pay taxes to support them are. If you want to see the family unit cohesive once again, just pull the welfare plug on the ones that don't deserve it and suspend it for those who get it and test positive for drugs, until they test clean again.

    When you get right down to it, Republican politicians in general are for big business and big money (the worst of them being the Rockefeller types that don’t care who gets crushed on the way to making the big bank roll) and Democrat politicians in general are for special interests and unions (the worst of them being the hardcore liberals that are true socialists who want everyone in the world under their controlling thumbs).

    True conservatives (not Republicans) want less government control over business, the economy, education, interstate commerce, state militias, states rights and people’s lives. The Fed should adhere strictly to the U.S. Constitution, it’s amendments and the Bill of Rights. It should protect us from foreign enemies with a very strong military, settle disputes between states and protect our national borders. And that’s pretty much all. We are not the policemen of the world and should stop acting as such.

  12. ^^^^ AMEN!!!!

    That is why I claim to be a Conservative Libertarian in stead of a Conservative Republican.

    Did I miss where it said in the article how much money Johnson Development had to spend in order to receive the $50,000,000 in tax CREDITS?

  13. Graham, PR,

    Your conservative/libertarian beliefs have value.

    In an ideal world, or an ideal country, they’d govern.

    But they don’t, at least not anytime in the 230-odd years of our existence.

    As I’m sure you’ll realize, the battle since then has been between Tories and Whigs, Federalists and Democrat-Republicans, Republicans and Democrats, now with some role reversal, Democrats and Republicans.

    No matter what our ideals, factions, or parties, if you will, corrupt them, and that has been true almost from the very beginning.

    In the final analysis, you have a choice between utilizing the governmental system to benefit the few, the rich, the privileged, or utilizing the governmental system to benefit the many, the democrats (with a small d), the citizens, the people.

    I’ve chosen to try to use the system to benefit the people.

    Choose your side.

  14. Are you the people - or the rich with your big, beautiful house?

  15. While you talk about power to the people, remember this: A crappy two bedroom in the hood is a palace compared to what a lot of the rest of the world has. The poor here have roofs over their heads, government food, free emergency medical care, and TVs. The poor in many other parts of the world have NOTHING. If the whole world lived like the US, it would take 6 earths to support us.

  16. brandt.randolph, I agree that every government faction that has ever ruled in this country has corrupted into something profane. It's time we learned from it instead of continuing to repeat it. I am totally against a national socialist government, as Obama is trying to install, but I am not entirely against government exercising a certain amount of control over the businesses and population of the country. But, those controls must be controls voted on and approved by the people of this country, not by overlords who think they know better than us.

    There is no reason why a happy medium between the needs of businesses and the needs of the population can not be realized. The first three steps in accomplishing this are to instill term limits for all federal senators and representatives, make all federal supreme court judges subject to election and not appointed for life, and to return the powers of the states back to the states. The Congress MUST adhere to the terms of the U.S. Constitution that they have sworn an oath to defend, but currently spit on whenever it doesn't suit their needs.

    The generational welfare state must end. No profit limit should be placed on businesses whatsoever. However, there should be a ceiling that, once reached, 50% of the profits beyond that level must deposited to the general fund of the state that the business is located in. The obscene salaries to CEO's and bonuses must end. Businesses are in the business of making profits and therefore should be exempt from any government assistance whatsoever. If bad business decisions are made, then the business must weather the consequences without burdening the taxpayers. When a CEO is caught embezzling money, or in any criminal act, he/she should be fired, given no severance pay or contract settlements. Crime is crime and should not be rewarded. If a business has plants in different states, they should be considered completely different businesses and not recognized as a single entity. When a politician is caught in a criminal act, he/she should be immediately fired upon conviction, jailed and made to pay back any and all costs or losses to the taxpayers. The pension for life lottery that congressmen now get should end. Name one other place in this country where you can make $85K a year for four years work and then draw that pension for the rest of your life. That's just stealing from the American people. They should also be on the same social security program and health care program as the general population. Lobbying should be outlawed and any politician that feeds special interests should be fired upon conviction.

    There are many, many more items I could continue to list, but this gives the gist of it. And the main thing about it is that none of this is unreasonable or beyond reach. If we can get enough people elected who are willing to make these changes, then the "parties" be damned. We should also outlaw specific political movements, just as Germany and Russia have. We should outlaw the Nazi Party, the Communist Party, any overt Socialist Party, and any religious factions that aspire to control government.

  17. To paraphrase: Plato once said good people don't need laws to tell them what's right or wrong and bad people will find ways around those laws.

    We need to put up the barriers to stop those bad people and keep them out of government.

  18. Graham,

    Radical, but theoretically possible, except maybe banning political parties and lobbying because of likely 1st Amendment issues.

    What's the "generational welfare state?"

  19. PR=PR (Personal Rights=Personal Responsibility)11/02/2009 8:56 PM


    You have to know damn well what "generational welfare state" means as Graham used it! Give me a break, you ain't a country bumpkin that hasn't been exposed to the various ways of life in our fine country. No, I'm not mad at you, just have an extremely low tolerance for educated folks that try to play semantics simply because they do not like the term used.

    Thanks for calling me an idealist, I'll take that over being myopic any day, all day. I trust business more than I do any government: one has a very large and immediate cause and effect reason to produce, to succeed. One relies on the labor and advancement of the other to exist. If one of them treats their customers/employees poorly they will fail; the other may simply abscond with more power to continue to survive, often doing so under the guise of "helping those that need help" (not to be confused with those who can not help themselves no matter their sacrifices).

    Maybe we should simply agree that the Republicans and Democrats have a differing opinion on how high the social safety net should be and whether or not State's Rights are a valuable part of our society. Sadly, State's Rights have thus far been inexorably tied to the slave aspect of our Civil War. It is even sadder that we have generations that believe that war was started and fought over slavery instead of the industrialized north forcing the agricultural south to sell all of their crops to the north at prices set well below what the free market(Britain & Europe) had been paying for them. Then there is the matter of exactly how "living" our Constitution is, should be, and was designed to be (oops, maybe the "designed to be" part "lived" it's way out of existence).

    The "big picture" directs the "little picture(s)", to allow the opposite to occur is akin to "putting the cart before the horse", removing the rudder from the ship, or what have you. I guess the modern saying would be "think globally/nationally, act(do) locally". Who best decides how, and what, the "locally" is to act and do?

    Can one have any Rights if they have no responsibility for their actions?

    What is one responsible for if they have no Rights?

    What happens when society has no/little Rights, no/little responsibility, or neither?

    Is it not in the best interest of society, as a whole, for individuals to carry the most responsibility instead of (continually) abdicating them to their government(s)?

    Do individuals mature (grow, improve, prosper, etc.) when they are given more and more responsibilities?

    Is society, any civilization really, made up of individuals?

    Why do some put their faith and trust in government instead of society, individuals as a whole?

    I know I digressed but I believe individuals learn when shown how all of the "pieces" are interconnected, work together, and why they are all so important. When people learn they progress, that is how society prospers....

  20. Randolph, I don't believe that if a referendum is offered and the majority of the people of the U.S. vote to outlaw these fascist and anti-Constitutional political groups, that it could be construed as an infringement on their 1st Amendment rights. Under such a law, they would have no rights in this country.

    I'm with PR=PR, I find it difficult to believe that you don't understand the meaning of "generational welfare state." So, if it's just a matter of you wanting to hear me say it, I will. When F.D.R. instituted the welfare program, it was designed to carry a person for up to two years to either find another job or improve their education so that they could get a better job. But, the system has been bastardized into a welfare program where, for at least three generations, welfare parents have been teaching their children how to work the system and remain on welfare so that they don't have to work or give anything back to the hand that's feeding them. And I don't mind telling you that I have no problem assisting those who truly need a helping hand, but, like most Americans, I am sick and tired of our tax dollars going to those who take welfare just because they can and refuse to get off their dead asses and go out and work for a living like the poor schmucks they're ripping off, i.e. the taxpayers. And what pisses me off even more are the illegal aliens in this country that are getting the same welfare, along with free education for their kids and free medical. And now we've even got anti-American politicians trying to get them the vote AND social security when they're not even citizens. There is no other country in the world that allows that. And I am sick and tired of it, and I think an abrupt end needs to be put to it. And I don't care who it hurts because the only ones that will be hurt by it are those that are abusing it and ripping off the American people.

  21. Graham, PR,

    I thought the questions about “generational welfare state” legitimate.

    Since Clinton’s 1996 welfare reform act, cash payments to anyone are limited to a maximum of five years, a little longer than FDR’s, but the same idea. So, the notion of a “generational welfare state” has been impossible, at least, for the past dozen years or so. Aliens, of course, have never been eligible.

    As for PR’s surprising interpretations of economics in the 1850s, the philosophical underpinnings of the Confederate States of America and the cause of the Civil War, I’ll take the word of contemporary observers:

    "The prevailing ideas entertained by Thomas Jefferson and most of the leading statesmen at the time of the formation of the old Constitution were that the enslavement of the African was in violation of the laws of nature - that it was wrong in principle - socially, morally, and politically … Our new government [the Confederate States of America] is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid - its cornerstone rests - upon the great truth that the Negro is not equal to the white man. That slavery - subordination to the superior race - is his natural and moral condition. This - our new [Confederate] government - is the first in the history of the world based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth" - Alexander Stephens, vice president of the CSA

    “One-eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was somehow the cause of the war… Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said ‘the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.’” – Abraham Lincoln, president, USA

  22. Randolph, you fail to understand that slavery was a minor issue in the Civil War. The war was coming whether slavery was an issue or not. The Civil War was economics and power based. Just as Hitler used the Jews as a common rallying point for the German people, so did Lincoln use the slavery issue as a common rallying point for the North. Most Northerners couldn't care less about the economic plight of the South and knew the South was not much of a threat on the floor of Congress. So, a common denominator had to be put into place that would give the Northerners something to rally around to justify the war. You know, just like the destruction of the twin towers became a rallying point for Bush to use to initiate the war on terror and establish the Homeland Security division.

    And I don't know what planet you're living on, but illegals DO get welfare. There is no device in place to present proof that you are an American citizen when applying for welfare. And there is nothing to the Clinton 5 year limit on welfare either. Can you name one person who was forced off the welfare roll since that bill was passed? ...I didn't think so.

  23. Graham,

    1. Read your Civil War history.

    2. Welfare rolls were reduced by 60 percent under Clinton's reform act.

  24. Dear Graham, I'd like to know how the illegals obtain welfare. I'm a citizen of this sad country who can barely walk. Even so, the clowns in charge of the system won't give me a monthly disability check.

  25. Too bad you're not a coy little teapot or a fiberglass cow. If you were one of those precious objects instead of a living, suffering human being, the Waxtrash oppressors would cherish you.

  26. Sad but true. The Witch of Waxilla cares more about her piece of the Berlin Wall than the well-being of her Bugspray Bank's victims.

  27. Dear PR=PR, The reason why some folks trust government more than business is simple: unlike businessmen (who treat ordinary people with contempt and exploit them whenever possible), government officials need the common man's vote and will pay for it with entitlement programs. If you're poor or lower-middle class, those programs financed by taxes imposed on rich corporate leeches look pretty darned good. Also, for low-income women, the government is the benevolent big brother or daddy who'll provide for them in a way their menfolk can't. We can howl all we want about the way free enterprise supposedly builds character, but most poor folks who need practical here-and-now assistance would rather have a check or a voucher than another useless motivational lecture.

  28. Amen! Let's hope that the wicked Waxies call a halt to the series of motivational lectures by big-buck hucksters they've sponsored at their "Round Hell." Racine's people need practical assistance, not entrepreneurial propaganda. Free trade caused the current recession. Regulation of business and a social safety net for all our citizens will cure our economic woes.