Educational Picketing of Arizona IRS Headquarters

FairTaxforAll

Shut Them Down!

On October 15th, The FairTax For All is organizing educational picketing at IRS Buildings in Tucson and Phoenix. According to The FairTax For All this is the beginning of a movement to shut down the IRS. FairTax For All is a 501(c)3 dedicated to educating the public and elected leaders on the importance of replacing the IRS Income-­Production Tax with a simple, fair, and transparent national consumption FairTax -­ HR 25/S 122.

“No American is safe from IRS targeting, intimidation, and harassment; everyone is a bull’s eye,” said FairTax For All spokesperson Dr. Yale Wishnick. “These types of abuses are nothing new,” said Dan Mastromarco, tax attorney and co-­author of HR 25 / S 122. He added, “In 1819, Former Chief Justice John Marshall warned in McCulloch v. Maryland that, ‘An unlimited power to tax involves, necessarily, a power to destroy.’ The FairTax Act is the only way in which Congress can once and for all eliminate the harassment, political exploitation and selective enforcement against perceived dissidents. It levels the playing field and redistributes power to the citizens who pay the taxes.”

The FairTax Plan is a comprehensive proposal that replaces all federal income and payroll based taxes with a national retail sales tax, a prebate to ensure no American pays federal taxes on spending up to the poverty level, dollar-­for-­dollar federal revenue neutrality and, through companion legislation, the repeal of the 16th Amendment, which authorized the creation of the Income Tax.

Protests are scheduled for Tucson and Phoenix IRS Headquarters from 3:30 pm to 6:00 pm.

Wishnick concluded, “Clearly after years of partisan wrangling about tax policy, our country is at a stalemate. Taxation is not a Democrat or Republican issue – it’s an American issue. The FairTax is the only option that will generate the revenue we need to run our nation in a way that eliminates special interests, creates a vibrant economy, provides security for seniors, and paves the way for future prosperity for the youth of our nation.”

Government Contract Rigged for MIHS?

CASH

Magellan Health Services filed a “formal protest and a lawsuit” against Maricopa Integrated Health Services or MIHS. Magellan had managed a contract that included serving Maricopa County’s poor since 2007. Magellan’s complaint alleges numerous irregularities:

In its protest, Magellan alleges that Mercy Maricopa has “serious conflicts of interest” because Mercy Maricopa intends to both manage the system and provide services, which is prohibited by the contract and by state law. Magellan also claims that Mercy Maricopa should have been ineligible to bid on the contract but that state procurement officials improperly amended the request for proposals “to permit the winning bidder to qualify as an eligible bidder.”

Magellan Arizona CEO Richard Clarke told The Arizona Republic that there were “serious irregularities in the bidding process,” such as the state twice amending the proposal request “at the last moment” to allow bidders to subcontract services, which benefited the Mercy Maricopa proposal.

Magellan also claims that the bids were improperly scored and that “there was an overall bias in favor of the winning bidder.”

For example, Clarke said, both organizations proposed eliminating the separate provider network for children’s treatment and using the administrative savings for direct services. Mercy Maricopa earned points for that portion of its proposal, but Magellan did not, he said. “There are a number of errors like that where it’s really clear to us that the two entities were judged very differently,” he said.

Magellan’s complaint targets not only MIHS but Betsey Bayless, MIHS’ CEO. Bayless has previously been under scrutiny for receiving a $125,000 taxpayer funded pay raise earlier this year, bringing her annual salary to $500,000 – in taxpayer money.  Bayless was viewed by many as a spoiler in the 2002 governor’s race between Matt Salmon and Governor Napolitano. Napolitano won by less than 10,000 votes and in return, Bayless was appointed as director of the Department of Administration. Bayless’ appointment would serve as a launching pad to her lucrative position at MIHS, a position which many view is beyond her qualifications.

The Arizona Republic also states an interesting fact about the state contract:

The contract, worth $2 billion to $3 billion, depending on whether the state expands Medicaid, is the states first for integrated health care, which blends physical- and mental-health treatment.

The difference between $2 billion and $3 billion is staggering. The Arizona Republic understates the amount and ignores the underlying possible nefarious motive for the changing of state law, bidding processes, and why MIHS would want the contract.  To put this into context, the difference between $2 billion and $3 billion is the difference between, say, Jerry Jones and Steven Spielberg.

Another key factor easily glossed over by the Arizona Republic is that MIHS receives nearly $60 million dollars in property taxes each year.  So, you essentially have a taxpayer-subsidized government entity bidding against private providers for the largest behavioral health contract the state has ever offered.  Does that seem fair?

The legal challenge by Magellan will hopefully shed light on the seemingly back door deal and reveal what really took place in the bidding process. When $3 billion in taxpayer dollars is at stake, the people deserve complete transparency on state contracts.