Gov. Mike Easley Proposes to Continue Tax Increases

Today, North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley announced plans to postpone the $460 million in tax relief scheduled to go into effect next fiscal year. The Governor claims that the plan would simply freeze “tax breaks” and doesn’t constitute a tax increase.

CSE says that claim is wrong.

To extend the one-half cent increase in sales taxes will cost taxpayers an additional $370 million next fiscal year. That’s a tax increase.

To continue the one-half percent increase in the income tax rate will cost taxpayers an additional $ 40 million next fiscal year. That’s a tax increase.

In 2001, taxpayers were promised expanded tax deductions (growing the child tax credit from $60 to $75 per child and the standard deduction from $5,000 to $5,500). To fail to deliver those deductions will cost taxpayers an additional $50 million next fiscal year.

CSE North Carolina Director Jonathan Hill commented, “Anytime there is a change in public policy that results in more money going from North Carolina families to the state government in Raleigh, that’s a tax increase.

”When Governor Easley told reporters, ‘You are probably going to have to freeze the tax structure right now,’ what he really means is he refuses to freeze out of control state spending. Before the Governor decides to take more money from North Carolina citizens, he should first evaluate the size of the state government and all of its programs.

“CSE clearly sees the Governor’s move as a continuation of tax increases on the hard working people of North Carolina.

“Promises for tax relief were made, and now they’re promises broken. CSE members are going to fight to stop these proposed tax increases.”