Stimulus tax $$$ for casinos, union bosses, sunscreen?

Taxpayers Association of Oregon

Here are five questionable expenses found in the 2020 Coronavirus Economic Stimulus bill known as CARES Act.

1. Casinos can apply for stimulus

In previous relief bills, casinos had been excluded. Under the CARES Act, casinos may apply for small business loans. For amounts over $10 million, they can apply for loans from the Treasury Department.

2. Help for sunscreen companies.

Faster FDA approval of new sunscreens. Certainly, cutting red tape is always a good thing, and removing federal regulations should always be the goal. But it’s hard to see how developing new sunscreens will have an affect on the spread of the virus, or the economic recovery.

3. $25 million to bail out the Kennedy Center

One particular performing arts center gets a special bailout unavailable to any other theater affected by the economic shutdown. Sadly, only a few hours after receiving the financial injection, Kennedy Center laid off most of its performers anyway.

4. Harbor dredging gets blank check-like powers.

Exempting harbor dredging from discretionary spending caps. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) was instrumental in getting this added to the bill. It exempts the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund from caps on discretionary spending.

5. Big labor got a union protection measure tucked in.

Companies that take federal stimulus money must not oppose any effort to unionize their workforce.

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