This week I will continue with the theme of taxes, fees, and fines OH MY! Maryland Assembly is one big people soaking machine having taxed as much as they can they are heavy on the fees.
Did you know that Clinton neo-liberals and Bush neo-cons allow corporations to break the charges for services rendered into fees for this and fees for that as with airlines that charge one price for a flight and then assign fees for luggage, meals, blankets etc. just to lower the amount that corporation pays in taxes on income? Corporations assign fees to lower taxes. Did you know Clinton neo-liberals and Bush neo-cons are now assigning fees to working and middle-class to hide that they are taxing us to death? Corporations are paying so little taxes that states like Maryland are raising taxes on citizens and the need for revenue is so high that they are turning to fees and fines on working and middle-class to fill the taxes lost to corporations. So, fees lower taxes for corporations and raise taxes for you and me.
Most states have laws against egregious taxation as does the Federal government. It also has laws of uniformity as I showed in my posts on tax policy. Well, to hide the fact that pols are now well beyond tax fairness in corporations vs people-----they are turning to fees. Maryland actually had an election where neo-con Erhlich was charged by neo-liberal O'Malley of too much taxation with the phrase 'fees are taxes' the number one slogan. Of course Erhlich was taxing and feeing for the same reason as O'Malley came to office and did----both are global corporate pols maximizing corporate taxes with subsidy and tax breaks. FEES ARE TAXES FOR PEOPLE. This Maryland election had Larry Hogan----yet another neo-con promising to lower taxes but he will only lower corporate taxes with a few bones to the people. We know Maryland Assembly is pretending lower corporate taxes are needed and who pays when corporations do not pay? WORKING/MIDDLE-CLASS AND SMALL BUSINESSES.
The same kinds of pols in Congress are in the Maryland Assembly making the same kinds of corporate maximizing deals because they are Wall Street Clinton neo-liberals and not DEMOCRATS. None of this is about JOBS JOBS JOBS.
DEMOCRATS DO NOT SOAK PEOPLE WITH TAXES SO CORPORATIONS PAY NOTHING.
American Airlines Restructures Fares To Include Bag Fees, Perks In Ticket Price
| By DAVID KOENIG Posted: 12/12/2012 1:05 pm EST Updated: 02/11/2013 5:12 am EST
American will charge $68 or $88 more per round trip for economy-class passengers who want a ticket that lets them check baggage or change the reservation later without getting hit by another fee.
The airline says it's responding to customer complaints about fees, especially the charge – typically $150 – for changing a reservation.
"This will eliminate the fear about what-ifs," said Rick Elieson, American's managing director of digital marketing.
American will still sell a basic fare without protection against add-on fees "for the less-discriminating passenger who is just looking for the cheapest way to get to where they've got to go," Elieson said.
Travel experts mostly praised the change and predicted that other airlines will mimic it.
"A checked bag costs $50 anyway, so for $18 more you get protection against change fees," said George Hobica, co-founder of travel website airfarewatchdog.com. "If I had to check a bag anyway, I'd do it."
American said Wednesday that it's selling the new tickets on its aa.com website and through travel agents for flights in the contiguous 48 states.
Here are the new categories in economy class:
_ "Choice" tickets will be similar to the current basic fare. If a passenger wants to check a bag or change the reservation, there's a charge for that.
_ "Choice Essential" fares will cost an extra $68 per round trip and include one checked bag, no additional fee for changing the itinerary later, and early boarding.
_ "Choice Plus," at $88 more per round trip, will include a checked bag, no change fees and early boarding plus bonus miles for frequent-flier purposes, standby privileges, a drink for no additional charges and other perks.
American will continue to sell fully refundable tickets in economy, which are usually more expensive. They offer the benefits of the "Choice" fares and more. It also sells business- and first-class tickets with many benefits.
All the fares are priced for round trips, a departure from American's usual display of fares on a one-way basis.
Henry Harteveldt, a travel analyst with business consultant Hudson Crossing, said many travelers want to know exactly how much their trip will cost, including all the add-ons.
"Overall, the approach is good," he said. "They're trying to move customers' focus from price to value."
There could be drawbacks for consumers. The experts said that the new format will make it harder to do comparison-shopping and to filter flight searches by departure or arrival time.
And customers won't find certain amenities, such as economy seats with more legroom, in the "choice" fares. Harteveldt said American must think it can still get a separate premium for those.
American isn't the first airline to bundle extras – Air Canada already does it – but American started the stampede toward extra fees by charging for checked bags in 2008, so its decision to repackage extras is notable.
American earned $1.1 billion in baggage and change fees last year, according to government figures. But the kitty is no longer growing as much. American's haul from bag fees doubled from 2008 to 2010, but is up just 1 percent this year over 2011.
Elieson said the company is confident that it can sell enough of the upgraded bundles to more than offset the fee revenue American will lose because of the changes. He declined to give revenue estimates.
American and parent company AMR Corp. have been operating under bankruptcy protection for more than a year. AMR's CEO said this week that the company is nearly done with its restructuring, but he declined to say when it might emerge from bankruptcy court.
The main talk in the Maryland Assembly is how to generate revenue as citizens are too poor to pay taxes or unemployed and corporate tax breaks and subsidy are soaring. The discussion in all committees is new categories for business licensing fees and it is all directed at the small business owners.
In the last few years the low-income water bottle vendors were pushed out to make way for vendors with licenses in Baltimore. This was one of the only ways in Baltimore the poor had to earn a few dollars and now they are targeted by police for not having licenses.
Street musicians need licenses-----and in the Maryland Assembly the talk is licensing or not hair-braiders.
Keep in mind that DLLR budget was cut 2/3 so there is no one going around to make sure these businesses are in compliance with their license-----Maryland Assembly and Baltimore simply want to collect the licensing fees.
Those living in Baltimore remember how desperate Rawlings-Blake was when the speed ticket camera revenue disappeared. City Hall refused to stop this fee revenue even as it became overtly fraudulent.
As you see below the shouting from Maryland citizens is the hefty taxes and fees on the working and middle-class-----but Maryland Assembly is not looking away from that---it is looking at corporate tax and fee advantages.
Md. needs to tackle excessive licensing fees
Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Maryland's excessive licensing fees hurt low- and moderate-income workers. Jay Steinmetz is correct that regulatory burdens have impeded Maryland's economic development and created an anti-business climate ("'Open for business' in Md.," Feb. 4). Maryland ranks among the worst states in the country for low- and medium-income occupations, imposing burdensome licensing requirements that impede entrepreneurship, raise the cost of doing business and create needless obstacles to employment for those most in need of a job. Gov. Larry Hogan and the economic development commission should seize this opportunity to review Maryland's occupational licensing laws and immediately jump start opportunity throughout the state.
Greg Reed, Arlington, Va.
The writer is an attorney for the Institute for Justice, a public interest law firm that challenges "unnecessary, arbitrary occupational licensing requirements" throughout the country.
Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
The Republicans in Maryland Assembly are pretty pleased at all levels of professional job categories being dismantled and subprimed. From university professor to part-time adjunct to Master Barber to limited licensed hair-braider. Even the historically low-wage taxi driver is brought lower with people using their cars as taxis and restaurants are going to Food Trucks.
People living in Baltimore know that the driver as taxi has been in place for decades. You see people standing in the street waving a hand and a car will stop. This is a long-standing trade for low-income people.
NOW IT NEEDS A MARYLAND OR CITY LICENSE TO BE OFFICIAL.
Taxi commission to hear livery car owners’ concerns on street hails
Posted March 21, 2012 By Aidan Gardiner
Print Mike Lee/Flickr
At a Taxi and Limousine Commission hearing Thursday morning, livery cab owners will have the chance to voice their concerns about new licenses that will allow them to pick up passengers. High on the list of worries already aired is the possibility that their drivers will start cherry-picking passengers. Another likely grievance is the high cost of required equipment.
With the new licenses, drivers will still be able to take assignments from their base while also picking up street hails in the outer boroughs. To do that, they will have to install credit card readers, a roof light similar to taxis, and either an interior security camera or a partition between the passenger and driver.
But some in the livery industry are concerned the new equipment is too expensive and, under the new regulations, drivers will neglect those on the street or others waiting to be picked up simply because they felt they had a better fare elsewhere.
Robert Hewling of the New York City Independent Livery Owners Corporation and Darlyn Sanchez of the United As One TLC Base Owners Association blasted this provision last year in an opinion piece for Metro, a free daily newspaper.
“When dual-use was implemented in Manhattan in the ’70s, it provided cover for drivers to refuse to pick up passengers based on race, age or disability, using the excuse of having ‘just’ received a pick-up call,” they wrote. “On the flip side, drivers often picked up a street-hailer for the immediate fare, leaving the car-service customer stranded.”
Commission officials stress the regulations governing the licenses are still a work in progress and the city will do what it can to ease the transition for those drivers who want to get a street-hail license.
“People are going to have to get the equipment of taxis and follow the rules of taxis,” said David Yassky, chairman of the commission, at a meeting last week with livery drivers. “By the time we start issuing the new licenses in June, we want the livery world to understand the new rules.”
Commission officials estimated that the total cost of these additions will be nearly $3,000. They are working with nonprofit organizations like the Business Center for New Americans to craft financial tools to help vehicle owners pay for the gear.
Special privileges will be afforded to those licensees whose vehicles are wheelchair- accessible. The city will issue grants from a $54 million fund to help vehicle owners buy new wheelchair accessible vehicles or retrofit existing vehicles so that they can accommodate wheelchairs.
“One idea that’s been thrown around is $15,000 per vehicle, but that’s not final,” said Adrian Gonzalez, a Commission official. “Once these licenses start being issued, we want to have the grant process sorted, but we’re still figuring out the mechanics of that process.”
Last year, Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Michael Bloomberg drafted legislation that would broaden taxi service to the outer boroughs in an effort to both raise funds for New York City and improve passengers’ experience.
The new rules will still prohibit borough taxis from picking up street hails in most of Manhattan and the city’s airports.
These 18,000 licenses will be sold in batches over the next three years and are expected to bring in some $1 billion for the city.
If the Commission approves rules governing the new licenses, which come for a vote in April, it will start issuing the licenses in June.
The biggest fee and licensing fiasco went to Economic Matters Committee and it was a great example of how Maryland citizens are being broken into even lower common denominators as far as income and it is deliberate. This comes from the Republicans as well as the Clinton neo-liberals and Baltimore neo-conservatives. They are all looking at Maryland citizens for more revenue.
Maryland Master Barbers have close to 2000 hours of education in getting a license and they are able to do most cosmotology-related hair issues anyone can want. We go to the hair salon or barber shop, look for the certificate or assume that if they are working for a chain they must have a certificate. These workers often do not have high wages just as with the taxi business. Getting that certificate helps them attract customers and gives them a professional status.
Then you have the hair braiders. These are workers who do not use chemicals, cut and style----they simply shampoo someones hair and braid. These are the shops you see in lower-income areas usually and they are giving people what they consider a creative hair experience. Everyone has seen these beautiful hair plaits. The issue is-----does the state need to license these people for the safety of Maryland citizens.
First, having hair-braiders go to the public health department for a certificate of education on hair/scalp health issues would be free and do what they want to do with licensing.
THAT'S ALL THAT IS NEEDED.
Master Barbers know that licensing all of these limited-service hair care workers will make their license moot. Everyone will have a license. Will a customer look closely to see what they are licensed for? Of course not. So, this will have serious effects on this trade. You may not think this is of great importance in the grand scheme of economy----but this is what is happening in all business occupations and it is all about opening new levels to license.
The best common from a Master Barber was-----
IF THIS LICENSE IS SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT PROTECTING MARYLAND CITIZENS THAN HOW WILL YOU INSPECT THESE ESTABLISHMENTS WHEN THERE IS NO OVERSIGHT AND ACCOUNTABILITY FROM DLLR??????
She said there have been no hair shop inspections for years, so how will this protect the public?
THAT'S WHAT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT! THAT IS JUST IT-----IT'S NOT ABOUT PROTECTING THE PUBLIC!
Maryland Hair Braiding Licenses and Permits
While not the largest state in the Union, Maryland makes a significant effort to protect its consumers. Numerous state licenses aim to shield residents from unscrupulous or irregular business practices. Accordingly, entrepreneurs will find that in many cases, they need to obtain the state's blessing in order to operate their businesses.
Everyone in Maryland remembers the Health Insurance website debacle that came down to no one watching and a few people engaging contractors that ended up not knowing what they were doing. This happens all the time in Maryland.
Below you see the Maryland Insurance Commission which collects fees from insurance businesses operating in Maryland. Keep in mind the audit given this commission only looked at how it was collecting its fees-----not how it was regulating the insurance companies to protect the citizens of Maryland from insurance fraud----
OF WHICH THERE EXISTS IN EVERY KIND OF INSURANCE IN MARYLAND.
The Maryland Insurance Commissioner ensures that all insurance laws of the state are faithfully executed by conducting examinations and resolving consumer complaints. The Commissioner authorizes and licenses insurance companies, producers, adjusters, and advisors for fire, casualty, life, accident, health, title, bail bonds, and other insurance and annuities. The Commissioner also approves all insurance policies offered for sale in Maryland by authorized companies, authorizes rating bureaus and advisory organizations, and approves or rejects the rates for most lines of insurance.
The striking information from this committee meeting with this commission over budget was the fact that the Insurance Commission had 17 open positions left unfilled. Was this why you didn't collect the fees?
NO, BUT IT IS WHY THERE IS SYSTEMIC INSURANCE FRAUD IN MARYLAND.
This was the biggest concern for Maryland Assembly
-----DLLR Continues Crackdown on Unemployment Insurance Fraud ...
Those desperate unemployed people not able to find jobs because there are no jobs.
Audit finds premium tax irregularities, ethics concerns at Maryland Insurance Administration
By IFAwebnews Staff Posted: December 3, 2014
The Maryland Insurance Administration has cost the state hundreds of thousands of dollars in recent years by failing to properly collect taxes on insurance premiums, according to a state audit released this week, as reported by the Baltimore Sun.
That failure is tied to the botched procurement of an online payment tool that the MIA implemented in 2012 -- a process largely controlled by a single employee who has since been referred to the Maryland State Ethics Commission for possible violations of state ethics laws.
The employee, who was not identified, “influenced virtually all aspects of the procurement and implementation” of the payment tool, the audit found. The tool, in turn, lacked a built-in system of checks and balances to ensure payments from and refunds to insurance companies were correct, said Thomas J. Barnickel III, the state’s auditor at the Office of Legislative Audits.
“Not only did they handle the procurement wrong, but it adversely impacted their operations,” Barnickel said in an interview with the Baltimore Sun. “It’s a double whammy, really.”
The MIA has said it is cooperating with the auditors and has made several changes to improve its tax processing system and meet audit recommendations, including referring the employee, who no longer works for the MIA, to the ethics board.
Now, if you remember, the greening tax credits going to corporations building green are soaring in Maryland while homeowners pushed to BAT----pay through the nose.
Best available technology (or just BAT) is a term applied with regulations on limiting pollutant discharges with regard to the abatement strategy. Similar terms are best available techniques, best practicable means or best practicable environmental option. The term constitutes a moving target on practices, since developing societal values and advancing techniques may change what is currently regarded as "reasonably achievable", "best practicable" and "best available".
A literal understanding will connect it with a "spare no expense" doctrine which prescribes the acquisition of the best state of the art technology available, without regard for traditional cost-benefit analysis. In practical use, the cost aspect is also taken into account.
The major pollution problems stem from BIG AG and BIG MEAT and it stems from developers being allowed to build communities on wetlands that should not have been developed. There is all kinds of septic problems around some of the poorest counties and communities because this development was allowed to go unfettered. Rather than make the developer pay for an upgrade----the homeowners are now having to address this problem. So while we are getting the people and their manure straight-----global corporate meat and agriculture are having their regulations taken away and fees for phosphates from chicken manure that never happened. Think about how Baltimore Inner Harbor and Harbor East built right on water's edge with the Baltimore Harbor one of the heaviest for sewage pollution.
Make no mistake------these septic systems are a problem, but they knew that when they allowed these developments to be built. They maximize profits for the developers and then come back with HOW TO BE SUSTAINABLE AFTERWARDS. I remember being one activist protesting the building of these developments on wet lands.
The bigger concern with Maryland's 'sustainable growth' is that its goal of cleaning water emissions doesn't make sense with the fracking issue taking out Marcellus Shale and the Port of Baltimore taking out the Chesapeake Bay with all kinds of environmental damage and BIG AG and BIG MEAT never addressed. This feels like more of a way to limit people's ability to live in large sections of the state unless you can afford to have a water treatment plant built. The Eastern Shore has a huge problem with septic systems that could move lots of people from their homes. These are people with hundreds of years history on the Eastern Shore.
New state rule will make septic systems, many new homes more expensive
By ALLAN VOUGHT, firstname.lastname@example.org
The cost of new homes using on-site sewage disposal systems will increase significantly in Harford County and elsewhere in Maryland after Jan. 1, when a controversial new state regulation takes effect.
The required installation of what is referred to in the law as "Best Available Technology," or BAT, is spurring owners of undeveloped lots to get well and septic permits before the law takes effect, a county health official said.
Most of those affected are in the northern half of the county where there are still hundreds of undeveloped, but platted building lots.
The deadline to receive a septic permit and be grandfathered from the law is this Friday, Dec. 28. County offices will not be open on Monday, Dec. 31, because of the New Year's holiday.
"The BAT units will cost substantially more than the conventional concrete septic tanks that are currently required," the Harford County Health Department said in a recent news advisory about the change in the law.
The additional cost is estimated at between $11,000 and $14,000 per individual septic system, Kevin Barnaba, director of the health department's Bureau of Environmental Health, said last week.
According to the health department's earlier media advisory, on Sept. 21, The Maryland Register (Volume 39, Issue 19) published a final action on Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Regulation 26.04.02 that takes effect on Jan. 1, 2013.
"Several changes to the regulation are cited in the code, the most significant of which requires new residential and non-residential construction to install a nitrogen reducing component also known as "Best Available Technology" (BAT)," the news release continued. "Current MDE negotiated prices under the Bay Restoration Fund Program range between $11,000 and $14,000 for the additional septic system component required by this new regulation."
"This is not a local deal; it was done at the state level," Bill Wiseman, spokesman for the county health department, said.
The regulation does not affect repairs to existing failing septic systems, only those systems for which a county permit is issued after Jan. 1, both Wiseman and Barnaba stressed.
A grandfathering policy was established by MDE allowing any property owner who obtains a septic system construction permit for new construction or additions prior to the effective date of Jan. 1, 2013 to be exempt from the requirement to install the BAT component, according to the county health department. In addition to receiving the on-site sewage disposal system permit by Dec. 28, the system itself must be installed within one-year of the date the permit is issued.
Barnaba said he expected to be busy with permits Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as the deadline looms.
"We definitely had an uptick in permit applications" during the past six weeks, he said, explaining that the department sent letters to licensed plumbers and septic system installers advising them of the deadline.
Barnaba said his agency issued 77 septic permits between Nov. 1 and Dec. 20 this year, compared with 14 permits during the same period last year. While the 2012 figure is five times greater, he pointed out that building in general has picked up this year compared to last.
According to the Harford County Department of Planning and Zoning's most recent monthly permit report, 224 permits to build new single-family homes were issued in the county (excluding the municipalities of Aberdeen, Bel Air and Havre de Grace) from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30 this year, compared with 170 for the same period in 2011. The permits are not broken down by whether the homes are being built on public sewer or private septic systems.
Barnaba also said that in order for the health department to issue a septic permit, the lot in question must also have received a well permit and have had the well drilled. That, he said, is a normal procedure so the department can determine if the well is properly drilled and is not within the septic absorption field, also known as a drain field.
A typical concrete septic tank that is used to settle solids, while allowing liquids to disperse into the absorption field, costs between $2,000 to $4,000 including installation, Barnaba explained. The BAT system, which uses a biological aeration process to remove nitrogen from the effluent, costs up to $14,000 more and could thus run as much as $18,000.
Neither the concrete tank technology nor the BAT technology includes the additional cost of installing the absorption field, which Barnaba said typically runs between $5,000 and $30,000 and will still be required with the new technology.
"You still have to have the absorption field; that's not affected [by BAT]," he said.
GETTING RID OF LOW-INCOME BALTIMORE CITIZENS ONE RENT COURT VISIT AT A TIME!
In Maryland Assembly Judicial Proceedings the issue of Baltimore City and its Rent Court came up. It centered on the state using the court system as an ATM. Anyone new to Maryland will be shocked at the level of fees for court-----fees for serving court documents----fees for having court records sent to higher court-----costs of copying documents at 50 cents a page. It is absolutely ridiculous and it acts as a barrier for people wanting to go to court.
The latest fee on the cost of legal representation is a $3 dollar fee on rent court filings. This was to pay the cost of creating online access. The lawyers then shouted loudly that this was on top of a $20 fee for rent court a few years ago and the lawyers wanted to know why LEGAL SERVICES ARE BEING CHARGED INSTEAD OF COMING OUT OF THE STATE GENERAL FUND AS HAPPENS FOR ALL TECHNOLOGY UPGRADES.
The Maryland Assembly is tacking costs to courts that are making it harder and harder for people and lawyers representing them to do business. Remember, in the world of Trans Pacific Trade Pact there is basically only corporate law-----
Baltimore Rent Court is notorious for fraud and corruption as slum landlords come through and tack all kinds of illegal fees onto low-income tenets who get evicted and then cannot get housing because of bad rental history----WHICH IS WHY THIS IS DONE. Who pays that new $20 legal fee from the Maryland Assembly? The person who loses in Rent Court and that is always the tenant. The lawyers representing these citizens will ultimately lose the money which makes them even less likely to represent low-income housing issues.
When everyone was surprised at the $20 fee increase members of the committee shouted----WELL THE BALTIMORE POLITICIANS ASKED FOR THIS!
It's of course applied only in Baltimore courtesy of your State Assembly pol!
'Use our easy on-line system to order your Baltimore City and Baltimore County rent notice (Failure To Pay)/eviction notice (Warrant Of Restitution) .
We will file your notice and appear in Rent Court as your Rent Court Agent'.
Maryland Late Fees, Termination for Nonpayment of Rent, and Other Rent Rules
Find out Maryland rent rules, including limits on late fees, notice requirements for rent increases, and notice required for terminating a tenancy for nonpayment of rent.
Your lease or rental agreement should spell out your landlord’s key rent rules, including:
- the amount of rent
- where rent is due (such as by mail to the landlord’s business address)
- when rent is due (including what happens if the rent due date falls on a weekend date or holiday)
- how rent should be paid (usually check, money order, cash, and/or credit card)
- the amount of notice landlords must provide to increase rent
- the amount of any extra fee if your rent check bounces, and
- the consequences of paying rent late, including late fees and termination of the tenancy.
RENT NOTICES . COM---
DON'T STAY IN RENT COURT ALL DAY!
Our per notice Rent Notice Fee is $54.00 (Baltimore city other jurisdictions are less) which includes actual court costs and us going to court. Call 410-653-3646 or email email@example.com
for quantity discounts if you file more than one notice per month. Our per notice Eviction Notice Fee is $67.00 (Baltimore city other jurisdictions are less) which includes actual court costs and filing the notice with the court.
Call 410-653-3646 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
for quantity discounts if you file more than one notice per month.