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Re: [greenyes] U.S. Trade Policy


And, as an aside, if communities want to protect forest or other lands from turning into subdivisions, there are many local government tools to do so. Here in Boulder County we have thousands and thousands of acres of "open space" - land permanently protected from development with conservation easements, zoning designation, and other land use mechanisms. Citizens have almost uniformly voted over the years for small taxes to fund the purchase and maintenance of this land. Those are appropriate tools to meet such goals, not timber subsidies!
Open space policies have kept the towns in Boulder County encircled by prairie and mountains, created wildlife corridors, hiking trails, etc. Places us recyclers go to recreate!

Anne
Gracestone, Inc.
Boulder, CO
303.494.4934 vox
303.494.4880 fax

Reindl, John wrote:

Hi Megan ~

The Wisconsin Department of Revenue found that the tax breaks that Wisconsin
provides to forest lands are basically only subsidizing the timber industry.

I believe that if the subsidies were eliminated, the cost of virgin fiber to
the mills would increase and that recyclers would receive a higher price for
their paper. This would make recycling program more economical, resulting in
more scrap paper being recycled, and at the same time reduce the consumption
of fiber.

I am not in favor of giving subsidies; I am instead in favor of imposing
fees that reflect the cost of the environmental externalities.

I would hope that the WTO would take a more aggressive stand against
subsidies.

John



-----Original Message-----
From: Megan Kershner [mailto:Mkershner@no.address]
Sent: Wednesday, October 13, 2004 9:10 AM
To: greenyes@no.address
Subject: RE: [greenyes] U.S. Trade Policy


I can't speak for all subsidized industries, but I do know that current
private forest tax breaks/subsidies in Wisconsin are about the only
thing keeping private forests from turning into subdivisions. Without
incentives to do the right thing, who will? Energy conservation is a
prime example.

And then I have to ask myself - is it really the tax breaks and
subsidies that is creating this waste product? Will removing the tax
breaks and subsidies change demand? Maybe.

Megan
Boise, Idaho




"Reindl, John" <Reindl@no.address> 10/13/2004 7:07:23 AM >>>


On the issue of tax subsidies and the wTO, does anyone have any
information
about why the subsidies for mining and forestry are also not being
brought
before the WTO?

As a recycler, I am especially concerned about the subsidies to
forestry,
since paper and wood are the largest components of the material stream
that
we handle, and are the largest parts of what goes into landfills.

Forestry not only receives massive subsidies in the US at the federal
level,
but also at the state and local level, through state and county
ownership of
forests that don't pay property taxes, income taxes or sales taxes,
and
programs to provide tax breaks for private forests, such as
Wisconsin's,
which has a price tag of somewhere around $50 to $100 million a year.

John Reindl
Dane County, WI



I would like, if I may, to ask you a question concerning basic trade


principles, in light of the U.S. position with regard to our Airbus


dispute

with the European Community.

If I understand our position in that case correctly, we argue that


free

trade under WTO rules is not whatever laissez-faire decrees, but


rather
"is

about fair competition and a level playing field," as you were


quoted in
the

October 7, 2004 Wall Street Journal ("U.S., Europe Sue Each

Other at
WTO

Over Aircraft Subsidies"). In that regard, it seems to be our claim


that

Airbus enjoys excessively large tax subsidies, creating an unlevel


playing



field on which Boeing cannot fairly compete. We, therefore, have


petitioned

to have WTO rule that the tax subsidies are an unfair trade

practice,



subject to penalties.


















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