Voters say no to 33% gas tax increase. Tax Task Force says tough—you’re
going to pay it.
Ronald Mortensen, Ph.D, Co-Founder CitizensForTaxFairness.org
On November 6, 2018, Utah voters resoundingly said No!
when asked if they would support a 10 cent per gallon increase in the gas tax—65%
No (689,254 votes), 35% Yes (363,878 votes).
So, what does the Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force do? They
ignore the vote of the citizens and include a “temporary” 4.85% state sales tax
on a gallon of gasoline in their tax reform proposal.
Continue reading by clicking here.
Heard at the Tax
Restructuring and Equalization Task Force meeting on October 22, 2019:
TASK FORCE MEMBERS:
Those paying income taxes are a “reservoir of funds that is available
to us.” The tax rate can be adjusted [to tap the reservoir] based on the
state’s needs for revenue.
The property tax is a “benefit tax.” It adds value to the
Infrastructure such as roads and highways should be funded
by property taxes but water infrastructure should be funded by user fees.
People can be land rich and cash poor. These people
shouldn’t be forced to sell their property in order to pay the taxes. If people
are land rich and cash poor they need to develop their property. If they don’t
develop it, they should sell it.
“I didn’t hear anyone on this committee address cutting state
spending or even slowing the growth of state spending.” (Ron Mortensen)
I am a taxpayer and object to being considered a reservoir
of funds available to the state. (Ron
How about imposing a sales tax on campaign
contributions? If that had been in
place, members of this committee would have paid $170,000 in sales taxes. (Ron Mortensen) To read more, click here.
Utah tax reform – grow government; socialize
business costs while privatizing profits; soak the middle class
Mortensen, Ph.D., Co-Founder CitizensForTaxFairness.org
This is the first in a series of
commentaries on the proposals put forth by the Utah Tax Restructuring and
Equalization Task Force. It provides a high level overview of the tax reform
proposals. Future articles will look as
From the perspective of a
taxpayer without high paid lobbyists or political clout, the legislature and
governor’s proposed tax reform looks like an overly complex exercise designed
to guarantee continued explosive growth in state spending while promoting
corporate socialism primarily paid for by middle-income taxpayers. Five major
things jump out of the Task Force’s draft proposals. Click here to
read the entire article.
Utah tax reform: Create a crisis and sell it to the public
Ronald Mortensen, Ph.D.
July 29, 2019
governor and Republican legislators created a funding imbalance by driving up
income tax collections while suppressing sales tax collections.
packaged this as a crisis in order to convince Utahns that the state has to
find new things to tax.
end-game is for the governor to call a special session and for legislators to enact
taxes on more things with the incidence of those taxes falling primarily on low
and middle-income Utahns and on small businesses.
voting for the bill will be rewarded with large campaign contributions from big
businesses and by the uber-rich since they will benefit the most from it.
take action to stop this, they will soon be paying more taxes in order to fund
even more state spending, to further socialize big business costs and to reduce
income taxes paid by the uber-rich.
Click here to read the entire article.
Tax Reform Task Force Meeting – Layton
Ronald Mortensen, CitizensForTaxFairness.org
Utah’s Republican governors and legislators have a
tax and spending problem.
During the past 20
years, population increased by 45% and inflation by 44%. However, the state budget, exclusive of
federal funds, increased by 146%. Add in
federal funds and it’s up 160%.
So state spending
increased 3 times faster than population growth, 60% faster than population and
inflation combined and roughly 2.6 times faster than median income which
increased by 55%.
Utah has a sales tax exemption problem.
to certain privileged, big businesses allow them to socialize their costs and privatize their profits by avoiding all
sales and corporate income tax payments.
For example, a
privileged Utah company that manufactures Wigits pays no sales tax on business
Thus, during the
production process no sales tax is collected on any of the say, $500,000 in inputs.
And when the
completed the Wigit is sold out of state for $1,000,000 no Utah state sales tax
is collected—a loss of over $60,000 in sales tax revenue.
privileged business pays no income tax on revenue from the Wigits sold
Therefore, low and
middle-income earners along with small businesses are left to make up the tax
If you are determined to modernize the tax structure, then
do something more than just rearranging the chairs on the Titanic.
Implement the PowerBall and
MegaMillion Lotteries so Utahns can buy lottery tickets without driving to
Idaho or Wyoming.
In addition to the
revenue from ticket sales, a one billion dollar Utah winner would pay the state
50 million dollars in additional income tax.
Consider legalizing and taxing online sports betting – a $300 billion business and Utahns already bet on
Require candidates for political office to pay a sales tax
on all campaign donations that they take in. The 2018, 4th
Congressional District race would have brought in roughly $550,000 in sales tax revenue
to the state ($9 million spent by both
candidates--$5,786,427 Love, $3,384,890 McAdams). The Salt Lake Mayoral race to date would have
brought in $60,000.