Out of Comptrol


The office of the state comptroller has announced that they have seized $49,870 in federal payments to sixty vendor companies, in order to retrieve unpaid Maryland taxes. You have to wonder at the level of effort necessary to make this sting happen: the bureaucratic machinery, the intergovernmental coordination with the Treasury Dept, the seizure of monies – all in order to obtain an average of $831 per company.

On Tuesday, the comptroller’s office confiscated a truck that was running on untaxed fuel; I’m not making this up. The press release states:

“In addition to finding illegal fuel in the vehicle’s propulsion tank, agents later learned that an unlicensed company was using the vehicle to transport almost 600 gallons of untaxed fuel.”

Note that they only “later learned” about the untaxed fuel in the bulk storage tank; they were originally targeting just the contents of the truck’s own propulsion fuel tank! At $0.2425 per gallon, the trucker owed $146 in taxes to the state.

That may seem a bit silly, but the state comptroller, Pierre V.R. Franchot, is a very zealous and ambitious tax collector. That’s a combination as dangerous as a mother grizzly bear, or an annoyed bee colony. And he apparently is not satisfied just to be a tax collector, but envisions himself as some kind of Lone Ranger, riding on a white horse chasing small-time companies who have missed paying the state a few hundred dollars.

His latest target is lawyers (Okay, okay, quit the cheering). Working on the premise that lawyers are more likely tax evaders than others (which seems dubious, at best), Franchot has requested a list of the Social Security numbers of every attorney in the state of Maryland. The Court of Appeals has rejected this (now you can cheer again), but Franchot isn’t giving up.

Perhaps William Donald Schaefer (Franchot’s predecessor) was an obnoxious buffoon, but I don’t remember him being such a self-righteous threat to our civil liberties and our privacy.

Explore posts in the same categories: Budget and Taxes, Civil Liberties, Maryland

3 Comments on “Out of Comptrol”

  1. Mark Wilson Says:

    Montgomery County, a place I lived in for about 35 years, is dominated by urban liberal politicians who want to take your money (they have a multi-billion dollar annual budget!) and run many details of how you live your life. I could go on and on for more time than you have to read about – from Doug Duncan’s “cat leash law” proposal to the proposal by a former County Council member (David Skull) to register all ammo. Just incredible. County politicos are the cause of the traffic nightmare on the beltway in Montgomery County – they refused to build the outer beltway when they could have done so cheaply and taken most all the interstate traffic off the inner beltway as the transportation experts advised them to do. But that might have raised a few eyebrows over taxes – so they (as CAREER POLITICIANS are liable to do) let it slide. Now that it is a crisis, they propose a toll-lane financed by private concerns who would profit accordingly. Way to go, huh?

    Hey, should I talk about the “emergency 5 cents a gallon gasoline tax” which they swore was only a temporary measure needed for only a few months. After several annual extensions of the termination date for this tax they finally removed any termination tax — then they went on to tall cell phones, etc.

    I used to watch them some nights and get tickled – damn County Council didn’t know what the Hell they were doing, but they were determined to do something to be sure that rules were established on what citizens were to do and not do. They knew best for the poor dummies who lived in the County. They do more, and tax more, than almost all counties in the USA (they do have a few equals here and there around the country in urban settings though). I finally retired and escaped the damn place.

    I suspect that it is still common knowledge in El Salvador that Montgomery County Maryland is the place to go to in the USA in order to get real money / benefits.

    Hey, what’s a little income transfer to, and benefits going to, folks who are going to vote for you from cradle to grave, huh?

    Very sad.


  2. Zinzindor Says:

    Actually, “a toll lane financed by private concerns” *is* the way to go. And I’m thankful whenever someone actually does “raise eyebrows” over taxes. Aren’t you?

    As far as El Salvador, the common knowledge is that Montgomery County is a good place to go to come work and make something of yourself. And I’m thankful for that, too.

  3. Ron Says:

    That company got to keep its untaxed fuel when they declared it to be an illegal alien. LOL

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: