Utah lawmakers pull plug on tax reform this session

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  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    March 8, 2019 2:17 p.m.

    It's quite telling that not even our far leftist, "I never met a tax I didn't want to triple!" posters are against this idea. This is a horrible idea.

    Just consider: this would tax legal services. So, every divorce, every person accused of a crime, every person injured, every time you want a contract drawn up... all suddenly more expensive. Who pays? Everyone! Small, solo attorneys aren't equipped to pay sales taxes, just like one to two man construction companies, or hair salons, and so on. The big companies don't care, because this punishes the small service providers.

    And what about out of state services? Do I as the attorney or architect or whomever have to pay sales taxes on services rendered? Doctors who save a life on the side of the road? Etc Etc Etc.

    This is an awful idea.

  • My 2 Bits Orem, UT
    March 8, 2019 12:59 p.m.

    I can't believe what is going on in this state. A legislature run by real estate and development professionals voting on other people's private property use (the right to petition is trying to be significantly altered) and seriously degrade our local business. The only voice of reality I saw on this was from a legal professional. Everyone else was green light go. The reality of this is that it hits everyone. I don't raise my red flag often, but this is one of them. This will make small business owners close shop and those that care to deal with it will simply push the bill on consumers, slowing the economy that is already showing signs of slow down. I am just grateful that my representative had her head in the clouds and all she cares about is daylight savings time... Can't we go back to debating that instead?

  • Tumbleweed Centerville, UT
    March 8, 2019 9:07 a.m.

    Can you imagine what this bill could do to the price of a home or office building if every subcontractor gets taxed for their services?

  • Farmington Fan Farmington, UT
    March 8, 2019 7:34 a.m.

    Taxing services is a bad idea. The legislature and governor seem to think that we should all accept this idea as something great. They need to get over their "group think" on this very stupid idea.

    Kill this bill, and don't resurrect it as a zombie or otherwise. Just like a zombie, it would eat our economy alive and be detrimental to everyone.

  • old cuss 101 Salt Lake City, UT
    March 8, 2019 12:07 a.m.

    It would help the discussion for all to note that the nation's wealth comes from two basic sources: 1- natural resources and 2- human capital, both in a variety of forms. Money represents wealth circulates in and through the economy and does more and goes further when it circulates completely and quickly. Money under the mattress may be good for the individual, but counterproductive to active circulation of wealth.

    We accept that governments have to channel off (tax) a percent of the circulating money/wealth in order to function. The revenue is not exactly wasted as it goes mainly for goods and services, but it is altered in its path of circulation. As a regulator, government adds little value to the economy, but it can affect +/- the general welfare of the country.

    It is long held that a good tax program draws from a broad number of money circulation paths. So we have sales, income, property, excise, transportation and like taxes. Taxing labor/services directly hits value generation at the wellhead and is so personal and universal and anti-progressive as to be widely resisted. Taxing labor is brutally fair, but onerous. We all would pay in tax and increased cost of goods.

  • Strider303 American Fork, UT
    March 7, 2019 10:58 p.m.

    Time for all of us to seriously engage our state representatives and senators about this idea, concept of "expanding the tax base". I think many of them have not read much if anything of the various editions of HB441. Yet they were willing to vote on it.

    If we are wise, we, the public will pressure the legislature to not bring it up in a special session but force the proponents to run on this bill in the next election as a way to measure public support.

    I suggest questioning every legislator on his or her opinion and how they plan to vote and publicize their responses. The media needs to question the governor and legislative leaders constantly to determine what they know and why they are in favor of this apparently very unpopular bill.

  • Red Smith , 00
    March 7, 2019 10:11 p.m.

    We need to cut the size of State gov't or tax cuts mean nothing.

  • ConservativeCommonTater Salt Lake City, UT
    March 7, 2019 6:43 p.m.

    Is "tax reform" the same as not being able to raise taxes...again. Every legislative session seems to increase taxes, by our "fiscally responsible Republicans" that love to raise taxes. So much that we have a $1.3 BILLION over taxation surplus. And those good Republicans are still trying to increase more taxes.

    Republicans love taxes, unless it affects the wealthy.

  • BillRands Syracuse, UT
    March 7, 2019 6:33 p.m.

    As is, it sounds like s tax increase not a decrease. A 0.02 percentage point decrease in the income tax rate will be swamped by the sales tax on all the services we use each year. Can you imagine paying a sales tax on a $20,000 medical operation? Will insurance companies pay the sales tax on medical procedures and prescriptions or will you and I have to pay out of our own pocket? Lots of questions need to be answered.

  • sheriffcreg SANDY, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:49 p.m.

    It was an awful bill with all kinds of unintended consequences. It would essentially shift a huge portion of the tax burden onto a select few individuals who are unlucky enough to use high-priced services in any given year. (e.g., non-life-saving surgeries, legal services for expensive lawsuits, etc.) It was also unclear whether out-of-state clients would have to pay for in-state services or whether businesses who service out-of-state clients would simply have to just pay the tax themselves out of their own pockets. (Which would be a clear signal for those businesses to establish themselves elsewhere)

    It was also dishonest to advertise the bill as a tax cut. It's clearly not. There are a few people who will pay less, but the vast majority of people will pay more. And it will result in significantly less profit for businesses, which is tied to peoples' bonuses.

    Not to mention that it comes with a reduction in income tax, which is tied to education. So Education would have gotten dinged $50-100M statewide unless the bill was rewritten to account for that.

    It was a bad bill. There's a reason why 47/50 states don't have a service-sales tax.

  • LoveLondon Murray, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:50 p.m.

    Some of the worst legislation ever proposed. We do not need to tax everything.

    Keep calling your legislators and tell them not to pass HB441 in any shape or form.

  • shamrock Salt Lake City, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:31 p.m.

    Seems like the legislators could easily have anticipated the uproar about the taxes imposed on services BEFORE the session and addressed those concerns then, instead of floundering during the session.

  • Vanceone Provo, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:30 p.m.

    I'm glad it died.... now it's time to burn the corpse and salt the ground where it stood, so it cannot be reborn this summer.

  • B-Real2 Saratoga Springs, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:27 p.m.

    Community pages all around showed responses from citizens overwhelming opposed to this HB441 bill, and the whole idea around it, over 95% of Utahn's were sharing they were against this...yes they were informal online polls...but THANK GOODNESS for social media on this one, it allowed Utahn's to speak up quickly and loudly and say: HOLD ON!! No reason to rush through something so significant! Why do we want to become just the 5th state to tax services like this?! I am shocked it even got this far into the legislative process.

    The comments here, on this topic the last week, have all been against this. Please learn from this state legislatures, we don't want a bigger tax base, we don't want more taxes, we want simplicity. If your tax package doesn't make things easier or simpler, scrap the idea and start over.

  • North Salt Lake North Salt Lake, UT
    March 7, 2019 5:19 p.m.

    Please vote no on HB 441. We need less taxes, not more. This bill represents a new and expanded layer of taxation, with additional forms, compliance time and complexity. It also unfairly favors some businesses over others. Utah runs a budget surplus. "Don't mess with success." Please do not do impose of this tax system on us.