GOP could take charge by cutting income-tax rates
Author title: "Tax cut Transfusion for the GOP"
At 8.5 percent, the top individual income-tax rate in Maine has been unchanged at more than double the average top rate (3.4%) of seven competitor states in 11 states of the the northeast for almost 20 years, excluding New York, Vermont, Rhode Island and Ohio.
Particularly during the 1980s, these high rates produced state revenue growth percentages far in excess of personal-income growth and pushed up the tax-burden percentage in the 1990s to the highest in the nation for nine years running.
They also slowed job growth to half the national average, gave Maine an anti-business investment climate, drove out businesses and youth, and plunged us into the deepest and longest recession since the 1930s.
State spending caps such as those discussed recently are relatively ineffective because they are a cap on spending growth and easily can be avoided by a Democrat majority.
Moreover, the Republican focus on cutting "spending" misses the central point because it does not reduce "tax rates," which are the primary and most effective way to control spending and the only way to correct the negative investment climate.
The GOP platform and leadership should commit to cutting all income-tax rates in half.
Business tax rates can be cut in half immediately without jeopardizing adequate state revenues with individual income-tax rates cut in half gradually over five to seven years.