, Newburyport, MA

October 24, 2012

Fogel is out of touch

Newburyport Daily News

---- — To the editor:

I am responding to last Friday’s Daily News article titled “Opponents square off in 2nd Essex Debate.” I attended the debate and have known both Barry and Lenny for a number of years. Both candidates are honest and have great character and integrity. However, I was quite dismayed at some of the comments made by Barry.

First, Barry said that the economy of Massachusetts is doing fine. Really? Ask any person on your street or across town and they will surely tell you something different.

Second, Barry said Massachusetts is an attractive place to do business. After the event, I spoke with Barry to let him know I recently moved my firm from Massachusetts to Portsmouth, N.H., saving over $43,000 per year in costs, mostly due to lower regulatory costs and streamlined government processes. For a small two-person firm, that’s a lot of money. His reply: “It must be due to your industry.”

Does Barry Fogel know annual corporate filings taxes in Massachusetts are five times the amount in New Hampshire? Does Barry know that payroll taxes such as state unemployment taxes in Massachusetts greatly exceed that of New Hampshire? Does Barry know businesses can buy computers, equipment and other supplies without a 6.25 percent sales tax in New Hampshire? Does Barry understand the onerous state regulations in Massachusetts, many of which are irrelevant and do nothing to protect consumers?

It is great Barry is a lawyer and can write laws. He made sure everyone at the debate knew that. However, it’s obvious he doesn’t understand the business or economic climate in this state. The last thing Beacon Hill needs is another lawyer who doesn’t understand the ramifications and costs of laws written.

Thomas Atwood

West Newbury