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Tony Knowles on Tax Reform

2004 former Democratic Challenger for Senate (AK; previously served as Governor)


Supports new $50M annual cruise ship tourism tax

Thirteen days after the next governor takes the oath of office, Alaska will enact sweeping new rules and taxes on the tourism industry. Just a few months ago, Alaska voters put cruise lines and their passengers on the hook for millions in new taxes and fees, all contained in a cruise-ship ballot proposition approved in August’s primary election.

Sarah Palin now says she doesn’t feel comfortable with some aspects of the new law. She recently told tourism industry officials that if elected, she would work with them to “mitigate some of the impacts” of the law.

The new taxes and fees will generate at least $50 million a year in additional state revenue, according to recent estimates from the Alaska Department of Revenue. For the first time, the state also will put observers on cruise ships visiting Alaska to monitor the ships’ smokestack and wastewater emissions. And cruise lines will need to begin disclosing their sales commissions with on-shore vendors.

Source: [X-ref Palin] Anchorage Daily News: 2006 gubernatorial race , Oct 30, 2006

Oppose the $143 billion corporate tax bill as a tax giveaway

MURKOWSKI: Murkowski also asked Knowles if he would have voted against the corporate tax bill, which she called the “jobs” bill, even with the gas line incentives.

KNOWLES: Knowles said the gas line provisions were noncontroversial and were merely “parked” on the bill because it would become law. “That doesn’t address the merits of the jobs bill,” Knowles said. “It’s a $143 billion tax giveaway. That is a bill that, yes, I would not have supported.”

Source: AK Senate Debate, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner , Oct 20, 2004

Offer a tax credit for the industry to build a gas pipeline

KNOWLES: Knowles counts the proposed natural gas pipeline among Murkowski’s failures because he said he believes the recently approved federal incentive package didn’t go far enough. The government needs to offer a tax credit that kicks in at low prices, he said. “Without that provision, industry leaders and other participants say it’s going to be very difficult to collect the $20 billion necessary to provide the right kind of economic environment. I will continue to pursue that.”

MURKOWSKI: “We got over $700 million worth of tax credits to whoever is going to build this line. If you don’t think that’s an incentive that gets people to look at the project, you need to look again.” Another provision offers an 80 percent loan guarantee from the federal government. Other language streamlines permitting and judicial reviews. “We made it happen and it’s news that all Alaskans should be celebrating,” she said. “It’s real results; it’s not just talking about it.”

Source: AK Senate Debate, in Fairbanks Daily News-Miner , Oct 20, 2004

Support permanent tax cuts for most wage earners

Q. Is it appropriate to continue cutting taxes in the face of the nation’s growing deficit?

KNOWLES: The best way to fix our budget problems is to create jobs. I support permanent tax cuts for most wage earners but would roll back cuts for the top 1% who average $1 million a year or more. This would generate $194.5 billion that should be invested in infrastructure, health care for seniors, children and veterans, and education.

MURKOWSKI: Federal tax cuts are a means to spur economic growth. I firmly believe individuals know how to better spend their money than the government does. This means more private investment instead of inefficient government-run programs. In the long run, that leads to greater prosperity and a reduced deficit for the nation as a whole.

Source: AK Senate Debate, Q&A by Fairbanks Daily News-Miner , Oct 10, 2004

Support tax cuts for lower and middle-class

Knowles supports tax cuts for lower- and middle-class that will get the economy moving. He supports tax incentives for businesses that rebuild infrastructure and create jobs that stay in Alaska and the US. He strongly opposes tax holidays for companies that export jobs to other countries and the extremely wealthy that have cost the country trillions in lost revenue while burdening working families of this and future generations. He believes in tax fairness and that tax cuts benefit work and not wealth.
Source: 2004 Senate campaign website, TonyKnowles.com , Jun 30, 2004

No national sales tax or VAT.

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.

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 one’s 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

2010 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Tax Reform: Tony Knowles on other issues:
AK Gubernatorial:
Sean Parnell
AK Senatorial:
Lisa Murkowski
Mark Begich

2011 Special Elections:
CA-36:Jane Harman(D)
CA-36:Janice Hahn(D)
NV-2:Dean Heller(R)
NY-9:Anthony Weiner(D)
NY-26:Chris Lee(R)
NY-26:Kathleen Hochul(D)
Retiring 2012:
CA-6:Lynn Woolsey(D)
OK-2:Dan Boren(D)
MI-5:Dale Kildee(D)
TX-14:Ron Paul(R)
Running for Mayor:
CA-51:Bob Filner(D)
Running for Governor:
IN-6:Mike Pence(R)
WA-8:Dave Reichert(R)
Running for Senate:
AZ-1:Jeff Flake(R)
CT-5:Chris Murphy(R)
HI-2:Mazie Hirono(D)
IN-2:Joe Donnelly(D)
MO-2:Todd Akin(R)
MT-0:Dennis Rehberg(R)
ND-0:Rick Berg(D)
NM-1:Martin Heinrich(D)
NV-1:Shelley Berkley(D)
UT-3:Jason Chaffetz(R)
Dem. Freshmen
in 112th Congress:

AL-7:Terri Sewell
CA-33:Karen Bass
DE-0:John Carney
FL-17:Frederica Wilson
HI-1:Colleen Hanabusa
LA-2:Cedric Richmond
MA-10:Bill Keating
MI-13:Hansen Clarke
RI-1:David Cicilline
GOP Freshmen
in 112th Congress:

AL-2:Martha Roby
AL-5:Mo Brooks
AZ-1:Paul Gosar
AZ-3:Ben Quayle
AZ-5:David Schweikert
AR-1:Rick Crawford
AR-2:Tim Griffin
AR-3:Steve Womack
CA-19:Jeff Denham
CO-3:Scott Tipton
CO-4:Cory Gardner
FL-12:Dennis Ross
FL-2:Steve Southerland
FL-21:Mario Diaz-Balart
FL-22:Allen West
FL-24:Sandy Adams
FL-25:David Rivera
FL-5:Rich Nugent
FL-8:Dan Webster
GA-2:Mike Keown
GA-7:Rob Woodall
GA-8:Austin Scott
ID-1:Raul Labrador
IL-8:Joe Walsh
IL-10:Bob Dold
IL-11:Adam Kinzinger
IL-14:Randy Hultgren
IL-17:Bobby Schilling
IL-8:Joe Walsh
IN-3:Marlin Stutzman
IN-4:Todd Rokita
IN-8:Larry Bucshon
IN-9:Todd Young
KS-1:Tim Huelskamp
KS-3:Kevin Yoder
KS-5:Mike Pompeo
LA-3:Jeff Landry
MD-1:Andy Harris
MI-1:Dan Benishek
MI-2:Bill Huizenga
MI-3:Justin Amash
MI-7:Tim Walberg
MN-8:Chip Cravaack
MO-4:Vicky Hartzler
MO-7:Billy Long
MS-1:Alan Nunnelee
MS-4:Steven Palazzo
GOP Freshmen
in 111th Congress:

NC-2:Renee Ellmers
ND-0:Rick Berg
NH-2:Charlie Bass
NH-1:Frank Guinta
NJ-3:Jon Runyan
NM-2:Steve Pearce
NV-3:Joe Heck
NY-13:Michael Grimm
NY-19:Nan Hayworth
NY-20:Chris Gibson
NY-24:Richard Hanna
NY-25:Ann Marie Buerkle
NY-29:Tom Reed
OH-1:Steve Chabot
OH-15:Steve Stivers
OH-16:Jim Renacci
OH-18:Bob Gibbs
OH-6:Bill Johnson
OK-5:James Lankford
PA-10:Tom Marino
PA-11:Lou Barletta
PA-3:Mike Kelly
PA-7:Patrick Meehan
PA-8:Mike Fitzpatrick
SC-1:Tim Scott
SC-3:Jeff Duncan
SC-4:Trey Gowdy
SC-5:Mick Mulvaney
SD-0:Kristi Noem
TN-3:Chuck Fleischmann
TN-4:Scott DesJarlais
TN-6:Diane Black
TN-8:Stephen Fincher
TX-17:Bill Flores
TX-23:Quico Canseco
TX-27:Blake Farenthold
VA-2:Scott Rigell
VA-5:Robert Hurt
VA-9:Morgan Griffith
WA-3:Jaime Herrera
WI-7:Sean Duffy
WI-8:Reid Ribble
WV-1:David McKinley
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Page last updated: Nov 06, 2011