The Minimum Wage & Punishing Success in Rhode Island: Do the politicians in RI want to destroy the economy, or are they just ignorant and inept?
Since hundreds of business owners in Rhode Island decided it was time to organize and stand up to fight for their rights less than a year ago by joining the Gaspee Business Network, many are left scratching their heads while considering the intentions of people in the Rhode Island Legislature. It is evident that a majority of the politicians in Providence either have no real experience and understanding of how to run a business, or do have such understanding but do not care for the livelihoods of workers and families throughout the Ocean State.
It is clear to anyone who actually understands business and economics that these are the only possible reasons for the decision making in the RI Legislature.Read more
Raimondo’s dirty little secret: First make the special interests rich, then toll every vehicle in Rhode Island
Rhode Island State Representative Blake Filippi wrote a brilliant and insightful article regarding the fact that the RhodeWorks plan will eventually toll passenger vehicles. This conclusion was drawn from a few obvious facts about the plan:
- If those who voted for RhodeWorks in the House of Representatives truly believed passenger vehicles would never be tolled, they would have passed Representative Filippi’s constitutional amendment to force a citizen vote on the initiative before it could be implemented. They did not, because the intent was always to eventually toll everyone.
- The U.S. Constitution’s “Dormant” Commerce Clause refers to the restrictions placed on states which prevent them from inhibiting interstate commerce. RhodeWorks is obviously in violation of this prohibition because it discriminates against interstate trucking in favor of local trucking.
“Those who pay the bills, make the decisions.”
Rhode Island’s political leadership yet again endows itself with more power to control, buy, and politicize nearly every business in Rhode Island. The new Ocean State WAVE ‘economic development’ plan empowers politicians with more rights than ever before to use taxpayer money to advance those businesses willing to play ball with politicians, while putting at a huge disadvantage those who will not.
Rhode Island is the Crony Capital of America
In order to avoid the inconvenient process of getting voter approval to hand taxpayer money to those businesses politically connected in Rhode Island, the leadership of the Ocean State has for years, and continues to this day to push moral obligation bonds for companies such as 38 Studios. These bonds conveniently obligate Rhode Island taxpayers to the risks taken by millionaires like Kurt Schilling, without the legal hurtle of asking permission first.Read more
The reasoning for tolling trucks in Rhode Island nearly everywhere they commute is predicated on the idea that trucks cause more damage to the roads and therefore should pay more to use them. Beyond the reality that truckers already pay more to use the roads via taxes and fees, the fact is that if politicians in Rhode Island genuinely intended to never toll passenger cars they would have passed Blake Filippi’s constitutional amendment to make such an effort very difficult. Yet they did not, the RhodeWorks plan passed, and it is obvious as to why.
When RhodeWorks was introduced as legislation, many trucking companies stood up and said enough is enough. One in particular was the Ocean State Job Lot. Upon the announcement that the tolls were going to be a reality, the leadership of Job Lot announced it would postpone its plans to expand their business in Rhode Island with a 500,000 square-foot, $50 million distribution center. This makes sense seeing such an expansion would incur major cost increases due to the eventual tolling of their trucks as they transit from the facility to other locations in RI and elsewhere in the Northeast.Read more
The Gaspee Business Network is dedicated to a level playing field for all businesses in Rhode Island, from the biggest to the smallest. Rhode Island politicians should work towards the same goal, and the GBN is determined to replace those who will not with those who will. This article is a recount of Robert Martinez’s story, one of the Gaspee Business Network’s newest members. Mr. Martinez is a veteran and was the owner of Doc’s Devil Dawgs Hot Dog Co..
Predominately, the Rhode Island General Assembly wants the citizens of Rhode Island to believe the massive amount of regulations, fees, and taxes they impose upon businesses throughout the state are only taking a “fair share” of money from millionaires who don’t need it anyhow.
There are, of course, successful businesses in which a person with the courage to take a risk and bet their livelihood on an idea, made it to a position of wealth in Rhode Island. Yet many, even most, fail at an aggregate loss of millions of dollars, which was put at risk on ideas that did not succeed.Read more
The Gaspee Business Network ignited into existence when it was evident that the Rhode Island General Assembly had complete apathy towards the will of the people and the business community in Rhode Island by passing legislation that would borrow billions of dollars to build over a dozen tolls in our very small state. In 2012 CNBC stated, “If there is a top state for business in our annual study, there must be a bottom state. For 2012, that dubious distinction goes to Rhode Island— for the second year in a row.”Read more
The Gaspee Business Network is unlike any business networking group in all of Rhode Island. If you are not one of the very small percentage of businesses in the Ocean State that enjoy the privilege of being politically connected, you should seriously consider joining the GBN before it is too late. From 38 Studios to the Brookings Institution Report, it is evident that cronyism is sinking its teeth deep into the RI economy. Unless the honest and hard working business owners of Rhode Island join forces, the only businesses that will truly thrive in Rhode Island will be those with the political clout to court politicians through relentless political bootlicking.Read more