House Committee Takes Up Income Tax Changes

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(Host) The head of the House Ways and Means committee says he would like to see his panel vote out a new state income tax plan by the end of the week.

Speaking last night on VPR’s Switchboard program, Stowe Representative Dick Marron said his committee is reviewing three basic options. All three plans “piggyback” the state tax in some way to the federal tax system.

The first would tie an individual’s state tax burden to their federal tax liability. This is a plan that the state used for many years. The second plan would link the state tax rate to a person’s federal adjusted gross income, while the third would use an individual’s taxable income level.

Marron says the old Vermont piggyback system is his preference at this point, even though it would require rate changes as federal income tax cuts are phased in over the next ten years. But Marron says he is open to the other possibilities:

(Marron) “And if I can get support of a large number of a majority of the committee for one option versus another that generates the same amount of revenue, I’ll go forward with that. I’ve got to get a bill passed through the House and that’s my primary concern.”

(Host) Marron says the Legislature needs to pass a bill this session dealing with this issue because the current law will expire at the end of the year.

If the General Assembly fails to pass a new plan, the state stands to lose at least $43 million in revenue in the next fiscal year, because the federal tax cuts would all be passed through at the state level.

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