Letters to the Editor

Don’t decry income taxes | Letter

Email your letter to: letters@kirklandreporter.com - File art
Email your letter to: letters@kirklandreporter.com
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With regard to Sen. Rodney Tom’s article bemoaning new tax hikes, I agree with Tom that the myriad of new taxes is burdensome and oppressive.

But rather than decry income taxes, I say – as a small businessperson and aspiring middle class citizen he claims to have the ear of – institute a true state income tax to reduce the confusion, simplify the tax code and apply a fairer cost model to state residents.

Why is Washington state one of a handful of states to not have an income tax? All but one of the others without an income tax have the benefit of oil and natural gas royalties.

Reduce the state sales tax by 75 percent or more so we lose fewer shoppers across state borders. Reduce the business and occupation tax so small businesses can reinvest in their own growth and survival. And create an income tax that recognizes some are in a position to pay more than others.

If I’m at the hardware store and pay the same sales tax rate as Bill Gates or Steve Ballmer who are in line with me, but I go home to eat hamburger and they have their hamburger served to them on the finest dinnerware, the divide between the 1 percent and 99 percent will continue to widen.

New Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson says tolls are here to stay and endorses a proposed 10 cent per gallon tax increase for a state that already has some of the highest gas taxes in the nation. Again, another regressive tax. Paul Allen’s lawn mower gas costs the same as mine but I need to mow my grass myself.

One final note: If Sen. Tom (or any other politician) is going to get as many column inches as this in the newspaper, I’d encourage he or his staff get a byline to make it clear to readers that the article wasn’t intended to offer balanced coverage.

Jeff Hoerth, Kirkland

 

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