Zaps Tait for Corporate Welfare

Anaheim Insider here.

Have you seen this post from blog: “Tom Tait: For ‘Corporate Cronyism’ Before He Was Against It.”?  Dan Chmielewski catalogs example after example of how much distance there is between Tait pure free market rhetoric and his real record.

Some of it has been out there for a while, such as Tait’s long record of supporting the TOT rebate deals that he’s now blasting in front of the OC Republican Party Central Committee and other venues. He never really explains the flip-flopping other than to say his past support of such policies “was wrong.”

What was new, at least to me, was the hundreds of thousands in government subsidies Tait & Associates has accepted from the state to train employees how to use their computers:

And when it comes to businesses sucking from the “public teat”, as it’s so often described, Tait & Associates has no problem using public funds for training purposes.

The State of California offers private companies grants for training employees on a variety of equipment using new computers and new software applications and Tait & Associates applied for these grants several times.  From the website : The Employment Training Panel (ETP) provides funding to employers to assist in upgrading the skills of their workers through training that leads to good paying, long-term jobs. The ETP was created in 1982 by the California State Legislature and is funded by California employers through a special payrolltax. The ETP is a funding agency, not a training agency. Businesses determine their own training needs and how to provide training. ETP staff is available to assist in applying for funds and other aspects of participation.

According to state records, in 2004/05,Tait & Associates was approved for $334,620 in contracts to train 234 employees from May 2005 to May 2007.  The earned amount of the grant was $114,685 and 145 employees were trained in a company that reported 265 people working at the business.  In 2006/07, Tait & Associates was approved for $283,500 to train 210 employees from May 2007 to May 2009 (about three weeks after the expiration of the first grant).  Tait & Associates reported 128 people were trained but the company shrunk to 227 people.  In 2009/10,Tait & Associates got a third ETP grant to train 125 employees for $75,500; 53 were trained but the business was down to 162 people.

In all, Tait & Associates had their employees trained on new computers and software to the tune of more than $320,000 in taxpayer funds after having been approved for nearly $700,000 – all to help a private business train employees to better do their jobs.  So nearly nearly twice as many people were trained than are currently employed at Tait &Associates.  Was Tom Tait himself trained with these state dollars?

It’s wrong for Anaheim have a policy to encourage the construction of luxury hotels by rebating back to the hotel (for a finite period) a percentage of the TOT tax revenue it collects. But it’s fine for an existing engineering firm to take taxpayer money to subsidize training its employees how to use their computers, which is something that has to be done anyway.

Tait defenders will probably say its different because the GardenWalk deal involves millions of dollars and Tait’s company only took hundreds of thousands of dollars. But is it the amount or the principle that matters?


  1. Matt, come on now. Dan? Yeah, I get why Dan’s panties are in a twist.

    “Tait defenders will probably say its different because the GardenWalk deal involves millions of dollars and Tait’s company only took hundreds of thousands of dollars”

    It’s actually $158,000,000 vs something valued in the thousands. ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY EIGHT MILLION DOLLARS.

    It’s also a subsidy that targets exactly one individual who donated money to Kring’s campaign.

    It’s also a subsidy that was only issued on the solitary pretext that the developer’s loan rate was DOUBLE the market rate.

    It’s also a subsidy that had no limits attached to it protecting the taxpayer. I.e., if the market conditions change, the taxpayer still gives back $158,000,000 even though the market proved the assumptions used to justify the stupid subsidy wrong.

    If this is about principle, Matt, this ought to be the principle:

    Lucille Kring PROMISED that she’d put Gardenwalk up for a vote. She used that promise to secure endorsements to win an election.

    She lied. She lied to get elected. You want to talk about principle? Talk about that.

    • Lifelong Anaheim resident

      Once again this guy defends Tait by attacking his colleagues. Tait said he supported our transportation programs when he ran in 2010 – Lie! Tait said he supported the resort area when he ran – Lie! Tait said he supported the police when he ran – Lie! Tait took the Chambers support when he ran and has worked against them every year in office – Lie! Tait said he supported the Convention Center expansion when he ran – Lie! Tait said he opposed districts his entire political career – Lie! I can keep going but the gist is clear. He is the ultimate lying flip flopper. But at least he lies under the umbrella of freedom and kindness so his blog thugs can swoon. So glad none of you are actually from Anaheim – with the exception of Cynthia Ward who’s just as adept at double talk as Tom Tait.

    • It’s my post, not Matt’s.

      The TOT rebate didn’t “target” the O’Connells. It was an existing policy open to all comers.

      Since you’ve decided to make the argument this isn’t about principle after all, but just the dollar amount, tell us what’s the threshold for an acceptable TOT subsidy?

      Maybe you don’t know that the O’Connells also gave to Tom Tait’s campaigns. Every one of them. They were his long-time friends, before Tait let his nasty new friends turn Bill O’Connell, a good, decent man, into a pinata. Tait’s previous votes for TOT subsidies came after he accepted campaign donations from hoteliers. If you’re going to make that allegation against Kring, you have to make it against Tait, too. I’m not holding my breath on that one, though.

      • “The TOT rebate didn’t “target” the O’Connells. It was an existing policy open to all comers.”
        Bull. Complete, total and unambiguous bull.

        It wasn’t an existing policy, it STILL isn’t an existing policy even after Murray proclaimed to the whole world she’d make it so, and not one dime of TOT revenue has been assigned to any other “4 star” developer according to this non-existent TOT policy– which means that it was absolutely targeted (either as a result of it not being policy or that no one else has applied for it meaning it was likely drafted in such a way to benefit one person first, which is just as bad) at one individual who fed dollars into Kring’s campaign after both her decision to approve it as well as her decision to violate her promise to send it to the people for a vote.

        AI– you are clearly now just pulling your ideas straight from your rear end. But, let’s assume you’re right and it is actually part of some sort of published policy that’s been communicated widely to existing hoteliers in Anaheim . . . this is still bad policy. Even if the $158,000,000 is justified to fund the project (it isn’t), not assigning any kind of check against the hotelier’s revenue stream during the TOT is down right criminal. The city assumes all the risk associated with the construction and the beneficiary of the public’s $158,000,000 gets to keep any windfall associated with a market bump or even a windfall associated with poor, unreasonable, or just lazy assumptions used to justify the TOT.

        Matt, I’m sorry I attributed this tripe to you. My mistake and I should have known better.

        Back to AI– I hardly owe any allegation to anyone. I might if Tait made a promise to vote against something only to turn around and vote for it after getting a check from a developer. Tee that up and we’ll talk.

        In the mean time, continue to tell me why Kring being a lying liar who lies is completely irrelevant.

        • You’re trying to defend Tait by attacking Kring. That tells me you don’t think Tait’s pocketing of the computer training subsidies is defensible.

          There was another hotel developer named Lake trying to put together a deal under the TOT rebate policy (and it was a policy), but it didn’t work out.

          The GardenWalk deal’s split was a little different. But your attempt to tie Lucille Kring’s vote for a different GardenWalk deal is desperate and dishonest. If you like, we can go back through years of Tom Tait’s campaign reports make the same allegations you are making against Kring. Unlike you, I don’t think either of them decide how to vote based on a $1,500 or so contribution.

          • Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah . . .

            Gimme a link to the published policy.

            Again, in the mean time: Continue to tell me why Kring being a lying liar who lies is completely irrelevant.

  2. So Ryan, your argument reminds me of the old story, “Madam, would you sleep with me for a million dollars,” and she says “yes.” And the man asks again, “Madam, will you sleep with me for a dollar?” She says, “what sort of woman do you think I am?” He replies, “we have established what kind of woman you are, now we’re haggling over price.”

    Care to debate any of the facts laid out on Tait’s votes and what they were for? Just asking….

    And while you’re at it, Mr. Transparency, who is funding CATER?

    • In reverse order . . .

      CATER– I have no idea. Ask a member. I know as much about it as you do.


      What? I neither defended any previous giveaways nor solicited anyone to be a whore. I said there’s a difference between thousands and $158,000,000. Like it or not, that’s a fact.

      • Do you think taxpayers should be paying for Tom Tait to train his employees how to use computers? Do you think a politician who portrays himself as a brave, principled champion of the free market should let taxpayers foot the bill for something he should be paying for?

        • I think that someone who says: “It wasn’t in my campaign literature” in response to a question from the Chairman of the OCGOP regarding her promise to voters has no business running for Mayor of Anaheim.

          Spin that.

          Also, put your name on it this time so we can assign the appropriate accountability to your tripe. Coward.

          Matt, I hate to say it– but if Anaheim Insider won’t pony up ownership of his or her excrement . . . guess who gets to own it by proxy?

  3. Is there a difference in the principle? Yes or no are the only two possible answers

    • Yes. There’s a difference.

      What’s your motive for being here, Dan? Does bashing Tate strip votes for Galloway or does it strip votes for Kring?

      If the former, thanks for acknowledging that Tait is the candidate to beat.

      If the later, why are you helping a politician who is clearly a lying liar who lies? Who exactly does that help?

      • Is criticism of Tom Tait not allowed?

        • Fire away, son. Put your name on it and don’t make it up.

          • No one made up the computer training corporate welfare scheme, but you’ve been avoiding that one. Unless you think corporate welfare is OK in smaller amounts.

            • Indeed. Let’s all gather round and condemn the guy for accessing a program (which, fair disclosure, I know absolutely nothing about. Maybe it sucks; maybe it doesn’t. I really don’t care.) that everyone else (apparently) in the state had access to.

              Up next, anyone connected to the Enterprize EZ.

              Jeez, let’s take a look at everyone’s 1040, too. Anyone claiming a deduction for college tuition?! DAMN YOU CORPORATE WELFARE THIEVES!

              Any other small fries you want cooked up before we get to the big potato?

              Finally, when you’re done, let’s talk about lying liars who lie and give away $158,000,000 to individuals who help clear their personal loans.

          • Ryan, the blog you contribute to routinely allows criticism from anon commenters. Are you going to ask them to stick their name to it? And what in my post is made up? I am for Galloway. Please don’t think I’m ignoring Kring. But you are clearly ignoring Tait’s hypocrisy. You failed to answer the principle question correctly Ryan. There is no difference on principle. On dollar amounts, yes. On principle, no.

            • Stop arguing, Dan. Join the Cult of Tait and you’ll stop worrying about the contradictions. It’s peaceful, man.

            • Dan– I can see why you would think I was saying something in your post was made up. I wasn’t. If I were, I’d have the courtesy to make that claim on your blog.

              If you have a problem with OJ’s commenters, take it up with the owner or editor of the site. I have nothing to do with OJ’s commenting policy, including what it does or does not allow.

              In this case, I’m criticizing an anonymous author, not an anonymous commenter. While you felt it necessary to chime in on that is a bit of a mystery.

              Regarding principle– there is a difference between comparing a misogynistic joke to reality. I’m surprised you don’t see that. Comparing the validity of a woman being a whore based on the opinion of a propositioning male to, oh, say, anything, isn’t worth discussion.

              I’ll concede that I’m ignoring Tait’s hypocrisy, real or imagined. Ignoring a raging forest fire to extinguish a cigarette butt is a similar absurdity, which is what you’re asking me to do.

              Now, you’ll have to excuse me while I go bark up some trees looking for BRAAAAIIIINS.

  4. Ryan, thanks for the signed confession that the principle itself doesn’t matter provided the dollar amounts are vastly different.

    • Dan, it wasn’t a confession. I called you a dirt bag (it pretty simple terms) for using a misogynistic analogy in an attempt to prove your point.

      I’ll sign that anytime.

  5. The original quote comes from Winston Churchill. You are a poor student of history as well. When shouting at trees for brains, get some for yourself.

    • I really need the Willy Wonka meme for this to work correctly.

      No shit, Dan, really? It was from Winston Churchill? I had NO IDEA!

      What other anti-feminist quotes from world leaders can you use to demonstrate your superiority?

  6. Ryan, denial is not just a river in Egypt. You admit principle doesn’t mean anything to you (and Tait for that matter) as long as you can point to dollar signs. “Perhaps you notice how the denial is so often the preface to the justification.” -C, Hitchens.

    • Is that what you heard?

      What I said was I won’t have a conversation with you that begins with the premise that a rich male may exploit a woman’s morality for either political or sexual conquest. It is misogynistic. (What’s worse is that you neither told the quip correctly nor used it for its intended purpose.)r

      You seem to be having a serious problem understanding that.

      Bad, Dan. Bad. Do it again and I’ll have to swat your butt with a newspaper.

  7. The quip is fine. You can’t argue about the principle or the facts so make your excuse. You didn’t seem to have a problem with Diamond’s metaphor about “only paying for a massage.” As far as doing it again, Tait’s record gives me lots to work with. And in case you can’t remember, I don’t scare easily Ryan

    • I’m sure you do think it’s fine. Better brush up on that history of yours . . . Not the Cliff’s Notes this time:

      I can’t argue about the principle or the facts because I don’t care about the principle or the facts. Apathy related to the stupidity of what you’re claiming isn’t the same as inability or incompetence. I actually conceded that above, genius. For the record, I’m not a strict laissez-faire capitalist– so if you’re really trying to bait me into something, you’re fishing with the wrong lure. To adapt and Obamaism: I’m not against all subsidies. I’m just against stupid subsidies. This was a stupid subsidy.

      I care about a candidate for mayor lying, just flat out lying, to get votes and endorsements. I care about that same candidate changing her mind on a $158,000,000 public vote only to have a check show up to pay down a personal loan of hers shortly after the vote from the recipient of her flip flopping lying vote. Campaign on no subsidy? No campaign donation. Vote for the subsidy, oh, hey– look at that! A nice little check to pay down my campaign debt. That sucks, Dan. Focus on that.

      Who says I didn’t have a problem with Diamond’s metaphor? You? Are you hacking my emails to Greg?

      I think there’s a stiff breeze blowing tonight. Better go bag it up.

      For anyone else actually reading this, Dan C’s presence here is just another reminder of why Kring shouldn’t be running for mayor. People like him are just going to wedge the party as much as possible on as stupid an issue as possible to get a Democrat in the seat.

      Computer training. You have got to be kidding me.

  8. As I learn of yet another Tait & Associates tax subsidized revenue source and particularly the commentator’s opinions that followed, I cannot help but admire and applaud both Mr. Cantor and Mr.. Chmeilewski’s candor and positions while debating this topic. At the very least I know who stands for what and I thank you both for your honesty and transparency with your opinions on this matter. This is democracy at its best and even though I do not agree with your position Mr. Cantor, I respect you and thank you for offering it.

    As for Mayor Tom Tait, he has and continues to be dishonest about such matters and deceives the tax payers of Anaheim by pretending to be a beacon for a pure free market while silently collecting hundreds of thousands of tax payer dollars from the State of California and the citizens of Garden Grove. It is hypocritical.

    The most unfortunate part of this is that while he was aggressively trying to masquerade as a “watch dog” for the tax payers, he has been secretly and personally profiting from them while simultaneously dividing our city with his dishonest rhetoric about the subject for his own political gain.

    It would be far more noble for Mayor Tait to come clean about his real positions on tax subsidies and then to apologize for starting a war that never needed to be.

  9. “I can’t argue about the principle or the facts because I don’t care about the principle or the facts.”

    Pretty much sums up the entire Cult of Tait. Or, as I love how Dan says, the Clown Car. I think we can all agree that facts rarely get in the way of their true-believer hard line.

    • And the unwillingness to attach your name to your sad little reply sums up the lack of courage in the “kleptocracy”.

      • “I don’t care about the facts or the principle, and you’re a coward.” That’s a pretty weak defense of Tait, Mr. Cantor. I can admire your devotion to the mayor, but this makes you sound like a fanatic.


          Good gravy people.

          It’s a critique of the idiocy of sitting around discussing the nutritional value of a single apple while the entire orchard’s worth rots on the ground for lack of harvesters.

          There are significantly bigger issues to grapple with in this campaign than this tripe. If we can’t agree on that, well, then apparently the Chmielewski effect is contagious.

          • That’s kind of the point. You’re Mayor Tait’s attack dog on this blog, and you can’t defend him on this issue so you keep changing the subject. Tait defenders brag that he’s so principled he is and taxpayer dollars are sacred to him. Now that we see he has his hand out for the corporate welfare he bashes, Tait defenders say it doesn’t matter and don’t want to talk about it.

            • I am not “Mayor Tait’s Attack Dog.” Believe it or not, I’m here to take your (collective) abuse of my own accord.

              For (what is this, the fifth time?) I’m not interested in defending Tait because the issue is stupid, not because he can’t be defended.

              Given a choice between researching exactly what the obnoxious training credit is vs, oh, say who’s genius idea it was to put the “ONE DOLLAR” in the Angel’s MOU for 155 acres of land, a railroad station, and a public theater is a significantly better use of my time.

              Are you seriously trying to claim that it’s not?

              I’m not defending Tait, I’m not saying he’s holy and white as the driven snow, or that you could peel the skin from a tomato using only the keen edge of his sharpened principle. I’m not. You’ll note that no one here is . . . so you appear to be arguing with yourself.

              I’m saying Dan’s article, and this related post, are a waste of space.

              But, i suppose, to Dan and the anonymous author who wrote this post’s credit . . . here we are wasting time talking about it.

            • You know what? F’ it. I’m in.

              Let’s start with this:

              Who funds ETP? (the organization that cut Tait & Associates the Check)

              “ETP can only fund training for employers that are subject to paying the Employment Training Tax. The entire ETP Program is supported by this tax.”

              So let me get this straight. Tait and Associates PAY A TAX to the state to fund business training to support growth of small businesses in California.

              Dan C and co. want to completely ignore that the training is self funded by this tax, that no private individuals pay into this tax, and slam Tait and Associates for being reimbursed THEIR OWN TAX DOLLARS for the purposes that the tax is specifically paid?

              Really? REALLY?! That’s hypocrisy? Are you freaking kidding me? We’re seriously going to state that opposing $158,000,000 in tax rebates that would have gone to the general fund for public services requires one to abstain from a self-funded training program for which one is obligated to pay tax into?

              That’s like saying you shouldn’t file for Social Security when your 72 even though you’ve paid payroll taxes your whole life because you support pension reform.

              Heck, we all benefit from some sort of government service. Am I a hypocrite for opposing tax increases even though I drove on a state funded highway this morning?


              What absolute and completely ignorant half-assed piece of political diarrhea.

              Shame on any of you for believing it.

  10. and yet the issue is so stupid and such a waste of space, why you have written so many comments and denied basic fact as lies?

    BTW, you weren’t banned from commenting at LOC. Your comments go into moderation so if they violate the terms of service, they get deleted. The very idea of you whipping out you junk and a ruler was inappropriate and your rantings were “Fiala-like.”

    And yes are most certainly ARE defending Tait. Anyone who can read gets that from your comments. The facts — with video — are presented and denounced as lies. They aren’t so you make up some argument designed to capture the attention of the ADD-set and say “ooo shiny.”

    If you want to write you’re not defending Tait when you clearly are, you are dishonest.

    • Oh, Daniel . . . you’re the one who suggesting comparing how big things were. That’s on you, sir. But that’s OK. I don’t blame you for getting all “huffy”.

      I’m denying your conclusion, which is substantially different from denying the facts.

      Here’s how your reasoning works.

      “I hit a girl because she tried to shoot me with your shotgun.”

      You then take your hand and cover up half the sentence and claim: “He said he hit a girl!”

      The fact is true, the inference of your conclusion is not.

      You’re welcome to postulate who I’m defending and who I’m not defending Really, I’m just appointed myself as defender of 3rd grade logic. It’s a self grandiose title, but apparently it’s needed.

      I actually have a comment stuck in AnaheimBlog’s purgatory that does (FINALLY) defend Tait. You asked for it. Enjoy.

  11. So a motion is made on 6/19/12 to use $40,000 saved by evening out each council members staff budget to fund a computer training program at Ponderosa Library. The program would serve Latino families in a poor part of town; it’s seconded and voted on. Tait votes no. It passes 4-1. Which part of my paragraph gets covered up to prove your analogy true? There is nothing to infer.

    • Where did the $40k come from? Why did Tait vote no? What was the prior motion discussing? What other funding sources might have served the same program?



      You don’t care. Because it doesn’t help your point. Better just omit that entirely as if it never happened.

      Isn’t there something, anything, more important you’d rather talk about?

      • By voting no, did Tait make it any more likely that he would get that 40k back for his over paid staffer?


        To then sum it up, Tait thinks subsidies for his private company are a good idea as seen by his use of them. When given the chance to extend a similar subsidy to a portion of the public who could really use it, he voted no.

        That was a bad decision. Why defend that?

        • It wasn’t a similar subsidy. It’s not even close to a similar subsidy, but again– it’s the inference that Dan allows a reader to adopt by intentionally obscuring the story that ought not be tolerated.

          I’ll give you the same comparison I gave Dan.

          I go to your house, I steal all your furniture. I then ask you to approve my donation of your future to goodwill to feed starving children.

          Is it reasonable for you to say no? Of course it is. I stole your furniture. No, you’re not making it any more likely that you’re going to get your furniture back by saying no– but that doesn’t change the fact that you think the best use of your furniture is for your furniture to be in your house.

          Is it reasonable for me to blab about town that you refused to donate to goodwill and caused the starvation deaths of 460 children?

          No. No, it’s not. Even if the two actions are distinctly separate, to derive a conclusion based on a less than complete depiction of the events is properly labeled distortion. A willful one at that.

          Finally– if you’re going to accuse someone of being overpaid without attaching your name to the comment, you’re a coward. You own those types of critiques so you can be held responsible for them.

          • Stealing furniture from a private residence isn’t really a fair comparison to diverting city funds for a better use. Your analogy runs the risk of invoking that which you criticize.

            As for my name, I’m Jack. I think you are passionate, not crazy. That cant be said for everyone that trolls these blogs. I feel pretty good leaving my name at that.

            • Why isn’t it a fair comparison? My three buddies and I took a look around our living rooms and decided that you had more furniture than we did . . . but that you and I have roughly the same public responsibilities.

              We took a vote. You lost. So we took it.

              Sure, it’s absurd– but what’s really the difference? You feel entitled to it based on what you need it for . . . The Mayor felt he needed it to effectively do his job. They’re not really that far apart.

              Jack– conceded on the name bit.

  12. it was funded from the excess $40K that Tait had over fellow council members. Honestly Ryan, it’s all spelled out in the post and on the video.

    As far as something more important to talk about, what about the Republican councilmembers and Mayor Tait voting against a proposal from Jordan Brandman not to separate families of undocumented immigrants via deportation. A very anti-Latino vote by the Republicans on the council and very forward thinking of Brandman.

    • Yeah, because one of your commentators dragged it out of you. You don’t get credit for that, sir.

      Great topic. Go write it up on your blog.

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