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Dirk Kempthorne on Tax Reform

Republican Governor (ID) and previously Senator


Return $140M of surplus to taxpayers

We have created a positive atmosphere that has generated a surplus. My budget package recognizes where this money came from in the first place. And thatís the hard-working Idahoans who pay taxes. Therefore, I will recommend tax relief in the amount of $140 million. A portion of that is permanent. A portion of that is one-time. And just as we did this year, if the surplus continues, we can continue to provide significant tax relief next year.

In that $140 million, the categories of tax relief will be individual income tax, corporate tax, investment tax credit enhancements and broadband connectivity geared toward our rural areas. There will be an increase for senior citizens in the grocery tax credit, and I am recommending that for young families that the childcare tax deduction become a tax credit, and an increase in the allowance on elderly dependent care. We will have for the first time research and development tax credits. It is a well-rounded, inclusive program.

Source: 2001 State of the State address to the Idaho legislature , Jan 8, 2001

Voted YES on requiring super-majority for raising taxes.

Senator Kyl (R-AZ) offered an amendment to the 1999 budget resolution to express the sense of the Senate on support for a Constitutional amendment requiring a supermajority to pass tax increases.
Status: Amdt Agreed to Y)50; N)48; NV)2
Reference: Kyl Amdt #2221; Bill S Con Res 86 ; vote number 1998-71 on Apr 2, 1998

No national sales tax or VAT.

Kempthorne adopted the National Governors Association policy:

Source: NGA Executive Committee Policy Statement EC-9 00-NGA1 on Feb 15, 2000

Let states independently determine estate taxes.

Kempthorne adopted a letter to Congressional leaders from 37 Governors:

We are writing to request equal treatment between states and the federal government on estate tax changes. Regardless of oneís view about phasing out the federal estate tax, the Governors are absolutely united in opposing any action that would discriminate against states in the phase-out of the state and federal estate taxes. This issue needs to be addressed before the Senate goes to conference with the House.

Governors believe that the ability of states to independently determine their own tax revenue policy is a basic tenet of federalism. Moreover, no federal tax bill should be enacted without close consultation with the states.

At the very least, there must be equity in the treatment of the state death tax credit in the tax bill the Congress considers with the proposed phase-out of the federal estate tax. Governors oppose provisions that impose disproportionate impacts on state revenue systems. The changes proposed by the Senate would have abrupt, significant adverse impacts on state revenues at a particularly onerous time for many states. The potential impact on states would begin next year and have a potential impact of between $50 and $100 billion over the next ten years.

We urge the leaders to respect those rights and to restore fairness.

Source: National Governor's Association letter to Congress 01-NGA19 on May 23, 2001

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Page last updated: Jul 12, 2013