The Official Blog of the American Patriot: Michael J. Maxim, internet radio show host, author, and activist. In this blog you will find articles reposted from various news sources all over the internet. Many of them are used to research our show topics. You will also find original writings Michael J. Maxim posts on The Examiner and Associated Content. These are reposted here for the sole purpose of spreading information from around the internet.
According to think tanks stretching across the political spectrum, Ohio can cut into their deficit by almost $300 million a year if the state would plug some loopholes in the tax code. The conservative Buckeye Institute and the moderate Center for Community Services and Greater Ohio all have issued proposals to the state assembly outlining their plans to save the state some money.
Some of the loopholes they pointed out are outdated and only benefit a few the groups stated in their reports to the state. For example there is a tax break for people who buy time shares in jet aircraft, which cost taxpayers $1 million a year; a tax credit for people who make campaign contributions, which cost $4.9 million; and a $50 tax credit for people 65 and older, which cost $33 million. All of which will help with the state’s deficit of up to $8 billion according o the recently passed two-year state budget.
With both groups in agreement signs of Ohio’s State Assembly working in a bi-partisan way on these issues are good; however the issue is still a hot and politically dangerous topic to say the least. Governor Kasich and House Speaker William G. Batchelder have signed "no-tax" pledges created by the group Americans for Tax Reform. Spokesman for the group Patrick Gleason did release a statement saying that the pledge would not be violated as long as any tax changes are "revenue neutral," or offset by additional tax breaks so the state is not left with additional revenue. However if any politician that did sign the pledge does violate it then the group will inform the constituents and will fight against their re-election bids.
Even though the groups are in agreement to close the tax loopholes they do not agree on what the extra money should go for. The Buckeye Institute says it should be used to offer tax breaks to small and medium-sized business to spur job creation and The Center for Community Solutions wants to use the money for behavioral health services and services for older adults, which it says could lead to Medicaid savings in the long run. Greater Ohio wants to offer incentives for more local and regional government reforms. All of which will save the state money in the long run in theory.
While it is still unclear if any of these loopholes will be closed it seems that the reports have sparked interest in both parties. Representatives of the groups did sit down with Kasich’s budget director Tim Keen, but no word yet on if the Governor agrees with the reports or not.
"What one person describes as closing a tax loophole another person calls raising taxes," spokesman Rob Nichols released in an email statement on the issue. "While in Congress, Governor Kasich was well-known for taking on inappropriate corporate welfare and that commitment continues. I think you'd be hard-pressed to find too many Ohioans right now who think their taxes are too low, however."