Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Restructure Taxes, Don't Cut Spending

When Maryland's legislative leaders met with incoming Gov. Martin O'Malley yesterday to discuss the Democrat-dominated state's policy agenda, revamping the tax structure came in at the top of the list.

The antiquated structure, designed in the sixties, does not reflect our modern economy and could result in millions in projected debt.

The restructuring could emerge in a number of forms. Some want to see an increase in the sales and gas taxes. Others want to change the way collected revenue is used. And some advocate a more progressive income tax.

These are mostly sensible proposals. Increasing gas taxes not only raises revenue but also encourages commuters to hop on public transportation. Adjusting the income tax to make it more progressive is a fabulous idea that would problems with the current system that prevent the most wealthy Marylanders from paying their fair share. We're not so keen on raising the sales tax because it disproportionately hurts lower-income consumers.

Unfortunately, not everyone is ready to consider these common sense proposals. Some lawmakers would rather see a cut in spending, The Baltimore Sun reports.

This is the worst possible time for such cuts. As a result of the BRAC military reorganization, Maryland is preparing for an influx of thousands of new residents. We will need more roads, more schools, more power and water. This is not exactly the time to spend less on those endeavors.

from The League: Reassembled


Blogger Rfustero said...

While I agree a cut in services should be avoided, I do believe a review of state services should be considered and any duplicate services eliminated. There should be a freeze on personnel hiring as well, and attrition should be allowed to take place with no replacements.

There is a lot of talk about increasing the tobacco tax, but I see little written about an increase in the alcohol tax.

In 2002, the State institute of Studies(Ithink this is the org), published a study that stated - if Maryland could tax internet sales(the ales tax) Maryland could reap about 500 million dollars in revenue. This might be an idea to consider,

12/20/2006 11:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG, you people make me crazy. God forbid we even consider a cut in spending. I have a endless supply of cash to contribute.

1/04/2007 10:51:00 PM  

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