Home » Opinion » Editorials
Tax holiday: But no spending holiday
In Massachusetts, not even the “tax-free weekend” is tax free. It is just another trick to get people to think that their government is looking out for them.
This weekend, Massachusetts residents can buy things in their own state without paying a sales tax. But don’t get carried away.
“In Massachusetts, the two-day exemption from the state’s 6.25 percent sales tax excludes restaurant meals, cars, motorboats, tobacco and any item that costs more than $2,500,” The Boston Globe reported.
Up here, as Gov. John Lynch pointed out on Thursday in what has become his annual nose-thumbing at the politicians who dwell below our southern border, the sales tax is something we don’t put up with.
In Massachusetts, most items come with a 6.25 percent sales tax. Some people say that is not a lot of money. For pennies they will never miss, people can pay for essential state services. That point of view is hard to reconcile with this fact: Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick in July set aside $20 million in the state budget to make up for revenue that would be “lost” during this weekend.
Of course, the money is not lost. It is spent — by the people who earned it, on things they need or want, not by the state on things the politicians need or want. To put that $20 million in context, the state budget Patrick signed last month was $1.9 billion larger than last year’s Massachusetts state budget.
So hungry for revenue is the Commonwealth of Massachusetts that it cannot trim spending by even $20 million out of $32.5 billion. It cannot let its people go a single weekend sans sales taxes without finding the same amount of money somewhere else so the politicians can spend it. It takes a “tax holiday,” but not a spending holiday.
The State of New Hampshire is not that ravenous. Not now. Let’s make sure it stays that way. Or one day we will end up living in a state that tells us we can shop tax-free one weekend a month, but only if we buy off of the politicians’ list of approved items.
READER COMMENTS: 4
- Disengaged: Obama's lousy excuse - 14
- Underestimating NH: Gun control picks two wrong targets - 29
- Roaming jihadis: A terrorist visits Manchester - 4
- Athletes and PE: Give them credit for sports - 7
- The EPA's friend: It has a loyal ally in Shea-Porter - 16
- Leading vs. following: Ayotte, Shaheen and the polls - 24
- The cupcake police: Stop! In the name of lard! - 15
- Page One Editorial: Obama is right - 27
- Taxed tips: Another NH revenue grab - 9
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Portsmouth woman faces up to life in prison in fatal overdose - 0
- Mass. sex offender indicted for sex assault on child at Plaistow Walmart - 0
- Home care worker indicted for kidnapping, sexual assault of male client - 0
- Police say house guest helped himself to credit card - 0
- Police say women were smoking crack with 2-year-old in car - 0
- Tools, copper piping stolen from construction trailers in Manchester - 0
- Firefighters say casino revenue needed for 'public safety' - 8
- Two sustained minor injuries in Rochester crash Sunday - 0
- Boat crash in Tuftonboro investigated - 0
Town may have to fix grave error
UNH hires firm to redesign one of its logos
Disengaged: Obama's lousy excuse
Chechen decries Boston attack