Home » Opinion » Editorials
County income tax? Better to go the opposite way
The far left will never stop trying to impose an income tax on the people of New Hampshire. The more firmly the people reject one, the more creative the left will get. The latest effort involves empowering the counties to do the dirty work, and although it has little chance of passing, Granite Staters should consider it a warning shot worth heeding.
State Rep. Delmar Burridge, D-Keene, has introduced a bill to enable counties to impose a 1 percent income tax. What makes this proposal more interesting than most others is that it would not raise revenue for the state's general fund, but instead let county legislative delegations impose the income tax within their own counties. As Republican Rep. David Hess, R-Hooksett, has pointed out, that is a clear violation of the New Hampshire Constitution's Part 2, Article 5, which guarantees proportional taxation statewide. Moreover, it would instantly give counties significantly more power. Over time the 1 percent tax would be raised and its statutory dedication to teacher pay relaxed, and county government would expand in size, scope and burden.
This proposal comes at a time when there is some bipartisan agreement that counties already are unnecessarily burdensome. Charlie Arlinghaus, president of the Josiah Bartlett Center, questions the need for county government at all. Most of its functions can be done by the state or local governments at a cost savings to taxpayers, he says. Former state Democratic Party Chairman Kathy Sullivan has seconded those sentiments.
When both sides acknowledge the cost savings to be had by shrinking or even eliminating county governments, why in the world would we want to make counties bigger and more powerful?
That this bill comes after 57 percent of Granite Staters voted to impose a constitutional ban on the income tax shows how persistent the left will be in its pursuit of its holy grail. It will never quit, which means that New Hampshire's anti-income-tax majority can never quit fighting back.
READER COMMENTS: 3
- Another View -- Cass Sunstein: A salute to the graceful silence of George W. Bush - 7
- David Harsanyi : Run, Liz, run! - 16
- Another View -- Bill O'Brien: Ask your state rep. to vote for transparency in the House - 43
- Another View -- Harold Meyerson: The right underestimates Elizabeth Warren's appeal - 39
- Jonah Goldberg: There was a time when we stood up to threats against free speech - 2
- Why I voted against the 'CRomnibus' spending bill - 20
- Another View -- Devon Chaffee: Why interrogators believe America should never torture - 2
- David Harsanyi: GOP establishment, stop whining - 0
- John Stossel: Individual giving beats government giving - 4
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Two Manchester women arrested in separate shoplifting incidents in Hooksett - 1
- Maine police search car belonging to husband of Londonderry shooting victim - 0
- Man arrested after chase, threatening to shoot police in Bow - 0
- Good Samaritan pins Manchester purse snatcher - 0
- Homeless man who saved woman from river: 'I don't consider myself a hero' - 9
- High School Basketball: Rivalries renewed in QCIBT - 0
- Dave D'Onofrio's Patriots Notebook: Will they get everything on their list? - 0
- Tuohy brothers add new restaurant in familiar spot - 0
- New Horizons volunteers deliver groceries and good cheer, making Christmas special - 0
Londonderry schools placed on lockdown after soldier's unplanned visit to high school causes alarm
Police say woman tried to steal 15 iPads