April 08, 2020
Letter

TABOR will help Maine

The Taxpayer Bill of Rights limits tax increases. It does so by requiring voter approval to increase taxes more than inflation plus population growth. In other words if inflation is near the current 2 percent and the population increases by 2 percent then the tax increase couldn’t exceed 4 percent without voter approval.

Why do I think you should vote yes on TABOR? Here is my rationale:

1. TABOR would limit tax increases to the increased ability of taxpayers to pay the tax bills. Since inflation increases most taxpayer incomes and population growth increases the number of taxpayers, TABOR would allow for additional tax revenues to pay for the added costs of government services.

2. Since Maine has the highest tax burden in the nation, and has had that “distinction” since 1997, TABOR is the best chance we have to insure that the burden doesn’t get worse.

3. Politicians have irresistible pressures to satisfy the wants and needs of the electorate, and without TABOR they have no effective limits on spending.

4. Contrary to what you hear, TABOR worked in Colorado which is 38th in tax burden, i.e. 37 states have higher tax burdens than Colorado. State and local taxes in Maine are 38 percent higher than in Colorado on the same income.

Don’t listen to the voices of government policy makers who are concerned that if TABOR passes, they will have to live within budget constraints like the families whose money they spend. If you agree that our tax burden is too high and you want to have control over excessive tax increases, vote for TABOR.

Jim Gustafson

Bowerbank


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