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Unformatted text preview: s, and Nebraska’s tax rates were
among the lowest in the United States. Nevertheless, a small group of ConAgra executives soon gathered on a Saturday morning at Harper’s
house, sat around his kitchen table, and came up with the basis for legislation that rewrote Nebraska’s tax code. The bills, drafted largely by
ConAgra, sought to lower the state taxes paid not only by large corporations, but also by wealthy executives. Mike Harper personally stood to
gain about $295,000 from the proposed 30 percent reduction in the maximum tax rate on personal income. He was an avid pilot, and the
new legislation also provided tax deductions for ConAgra’s corporate jets. A number of state legislators called Harper’s demands “blackmail.”
But the legislature granted the tax breaks, afraid that Nebraska might lose one of its largest private employers. Harper later described how
easy it would have been for ConAgra to move elsewhere: “Some Friday night, we turn out the lights — click, click, click — back up the
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This note was uploaded on 02/25/2014 for the course MGMT 120 taught by Professor Litt during the Spring '08 term at UCLA.
- Spring '08