Dear Friends and Neighbors,
The 2010 regular session ended March 11. The Legislature is currently in the middle of a special session called by the governor that could last up to 30 days. Each day of special session costs taxpayers between $14,000 and $18,000 per day!
The House of Representatives passed $800 million in new and increased taxes over the weekend, the largest one-year tax package in state history.
The $800 million in tax increases includes increases and new additions to the state’s complex business and occupation tax, hitting employers especially hard at a time when most are struggling to stay in business and keep current workers employed during the recession.
I want you to know that I voted against this tax package as I believe that tax increases are going hurt our employers and families at a time when both are struggling to make ends meet. Raising the dreaded business and occupation tax is only going to hurt the very ones who can help get us out of this economic recession.
Additionally, by not implementing reforms that have a long-term impact, we’re just punting the problem down the road and setting ourselves up for more budget problems next year. I’m disappointed in the actions by the majority party, but more than that, I’m fearful for our families and our small businesses. Our families will continue to see their buying power erode and our small businesses will continue to see less purchases by consumers.
The taxes included in Engrossed Second Substitute Senate Bill 6143 include (dollars in millions):
Tax increases were not the answer to our budget problems last year, and they certainly shouldn’t be part of the solution today. I will continue to vote against tax increases and advocate for true government reform, efficiencies, and defining and funding our priorities first.
Thank you for your continued input, and thank you for taking the time to read my e-newsletter.