Sales Tax Measure Defeated
By Travis Berg
House Bill 1222 was killed in the House State Affairs Committee. The bill raises the sales tax to fund education and other budget needs. It sets a temporary increase from April to November, or until 100 million dollars is generated. Proponents say HB 1222 takes some pressure off the property tax.
Opponents were concerned the temporary tax would turn into a permanent one. Some committee members are interested in finding a different long term solution. Representative Bernie Hunhoff says the problem needs to be fixed, and we cannot push the problem onto the people.
Hunhoff says, “And we’re going to have to come up with some options down the road. And I don’t think this is the fairest fix, and I don’t like it very well at all. To get my full support you would have to take it off food and other things. And I think as Representative Bruner suggested, you would have to use those funds over a period of two or three years. We’re going to have to come up a with a two or three year approach to solving the structural deficit. It was in place in good times and bad. The idea that you can fix it in one year is just preposterous. We need a long term approach, a longer term in state government, a 2 or three year approach to get this thing fixed. And we’re going to have to come up with some options down the road.”
Representative Susy Blake opposed the tax increase, but she appreciates the idea. Representative Blake says we need to have discussions and look for solutions.
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