Does Sinclair Really Need a Handout from Md Taxpayers?
By Colleen Ebacher and Sonia Shah
The Baltimore Sun, April 4, 2018
Last month, the Baltimore County Council decided to bestow Sinclair Broadcasting with hundreds of thousands of taxpayers’ dollars. Those funds will join another $1.3 million showered on the conservative telecommunications giant from the state of Maryland. And if the rapidly expanding company makes good on its plan to employ 367 more people in the county, it won’t have to pay a cent of it back.
Wade Kach, the county councilman who represents Hunt Valley, where Sinclair’s corporate headquarters are located, called the hand-out a “win-win for everyone.” But is it?
Sinclair Broadcasting is no struggling local business on the brink of bankruptcy. It is the largest TV station operator in the United States, with a $3.9 billion takeover of another corporate giant, Tribune Media, in the works. Nor is it lacking in powerful political connections. In just the last six years, Sinclair — which George W. Bush’s FCC chairman called “the most dangerous company most people have never heard of” — has tripled in size, apparently thanks to a series of ethically questionable quid pro quo arrangements in Annapolis and Washington D.C.
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