Thursday, June 5, 2008

Finance Committee Report

One of Sarkozy's innovations when he first came to power was to place the National Assembly's finance committee under the chairmanship of the opposition as a check on government spending. That committee has now produced a very interesting report on the dramatic increase in tax credits, rebates, and shelters over the period 2003-2008--a period of undivided right-wing control. The increase amounts to nearly 50 percent over 5 years, from 50 to 73 billion euros. Of course there are legitimate governmental uses of tax credits, but Migaud claims that the efficacy of the new programs is "poorly evaluated." Furthermore, the system is "opaque," which only complicates the problem of reform.

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