Oh Lord, Won’t Ya Buy Me …. A Used Yacht?

April 18, 2011 By: Juanita Jean Category: Uncategorized

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It’s tax day so the Texas Lege took up a pressing tax issue to get America rolling …. er, floating, again.  A tax break on yachts!

Yes, today a House committee discussed giving a tax break to wealthy yacht-buyers. Under House Bill 2187, by Rep. John Davis, a Houston Republican, the tax on sales of boats over $250,000 would be capped at $15,625. For a $20 million yacht, this would work out to a tax reduction of 99 percent. Those buying smaller, cheaper boats would continue to pay the current 6.25 percent sales tax.

Of course I am serious.  I could not make this stuff up.

But, fear not, middle class, for they had you in mind, too.  Democratic State Rep Mike Villarreal arrived a tad late at the hearing and asked, “So this bill is a tax break for mega-yacht owners? I feel like I just walked through the twilight zone. Is that what we’re talking about – a tax break for mega-yacht owners?”

The yacht dude answered, “This is not just for rich people. You can get used yachts as well.”

And he was serious.

No, seriously, he was serious.

Dayum, Bubba, let’s trade in the double wide and get us a helluva deal on a used yacht!  We need the tax break because right now all of our cash flow is tied up in groceries.

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21 Comments to “Oh Lord, Won’t Ya Buy Me …. A Used Yacht?”


  1. Don A in Pennsyltucky says:

    Except of course that he isn’t the kind of guy anyone would want to buy a used anything from.

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  2. gabberflasted says:

    The larger the boat, the lesser the tithes. Ain’t this a little backasswards?

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  3. For the first time ever, I disagree with you on this. Galveston county needs something. All we have now is boating and nobody’s buying. This could help restaurants, marinas, baitshops, hotels, boat mechanics. boat cleaners, and yes the boat salesmen. Check out the cars of the people that work at boat stores versus the people that buy. We don’t have a fancy mall or a cute little baseball team like Fort Bend. We need whatever help we can get.

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  4. Juanita Jean says:

    Hey Kat, the first time the Bible Thumpers in east Texas all take a nap at the same time, the Lege is gonna push through gambling on the island real quick before they wake up. Besides, Galveston has Tilman Fertitta and his cookie cutter restaurants determined to singularly destroy creative cuisine all across Texas. “Ma’am, never mind that your snapper is overcooked, look at the pretty fishes swimming right by your table!”

    How ’bout we give a tax break on boats costing under $15,000? Think of the boost that would give the beer industry.

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  5. You have no idea how many of us Galvestonians are PRAYING for gambling! The bible thumpers aren’t the only problem, its the Louisana Money and the Indian tribes money that SOMEONE is getting. I think Tilman needs different marketing. Something like “Tilman loves teachers-vote for casinos!” And tax breaks for boats under $15000 would only help Bass Pro shops. Although they do have better food than Tilman’s places.

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  6. I just had lunch with a friend who goes with her husband to either Louisiana or Oklahoma every month to gamble. She said she had heard the casinos are giving our upstanding, supersize fundamentalist lege members a little something in plain envelopes to keep gambling out of Texas.

    Why won’t they let the peoples vote?

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  7. BarbinDC says:

    Y’all can thank Jack Abramoff for keeping gambling out of Texas. He single-handedly ruined the prosperity of the Tigua Indians in El Paso when he got the Lege to close down their casino. Many, many envelopes changed hands.

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  8. “It doesn’t take much to get over $250,000 anymore,” mused Rep. Lanham Lyne, a Republican from Wichita Falls.

    No, not much at all. I mean, if I go cash in my coin jar, I’m nearly practically almost half way there.

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  9. Ms. Juanita’s assessment that the House Bill 2187 is “a tax break to wealthy yacht-buyers”is sadly missing the point. The benefit to “wealthy yacht owners” is vastly over-shadowed by the benefits that Texas will gain for capping the Sales Tax on recreational boat purchases of $250,000 or more.

    Last year the state of Florida passed legislation unanimously to cap their sales tax on recreational boat purchases of $300,000 or more. And since this law has been in effect, Texas has seen their large boat purchases head to Florida to take advantage of this tax break. With those boat sales went fuel sales, retail sales, mooring fees, services fees, restaurant sales, and every other money-generated business sale associated with a large boat purchase.

    What’s happening is that those of us who work in a marine-related business are losing business. We are having to shrink our staffs and tighten our belts and close our doors because Florida is getting the business that should be staying in Texas.

    You may look at this as a benefit to the rich – we look at this as Saving Our Jobs in Texas.

    I have a business in Title transfer. I use to receive a lot of business from Florida dealers and brokers who sold boats to Texas residents. I don’t get that business anymore because those Texas buyers are finding it more cost-effective to keep their million dollar yacht in Florida. If you think about it – they are saving $45,500 to keep their boat in Florida – that pays for a lot of fuel, retail and services. Texas gets nothing.

    We have an economic study that shows Texas would glean an additional $36 million on revenue by keeping these boat sales in Texas with a sales tax cap of $15,625.

    Why don’t we try to cap for the smaller boats? Because they cannot afford to go to other Boater Friendly states to purchase and keep their boats to avoid Texas Sales Tax.

    Ms. Juanita, your thinking is short-sighted. You’re comments are based on you’re ignorance of our industry’s plight. We are rallying to do this to keep our jobs. Rep. John Davis is rallying to keep Texas Boating strong in Texas.

    Rich people have options. We’re trying to make it more agreeable for them to keep their boats here in Texas and not feed Florida’s economy.
    Kind regards,
    Glynda Allison, President
    Carol Matthews Vessel Documentation, Inc.

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  10. Juanita Jean says:

    Glynda Honey,

    Using your logic, we should also give tax breaks to people buying luxury motor homes, fancy pants golf clubs, diamond necklaces, and exotic swimming pools because those things, too, provide jobs.

    Or, and let’s get serious here, how about we give tax breaks on things the working class needs? Those things also provide jobs and Lord knows the middle class needs the tax breaks.

    As far as me being short sighted, you have that completely wrong. I see exactly where this leads – to rich people holding this country hostage. How many damn tax breaks do they need? You give Billy Bob a tax break on his bass boat and I’ll talk business. Until then, I will stand by my belief that trickle down economics doesn’t trickle at all. It tinkles.

    Juanita

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  11. So – in other words – Screw the Recreational Marine Industry because wealthy people enjoy it? Wrong way of thinkin’, if you ask me. This is one tax break that actually feeds the economy – not like the bogus jokes they’re hocking in DC. I work in this business, and my revenue is down at least 25% from loss of boat buyers to Florida and other boater friendly states. Add the BP Gulf Oil Spill and I’m down another 25%. You can “billy bob” it all you want, but the bottom line is my bottom line is fading fast along with other marine-related jobs. Boating is Big Business for Texas… why send the big ticket items to Florida? You’re tree is blocking my forest. So, Juanita Honey, get out of my way.

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  12. Juanita Jean says:

    Glynda – I could take your needs a little more seriously if you would at least take notice that everybody’s bottom line is in a little pain right now. And I’m completely sorry that the yacht industry is feeling a pinch, too.

    I’d like to feel sorry for you, but I can’t feel more sorry for you than I can laid off teachers, the men and women of the recreational vehicle industry, fishermen along the Gulf Coast, and the good men and women of West Texas who are fighting fires to protect their homes. Times are tough, babe. Gut up.

    The solution to every problem in America is not to cut taxes on the rich. How ’bout you lower your price and help them out? You should be willing to do that because it would be a good investment for you, right?

    And, just one other note of far less importance. I don’t Billy Bob. I Sassy Frass.

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  13. Fenway Fran says:

    Jeez Juanita, Glynda (isn’t she supposed to be the good witch?) is the one who keeps knocking on the beauty salon door looking for another appointment. She wants YOU to get out of HER way????? She’s been sniffing too much spar varnish. Don’t let her near Thelma’s acrylics…

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  14. Sassy frass this – we want rich people to spend their money in Texas – not Florida. Big boats spend big money on fuel, supplies and services which, in turn, supports jobs and allows Bubba to buy his bass boat, that he will then take fishing and teach his boy (or girl) the value of reeling in the big one that will feed his family in the house that jack built. You can’t trickle down better than that. It’s building the economy that helps to build family values. Again, this is one tax break that does benefit the ecomony directly and impacts jobs in Texas.

    Oh, and everyone has had to lower their prices. Haven’t you heard? MarineMax is having a Red Tag Sale…

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  15. Juanita Jean says:

    Same deal with motor homes, Glynda. Exactly the same deal. And lots of other stuff that rich people buy. Why just yachts? Why not all luxury items? And what guarantee do we have that yacht owners are going to buy all their gas in Texas? What keeps someone from North Carolina from coming here and buying a yacht for the tax break and then floating that sucker home to buy Carolina gasoline, services, and whatnot? That’s the hard thing with yachts – you can’t make them sit still.

    Don’t be so self absorbed, Girl. This is a beauty salon and selfish is not at all attractive.

    I don’t know if you know about this but we’ve got a landlocked West Texas congresscritter who bought a yacht with his campaign contributions. If this bill passes, will he get a rebate?

    I don’t hang out at Marine Max’s. I buy all my yachts from Fast Eddie’s Brazos River Yacht Club and Bait Camp.

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  16. Juanita Jean says:

    Well, Glynda, now you’ve got me in big trouble.

    Gus Frontage of The Good People at Greasy Gus’ Used Jet and Crop Dusters Airline Corporation came and hunted me down at the Dairy Queen this evening wanting to know why his buyers aren’t getting tax relief.

    Gus sells gently used jets with only a tiny but semi-pleasant hint of marijuana odor – purely medicinal, you understand – and some upscale crop dusters. He wants to know why yachts should get all the breaks and, honestly, Glynda, I couldn’t answer him.

    Next thing you know, Cletus Bohannon, who just recently became an entrepreneur after he lost his job down at the popcorn plant, wanted to know how come yachts got a break when his inner tube business on the Comal River don’t get diddle squat.

    Trixie says you should give a break on limos because those suckers are expensive and she just knows she’s gonna win the lottery and really, really needs a limo any day now.

    So, to make a long story short, my strawberry chocolate Blizzard got all mushy before I could eat it because people are plenty upset that only yachts are getting this tax break.

    All this is making me cranky.

    By the way, Gus says he has an opening for a jet mechanic if you’re looking for work. Some knowledge of jet engines would be helpful but it hasn’t held Gus back. You’d be amazed at what he can do with duct tape and bailing wire.

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  17. glynda, I’m really disappointed that you’re not also over on my blog spreading your message there too. Please do, and while you’re there, you can explain how you would fund the budget to provide basic needs like public education, and which taxes you would be wiling to raise in order to balance it. You could also explain how best for legislators to go home and explain to teachers why they’re being laid off, to doctors why they won’t be paid for their services, while at the same time they cut taxes for rich yacht buyers. Give it up.

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  18. Ok. let’s put this in terms Thelma would understand. When Bobby Sue comes in and says just trim my bangs , don’t wash my hair, she will get just that, and maybe 15 minutes of your time. BUT, Velma Vanderbilt wants a color job and a cut and a manicure/pedicure and she asks if you all will fetch her a glass of pinot grigio, honey, it is chilled and touching her lips before she has even put her purse down. You see, you’re giving her alittle something extra to keep her from going to Toni and Guys over at the mall. Because her tips pay for new work shoes at payless when its BOGO time. And hey, those women on those yachts really need their hair done after a day on the gulf!

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  19. Juanita Jean says:

    Yeah, Kat, but trust me, Velma’s gonna pay the same fair market price as everybody else because if she doesn’t, Bobby Sue will take her business elsewhere. Everyone is a princess around here and that’s why I am damn famous. If I start handing out free wine to my rich customers, I’m gonna have to start charging Bobby Sue a little more to help meet the wine bill. So here’s Bobby Sue helping to pay for wine that doesn’t get anywhere near her lips. Bobby Sue carries around a baseball bat for just that purpose.

    And, Honey, I don’t fetch wine for anybody. I’m so good at what I do that customers bring me wine. Maybe the Texas yachting industry could take a tip from me. Wait a minute, let me change that. To hell with “maybe”, I know for a fact that they could take some tips from me. #1: Quit whining that times are tough for the yachting industry. Times are tough for the eating industry.

    And thank you, Harold, for jumping in here. It’s nice to have a man’s opinion every now and then.

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  20. Ok! Put down the hairspray! This is just asking that we all have the same rules as other states. Big boats, little boats, we just need people to buy them, fix them, sail them and fish from them. We can’t live on just local tourists. You all come down to the beach with the full coolers and then go home. No money stays here! Galveston county is at the point we will do what ever it takes to survive, ’cause since Ike it’s still slim pickins along the coast. And that’s one of the reasons why property taxes around here dropped and republicans got stupid ideas and laid off teachers and so on.. So please, organize a beauty shop field trip, come on down to the strand. AND PLEASE GOD, SPEND SOME MONEY! And now, I will shut up.

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  21. Sumgal2u says:

    Accidentally, I stumbled across this website because I typed in “Lord I need money now!” Curiously I clicked on the heading, “O Lord wont you buy me….. Miss Juanita, you are absolutely correct in your economic view of the tax breaks to the rich. The last thing they need are more incentive to live large at the expense of the real taxpayers.
    I live in Ohio and our governor is sending Ohio to hell in a hand basket! Every social program has been cut if not eliminated. My 73 year old mother had a home health aid to help her get along and now she gets NOTHING! The lack of concern for the common person is completely lost in the democracy that was originally for the people. We don’t need Wall Street techniques on Main Street. One of our local governmental agencies laid off 15 employees with more on the way because of budget cuts. As if Ohio wasn’t hit hard enough in 2004 when we lost over 250,000 jobs, we get this bozo in office who continues the elite agenda. The rich get richer and the poor become destitute.
    BTW, I’ve enjoyed reading your page! God bless and keep up the work Sassy Frass!

    http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2011/06/16/kasich-tax.html
    http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2011/03/15/kasich-releases-budget.html

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