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Source: Taxpayers UnionToyota hand-out secrecy as bad as the decision
The secrecy surrounding the ratepayer-funded $391,000 gift to Toyota is worse than the actual decision to give away the money, says the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union, which exposed the handout last week. Responding to the Manawatu Standard reporting that elected officials are refusing to discuss the decision, Jordan Williams, a spokesman for the Taxpayers’ Union, said:”Democratic accountability is broken when elected officials are apparently not allowed to talk about how a corporate welfare decision was made, or even who voted in support of the handout.””Of particular concern is that the Council isn’t saying who else it has made grants to. It stinks to high heaven.””Blame also lies at the feet of Toyota. Why is this multinational company with annual posted profits of over $22 billion USD bludging corporate welfare from Manawatu ratepayers? It is breath taking in its cheek.””Why too has GST apparently been applied when the grant is not in return for services? If what is in the public domain is true, that would imply Toyota is in breach of New Zealand tax law. There is no such thing as GST on a donation.””Last week Toyota refused to disclose whether it had received secret grants from other local councils. Our team is looking further into that possibility. We can’t rule out that Toyota has an industrial size corporate welfare trough operation.””Toyota and the Council need to come clean to the good people of Palmerston North who are now funding them.”ENDS
ENQUIRIES:Louis Houlbrooke021 950 191 NOTES TO EDITORS:
The New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is an independent and membership-driven activist group, dedicated to being the voice for Kiwi taxpayers in the corridors of power. Its mission, lower taxes, less waste, more transparency, is supported by more than 36,000 subscribed members and supporters.
The Taxpayers’ Union operates a 24 hour media line for comment on taxpayer issues. Representatives are available on (04) 282 0302.
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