Orcutt says families and employers cannot afford House tax proposal

'This is $850 million that our economy cannot afford,' says Orcutt

Democrat budget writers in the House of Representatives finally released their tax proposal this afternoon.  The plan includes a tax on bottled water, candy, gum, cigarettes and janitorial services.

Rep. Ed Orcutt, R-Kalama and ranking Republican on the House Finance Committee which holds public hearings on tax measures, released this statement:

“This is $850 million that our economy cannot afford.  This doesn't make the task of economic recovery for our families and employers any easier.  These tax increases will lead to more layoffs and further delay employers from hiring back workers.  Also, it will further erode the ever-decreasing buying power of low- and middle-income families.

“I personally know an employer in my district that works in janitorial services.  This tax is the difference between her keeping her workers employed or being forced to go down the road of layoffs.

“And, adding another dollar to the price of cigarettes is only going to create an underground economy, or force people to go the tribal reservations or, in border areas like Southwest Washington, encourage folks to go across state lines to make their purchases.  The secondary affects of people leaving this state also needs to be considered.  The mom and pop convenience stores in our state are going to suffer because of these tax increases.

“The Senate Democrats want to increase the sales tax.  The governor wants to tax an assortment of items, similar to the House proposal.  While we don't know exactly what the final tax package will look like, I can almost guarantee you it will only go in one direction – UP!  At the end of the day, it's going to look ugly for taxpayers.”

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Washington State House Republican Communications