Letter to the Editor

Ideas sought on tax relief plan

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dear citizens of District 23:

The repeal of the personal property tax recommended by the governor has caused a great deal of concern in our district especially with the counties, cities, educational entities and others.

My goal is to find a solution that would be helpful to all concerned.

Outright repeal is not a solution because it would create choas with those listed above. This tax has always been passed on to the customers of all business entities and those customers pay the tax when they purchase the products and services of business. When a business in our local area does business outside of our local area they are collecting the tax from customers who live outside the area, Idaho or even the USA. The taxes collected from those outside our area is then paid to all the entities listed above from the local businesses.

Can we afford to give up that revenue in one outright repeal action? There has to be a better solution.

The governor has suggested a local option tax and Idaho would create a fund of $20,000,000 to help in the loss of revenue.

I'm not in favor of local option taxes. That does not lower taxes.

There are a host of problems with outright repeal.

For the record, I am opposed to the personal property tax. This is a difficult tax to collect and is not a fair tax. When you purchased the personal property you paid a sale tax and then you have to pay personal property tax every year thereafter until you dispose of the property. You may recall this tax was removed from agriculture equipment years ago and I was in full support. Idaho should have kept the removal of this tax going at that time. Business has been asking where is our relief and rightly so.

We need to find solutoin that will help all parties involved and can be worked into the economic system to improve the financial health of all concerned and this will take time. We do need to start. Maybe we need to reclassify our definition of personal property and put in good ideas slowly and carefully to avoid chaos. I repeat, we do need to start. Yes, it may cause some pain but many are feeling pain with the present system. This will take patience and effort an everyone's part. When you have ideas for solutions please let me know.

Yours for a more prosperous and free tomorrow.

-- Rep. Pete Nielsen