Chairman Terrence Duffy lied to shareholders during the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s annual shareholders meeting, held downtown on May 23. Protesters holding proxy shares attempted to probe Duffy with questions pertaining to CME’s lobbying for state tax breaks and their massive profits. Duffy rebuffed the questions as out of order because they did not address items on the agenda while telling them they could be asked during the open question and answer session at the end of the meeting.
Roughly 50 protesters scattered themselves around the room prior to the meeting but stood in solidarity with each other as proxy after proxy attempted to question CME’s profitable lobbying for a state tax break last fall. The company threatened to leave the state after more than 100 years of operation if it did not get its way. Duffy tried to hedge against the protesters’ concerns at the beginning of the meeting in his opening remarks.
“We are a global company, and we asked to be taxed like every other major company based in Illinois, many of which are much larger than CME Group,” said Duffy. “The Illinois Legislature recognized and corrected the unfair treatment by giving us an apportionment that is equitable and puts us closer to other Illinois companies.”
The supposed correction in the unfair treatment will deprive the state of nearly $1 billion over the next decade. The impact of this correction is severe as Stand Up! Chicago’s Elizabeth Parisan noted in the Huffington Post:
The cuts to these programs are so deep that they actually go back in time. Earlier this month, the state notified 40,000 childcare providers that they might not get paid for the last three months of services they provided because their program was underfunded by $73 million. The announcement thrust thousands of families into turmoil as providers wondered how they would keep their doors open and working parents wondered if they would lose the safe and affordable childcare they depend upon in order to make a living.
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