Have we gone tax crazy?

I can’t help but wonder if we’ve gone a bit crazy lately with our rush to tax Nestle for the water it bottles in Maine. In our zeal to create more revenue to spend, it seems our legislators will do anything to make a buck.

Water is a resource, but should we tax Nestle for developing that resource? If yes, why limit it to Nestle? There are other bottlers here in Maine. Let’s also tax the paper companies and other manufacturers for taking water out of the system. Lastly, let’s tax everyone on town water or with a well; after all, they’re taking away a natural resource from our state.

Let’s face it, in Maine, no one pays for water, currently. While you might think you get a water bill from the city or town, in reality your bill is for delivery of the product and the cost to test the water and add those pesky chemicals required by the federal and state governments. No one actually pays for the water, including Nestle.

In fact, I think Nestle could argue the water in the bottle is free. When you buy the product, you’re only paying for everything from acquisition to production, delivery, marketing and sales, plus markups from each level of retail operations along the way.

Instead of being in such a rush to tax them, why not simply have a bottling fee to allow regulatory agencies to monitor operations and ensure the resource is not over-utilized?

Robert A. Reed, Lewiston

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 's picture


good morning veritas...

RONALD RIML's picture

Good Afternoon!!!

How ya been??

 's picture

big difference

tron big difference I use money I earn to pay taxes on products I buy..you use state and federal handouts to buy everything you get and if you've ever paid attention, when you use yourr EBT card in Maine the system automatically deducts the tax back out so you pay nothing as the state doesn't want to use its own dollars on tax back to them. But then again you want us all to believe you live a life of luxury on just a disability check you earned working minimum wage in a shoe shop 35 years ago....you've had numerous opportunities to open your files and prove me wrong, but you steadfastly refuse...what exactly are you hiding...you're not getting rich off some illegal enterprise are you? Don't bother to answer, I'm still cleaning my hip waders from last time we discussed this one....

RONALD RIML's picture

Bob relies on Personal Attack as his argument holds no Water...

Bob relies on Personal Attack as his argument holds no Water...

And we didn't even ask him to pay for a drop of it!!

RONALD RIML's picture

Bob - You're the one not 'Thinking

1. - Charge all resellers of bottled water if their aquifers draw raw product from under any public land.

2. - Charge all businesses for any public natural resources sold at profit.

The alternative is government subsidy of private business.

You are the whiner complaining that business should be free to exploit public property for it's own private gains.

 's picture


So Maine Ken and thinkingman you agree that Nestle is a monopoly. Only a monopoly can pass on costs to the consumer. If they are not a monopoly, then they have to absorb the added cost in lower profits which means their management and stockholders pay the tax. Can't have it both ways is Nestle a monopoly or do their owners pay the tax.

 's picture

Robert, you missed one very

Robert, you missed one very clear distinction-Nestle is not paying one cent for the water that they are taking and selling. Sure, they are paying the costs of pumping it our of the ground and putting it in bottles, but so are the homeowners. The difference is that the homeowners are not turning around and SELLING the water for a profit. If they did, then they should be taxed for that priviledge as well. As for everyone on town water, here's a clue-they ARE taxed whether it's for the delivery and chemicals, they are still taxed.

I realize that it's going to be a long time, if ever, before Maine's population density approaches that of Florida. However, because of all those people who want to live where they can be out in the warm sunshine all year round (or at least in the winter), Florida has a water problem. The aquifers are being depleted. As of 1990, salt water has intruded into the aquifer 15 miles inland all around the state. Given that the state averages about 90 miles wide, that's 1/3 of their fresh water aquifer has been depleted, so the point is, it CAN happen. Why not be pro-active and take some small steps now to preserve the water quality and preserve the aquifer in Maine. I know, you think tax is a four-letter word. Okay, fine. You want safe, pot-hole free roads, you want the police and fire department to come when you call, you want good schools, and all the other stuff while at the same time giving businesses a tax-free, free ride. Guess who gets to make up for what the businesses, which usually impact all of those services harder than the average citizen, don't pay in taxes? Yup, you and me. Time for them to pay their share.

 's picture

There you go again... there's

There you go again... there's a business thriving in Maine, so let's tax it some more. Before you know it they'll be taxing the shells tourists pick up on our beaches. Keep it up and soon there won't be enough of us working to support the entitled class the Dems love so well.

RONALD RIML's picture

Learn the difference between a 'Tax'

And subsidizing a business's raw material.......

RONALD RIML's picture

Rob - Merely look at the U.S. the see how it goes badly....

Nothing has 'ended' for any of the countries that you've mentioned, and it certainly hasn't ended for the U.S.

You refer to France, Greece, and Spain.

France has the 10th highest life expectancy of all countries, Spain is 21st, and Greece is 26th.

Where must we be with our world class health care system?? How about 49th. There's something to be proud of!! USA! USA! USA!

This according to our own CIA - https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/21...

RONALD RIML's picture

Nice Smoke-Screen, Bobbie

No wonder you were a politician.

Refute the data, if you can. Don't pretend it means nothing.

 's picture


How can you be so short sighted I agree with Veitas 100%; do you think Nestle walks on water?A small tariff forusing Maines'natural resources could asist many layers of MaINE government, and still allowtem to flourish!
Bob Mennealy


I apologize to all for my misspellings!, my concern to gain acess thru the LSJ's filter un nerves my composition skills at times!

RONALD RIML's picture

Bob - Does Free Health Care fit in with your Free Water plan?

Bob - Does Free Health Care also fit in with your Free Water plan?

My guess is not. But the 'Everyone' you mention in your letter with a well taking this natural resource aren't in the business of selling that resource. Even you should figure that one out.

If Nestle wants to sell a product, they - like other manufacturers, should pay for their raw materials. Not take limited resources gratis.


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