and the
Citizens Economic Research Foundation

May 24, 2005

Senate budget: the income tax rollback

Citizens for Limited Taxation has always been opposed to using outside sections of the state budget to make policy unrelated to the state budget. However, the issue of tax hikes and tax cuts does seem pertinent to the document in which tax revenues, either increased or decreased, are spent.

We also recognize that taxation issues must originate in the House. As Senator Brian Lees (R-East Longmeadow) noted in yesterday’s debate, the House budget contained language referring the income tax rollback to a study. The Republican amendment wanted to act on the same rollback now. Since the Senate is choosing to spend more tax money than the House, the amount of money available should be decided during the budget debate.

But we further recognize that the Senate, like the House, would rather spend the surplus created by the "temporary" tax hike of 1989, than follow the mandate of the voters in 2000 that the 5% income tax rate be restored. We recall the roaring ‘90s during which state spending doubled but the promised rollback was always deemed "unaffordable" by the Legislature; we hope this pattern will not be repeated.

We disagree with the ruling of the Senate President that the amendment was out of order; however, having lost that battle after a valiant effort by Senator Lees, we move on to hope that the amendment can and will be debated with the next available document.

We still await a hearing on Senate bill 1645, the income tax rollback, filed by Senators Scott Brown, Brian Lees, and Robert Hedlund, and Rep. Richard Ross for CLT, and look forward to a debate and rollcall vote on that bill soon.

Have we mentioned lately that the "temporary" income tax hike of 1989 is now sixteen years old?

See:  "Was it a promise or wasn’t it? You decide!"

– 30 –

Return to CLT Updates page

Return to CLT home page