July 2014 Newsletter
In recent weeks, Sen. Levin released a bipartisan Senate report showing how banks and hedge funds avoided billions of dollars in taxes; highlighted efforts to help Michigan small businesses get the capital they need to grow and create jobs; and spoke in favor of his legislation to boost cleanup and preservation of the Great Lakes.
Subcommittee uncovers tax avoidance, excess financial risk
In recent years, Sen. Levin's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has exposed complex financial arrangements that profitable corporations and wealthy individuals employ to avoid their obligations to pay all their U.S. taxes. It has also examined reckless behavior that has put the stability of the financial system - and by extension, the U.S. economy - at risk. In July, the subcommittee issued a 100-page report and held a hearing that brought those themes together, showing how Wall Street firms used a complex arrangement to avoid billions of dollars in taxes and introduce new risks to the financial system.
Levin small business program boosts Michigan
The Treasury Department recently released data showing that the State Small Business Credit Initiative, a small-business lending program created by legislation Sen. Levin wrote has helped give Michigan small businesses access to more than $79 million in capital to operate, expand and create jobs.
More news from Senator Levin
- Sen. Levin joined with Sen. Richard Durbin of Illinois and Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island to introduce the No Federal Contracts for Corporate Deserters Act, which would close a number of loopholes that allow companies that shift their tax address offshore to avoid paying taxes to continue receiving taxpayer money through federal contracts. He also submitted testimony to the Senate Finance Committee on the need to curb that tax avoidance scheme, which is known as corporate inversion. Read the bill text [PDF] and a summary of the legislation.
- He testified before a Senate subcommittee considering his Great Lakes Ecological and Economic Protection Act and submitted testimony to a subcommittee considering legislation that would renew funding for the Motor Cities National Heritage Area and to designate three national scenic trails, including the North Country Scenic Trail that passes through Michigan, as units of the National Park Service.
- He joined Sen. Debbie Stabenow in announcing $1.1 million for recreation and conservations projects on Michigan public lands.
- He mourned the passing of Peter Wege, a West Michigan businessman and philanthropist who was a driving force behind projects to restore the Great Lakes.
- He marked the 100th anniversary of the Hamtramck Fire Department.
- He joined Sen. John McCain of Arizona in releasing a bipartisan report on a troubled Air Force information technology program that cost taxpayers more than $1 billion.
- He supported legislation that would prevent some employers from imposing their religious beliefs on employees by denying insurance coverage for contraception.
- He sent a letter to Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White calling on the SEC to end conflicts of interest that harm stock market investors and were the subject of an investigation by Sen. Levin's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.