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Special to Citizens for a Sound Economy
BACKGROUNDER: THE TAXPAYER’S BILL OF RIGHTS (TABOR) WOULD:
WHY DO WE NEED IT?
• Wisconsin’s GPR spending grew at nearly twice the rate of population plus inflation (CPI) between 1992 and 2002.
• In a world where special interests can manipulate government into spending more and more money, we need spending caps to hold taxes down.
• If TABOR had been in effect since 1992, Wisconsin taxpayers would have saved more than $1.5 billion last year alone. That’s a one-year savings of $276 for every man, woman, and child in the state. Imagine the investment that could be done with that money. Imagine the spending power that would mean for a family.
• Governments can only raise tax rates if the voters agree to it through a referendum. Those referenda can only be held on specific dates – regular election dates. Spending proponents will not be able to sneak in a referendum at an unusual time, when they can count on voter turnout to be low.
THE RAINY DAY FUND
• Governments will be required to create an emergency fund equal to 3% of their annual expenditures, and a budget stabilization fund equal to 4% to 15% of annual expenditures. A two-thirds majority vote will be required
before the budget stabilization fund can be used, and it must be replenished at a rate of 1% per year.
• Spending limits may be exceeded in case of emergency. TABOR requires a two-thirds majority vote in each house of the Legislature (or the school board, county board, etc.) to declare an emergency, then a two-thirds majority in each house on the specific tax hike.
• Emergency spending can only be approved once the rainy day fund is exhausted, and unused funds must be refunded if not used within 180 days.
LET THE PEOPLE VOTE
• A referendum is required any time the state or local government wants to:
• Exceed the spending limits outlined in the constitution;
• Raise the rates of the income, corporate, sales or franchise taxes;
• Enter into new bonding.
SUPPORT THE TAXPAYER BILL OF RIGHTS
Rep. Frank Lasee
608-266-9870 or 888-534-0002