Tough economic times may lay ahead, but that’s no reason not to give Georgia residents tax breaks. If anything it’s even more of a reason to provide relief, as taxpayers are caught in the same wicked cycle.
Unfortunately, that line of reasoning appears lost on those who argue that state lawmakers should ditch plans to do away with ad valorem taxes on automobiles and reduce the state’s income tax rate. Opponents of relief say tax breaks will force the state to make budget cuts which in turn will force local governments to raise local taxes.
That’s assuming, of course, that government is incapable of cutting costs when, to the contrary, there is ample evidence that government at just about every level can afford to reduce spending. If you doubt this, simply take a look around at government spending habits, which range from providing taxpayer funded vehicles - many quite nice - for some employees to providing a raft of services that aren’t absolutely essential to ensure public health and safety and a solid education for children.
With the legislative session scheduled to wrap up Friday, it was still unclear at our opinion page deadline whether Georgians will see tax relief. But it remains our view there are ways for government to cut budgets without sacrificing the basics, ways that will give taxpayers a break.
Bryan County News
April 5, 2008