Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Ga GOP Lawmakers considers eliminating Income Tax Credit Designed to Help Low -Income Georgians

James Salzer of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes:

Today, the Senate is scheduled to vote on legislation that would cut low-income tax credits to a million Georgians who have incomes below $20,000. The tax credits are worth about $5 to $26 per person.

The tax credit measure is brainchild of Rep. David Knight (R-Griffin), who argues that there are no other, similar tax credits for people who don’t earn enough money to have a tax liability. However, the state allows some corporations to receive similar tax credits. Both programs cost the state more than $20 million per year. Knight’s bill would not impact the corporate income tax credits.

Sen. George Hooks (D-Americus), the dean of the Senate, shook his head when asked about the low-income tax credit cut. “And at the same time, we’re giving tax breaks to trillionaires on Sea Island.

My analysis:

Last week, the GOP controlled legislature combined permanent tax cuts with much-needed revenue increases in HB 1055, eliminating the state’s small share (one-fourth of a mill) of local property taxes. It also was changed to include a phase-out of state income tax on (wealthy seniors) retirement income of Georgians 65 and older.

Those two tax breaks, which wouldn’t start until 2012, would cost $380 million over five years by lawmakers’ projections.

But they want to cut the Income Tax Credit designed to help low-income people in the state. You have got to be kidding me. Low income people tend to vote democratic & are less likely to vote in elections, so the GOP probably figured "why not".

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