BY RICHARD LEE FALE – I am sending this as a concerned citizen looking to help my community and keep myself informed, educated and engaged.
Our State’s budget forecast is dim. Yesterday, the Council of Revenues met again at the the request of Governor Abercrombie to reevaluate our State’s financial forecast in the wake of the devastating earthquakes in Japan and unexpectedly low projections of tax revenue.
Our State government, including the Legislature, is looking into numerous proposals to increase revenue or cut spending. Some of the most significant measures include:
Moved through House, being heard by Senate:
*HB 1092- Taxes pensions of retirees with $100,000 total income for single filing taxpayers or $200,000 for joint filing taxpayers. (Effective December 31, 2011)
HB 1041- Eliminates Medicare Part B reimbursements for retirees and spouses. (Effective for those hired after June 30, 2010).
*HB 1102- Increases vehicle weight tax $0.01 per pound on all personal vehicles and some commercial vehicles; doubles flat fee for vehicles over 10,000 lbs from $150 to $300.
*HB 1101- Increases State’s vehicle registration fee from $25 to $45
HB 1043- Appropriates unspecified Hurricane Relief Fund to address fiscal concerns and balance this year’s budget.
Moved through Senate, being heard by House:
*SB 1270- Borrows unspecified amount from Hurricane Relief Fund to address fiscal concerns and balance this year’s budget.
SB 935: Appropriates unspecified amount from the State’s Rainy Day Fund to pay for essential state programs.
*Have hearings this week or soon.
Our elected officials need to hear from YOU about what you feel is important for our State government to do to balance the budget.
Please contact your elected officials and share your concerns with them. Let them know which of these measures you support or do not support. If you are feeling even more compelled, I encourage you to submit testimony on some of these bills. Just click here and enter the bill you want to submit testimony for. It will talk you through the rest of the process.
Together, we can make a difference for our community and the State. I encourage you to share this with colleagues, friends and family and urge them to keep up with legislation that matters most to them.
Thank you for your continued support and don’t stop fighting the good fight for the sake of our State, its people and generations to come.
Richard Lee Fale was a candidate for House district 45. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org