Has Mr. Fernald forgotten uproar against 'closing the loophole'?

To The Daily Sun,

Mark Fernald's op-ed in the Sept. 25 issue of The Sun concerning the New Hampshire Interest and Dividends Tax (IDT) indicates that he doesn't understand forms of business organizations, economics and recent history. His article is a complaint of unfairness as hint for the broad-based income tax platform that he ran on for governor in 2002, and was defeated.

Mr. Fernald seems to forget the uproar created in 2009-2010 by the Democratic-controlled Legislature and the State Department of Revenue Administration (DRA) when they tried to "close the loophole" by taxing distributions from limited liability companies (LLCs) and other business organizations. Attempting to apply the IDT on top of the Business Profits and Business Enterprise Taxes (BPT, BET) would have increased the tax burden on small businesses to around 13.5 percent and made New Hampshire even more uncompetitive for small business than it currently is — and during a difficult economic period which still lingers today. Fortunately the hue and cry from New Hampshire citizens forced the Legislature and DRA to back away from their position, but Mr. Fernald seems to persist. He just doesn't understand business and economics.

My background is in corporate law, where I served as counsel to large and small businesses in Connecticut and Illinois for over 30 years. I have also instructed classes at the undergraduate and graduate levels in the College of Business Administration at Plymouth State University for over 10 years, which classes included instruction on forms of business organizations, including LLCs.

In my personal experience, LLCs are a primary and favored form of business organization among small businesses and the backbone of New Hampshire's economy. The reasons are simple. LLCs are easy and inexpensive to form; management can be through a single member/owner; claims and liabilities are limited to assets of the LLC, not personal assets; and most importantly LLCs avoid double taxation, i.e. taxes are paid at one level, usually the member/owner level (in most states).

For federal and most state purposes there is a "pass through" of taxation at the entity level, which is measured by earned income at the member/owner level. New Hampshire is different. Because we do not levy an income tax on earned income received by individuals from LLCs and other sources, taxes are collected at the entity level through the BPT and BET, regardless of whether the entity is a partnership, corporation, LLC or proprietorship.

Thereafter, distributions to individual members/owners have traditionally not been taxed.

Mr. Fernald forgets that the IDT has traditionally been a tax on interest and dividends received by individuals from organizations like GE, P&G and J&J. It is a tax on unearned income. It is simply a mischaracterization to attempt to apply it on top of already existing taxes on earned corporate income like the BPT and BET. To call LLCs a "huge loophole" and comparable to "corporate inversions" is to seriously misunderstand economics and business formations. Furthermore, all of Mr. Fernald's points seem to ignore economic incentives and personal motivation. They reinforce the old adage typical of many on the left that when you tax or regulate something, you get less of it. Is that what we want for our state's economy in these difficult times? Hardly.

Richard R. Gerken


  • Category: Letters
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When he calls me names, I know I've said something he can't rebut

To The Daily Sun,

Geez, so I am considered an intellectual by those on the right? They must be scared of me for some reason. I've already given up on Mr. Earle accepting the facts for what they really are, and not his channel called Fox views. But Mr. Earle may want to check his "fact" that Lois Lerner was appointed by President Obama. I know Mr. Earle doesn't consider me an intellectual, because he called my letter "stupid", golly Mr. Earle , you hurt my feelings. That's a joke Mr. Earle, as was my letter concerning your hunting for things that aren't there.

But I will say one more thing about the idea that Iraq had WMD, which were allegedly shipped to Syria. Iraq may have sent chemical weapons to Syria, and chemical weapons are truly awful weapons. In fact chemical weapons were deemed so awful that when they were used in World War I the world decided to ban them from use in any circumstance. Some people obviously didn't get the memo. And yet the WMD issue is still alive because as awful as chemical weapons are, Bush was talking about nuclear weapons. And if Syria had WMD, of the nuclear variety, they might want to let someone know, especially since we are now bombing them.

Now to the religious issue, you know the "war on Christianity". I don't believe that any religion should have sole placement on public property, whether it be a town square, courthouse, public park, or public school. I did enjoy last year's Christmas concert at Belmont High School. So no anti-Christian sentiment here in the Lakes Region that I can see. If it is true that Judaism and Islam are being taught to the kids and Christianity is being excluded, that isn't right of course. And while I would support anyone trying to right that wrong, I am not so sure it is the truth in the first place.

It is my belief that teaching every major religion should be required in all schools, so kids have a better understanding of those who are not of their particular faiths. And it is certainly true that our founding fathers words should be taught as they were said or written. It might be helpful to highlight Thomas Paine's views on organized religion. It should also be stressed that the very foundation of our country is religious freedom, that many of the first settlers here came here to escape religious persecution. And that they were trying to escape from countries where there was a state sponsored religion.

Not being one who would let someone else's opinions or statements or actions affect my beliefs, I have no problem with FFRF's lawsuits. If they bother you, or make you question your own beliefs, it sounds like you need to re-evaluate your feelings and beliefs.

To those on the right side of history, meaning on the left side of politics, who have written letters either in my defense or due to an ability to accept reality for what it is. Thank you. Mr. Jutrus, to be honest, I couldn't care less about Mitt Romney's presidential aspirations, whatever they may be. The whole letter, while I believe was factually accurate, was actually meant to debunk Mr. Earle's nonsensical letter claiming we liberals voted for President Obama because of the color of his skin. Mr. Romney, like anyone else is entitled to change his mind and/or his opinion on any issue at any time. Mr. Earle just seems to like his presidents and candidates to be liars, he is also welcome to vote for any candidate he chooses, for whatever reason he chooses.

Now it's not my style to call names, I was raised to have respect for others, but to also not take nonsense from anyone. I enjoy reading Mr. Earle's letters and hope he keeps writing them on his seemingly daily schedule, when he calls me names, I know I've said something he can't defend in any other way. I can understand name-calling, believe me I've called Mr. Earle some choice names in the privacy of my home, and like it when others call him names that are so fitting as one particular writer to this paper does, (keep up the good work, James.). Again it just isn't my style. I can appreciate it though, yeah.

One more thing, I hope Canadian Ted Cruz makes it to the big show, that would be both interesting and entertaining.

Marty Valengavich


  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 194

How dare you criticize others for getting assistance in time of need

To The Daily Sun, 

Today, I have a few comments about local radio. Many thanks to Bill Binni for bringing back Open Mic from 9-10 a.m. weekdays. Pat Kelly does a wonderful job of bringing on guests from diversified areas, including a wide range of service information in our community. It has been very helpful to many. I also enjoy that we have Sachem football back and a very good Saturday morning sports program. They all can be reached on 1490 WEMJ-AM at 527-1490. 

We also have the HAWK-Modern Era Rock and Roll. Another station I enjoy is WPNH and WFTN at 1300-AM. Great oldies! The other station locally is WEZS 1450-AM. We used to hear a great variety of music, with Allen Harrison giving local and national news in the morning, now all you hear for the most part is FOX and the program I refer to as the "aggravator". Yuck! The exception would be Tom Brown from 9-12 p.m. weeknights. I may not agree with much of his political views, but we get to talk about out of the box subjects. So thanks to Pat and Tom, GOOD JOB BOYS!

I have another issue to discuss with regards to the letter dated May 24 in The Laconia Daily Sun written by Neil Young. Neil wrote in the letter that I put down his fathers' service to our country; that is such a lie. I have the greatest respect for those who have served and continue to protect our nation. Got it Neil! And another thing, your name calling only makes you look stuck on stupid. If you let everyone have their point of view instead of following your mantra, you might have a better and wider range of listeners, instead of the same boring subject matter everyday, and hanging up on people that do not agree with you. IT'S JUST A THOUGHT! 

I have written before, I worked hard my whole life. For you to call me a "taker" is ridiculous. Talk to people who worked in construction during their lives, as I have, and then call them names because you don't agree with them politically; I consider that small. The physical labor that I have or another person in the construction field has. Being in the construction industry wears your body out faster than the norm, so that being said, you need to understand that some of us have to go on disability earlier in life than most. In my case, I retired early, getting benefits at 60 years old. I am now 63, and collect my Social Security that I worked a lifetime for. I understand that you were getting SSI benefits from childbirth until you were 18 because of your loss of a parent. What a hypocrite! How dare you ever criticize others for needed assistance in a time of need. People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. My father and you are totally different people. My father was a quite and kind person. Never bothering anyone for anything. He worked extremely hard to provide for his family of four without complaining. You couldn't carry his water. So Neil, enough of this "taker" crap, because you would be at the top of your class. 

P.S. I hope you are enjoying your Social Security!

Ray Corliss 


  • Category: Letters
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We need Annie Kuster; Northern N.H. all to often gets lost in shuffle

To The Daily Sun,

Did you know that Ann McLane Kuster is the first Member of Congress from New Hampshire to serve on the U.S. House Agriculture Committee in almost 200 years (Josiah Bartlett 1821-1823)? As a two-term member of the New Hampshire House Environment and Agriculture Committee, I have seen first hand the challenges that our local farms, forests and small food producers face.

On the federal level, most of the support goes to "mega-farms" and agribusiness. Annie is now working on the Local Farms, Food and Jobs Act. This will help small farmers in New Hampshire by providing much needed support for infrastructure, such as processing, that is already available to large producers. This legislation will improve access to farmers' markets and community supported agriculture (CSAs) and expand opportunities for schools to purchase fresh, local foods.

This summer, Congresswoman Kuster gave Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officials a tour of New Hampshire farms so that these Washington officials could hear from New Hampshire farmers directly. The visit was an important step to fixing federal food-safety rules. Ask any local farmer or producer. The federal rules are geared for large producers and mega-farms, and while they work to keep our food safe on a large scale, many of the rules also harm our local agriculture and hurt our economy.

Annie Kuster is also a member of the U.S. House Veterans' Affairs Committee. She has actively fought for the Veterans' Choice Card, which will allow veterans who live more than 20 miles away from a full-service VA medical center to go to a private facility to receive care. In addition, after active efforts from Annie and the other members of New Hampshire's Congressional delegation, the VA is now opening satellite clinics in Colebrook and Berlin. These steps are especially important for Granite State veterans who currently need to travel either to Manchester or White River Junction for medical care.

I support the re-election of Annie Kuster to the U.S. Congress, and I urge you to cast your vote on Nov. 4 for Annie. Annie has been a clear and effective voice for her district, particularly for those of us in northern New Hampshire whose interests are all too often lost in the shuffle of Washington politics. We need Annie in the U.S. House.

Suzanne Smith

State Representative (Grafton Dist. 8)


  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 164

I am thankful to have Jeanie Forrester representing us in Senate

To The Daily Sun,

I support Senator Jeanie Forrester as she moves forward to be elected once again as our State Senator from District 2. I have known Jeanie since 2003 when she and her husband first came to Meredith looking for a place to live. In 2005 Jeanie asked me to join her and others in an effort to help Meredith be a better place to live, work and play.

Over the past 10 years I have seen Jeanie as a leader, a listener and as someone who has the true desire to make things happen for the better. Whenever I am with Jeanie, she takes time to listen to me share what is happening in my business. At our non-profit meetings, Jeanie is looking for answers to what we can do together to make this area a stronger economically as well as to raise a family. Jeanie, I believe, genuinely wants to know what she can do to help me in whatever I am doing.

I am proud to be a family man from Meredith, a property owner in Meredith and a small-business owner in Meredith. I am thankful to have Jeanie Forrester, an active senator, representing District 2.

Chris Kelly


  • Category: Letters
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