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What Happens When You Don't Have Money

A recent study finds that the poor condition of Pennsylvania's roads cost the state over $8.2 billion a year. The roads and bridges in the Commonwealth are in terrible condition which increases the cost of vehicle maintenance, gas, lost time in traffic, and more accidents. . . . To address the problem...

The Myth of Revenue Neutrality

Somehow the concept of revenue neutrality has become a fundamental principle of tax reform. . . . The principle of revenue neutrality says that you can change your tax system all you want as long as it collects the same amount of revenue. See? Then it's not a tax increase. But what if one of the...

Will Developed Countries Learn to Tax?

In 1963, Nicholas Kaldor published a paper in Foreign Affairs about the ongoing fiscal problems of poor countries, entitled " Will Underdeveloped Countries Learn to Tax? " It turns out Kaldor should have aimed this advice at his own country, as the rich world, confident in its fiscal advice...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 12th, 2012

c Budget & Taxes FL JUDGE SIDES AGAINST STATE IN PENSION CASE: A Florida circuit court ruled last week that Gov. Rick Scott (R) and Republican legislative leaders' decision last year to cut public employee salaries to offset the state's contribution to their pension fund was an...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 12th, 2012

c Budget & Taxes FL JUDGE SIDES AGAINST STATE IN PENSION CASE: A Florida circuit court ruled last week that Gov. Rick Scott (R) and Republican legislative leaders' decision last year to cut public employee salaries to offset the state's contribution to their pension fund was an unconstitutional...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 19th, 2012

Budget & Taxes WV COMMITS TO PAYING DOWN PENSION DEBT: West Virginia's unfunded pension liability - estimated at $10 billion last year - is one of the highest per capita in the nation. But the state became a standout on the issue in a very different way last month when lawmakers approved...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 19th, 2012

Budget & Taxes WV COMMITS TO PAYING DOWN PENSION DEBT: West Virginia's unfunded pension liability - estimated at $10 billion last year - is one of the highest per capita in the nation. But the state became a standout on the issue in a very different way last month when lawmakers approved...

A Time Bomb of a Tax Code

There's a lot of serious news out there - tragedy, health care, a nuclear Iran. It seems the news of the day roars at us. But if you turn down the sound, you can hear it: tick, tick, tick. What is it, you say? It's the federal tax system, and it's set to explode. And if it does, there...

Taxing the Rich, and Missing the Point

The hot tax news is that President Obama has proposed extending the so-called Bush tax cuts but only for the middle class, not for the people the President thinks are rich. (If he gets what he wants can we start calling them the Obama tax cuts?) Apparently, the President thinks that families making ...

State Net Capitol Journal – January 19, 2015; Supreme Court To Decide Fate Of Colorado Taxpayer's Bill of Rights

Budget & Taxes SUPREME COURT TO DECIDE FATE OF CO TABOR: Colorado's Taxpayer's Bill of Rights — requiring lawmakers to obtain voter approval to raise taxes and to issue refunds to taxpayers when revenues grow faster than inflation and population growth — has survived repeated...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 9, 2015; Louisiana Governor Proposes Tax-Credit Changes

Budget & Taxes LA GOV PROPOSES TAX-CREDIT CHANGES: Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal's (R) administration proposed a 2016 budget last month that included deep cuts that would close community health clinics and historic sites, as well as force more belt-tightening at the state's colleges and...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 16, 2015; States Consider Taxing Non-Profits

Budget & Taxes States Consider Taxing Non-Profits Under Maine Gov. Paul LePage’s (R) proposed budget, nonprofits in the state would lose their exemption from local property taxes. LePage’s plan is to lower the state income tax from 7.95 percent to 5.75 percent and raise the sales...

State Net Capitol Journal – March 23, 2015; Will Indiana Become First State To Ban Internet Tax?

Budget & Taxes Will IN Become First State To Ban Internet Tax? State and local governments are currently banned from taxing access to the Internet by the federal Internet Tax Freedom Act, enacted in 1998 and extended several times since. But with the present 9-month extension set to expire...

State Net Capitol Journal – June 22, 2015; Some Republicans Embracing Tax Hikes

Budget & Taxes Some Republicans Embracing Tax Hikes After Republicans swept into control of 29 governor’s offices and 25 state legislatures in the 2010 elections, they moved aggressively to cut spending and taxes. The cuts continued the next few years in the wake of the Great Recession...

State Net Capitol Journal – July 6, 2015; Puerto Rican Debt Threat to U.S. Cities, States

Budget & Taxes Puerto Rican Debt Threat to U.S. Cities, States In an interview with The New York Times last month, Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro García Padilla said the U.S. commonwealth wasn’t able to pay its roughly $72 billion in debt. “The debt is not payable,”...