Public Banksters - Part XV: Gwen Hallsmith's Claim of "Victory" This Spring Takes a Major Financial Hit This Past Week
*** Trigger Warning ***: The following content that may elicit symptoms of Post-Traumatic Public Banking Disorder!
For those of you following the state budget revenue shortfall here in Vermont, it'll come as no surprise that Governor Shumlin is proposing a 2.2% or $31 million dollar cut to the 2015 budget. Consensus is that untried and unproven programs take larger cuts so as to spare programs for elderly, children, the needy, and health related assistance programs. Recognizing this, the governor's office had at first recommended a cut of more than twice the 2.2 rate from the Vermont Enterprise Investment Fund. And if you're not familiar with the VEIF, it's an internal fund of the Vermont Treasurer Beth Pearce's office earmarked for business stimulus.
Executive Director of the California based Public Banking Institute and local Grand Poobah of Vermonters For A New Economy, Gwen "The Hacker Baiter" Hallsmith, has claimed it as her "victory" on the little watched Laura Flanders Show back in April which I reported on here. It's the program where the public banksters finally managed to get their beaks wet in the public funds water. But not everyone shares the enthusiasm for an "unproven program" getting parity with assistance programs that are proven to be direly needed and getting just about the same cut as those for needy. Some, like Chris Curtis, an attorney with Vermont Legal Aid, suggested via one published report on Wednesday that,
"... Newer programs, such as the $4.5 million Vermont Enterprise Investment Fund to incentivize businesses to remain or locate in Vermont, should be more ripe for scrutiny than established programs with proven track records. The administration has proposed trimming the fund by $250,000 as part of the rescission."According to numerous other published and broadcasted reports the committee charged with making the tough choices about what gets cut, the Vermont Legislative Joint Fiscal Office, didn't agree with the governor's 5+% cut to what some call his IBM Enterprise Investment Fund (hardly the fund envisioned by the public banksters when the scale of what they were proposing to capitalize a public bank - $70 million - shrank to a nearly $4.5 golden handshake to an existing Vermont employer). The VLJFO quadrupled the cut to the program to nearly 21% or close to a cool million dollars.
As noted on WCAX:
"'Some agencies have a lot of other places to go and some of the smaller agencies have less places to go,' Vt. Finance and Management Commissioner Jim Reardon said."So, after all the cutting of a program that people in and out of government are calling a fund for "IBM or... (it's) successor," me's a-wondering just what spin the public banksters primary spokesperson and unregistered lobbyist, Gwen Hallsmith, will put on the affair. Perhaps even more notably, the press is reporting that no Vermonter has applied for assistance from the fund.
"Lawmakers vetoed the governor's proposal to reduce assistance for those aging out of foster care and other human service cuts one day after getting an earful from constituents."
"The governor ultimately agreed to quadruple his planned reduction to the newly created enterprise fund, bringing the $4.5 million potential incentive package to retain IBM or bring in a successor company down to $3.5 million."
"'We think that is an important fund, but in the spirit of cooperating... We will concur with your recommendation,' Reardon said."
Great work there, Gwen. All of that work resulted in fund primarily devoted to "assisting" one of the largest, most well healed employers in Vermont. I just can't wait to see what all your "work" gets for Vermonters in the next legislative session. Maybe a new, groundbreaking incentive program to fund Vermont Gas' 40% cost overrun and eminent domain claims that you could call the Vermont Farm & Residence Assistance Fund will get Vermonters closer to that anti-capitalist "new economy" you profess to so love too, eh Gwen? That seems like something that you and Gary "The Rocket Scientist" Flomenhoft" could pull off given your track record. Heh.
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