@NCCapitol

@NCCapitol

NC Dems blast GOP - again - on taxes

Posted April 7, 2015

— With tax day just eight days away, state Democratic leaders held a news conference Tuesday to accuse Republican leaders of misleading the public about their 2013 tax overhaul.

That overhaul doubled the standard deduction on state income taxes and lowered the tax rate from a progressive tiered scheme of 6, 7 and 7.75 percent to a flat rate of 5.8 percent for all income – a modest cut for workers who earn less but a generous one for the state's highest earners. The corporate tax rate was cut from 6.9 to 6 percent for the 2014 tax year.

However, the overhaul also repealed many tax deductions and credits taxpayers have been able to claim for years, from medical expenses and college tuition to child care and small-business income. Those changes have come as an unpleasant surprise to some taxpayers preparing their returns due next week.

Republican authors of the reform said most people, although not all, would end up paying less. But Democrats say they've heard plenty from constituents of both parties who did not come out ahead. They're accusing GOP leaders and Gov. Pat McCrory, who signed the legislation, of cutting deductions for the middle class to pay for corporate and high-income tax breaks.

"We’re hearing from people across the board about the damage that’s been done by this Republican majority and this Republican governor," said Rep. Susan Fisher, D-Buncombe. "Gov. McCrory and the Republican legislature are costing them dearly, and they deserve to know who was prioritized ahead of them."

"People feel duped by this governor and the legislature," said Sen. Mike Woodard, D-Durham. "They were promised the largest tax cut in history. Instead, they’re paying more and watching millionaires get a break on their yachts and their jets, and that’s just wrong."

House Minority Leader Larry Hall rattled off a list of GOP measures he says have hurt lower-income families: higher gas taxes, expanded sales taxes, cuts to unemployment benefits and the sunset of the state's Earned Income Tax Credit after Republicans declined to extend it.

"Over the next five years, Gov. McCrory will give away a billion a year to North Carolina’s wealthiest individuals and largest corporations," Hall, D-Durham, said. "In fact, two-thirds of the money will go to individuals with incomes over $900,000 a year. Who’s paying for it? Middle-class families and workers."

The state Republican Party issued a emailed response to the Democratic press conference.

"Gov. McCrory signed historic tax reform into law which puts more money into the pocketbooks of working North Carolinians as well as small businesses, but the North Carolina Democrat Party continues to launch attacks based on the same old liberal talking points," executive director Todd Poole said in the statement. "The fact is the Democrat Party wants to bring North Carolina back to the high tax, big government system that has failed North Carolina in the past.”

46 Comments

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  • Eric Hammond Apr 9, 2015
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    don't think your taxes went up? think again! 1) taxes on power bill TRIPLED (with only a very VERY slight increase in use over last year) 2) at the grocery store - bought $100 in groceries & paid nearly DOUBLE the taxes I paid last year for the same stuff (nothing fancy, just staples and toiletries) - sad thing is that people are too dim to realize that those 2 things alone (among many) are roughly the same for EVERY family of 3 no matter what you make annually and THAT is hitting the middle & working classes with HIGHER taxes so they can give the rich a break! WHY is the GOP getting away with class warfare? flat taxes, and regressive/opressive taxes are REPEATEDLY proven throughout history to ruin countries! and "trickle - down economics" has been proven to be completely BOGUS - don't think so? - look it up! every time the tax rate has been lower on the rich than on the middle class the economy has tanked within 8 years! 1921 gave us 1929, 1980 = 1988, and 2001 = 2009

  • Carl Keehn Apr 9, 2015
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    In fairness to the public schools in North Carolina, they are not ranked badly according to achievement, in fact the ALEC database lists them as 16th. It is only in the treatment of staff and teachers that North Carolina ranks poorly.

    There is one area in which North Carolina exceeds. According to the NEA and adjusting for inflation, North Carolina has show the greatest decrease in teacher salaries in the decade between 2003-04 and 2013-14; with a 17.4% decline.

  • Mary Zulch Apr 8, 2015
    user avatar

    I know my taxes went up, and my kids are not getting the education they used to. Yet again, our government is proposing more tax cuts for businesses. We cannot afford what has already been done to our tax base. So very sad. I tell everyone to stay away from this state, especially if they have children and cannot afford private school...unless private school is a benefit of their company. Keep your children out of NC public schools. They are in the bottom 8% of all the country. That should say something, and it does,

  • Anne Nemous Apr 8, 2015
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    The harsh reality is that by and large these tax cuts weren't cuts for the middle class. By doing away with credits and breaks for charitable contributions, adoption expenses, small home office write offs, etc, they did indeed raise taxes on the middle. The wealthiest in the state saw the lion's share of benefit and the folks at the bottom also subsidized a tax cut for the rich by losing the EITC.

  • Terry Watts Apr 8, 2015
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    Cyclical...

    The fact of the matter is teachers make $45k per year however you slice and dice it...

    Gotta go home, talk to you tomorrow!

  • Collin McLoud Apr 8, 2015
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    Wow Terry, I never said anything about partisanship, taking back the country, or redistribution. Misquote much?

  • Collin McLoud Apr 8, 2015
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    Apparently you don't get it. You can't compare salaries of people who work a full 12 months to people who work 10 months.
    Yes, it is true that year-round teachers make the same as traditional 10 month teachers. However Instead of attending school in four consecutive nine-week periods, then taking a two-month summer break, year-round teachers work in six-week blocks and take three weeks off in between each block. This means that they work about the same amount of time thus the same pay.

  • Terry Watts Apr 8, 2015
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    So what you're saying is that your partisanship gets in the way of reasonable thinking - that when its your side raising the taxes, its "taking back the country". But when its the other, its the "redistribution"... Hilarious...

  • Terry Watts Apr 8, 2015
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    Wow... You still don't get it do you... Teachers get paid by the year. They do not "lose" anything. We know this b/c they get paid $3750 per month for 12, and $4500 per month for 10. You even agreed with that particular fact below.

    We also know this b/c year-round teachers do not make 16.7% more than their traditional peers.

  • Collin McLoud Apr 8, 2015
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    Why do you IGNORE the FACT that if someone doesn't work for 2 months out of the year that they would lose 16.7% of the annual income?

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