Utah Lawmakers Mislead Voters on New Toyota Plant
Other than a $1.3b manufacturing facility in Mississippi, ToMoCo has no plans to open another U.S. production facility. And yet The Salt Lake Tribune reports that local lawmakers are dangling the prospect of a new Toyota factory to justify HB436, a bill authorizing $5m for a statewide English literacy program. The money adds to a Toyota grant, which led Bill sponsor Rep. Greg Hughes, R-Drape to claim "Toyota is looking for opportunities to build a manufacturing plant. They are looking for communities they could bring this plant to that invest in their work force." In fact, the lawmaker's assertion was based on a letter sent to (not received from) Toyota's Veep Patricia Pineda, thanking the automaker for the grant. "We… understand that Toyota may have future interests for potential economic development that may include a motor assembly plant constructed in our state. As Utah's Legislature and Senate Leaders we welcome any such future thinking." The Trib reports that "attempts to reach Toyota Wednesday were unsuccessful." Next time, just drop us an email…
"the Utah legislature is part time, and only meet for one month a year" Sounds like a good idea to me. If only our House and Senate did that. I would be willing to pay them to be on vacation for 11 months a year so they wouldn't have enough time to screw things up so badly. It used to be that Washington was a ghost town in the summer months because of the heat. Then they installed AC. I think it was humorist Will Rogers who said they would get into all kinds of mischief by being able to legislate 12 months out of the year.
Why did Toyota give Utah a grant? Isn't there some sort of quid-pro-quid there somewhere?
To counter Michagan's wish for tariffs and such is my guess. Toyota and Honda gave heavily for Katrina victims too. Its both being a good corporate citizen and its smart business to counter all the toyota is bad for the US talk coming from Detroit 3 employees and their political representatives.
Your legislature meets one month a year? That's still much too long, and much too often. But still, a good example for other states. I wouldn't mind long sessions if they repealed one obsolete or useless law for every new law enacted.