Sales Tax Measure Dies in Committee
By Jackelyn Severin
The last of several measures to temporarily raise the sales tax has been defeated in committee. Senate Bill 174 brought by Senator Stan Adelstein of Rapid City raises the sales tax by a penny during the summer months for three years. Adelstein says the measure could raise 50 million dollars per year to help cover costs of Medicaid and education funding.
Senator Craig Teiszan supports Senate Bill 174. He says the proposed cuts to Medicaid and education could cause permanent damage.
“I believe that Senate Bill 174 is a legitimate alternative, says Teisan, “And I think it is certainly one of the ways that we can address the current budget proposal that’s before us.”
Opponents of the measure say it doesn’t solve the state’s structural deficit.
Senator Bob Gray opposed the measure but for different reasons. He says the state has a revenue problem and needs to take a serious look at raising taxes permanently.
Gray says, “We need to at some point stand up and say hey we have some bills to pay lets pay them. Whether that’s education, or whether that’s Medicaid, or whether that’s taking care of state employees who are plowing our road sometimes we need to just stand up and say we to do it and we need to do it right.”
The Senate State Affairs Committee killed the measure by a vote of 6 to 3.
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