ustaknow

ustaknow 1 year, 1 month ago on Squawk of the day - March 17, 2013

I am surprised at how many saints throw their cigarette butts out the window at all of the off ramps. Can we, somehow, rig up a camera at these ramps that would get the license plate number and fine that car owner ? We could rebuild America with the fines.

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ustaknow 1 year, 1 month ago on Extended jobless benefits to be cut

"I will veto any effort to get rid of those automatic spending cuts to domestic and defense spending. There will be no easy off ramps on this one." - Barack Obama, 21 November 2011.

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ustaknow 1 year, 2 months ago on Young Dawson mayor meets city's challenges head-on

Well the task before him is to modernize the local offices and bring the city into modern times without raising the taxes so much on the citizens that they will want to move out. Good luck - and it can be done

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ustaknow 1 year, 2 months ago on HB 386 offers dramatic changes for car buyers

Basically, it is double taxation. The cars have already been taxed once before at original point of sale. So to tax it again and again ( every time it is sold) is just paying taxes over and over for the same thing.

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ustaknow 1 year, 2 months ago on City, county face budget challenges

Continued: The transformation of Puerto Rico’s dysfunctional economy has begun to attract attention. Retailers such as Nordstom, PetSmart, Saks Fifth Avenue and Victoria’s Secret have announced store openings in San Juan in 2012. Honeywell International and Merck & Co. have announced expansion of their manufacturing operations on the island.

Standard & Poor’s has upgraded Puerto Rico’s credit rating to “positive” from “stable” – its first upgrade in 28 years. Moody’s took Puerto Rico bonds back to triple-A, the highest rating in 35 years. “We are moving in the right direction,” Mr. Fortuno said. “So we can keep lowering taxes.”

In three years, Puerto Rico’s budget deficit has been reduced to $600-million from $3.3-billion. In 2009, its deficit equalled 44 per cent of its revenue; in 2011, it stands at 7 per cent. In 2009, as a ratio of deficit to revenue, Puerto Rico ranked 51st among American states, at the bottom of the pack. In 2011, it ranked 15th.

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ustaknow 1 year, 2 months ago on City, county face budget challenges

A must read: " On Jan. 2, 2009, 18 days before the inauguration of U.S. President Barack Obama, the fortuitously named Luis Fortuno assumed office in Puerto Rico, the first Republican governor in 50 years.

“We were closer to the abyss than most states,” Mr. Fortuno recalled in a recent interview with Deroy Murdock, a columnist with Scripps Howard News Service and a contributing editor with National Review online.

“When I came into office, we were facing not just the worst recession since the Thirties, but the worst budget deficit in America, proportionally. We were literally broke. We did not have enough money to meet our first payroll,” Mr. Fortuno, 51, recalled. “We had to take out a loan to meet it.” (At that point, he added, “my wife asked me if we could ask for a recount.”)

What to do? Facing a $3.3-billion deficit, Mr. Fortuno did something almost unprecedented in contemporary public finance: “We cut expenses.” He took a 10-per-cent pay cut; senior bureaucrats got a 5-per-cent reduction. He cut 20,000 public sector jobs permanently and more temporarily – saving more than $900-million. In his first year in office, he slashed government spending, in absolute dollars, by 20 per cent.

Mr. Fortuno also cut taxes. He lowered the corporate tax rate to 30 per cent from 41 per cent (with further cuts coming in each of the next two years). Personal income tax rates dropped by 25 per cent (with further cuts coming in each of the next five years).

He gave homeowners a five-year property tax holiday, and scrapped capital gains and death taxes. These reforms put a floor under property values. In 2011, existing home sales increased by 35 per cent (compared with an average decline of 7.9 per cent in the continental states); new-home sales increased by 92 per cent (compared with an average decline of 9.9 per cent in the continental states).

To do anything in the old economy, Mr. Fortuno said, “You needed to obtain 28 permits … and go to 20-plus different agencies to do that.” Today, you need go to only one agency for a permit, “or you can go to PR.gov and get it online.”

In another fundamental reform, he transferred public sector workers from “old-fashioned, statist defined-benefit pensions” to “market-friendly, defined-contribution pensions.”

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ustaknow 1 year, 2 months ago on Squawk of the Day - Jan. 20, 2012

Welfare cost 45k per person on welfare now maybe you do not get that much yourself but government says it cost that much so if one welfare recipient goes to work _ we save that 45k plus we add the income tax they would pay and we get a net gain to the government of 47-50k so add the avg say of 48k to the government times how many millions of people on welfare and pretty soon you see we could pay off deficit

48k x 31 million people = a hell of a lot of money

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ustaknow 1 year, 3 months ago on Edwards announces WG&L retirement

Mr. Edwards has done an outstanding job of running WG&L

I regret this move and hope the city does not screw up the finances of the WG&L

Mr Edwards, May you enjoy your retirement to the fullest

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