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House Republican Leader Ken Fredette of Newport
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Augusta, Maine 04333-0002


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For Immediate Release

Date: 12/13/13

Statement of Rep. Fredette on Tax Review Task Force

AUGUSTA - The Democratic chairs of the Tax Expenditure Review Task Force briefed the Appropriations Committee on their ideas Thursday. House Republican Leader Ken Fredette made the following statement in reaction.

"Mainers overwhelmingly believe that we should reduce spending instead of increasing taxes to solve the state's budget problems, and they're right. Unfortunately, Democrats have rejected every spending reduction to come before them while doubling down on new taxes on Maine families—everything from haircuts to movie tickets.

The purpose of the tax task force was to identify outdated credits that are no longer helping companies create jobs, but instead, the majority-liberal panel recommended new taxes on workers, students, and small businesses. The task force needs to go back to its original objective and Democrats must fulfill the other end of the bargain, which is to reduce our out of control state spending."

BACKGROUND:

As part of the budget, the tax expenditure review task force was tasked with finding $40 million in corporate tax incentives to eliminate. They instead proposed $82 million to eliminate, with only $20 million directed at businesses. The rest were new taxes on services, amusements, cable/satellite TV, Opportunity Maine student credits, and more. (See here)

Also as part of the budget, the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) was tasked with recommending $34 million in spending cuts; some would be implemented by the Administration without legislative pre-approval for the current fiscal year, but roughly two-thirds would have to be approved by the legislature for Fiscal Year 2015. Democrats summarily rejected all of OPM's recommendations without offering their own alternatives.

Contact:
David Sorensen
Maine House Republicans
Tel: (207) 205-7793