Americans are a hard-working bunch and should keep what they earn. Our ideas for tax reform reduce the burden of taxes while ensuring governments have the resources to focus on core responsibilities.
Governor Jan Brewer was right to veto the legislature’s attempt to carve out special tax privileges for certain businesses.
In her veto message, the governor cited many of the reasons the Goldwater Institute suggested for opposing the legislation. The bill had “potential to favor new businesses over those who have weathered the economic storms with us,” she wrote, and would require new bureaucracy to verify company eligibility.
Arizona’s teachers union has a fixation on school funding. And if the union’s proposed ballot initiative to permanently raise the sales tax in Arizona is any indication, they have also developed tunnel vision. The teachers union and other education associations want the “temporary” one cent sales tax increase that passed two years ago to become permanent.
When policymakers say they have enacted “historic” legislation, they are usually accused of hyperbole. And, in many cases, that is a fair criticism. But in the case of Governor Brewer’s signing of HB 2815, it isn’t a big stretch to say that the action did make one historic move in regard to tax policy. It made Arizona the ninth state in the U.S. to effectively cut its capital gains tax. When the tax cut is phased in completely by 2016, the effective tax rate on capital gains will be 3.4%, instead of the current rate of 4.54%.
Recently, the Arizona Education Network (AEN) opined in the Arizona Republic, “Once in a great while, Arizona citizens have the opportunity to do something truly transformational for the trajectory of our state.”
Blogger Mike McClellan criticizes the Goldwater Institute and me specifically for our estimate that the 1-cent sales tax rate increase would cost Arizonans 14,000 to 20,000 jobs. He cites the increase in the number of jobs in the state over the last two years and recent predictions that job growth will pick up as evidence of how wrong we were. There’s just one problem with McClellan’s thesis; it has no basis.
It’s federal tax day, and many wonder why they owe the government so much money. And those who receive refunds might wonder why the federal government kept so much in the first place.
|Click image to enlarge|
Open your wallets even wider, Arizona taxpayers.
Tax policy is often like looking at a pointillist painting – stare closely at only a section, and you don’t have a sense of the whole picture. But when you back up, the picture comes into a focus.
On March 12, the state senate in Oklahoma passed a bill that would immediately turn the state’s income tax into a flat tax, cut the tax rate in half, and strip away the extraneous tax credits and special carve-outs. Then, over a 10-year period, it would slowly phase the income tax out of existence by cutting the rates each year until they reach zero.
Arizona could be on the verge of strong economic growth. Right now the state House of Representatives is considering HB 2815 which, among other things, phases-out the capital gains tax over four years for assets purchased in 2012 and after. The governor has declared that she is interested in signing a bill that cuts taxes on capital gain income.