Mitt Romney has avoided paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes through some creative accounting practices. As the Huffington Post reports, Romney received more than $170,000 in stock after his company, Bain Capital, took over Sensata Technologies – a manufacturing company in Illinois. Sensata has been in the news recently because it plans to lay off 170 workers in November, when it moves its last remaining American plant to China – a decision made by Bain Capital.
But Romney got HIS money – and rather than paying taxes on it, he transferred the $170,000 to a non-profit entity that he created known as the Tyler Charitable Foundation. In doing so, Romney avoided $25,000 in capital gains taxes and was able to trim $50,000 off his tax bill by deducting his so-called charitable contribution.
Romney did a similar move in 2010, when he transferred $1.3 million in stock from Domino’s Pizza to the same non-profit – cutting $600,000 off his tax bill. According to IRS law, Romney’s charity – which has assets of $10 million – must spend 5% of its assets each year to maintain tax-exempt status. Over the past few years, Romney has done the bare minimum to meet that threshold – distributing nearly 8% to charity – mostly to the Mormon Church.
Romney’s not doing anything illegal here, but it shows that the man is willing to do whatever it takes to avoid investing back in the nation that made him so rich. And it’s more evidence that Romney needs to release his tax returns so the people can see what else he’s been doing with his money and what other taxes he’s been avoiding.