Creating exemptions, raising sales tax rates and discriminating against certain products with higher taxes are all examples of bad tax policy. By proposing such tax increases, state Sen. Les Donovan, R-Wichita, showed his ignorance for what sound tax policy should look like.
As a general rule, the optimal tax structure is one that maintains low rates, is broad-based and is not distorting. Abiding by these sound tax principles encourages economic growth and makes budgets more predictable.
Donovan’s “divide and conquer” approach to tax policy would accomplish just the opposite.
Each of his proposed tax hikes would unduly burden lower- and moderate-income families. Taking more money from financially strained families in Kansas will not only hurt the state’s economy, but will burden all Kansans.
Going forward, the Legislature needs to focus on comprehensive tax reform and an overhaul of the government work force, and show a real commitment to reducing its expenditures.
The Heartland Institute,
This letter to the editor was originally published in The Topeka Capital-Journal.