Links: Tax Reform, Sales Tax Holidays and New York’s Demobilizing Response to Tardy Tax Payments

August 6, 2013

Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) and Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) are back on the road for their tax reform tour, discussing a simpler, flatter code. But it’s not as easy as just eliminating all the deductions if economic growth is your goal. You have to start with the correct income base first, removing the opposition to savings and investment that exists in the current code.

Federal tax revenues are on their way to a banner year – the highest ever, in fact.

A $950 million tax increase will find itself on the November ballot in Colorado. The increased revenues will go to education according to the bill from the State Senate. Unfortunately, education spending often results in more money for well-paid administrators, not students and teachers. Between 1950 and 2009, the number of students in U.S. public schools increased by 96 percent and the number of administrators and non-teacher staff increased by over 700 percent.

New York plans to suspend the driver’s licenses of 16,000 taxpayers who are late on tax payments in excess of $10,000, if they fail to pay. For the New York revenue department’s sake, let’s hope those taxpayers don’t live in public transportation friendly New York City.

A Boston Globe columnist has called out sales tax holidays as the gimmicks that they are – a stance the Tax Foundation has discussed before. From the Tax Foundation’s Joseph Henchman: “If a state has to offer a ‘holiday’ from its tax system, it’s a sign that there’s a problem with the system itself.”

Forbes has an update on the progress of tax reform and what we’ve learned so far. An important reminder: In a static, revenue-neutral world that ignores economic growth, pro-growth tax reform is all the more difficult.

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