CWA and UAW Call on Ways and Means Committee to Hold AT&T, GM and Wells Fargo Executives Accountable During Tax Oversight Effort

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

NATIONAL -- The Communications Workers of America (CWA) and the United Automobile Workers (UAW) sent a letter this week to members of the Ways and Means Committee, including committee chair Rep. Richard Neal (D-Mass.), urging the full committee to investigate how AT&T, General Motors, Wells Fargo and other major corporations are spending the enormous tax cut benefits they received from the 2018 tax bill. Congressman Neal has promised to hold hearings on the tax bill in his new role as Chair of the Committee and the unions’ outreach follows a letter CWA sent in December calling on Rep. Neal to investigate AT&T during the committee’s tax oversight efforts.

This comes as AT&T workers and CWA members have been meeting with their local members of Congress to deliver personal letters asking for their support for a hearing to hold companies like AT&T accountable to the tax bill job promises.

CWA President Chris Shelton and UAW President Gary Jones write in the letter: “Randall Stephenson, Mary Barra, Tim Sloan, and other corporate leaders whose corporations have significantly benefited from the tax cut, should be required to explain why the predictions made by the authors and supporters of this major tax policy change were so seriously incorrect when they promised thousands of new American jobs and rising wages.”

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson once boasted that every $1 billion in tax savings will create “about 7,000 good jobs for the middle class,” meanwhile the company has eliminated more than 11,000 jobs since the tax cuts took effect and recently announced the closure of call centers in Indianapolis, Ind., Kalamazoo, Mich., Appleton, Wis., Syracuse, N.Y, and Meriden, Conn..

Despite benefitting from reduced corporate tax rates and recently reporting bottom line net income of over $8 billion for fiscal year 2018, GM has announced plans to shutter four plants located in Michigan, Ohio, and Maryland, while also laying off 8,000 American white-collar workers. In total, the lives of nearly 12,000 American workers will be directly harmed. Additionally, there has also been no evidence to date that the corporate tax cuts have encouraged GM to bring back any production from Mexico to the U.S.

Wells Fargo is expected to benefit more from the tax cuts than any other bank, but has announced plans to lay off up to 26,500 people and is offshoring jobs to the Philippines and India.

In the letter, Shelton and Jones follow up on CWA’s request that the investigation answer specific questions from workers nationwide: “We believe it is critical that the new Congress look at policies that will create jobs, grow wages and stem offshoring. Our members and tens of millions of working Americans want to see that as a top priority for our elected representatives. It would appear from the facts we are seeing that the major tax policy changes enacted last year have done exactly the opposite. We urge you to hold hearings to examine the impacts of the tax law on corporate profits, wages, job creation and offshoring.”

The letter to the Ways and Means Committee is available online here.

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