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Vice President Pence’s visit and tax reform

By Bill Yeargin

Last week Correct Craft was honored to have Vice President Mike Pence visit our world headquarters in Orlando and tour our largest company, Nautique Boats.

Accompanying Vice President Pence on the visit were Florida’s Gov. Rick Scott and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. Nautique President Greg Meloon and I were honored to tour the vice president around our Orlando production facility and introduce him to several of our teammates.

I was also honored to share our mission with him and host a roundtable where community leaders shared their ideas with Vice President Pence, Gov. Scott, and Secretary Perdue.

Finally, our employees and guests appreciated the Vice President’s thoughts on tax reform – one of the Trump Administration’s highest priorities. The vice president was very gracious and seemed to genuinely enjoy learning about our company.

During the roundtable, the primary topic was tax reform. The current U.S. tax code needs attention and I shared with the roundtable what I see as two significant problems for U.S. companies trying to compete in the global arena.

First, the U.S. tax rates on businesses are near the highest in the developed world which encourages businesses to take production overseas, costing U.S. jobs.

Second, the tax code incentivizes U.S. companies that make money overseas to keep that money (estimated to be trillions of dollars) outside the U.S. even though many of those companies would like to bring the money back to the U.S.

I appreciated the opportunity to share these challenges and appreciated not only the vice president’s interest in hearing about them but also his support of fixing them.

As our country considers tax reform, there are many details to work out. In the weeks ahead I hope that our leaders in Congress and the Administration will consider what I believe are three more important issues related to the topic:

  • We need to seize the opportunity of reforming our tax structure to also tackle our federal deficit. We clearly need tax reform but I hope we will do it in a way that reduces our deficit and does not pass our problems onto our children and grandchildren.
  • We need forward thinking tax reform. Increasing computing power is accelerating the development of exponential technologies that will dramatically change our world in the next 10 to 15 years. Industries will be eliminated and changed and new businesses will emerge. I hope that as we consider tax reform we will ensure it is forward thinking and considers the significant changes coming.
  • Though not directly related to tax reform, I hope as part of this process we can view global trade not as a win-lose, zero sum game, but as an opportunity to expand the global economic pie which will significantly help companies like Correct Craft. We distribute our products into 70 countries and anything we can do to grow the global economic pie while lowering barriers to U.S. companies selling internationally, will help companies like ours continue to provide good jobs in the U.S.

We very much appreciate Vice President Pence visiting us and his interest in our industry, community, and company. I also appreciate him bringing attention to tax reform which is an important issue. Our team was incredibly grateful to host this historic event.

Bill Yeargin is the president and CEO of Correct Craft.

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