Do you ever get the feeling that the tax quiz in Carson City is multiple choice, but without a “none of the above” option?
First Gov. Brian Sandoval trotted out a bunch of ex-governors to tout his $1.3 billion in tax hikes, mostly to fund failed public education spending programs. Treasurer Dan Schwartz tossed out his brief outline for a budget that would still spend more without tax hikes. Controller Ron Knecht rolled out his more detailed plan to spend almost as much as Sandoval, but without tax hikes. Now, Assembly Bill 464, presented by Majority Leader Paul Anderson and Taxation Chairman Derek Armstrong, both Republicans, proposes raising the modified business tax on payrolls instead of Sandoval’s gross receipts tax.
Is there no one in Carson City who can just say, no? Spend what the Economic Forum said you’ll have to spend under the current taxes?
Sometimes people get blindered by the lack of choices being presented and think they have to take one of them.
At least AB464 has the advantage of being based on a known tax source and the estimates for the amount it will raise are more trustworthy than the estimates for Sandoval’s untried, untested gross receipts tax in the form of business license fees — contained in Senate Bill 252.
The Nevada Registered Agent Association commissioned a study of Sandoval’s proposal and estimated that it overstates its revenue projections by approximately $42 million in FY 2016 and by about $65 million for FY 2017. How will that hole be filled? With tax hikes?
Forgotten in the scramble to tax more of our money for their spending is the fact the Economic Forum forcast $6.33 billion in revenue for the general fund for the next two years. That is up from a forecast of $5.8 billion in revenue two years ago — a 9 percent increase.
Nevada’s population grew by 2.5 percent from 2011 to 2013. Nationally, inflation has increased since 2012 by 3.4 percent. Thus, 9 percent is enough to cover both population growth and inflation.
It would also be helpful to note that the 2012 forecast was a bit of a lowball and the actual two-year revenue is closer to $6.27 billion. What’re the odds the same thing will happen with this forecast?
How much more of the state’s gross domestic product and net income does government need?