More Taxes the Answer to State Budget Woes?

By: Phil Pendlleton Email
By: Phil Pendlleton Email

Governor Beshear says Kentucky needs a major influx of cash to help the state's ailing budget. He’s said before that he's against more taxes but there are both lobbyists and lawmakers who say that's just what Kentucky needs.

Representative Jim Wayne is proposing changes to Kentucky's tax structure such as restoring the estate tax, expanding the sales tax, and enacting a progressive income tax.

“Currently our working poor and low middle class citizens are paying 30 percent more of their incomes in state and local taxes than the top five percent, our very rich,” Rep. Wayne told the Special Subcommittee on Expanded Gaming.

House Bill 262 would also increase the sales tax on country club fees, chartered air flights and other services that Wayne says are used by the rich.

“The working families in my district pay a sales tax on Kentucky Kingdom, but the wealthy who play a round of golf at Valhalla Country Club pay no tax for their fun,” said Rep. Wayne.

The testimony came before the committee that's studying casino gaming. Representative Wayne says the tax hikes wouldn't replace gambling revenues; the money would just arrive sooner.

Health advocates are pushing for a higher cigarette tax. They also say the money would come quicker. The idea is for smokers to pay 75 cents more in taxes.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Wow Location: Richmond on Jan 23, 2008 at 02:01 PM
    WHy dont we start with reducing overpaid officials that only hurt the state?
  • by David Location: Winchester on Jan 23, 2008 at 10:08 AM
    Just what we needed for our economy, more taxes. Thanks to all of you who elected the tax and spend Democrats.
  • by Carol Location: KY on Jan 23, 2008 at 08:35 AM
    I agree that cigarettes and alcohol are not necessities for life, and those who choose to participate in those activities should not do so if they can't afford to adequately feed, clothe, and house their families. Of course we know that personal responsibility is not always at the forefront of the decision to smoke or drink, and this tax would be a good thing, in my opinion, although I'm sure not politically correct! But, I'm not much for political correctness anyway, because it seems that so often political correctness doesn't reflect what is in the best interest of the people. So, I support that tax increase, along with changes to the tax laws so that the middle and lower class don't pay 30% more of their income in taxes than the wealthy. I sincerely hope we don't have a politically correct legislative session in KY this year!!
  • by Margaret Location: Kentucky on Jan 23, 2008 at 08:18 AM
    I don't know why these services aren't being taxed already! Absolutely they should be taxed. This seems to be a very fair way of raising revenue that we really need. If I could choose between the status quo and a better funded higher ed system, or better funded health services, I'd choose the funding, even if I meant I invested a little more in. Easy choice.
  • by TOM Location: LEXINGTON on Jan 23, 2008 at 04:13 AM


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