Thursday, November 26, 2020 10:52 pm

Arizona lawmakers ponder automatic income tax cut

By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services via Pinal Central

It’s not quite the “taxpayer bill of rights” that then-Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed nearly a decade ago as “too restrictive.”But state lawmakers are weighing legislation that, if it works as advertised, could result in automatic cuts in income tax rates with no chance of them ever returning to where they are now.

The proposal set for Senate debate Monday requires budget officials to figure out how much of a “surplus” the state has each year. Then, after accounting for inflation, population growth and required spending, the Department of Revenue is required to adjust income tax rates to return 50% of that to individual taxpayers.

Sen. J.D. Mesnard, R-Chandler, who crafted SB 1489, said it’s designed to both allow the state budget, estimated to hit $12.3 billion this year, to continue to increase to meet the needs of a growing state and provide enough flexibility for lawmakers — and even voters — to enact new programs.

But some Democrats say there’s a major flaw.

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