Make use of kid’s spring break

Published 1:46 am Tuesday, March 21, 2006

By Staff
The Rev. Keith Butler, a former Detroit City Council member who pastors Michigan's largest church and seeks the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate, made his case to the Cass County GOP in Edwardsburg March 18 and in his new book, “Reviving the American Spirit,” that, “It's time for common sense to prevail in America.”
Butler writes, “Too many of the people who hold public office in the United States of America at the beginning of this 21st century have made a career of responding to special-interest groups or bowing to the latest public opinion polls.
We'd like to think that this report would qualify as an example of the absence of the underrated quality of common sense.
The Associated Press said last week that one in 10 companies contracting with the General Services Administration owes unpaid federal taxes totaling $1.4 billion, since neither federal law nor the agency's policies require government officials to consider a company's tax debt when awarding a government contract, according to the Government Accountability Office.
Congressional investigators studied GSA contracting practices for a Tuesday hearing of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs investigations subcommittee.
The panel, which has been probing tax evasion among government contractors, released the report last Monday.
As pointed out by Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., “It is simply unacceptable that tax cheats who owe the government millions in back taxes get millions of dollars from American taxpayers.”
The GAO discovered evidence of abusive or potential criminal activity among 25 contractors who diverted payroll taxes for personal or business use.
Failure to transfer payroll taxes withheld from employee paychecks to the government constitutes a criminal felony.
Despite owing between $100,000 to more than $9 million to the government, the owners and officers of some of these companies enjoy enormous personal assets, including homes worth more than $1 million and luxury vehicles.
The AP says a human resource services company got at least $100,000 in contract payments while owing more than $400,000 in federal taxes.
The owner has multiple properties and several luxury vehicles and made multiple large cash withdrawals at casinos, yet the company landed a hurricane relief contract.
Doesn't this defy common sense?