It is not illegal, but don't tell that to Wisconsin's Department of Revenue or the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Headline: Walmart owes back taxes, state says
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has avoided millions of dollars in state taxes by paying rent on 87 Wisconsin properties in a way that the state Department of Revenue calls an "abuse and distortion of income."
Of course, Walmart is not exactly breaking the law-
The charges are unusually aggressive for the state's tax-collection agency, and the case is being closely watched by tax professionals. Legislators, too, have become involved; some want to change state law to end the technique Wal-Mart is using.
Wal-Mart says it has not done anything wrong but is merely taking advantage of an overlap of state and federal tax laws: To reduce its taxes and costs, it sets up one subsidiary to run its stores and another subsidiary to own its real estate. The operating subsidiary pays rent to the real estate subsidiary and takes a tax deduction for the rent, even though that money eventually ends up in the corporation's own pocket.
Perhaps the state legislators and the governor need to fix this loophole before they go off accusing Walmart of owing back taxes! According to Wisconsin laws, they do not owe back taxes!
"Anything Wal-Mart can do to lawfully lower its costs allows the company to pass it along through lower prices," said company spokesman John Simley. "This is a lawful (tax) structure in Wisconsin."
Darn those crazy Walmart folks who insist on following the rules and trying to keep the costs low for consumers!
Really, folks- I just do not get it. Why do the liberals hate Walmart so much and yet they are shopping there just like the rest of us. Could it be the low prices?