A fairer tax cut from Democrats | Arkansas Blog

Friday, March 22, 2013

A fairer tax cut from Democrats

Posted By on Fri, Mar 22, 2013 at 10:13 AM

Rep. Warwick Sabin says he's amended his income tax realignment proposal, HB 1926, to eliminate a new 7.5 percent top rate for the highest income taxpayers. That increase on the top end made his proposal to realign tax brackets and expand the individual deduction for most taxpayers revenue neutral. But a bill with any sort of tax increase, even for the highest income taxpayers, is a non-starter in the Republican majority legislature.

The change has grown Sabin's co-sponsorship list dramatically. It offers a fairer tax cutting alternative to Republican Rep. Charlie Collins' proposal, which cuts the top tax rate for the highest income taxpayers and gives the majority of tax cut benefits to high income, with little or none to the poorest taxpayers. The accompanying illustration shows how benefits from Collins' bill would flow.

Sabin writes:

I had included the new tax bracket to make the proposal revenue neutral primarily out of respect for Gov. Beebe, since he originally said that he would not go along with any revenue cuts, and I didn't want to jeopardize his stated priority to first eliminate the Grocery Tax.

By removing that new tax bracket and keeping everything else the same, my proposal will cost $57.3 million. But that is still far less than $100 million, and it will target the relief to the people who need it the most and who will use it to directly and immediately stimulate the Arkansas economy. Plus, no one will be able to accuse us of raising any taxes.

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