Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Rogert: I like cheese

For those of you following the saga of Democrat state Senator Kent Rogert, Joe Jordan's Nebraska Watchdog has another update.

Jordan first broke the story (somehow) that Rogert, from Tekamah, hadn't paid the sales tax on his speed boat by claiming that he is a "boat dealer". If he is a dealer, he has made less than $1,000 each year by doing so. (For that matter, we're fairly sure that Rogert could also claim to be a lion tamer or Zorro.)

He apparently saved around $3,000 by doing this.

Is there anything illegal by doing this?
Not sure.

Hmm. Pretty sure.

In any case, Jordan first broke the story at Nebraska Watchdog, here.

The OWH followed up (without mentioning the Neb-Dog story AT ALL -- wonder how they got their info???) here.

The LJS also followed up, and had the courtesy to note the Neb-Dog story, here.

And now Neb-Dog has updated here.

But all of this really pales in comparison to the bio Rogert apparently wrote by himself for the LJS back in 2007, as a newcomer to the legislature.

In that piece we get such nuggets as:
  • I love my boat. That’s the thing I love the most.
  • The only things I’m avidly watching now are “24” and “Grey’s Anatomy.”
  • I have a thousand (text messages) a month, at least. It’s very freaky (how fast I can do it.) People are like, ‘how did you do that?’
  • But it’s pretty hard to beat the ’80s hair band rock. Poison and Mötley Crüe.
  • I like cheese.
A loud boat. Some Crüe. Some cheese.

It just don't get any better than that...


Six(now Eight) Dollar Parker said...

Kudo's to NWD on the scoop. I didn'y know you could call yourself a boatdealer and save sales tax. I"M A CAR DEALER!!!

Anonymous said...

I'm sure if you dug into every senator's past you'd find instances where sales tax was not paid.

Anyone that buys something on Amazon.com and doesn't report it to the state and pay sales tax is breaking the law.

How about we look into the online buying activities of the state senators and see if they have all reported their purchases properly to the Department of Revenue and paid sales tax.

Street Sweeper said...

Really? You're defending Rogert calling himself a boat dealer, and essentially putting dealer-plates on his speed boat?

Yup, that's exactly like buying something on Amazon. Excellent comparison.

(You're also undoubtedly a big fan of Crüe flavored cheese...)

Anonymous said...

Wierd. I had been thinking that this guy could possibly be one of the elusive Dem statewide candidates that Covalt/Rogers can't seem to find, but I guess not now. lol

Anonymous said...

The claim against Rogert is he put dealer plates on his boat and avoided paying state sales tax.

If you buy something online and don't report it to the state you've avoided paying state sales tax.

Seems pretty similar.

You can make the claim that Rogert actively avoided paying sales tax and in the other example it is passive. The fact is in both cases the end result is the same.

Sweeper, have you ever purchased something online and avoided paying sales tax? I'll be you have.

Street Sweeper said...


I've never falsely claimed a profession in order to avoid paying sales tax.

Oh, and your comparison is moronic, so try for something else if you're attempting a semblance of a valid argument.

Thanks for reading!

Anonymous said...

What politicians have cost state and local governments recently...

Republicans - $200k sexual harassment settlement

Democrats - $3,000 sales tax avoidance

The Republicans just seem to beat Democrats at everything in this state.

Anonymous said...

At least Blinn had the common courtesy to resign. Kent Rogert should to the same thing.

Friend of Fahey's said...

Democrats cost to Omaha

$300 million pension shortfall

$2000 for Fahey Street signs

and millions of dollars of liability from unsecured satellite dishes...lol


Anonymous said...

I wonder if Ken has ever used his boat for recreational purposes on Ben Nelson's turkey farm.

macdaddy said...

Crap! That's all I needed to do to avoid sales tax on my boat? BTW, why is sales tax on vehicles so much here in Nebraska? 7.5% is highway robbery. I have a hard time getting upset about it although I'm jealous that he found such an easy loophole. Mine was a little more work: I bought and keep my boat in another state. One with much lower sales taxes and registration fees. My guess is that Nebraska is missing out on a lot of sales tax that they could be collecting if they came in line with the neighboring states.

Anonymous said...

$69 Fry Daddy for Chris Jerram

One Out In The Third said...

Rogert will walk...it was all a big misunderstanding. You or me...Bruning would be putting a wheel lock on our boat trailer and using a battering ram on our front door.

Six...a lot of car dealers are holding the bag for Obama's C4C.

Me...I want to be an arms broker.

Anonymous said...

You don't have to wonder about other State Senators.

All you have to is look at the Majority of the Leaders in Congress and most of Obama's Cabinet to know that getting away with it is a priority for many elected officials..

Apparently, you and I are the only one's that properly pay our taxes.

Then again, since I can pay a $60 delivery fee to have 3 pieces of furniture delivered to my home by NFM, all just to avoid that extra 1.5% City sales tax, I guess I am a tax scofflaw too.

Or maybe I just don't own a pickup truck or I can't carry furniture up the stairs.

In Rogert's case, he could afford the payment on a 15 year loan for that big, fast and loud boat. He just couldn't afford the 3 Grand after buying gas, beer and margeritas for everyone all month. So he asked around and found out there was a loophole.

I only wish that our State Lawmakers would spend more time closing loopholes than using them-isn't that what they've been elected to do?

Gerard Harbison said...


Anonymous said...

LOL! Spicolli...

macdaddy said...

You guys are getting a little confused here. According to Rogert, he is a boat dealer. He legally registered as one and has kept up his registration. He claims to have sold 10 boats since he got his license, just not the one he uses the most (and BTW, every month during the summer consists of a whopping 3 months.) There is nothing illegal about this nor unseemly because each and every one of you are allowed to do the same thing. Every poster here can be a boat dealer. This law wasn't brought about for his advantage, but he was smart enough to use it. I don't see the problem with him following the letter of the law. I also don't see why he needs to try to change it. And no, I'm not going to run out and register as a boat dealer, but when somebody can legally get out of the grasping hand of the Nebraska treasury, I find that something to applaud, not grouse over.

macdaddy said...

And another point, there is nothing wrong with dealers using their inventory. I see dealer plates all over the place. Are those people getting away with something, too? No.

WeedWhacker said...

DUUUUUUUUUDE! Where's my boat?

Anonymous said...

Except, time has proven that elected officials are held to a higher standard and should.

My question is why did he register it in Douglas County first? When did he live here? Was he afraid that the County Clerk in his home County would know that he was lying if he tried to do it there?

Besides, I don't want an idiot that can't even figure out how to make a $100 profit on each of 10 boats he sells representing my interests in the Legislature.

I, personally, think he is lying about some part of this, it is just a matter of time before Joe Jordan discovers which part.

BTW, Joe is not the best reporter to pick a fight with, his investigative journalism will fry you every time AND, he has money backing him now.

Also, Macdaddy, I have to guess that you had, and have, no problem with all the tax cheats in the current administration and sitting Chairs of Congressional Committees.
For they too, found a way to keep their hard earned tax dollars out of the box of the Treasury.

macdaddy said...

Anon 7:52: From what I can tell from the article in OWH, Rogert used a perfectly legal way to get out of paying the tax. He followed the law. Geithner and the others did not. In fact, they actively ignored it, hence the term tax cheat should be applied to them, but not to Rogert. In addition, the law was unfairly applied to the tax cheats in the administration: none of them got jail time for defrauding the government and none of them were disqualified from drawing a government paycheck. I couldn't get away with that. But I sure could be a boat dealer and get out of paying sales tax on a boat. So could you.

Look, you can disagree with the law and think it should be changed or should have been changed a long, long time ago, but as far as being held to a higher standard, I'm going to throw the BS flag. Politicians are held to the same standard as we are: no higher and no lower. We are a nation of laws, not the mob.

I have never met this guy and since he is a Democrat, I'll never vote for him if given the chance, but this whole issue is much ado about nothing.

Anonymous said...

I will throw my own BS flag on your assertion that pols are not held to a higher standard.

No one would give a rat's ass if my neighbor found an Argentinan Chica, but boy did everyone worry about it when it was a Republican Governor.

As for the rest, I was just checking your moral barometer. I think he knew what he was doing was a lie, but telling a lie isn't illegal-unless it is to the Taxman.

how about the variety of places he registered the boat, beginning with a county he didn't live in?

Right Wing Professor said...

The Lincoln Journal Star this morning editorialized that perhaps he might be the right person to rewrite the law to remove the tax loophole.

They avoided mentioning his party affiliation. Of course, the very omission of mention of party when someone's caught with a hand in the cookie jar is a pretty reliable indicator the offender's a Democrat.

macdaddy said...

But RWP, how would it be rewritten? You'd have to sell a minimum number of boats? That would kill start-up companies. A higher fee? Again, that's raising the cost of doing business. I'm sure the boat business isn't that big in Nebraska, but surely people shouldn't be denied the ability to buy a boat from somebody who doesn't want to make a killing on it.

I'm done now. Anyone else can feel free to have the last word.