Cooper Is the Corporate Subsidy Governor

While campaigning, Roy Cooper ran on an Occupy Wall Street-esque theme that corporations shouldn’t be getting tax cut and subsidies.

Now that he’s governor, he’s handing out subsidies like Halloween candy while his staff is taking pot shots at tax cuts.

Cooper staffer Jamal Little says Cooper is the “Jobs Governor.”

Really Mr. Little?

300,000+ jobs were created under former Governor McCrory despite Roy Cooper’s attempts to sabotage the NC economy in the name of letting men pee next to little girls and women.

Flashback to July 2017: Cooper shovels $22 million in taxpayer money at Infosys, a serial H-1B visa rules offender which was forced to pay out the largest fine in history over H1-B visa violations.

Flashback to May 2017: Cooper flip-flops on tax breaks when he doles out $40.2 million in taxpayer subsidies to his HB2 opponent pals, Credit Suisse. The company had racked up billions in fines for tax evasion and shady business practices. In 2014, Credit Suisse was fined $2.6 billion by the IRS and plead guilty to conspiring to help Americans evade taxes.

I wrote about both of these flashback events at American Lens. Full text of those articles is below.

Infosys Jobs In NC Will Require Vigilance
July 26, 2017, by A.P. Dillon

The big announcement by Governor Roy Cooper that Infosys is bringing jobs to North Carolina will require some vigilance.

The tech company announced plans to bring 2,000 jobs to the state over a five-year period.

According to Governor Cooper’s press release, Infosys plans to invest $8.73 million in Wake County. The press release says an estimated $2.9 billion will be added to the North Carolina economy.

The jobs come with a price for taxpayers. Infosys could receive more than $22 million in tax-payer funded incentives through 2029 if they meet certain job creation criteria.

“North Carolina’s central role in technology innovation makes our state a perfect fit for Infosys,” said Governor Cooper. “Our world-class universities and our high-tech workers drive growth and attract companies from around the world that are looking to innovate.”

The release also says that jobs coming to the state include software developers, analysts, digital architects and other technology professionals.

Salaries for the new positions will vary, delivering a total payroll impact of more than $130 million each year to the community, once all positions are filled.”

Proud Partner

“We are proud to partner with North Carolina and Governor Roy Cooper in delivering one of the largest jobs commitment in North Carolina state history. Together, we will develop the next generation of North Carolina innovators through world-class education and training in the critical skills of the future, including Artificial Intelligence, data analytics, cloud and more, and bring scale to North Carolina’s already-thriving ecosystem of innovation to help our clients create their digital futures,” said Dr. Vishal Sikka, Chief Executive Officer, Infosys.

Partnering on the project, according to the release is N.C. Commerce, EDPNC, the North Carolina General Assembly, the North Carolina Community College System, North Carolina State University, Wake Technical Community College, Capital Area Workforce Development Board, Wake County, the City of Raleigh, the Town of Cary, the Town of Morrisville, and Wake County Economic Development/Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce.

“North Carolina is well-known for innovation – with a talented technology workforce focused on progressive fields like advanced manufacturing and clean technology; a diverse economy from financial services and life sciences; a vibrant startup community across Wake County and Research Triangle; and top-tier universities and community colleges,” said Sikka. “Together, we can now accelerate and expand, to drive the digital transformation of vital U.S. industries including aerospace, banking, biotech, and energy.”

Infosys’ Checked Visa Past

While this seems like good news, the company has run afoul of visa requirements in the past and was heavily fined for hiring B-1 workers over Americans.

In 2013, Infosys paid the largest fine in history in a settlement over H-1B and B-1 visa abuse.

The company was using B-1 visa holders to do jobs that are required to be performed by U.S. citizens or legitimate H-1B visa holders.

Infosys settled the 2013 case which alleged “systemic visa fraud and abuse of immigration processes.” The company paid a record settlement amount of $34 million. This was the largest payment ever in such a case.

In addition, Infosys committed to fix their corporate compliance measures. However just a few years later the company was back in hot water.

More Trouble with Visas

Early in 2017, the company paid out a $1 million settlement in New York. In that case, Infosys failed to pay workers a commensurate salary, pay the applicable taxes and broke H-1B U.S. visa rules – again.

A whistle-blower claimed that Infosys routinely brought in foreign IT personnel to do work in violation of the terms of their visas.

New York Attorney General’s press release on the settlement said that Infosys was “systematically abusing the United States visa rules in placing foreign workers at client sites in New York State.”

The press release stated that “Infosys provided instructions to employees on B-1 visas regarding how to deceive U.S. consular officials and/or customs and border protection officers.”

In May, Infosys announced that it was aiming to hire 10,000 U.S. employees over the next two years. Clearly, North Carolina is going to see some of those jobs.

The announcement by Infosys came shortly after the Trump administration began ramping up scrutiny of the H-1B visa program for skilled foreign workers.

Given the history, State officials will have to be vigilant as Infosys begins its hiring process, lest North Carolina workers be shut out.

Gov. Roy Cooper Flip-Flops on Corporate Tax Break
MAY 30, 2017, By A.P. Dillon

Governor Roy Cooper appears to be breaking one of his campaign promises. Cooper appears to be flip-flopping on his corporate tax break campaign stance.

Two weeks ago, Cooper announced a deal with Credit Suisse that would expand the number of jobs in the Research Triangle Park.

Governor Cooper’s press release states in part that Credit Suisse will create, “1,200 new jobs in North Carolina over the next several years,” and that the company,  “plans to invest $70.5 million at its current campus in RTP to accommodate this expansion.”

“Credit Suisse has enjoyed a strong presence in North Carolina for more than a decade, and they’ve flourished here,” said Governor Cooper. “We’re encouraged that this commitment to North Carolina will bring high-paying jobs and spur economic development across our state.”

But that deal comes with a hefty subsidy.  Cooper’s press release sticks this important piece of information down in the eighth paragraph:

Credit Suisse’s expansion in Wake County will be facilitated, in part, by a Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) approved by the state’s Economic Investment Committee earlier today. Under the terms of the JDIG, the company is eligible to receive up to $40.2 million in total reimbursements.

When campaigning, Cooper has said on his website that he opposed, “Corporate giveaways and tax cuts for the wealthiest come at a high cost for middle-class families.”

Yet now Credit Suisse will be receiving a $40.2 million dollar tax break per Governor Cooper.

House leaders responded to Cooper’s corporate hand-out to Credit Suisse, who made economic threats to North Carolina over House Bill 2 (HB2), by saying they, “welcomed his change of attitude” on tax cuts.

Credit Suisse’s long, checkered historyA $40.2 million dollar tax break is a drop in the bucket compared with the fines Credit Suisse has racked up over the years.

Here is a sampling of the billions the company has been fined for their mismanagement and shady business practices.

12-15-09 NY Times
“Credit Suisse is expected to pay a fine of $536 million to settle accusations by the
United States government and New York State authorities that it violated sanctions
by helping Iran and other countries secretly funnel hundreds of millions of dollars
through American banks, people involved in the negotiations said Tuesday.”

05-19-14 Forbes
Credit Suisse fined $2.6 billion by IRS; plead guilty to conspiring to help Americans evade taxes.

10-05-16 SEC
Credit Suisse Paying $90 Million Penalty for Misrepresenting Performance Metric

10-21-16 Business Times
Credit Suisse to pay 109.5m Euros in Italy tax probe; Allegedly to help clients evade taxes

12-05-16 FINRA
FINRA Fines Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC $16.5 Million for Significant Deficiencies in its Anti-Money Laundering Program

12-13-16 Institutional Investor Securities Blog
$11 billion Credit Suisse investor fraud case is given green light to proceed in NY.

12-23-16 Bloomberg
Credit Suisse agreed to a $5.3 billion deal and will recognize a $2 billion hit to earnings to resolve U.S. investigations into sales of the toxic debt that fueled the financial crisis.
More at Reuters via CNBC.

03-15-17 LeapRate
“Australia financial regulator ASIC has announced that Credit Suisse Equities (Australia) Limited, an Australian unit of global banking firm Credit Suisse Group AG (ADR) (NYSE:CS) has paid a penalty of AUD $170,000 to comply with an infringement notice from ASIC’s Markets Disciplinary Panel (MDP).”

03-31-17 American Banker
Credit Suisse raided, client assets seized in tax probe

04-16-17 Law360 (paywalled link)
“Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC and one of its former investment advisers agreed to pay a total of nearly $8 million to end the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s claims they improperly invested clients in more expensive mutual funds to reap higher fees, the SEC announced Tuesday.”
More at Reuters.

A full and very detailed accounting of Credit Suisse’s checkered past can be found at the Corporate Research Project.

About A.P. Dillon

A.P. Dillon is a reporter currently writing at The North State Journal. She resides in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_ Tips:
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