Posted by Brian at 8:39 PM
I love this idea
I don't know if I blogged about it before, but I certainly read about it a couple of weeks ago and liked it then and hope it comes to fruition.
The tax... would apply to stores more than 25 percent of whose employees work part time and whose full-time employees make less than $22,000 a year. Citing research that found state taxpayers spend about $421,000 a year for every Wal-Mart store with 200 employees, Senator Toole estimates that the tax would affect 160 stores -- about half of [state] retail -- and raise some $20 million annually.
Now you may notice that I edited out the name of the state where this is under consideration. I did that because it's really surprising. We're not talking about Vermont, or California, or Oregon, or any of those supposedly uber-liberal states. We're talking about Montana. Yeah, that Montana. The Montana that went so heavily to Bush in 2004 that I don't believe Kerry set foot in the state.
However, that same Montana also elected a Democratic governor and put the Democratic party in charge of both houses of their state legislature. Go figure.
My only beef with the article is that they lump Costco in with Wal-mart, Target, and other big box retailers. Costco pays their full-time employees enough that they wouldn't be hit by this tax. Wal-Mart? Wal-Mart would pay their employees in store credit instead of money if they could get away with it.
So I hope Montana does this, and that other states with high health care costs follow suit. It's time to make companies like Wal-Mart pay their fair share.