Sunday, October 05, 2003

Today's Virginia tax reform item

This column from the Norfolk paper describes a few ideas on reforming the tax laws of Virginia. One Republican legislator would "wipe out hundreds of exemptions to the sales tax, apply the tax to most services, and lower the rate from 4.5 percent to 4 percent. Then, he'd eliminate almost every addition, subtraction and deduction to the state income tax, including an overly generous break for seniors, and revamp a schedule in which the highest tax rate -- 5.75 percent -- kicks in at $17,000. The new plan would leave the first $15,000 of income untaxed for everyone. A top rate of 6.25 percent would apply to income above $50,000." Another group has a plan that "revamps the income tax and expands the sales tax to services, while eliminating the sales tax on food and adjusting the corporate income tax. The income-tax design is more progressive than Louderback's, with a top bracket of 7 percent kicking in at $100,000, while on the sales tax side, health care services, insurance and utility bills are exempt. The plan would produce about $1.48 billion in new revenue, which the organizing project believes will be needed to balance the state budget."

(Now, if I can just figure out how to claim that legal services are good for your health and a form of insurance against bad things happening.)

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