Lynn small business owners voice concerns to governor

LYNN – Three small business owners from Lynn joined those from other communities Tuesday at a hearing before a special commission in Boston where they railed against tax breaks for large corporations.Gov. Deval Patrick formed the commission to study proposed legislation that would limit certain tax loopholes used by big business and, in turn, benefit smaller enterprises.”The small business owners are really mobilizing on this one,” said Marisol Santiago, lead organizer on the North Shore for the Neighbor to Neighbor advocacy group. “Three of them from Lynn were among those who testified in support of the governor’s tax package. They’re still in shock of the facts. Now they want to help make sure those tax loopholes are closed.”According to Santiago, small business owners throughout the North Shore are unifying, in some cases under the banner of Neighbor to Neighbor. “This tax package would raise over $500 million in revenue for the state. Lynn alone would receive over $700,000,” she said.”The small business owners are really community leaders. They are contributing to the community. They are the backbone. The mom-and-pop businesses are being responsible in this way, yet the large corporations do whatever they can to avoid paying their fair share of taxes. By testifying in favor of closing the loopholes, the small businesses are leveling the playing field.”The Lynn business owners testified before the Special Commission as a panel. The members included Basilio Encarnacion, owner of the Rincon Macorisano restaurant; Ceasar Santana, owner of Service Express; and Cristino Acosta, proprietor of Canon’s Barbershop.The Special Commission consists of five state representatives, five state senators and five members appointed by the governor.”We are busting the myth that closing tax loopholes would be bad for business,” said Santiago, adding that over 50 small- and medium-sized businesses statewide have called for an end to tax-avoidance practices allowed under the current tax code in Massachusetts.”As a small business owner, I’m paying more in taxes than many of the biggest businesses in the state,” said Encarnacion.Neighbor to Neighbor member Maria Carrasco of Lynn told the commission that closing the tax loopholes would be good for the state and good for business. “We need to be investing in our schools, health care, housing and other vital services to make our economy stronger. Ending corporate tax evasion will raise the revenue to make that possible,” she said.

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