Gov. Daniels comments on Litebox, IBM
Gov. Mitch Daniels says he made a mistake by attending the opening of a business in Indiana. The governor is looking back on the past year and talking about what he might have done differently.
Eyewitness News: "The Chicago Mercantile Exchange. How does that stand?"
Daniels: "well, the phone lines are still open but Illinois has made a very, very large concession to some of their biggest businesses. Illinois has got themselves in a terrible position. First of all, they're so incredibly broke, if you do business with the state you won't get paid for seven to eight months. They have been raising taxes on everybody and everything and meanwhile they are paying businesses cash to stay put."
EN: "Once you start how do you say no to the next guy?"
Daniels: "We would never do that. The most we ever do is if you bring new jobs and they show up, we give a little bit of a tax break for a few years. But to be in position where you're handing out money just to stay where they are and not to add a single job is a very bad place to be and we have always said we would never let Indiana get into a place like that and fortunately we are not."
EN: "You have got a little heat in the last year in the LItebox situation. Looking back should that have been handled a little differently?"
Daniels: "Don't think I would have gone to the event. As far as we knew it was another opportunity and it still is, by the way. Look, I don't know if it will work or not. New businesses sometimes don't. If it doesn't we are not out a cent. If it does we got a lot of jobs that we wouldn't have had and some tax revenues too. I wouldn't handle anything differently about trying to get them to try their business in Indiana as opposed to trying it somewhere else. We are very careful to make sure if it doesn't work we lost nothing."
EN: "The IBM case you have been asked to testify. Normally governors do not and I know the attorney general has recommended you do not. Is that how you feel about it too?
Daniels: "It is not normally; no governor ever has and you know my own instinct, of course, is to lay things on the line. But in this case I do not want to set a precedence for another governor to have to live with."