Honorable Steve Kagen, M.D.

Wisconsin's former 8th District Representative

January 4, 2007 to December 22, 2010

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Kagen Votes to End Taxpayer Funded Bonuses

Press Release

Media Contact:
Jake Rubin 202.225.5665


March 19, 2009

Washington, DC — Congressman Steve Kagen, M.D. today voted to send a clear message that misuse of taxpayer money will not be tolerated. Kagen voted to punish the executives from AIG who gave themselves million dollar bonuses with taxpayer money and anyone who tries to do the same in the future.

“This abuse of public trust and taxpayer money must end,” said Kagen. “It’s outrageous to ask the government for help and then turn around and give bonuses to people who were responsible for getting us into the current mess. In this economic climate we cannot reward failure.”

The House-passed resolution calls for a tax rate of 90 percent to be applied to the bonuses received by individuals from companies which have received at least $5 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). It would also apply to bonuses paid by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

“I voted against the Wall Street bailout because I did not believe it had the necessary accountability and oversight. Moving forward, I am working hard to make sure that every cent of taxpayer money is being invested in projects and initiatives that create jobs and put our economy on the right track.”

Bonuses will be defined as any retention or incentive payment which is in addition to regular employee compensation. The special tax rate only would apply to individuals and families with overall income in excess of $250,000. The measure applies to payments received after December 31, 2008.

“To build a better future for all of us we must catch the crooks that have driven our economy into the ditch, we need to clean up the mess left for us by the previous administration by investing in Main Street not Wall Street, and we need to rewrite the laws to reward hard work and get our economy moving again,” said the Congressman.

Tomorrow, Kagen will convene an informational session for small business owners about how to take advantage of the opportunities provided though the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. He will be joined by Small Business Administration Regional Director Eric Ness, American National Bank Fox Cities Executive Vice President Dan Nisler and representatives from area small business. The session will take place in the Executive Dining Room at the Student Center of Northeast Wisconsin Technical College’s Green Bay Campus at 10:00 AM Central Time.

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