Rep. T. R. Rowe (R-123) today said the Democratic budget that sets a record for tax increases of $1.8 billion will harm some industries, punish hard working wage earners and creates a misleading $1 billion surplus on the backs of the middle class. He both voted against the largest tax increase budget in CT history.
The Republican proposed an alternative budget that had no new taxes, is balanced through spending cuts and would create a leaner state government. The Democratic budget is also $2 billion out of balance because union concessions counted on by the governor have not materialized yet.
Budget debate began at 2 p.m. in the House May 3rd, following the overnight vote of approval in the Senate.
“The passage of this budget more than anything represents a wasted opportunity,” said Rep. T.R. Rowe. “While neighboring states found ways to balance their budgets through government streamlining, reduced spending and no tax increases, Connecticut has chosen to continue down the well-worn path of increased taxes and increased spending, demonstrating the same lack of discipline that got us into this trouble in the first place. We offered an alternative plan which significantly decreased spending without tax increases. Our input was ignored, and there will be a hefty price tag for the state residents who are already struggling to pay their bills and make ends meet.”
The Democratic budget raises $1.8 billion in new taxes that will be felt in clothing purchases, on grocery checkout lines, in car dealerships and next April when taxpayers give more of their wages to state government. In between, property tax bills will go up because the Democrats cut by 40 percent the property tax exemption.
Rowe noted that the cost of doing business will also escalate because the corporate surcharge on companies was doubled from 10 to 20 percent. And businesses, which account for more than half of all sales taxes in business-to-business transactions, will be forced to pass those costs on to consumers.
The sales tax will be raised from 6 percent to 6.35 percent on items already taxed to raise $138 million in the first year of the budget.
Other additional taxes that were raised:
· Luxury taxes on goods such as jewelry, cars and boats. Wedding dresses over $1,000 will cost more this summer;
· Rental car surcharges of 3 percent;
· Yoga instruction;
· Cigarette taxes go from $3 to $3.40 per pack;
· Selling a house will cost more beginning July 1 with the increase in the conveyance tax of .25 percent;
· A person earning $50,000 will have income taxes raised by 10 percent.
Aside from all the tax increases, numerous breaks and credits were eliminated and scores of higher motor vehicle fees will be implemented.