Over the past few years, the Republican-dominated Idaho State Legislature has repeatedly passed big-business tax giveaways to keep top employers happy. And what are the thanks we get?
Last year, Minnesota-based SuperValu - the new parent company of Boise-born Albertsons - announced it would move many Boise employees to the Twin Cities. Now, Micron - the largest private employer in the state - is laying off hundreds of workers, perhaps as many as 1,200. No one really knows, because Micron is apparently telling dismissed workers that if they talk, they'll lose their severance pay.
Here's hoping all the laid-off Micron workers find good jobs, here or elsewhere. (Few local employers pay as well as Micron, so we may well see families leaving for places where wages are better.) But the biggest lesson we need to take from this is that it's ridiculous to shortchange Idaho families, schools, and small business owners by giving huge tax breaks to corporations. No matter how many times the GOP smooches their butts, big businesses will do what they want. Let's focus on developing small companies - not corporate behemoths that demand discounted meals at the public trough, then skip out on the bill.