DavesPaper.com | by DP News Staff | April 28, 2023
A two-year current services budget was already passed, leaving more than enough money to provide relief to Maine taxpayers without cutting any services or existing programs.
AUGUSTA – Following news from Maine’s Revenue Forecasting Committee today, Legislative Republicans renewed their call for meaningful tax relief, especially for low- and middle-income earners struggling to keep pace with higher living costs. Updated preliminary revenue projections from the Committee for the current and next two fiscal years show the state could have nearly $1 billion more in revenue above the two-year current services budget passed last month by Democrats.
Republican leaders issued the following joint statement in response to the updated forecast:
“Today’s Revenue Forecast Committee meeting should be great news for Maine taxpayers if it leads to lower taxes for workers and their families. State government has used the pandemic to grow $2 billion larger, while family budgets have gotten smaller. People are struggling to heat their homes, pay their electric bills, buy groceries, fill their gas tanks, and pay rising prices on everyday items. The current revenue projections will allow us to lower taxes so that Maine’s people can keep more of their hard-earned money.
“Republicans are calling on Democrats to commit to working with us to end the practice of over-collecting and over-taxing our citizens and then sending part of it back to some. This practice of picking winners and losers must end.
“With our bills covered for the next two years, there is no good reason why we cannot commit $400 million to provide comprehensive relief to taxpayers out of a budget that may ultimately reach $10.8 billion. This can be done without cutting any services or existing programs.
“We stand ready to work with Democrats to help workers and their families who have lost, on average, $7,500 in purchasing power this past year from out-of-control inflation due to failed economic and energy policies. We must act now.”