Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
About this Blog   |   On Twitter   |   Follow us on Facebook   |   RSS Feeds RSS Feed
Posted at 3:10 PM ET, 01/18/2011

Norquist urges legislators not to raises taxes

By Anita Kumar
Anita Kumar

Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform and one of the nation's best-known anti-tax activists, sent a letter to Virginia legislators Tuesday urging them to oppose any tax increases during the General Assembly's session.

"There is never a good time for a tax increase, but now as you work to get this economy moving, it would be most detrimental to any prospect of economic growth and job creation,'' he wrote in his letter. "On November 2nd, all over the nation and in the Commonwealth of Virginia the voters spoke resoundingly against higher taxes and spending; I would urge you to guard against forgetting their voices during the session."

Norquist singled out two bills that he said would raise taxes, including one from Del. David Albo (R-Fairfax), which would tax out-of-state corporations that sell services in Virginia as a way to raise up to $200 million for the state's traffic-clogged roads, and one from Del. Joe Morissey (D-Richmond), which would levy a 20-cent tax on plastic bags.

He also encouraged lawmakers to pass Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposals to bond $2.9 billion for roads and to privatize the state's 333 liquor stores.

Read the full letter below:

January 18, 2011

Virginia Senate
Virginia House of Delegates

Dear Legislator,

Now that the General Assembly has convened for the 2011 session, calls for tax increases are already arising. I urge you to reject any and all tax increases that are presented to you. There is never a good time for a tax increase, but now as you work to get this economy moving, it would be most detrimental to any prospect of economic growth and job creation. On November 2nd, all over the nation and in the Commonwealth of Virginia the voters spoke resoundingly against higher taxes and spending; I would urge you to guard against forgetting their voices during the session.

As you worked to erase an overspending problem in the 2010 session, I urge you to continue to address this problem in the 2011 session. Currently, there are some pieces of legislation that would only be patching the problem with tax increases, rather than curtailing spending and eliminating inefficiencies. Americans for Tax Reform stands firmly with Virginians all over the Commonwealth in firm opposition to any and all of these tax increases. A couple of pieces of legislation raising concern are the following two, though this list is not comprehensive:

· House Bill 2341 sponsored by Delegate Morissey: This bill would levy a twenty cent tax on plastic bags in the Commonwealth of Virginia and levy fines on retailers who do not comply with collecting the new tax. This is an uncanny attempt to implement a social engineering project and eradicate plastic bags while also taking more money from the pockets of Virginians. Furthermore, there is no evidence to suggest that plastic bag taxes improve the environment.

· House Bill 1604 sponsored by Delegate Dave Albo: This bill would change rules that relate to the collection of corporate income taxes. This bill attempts to level the playing field between Virginia businesses and out-of-state businesses, but ends up being a net tax increase overall. This bill could be fixed by amending it to be revenue neutral; one way this could be done is by cutting the corporate income tax rate.

There are a couple other issues that I would like to address, one being Governor McDonnell's transportation plan and the other being one of the ways he looks to fund the plan, namely through the partial privatization of ABC.

First, privatization of liquor industry is an important goal. In principle, ATR fully supports privatization of ABC and other entities. The current plan Governor Bob McDonnell is proposing would privatize the retail side of liquor sales. From what has been released so far, this plan does not contain tax increases. Eventually, total privatization of ABC should be the goal of the Commonwealth, but this ideal should not stand in the way of a step in the right direction.

Secondly, transportation is an ongoing issue in the Commonwealth of Virginia and in many states around the country. Governor McDonnell is looking to borrow about $4 billion in order to fund his transportation plan. It is fair to discuss whether or not this is good policy for the Commonwealth of Virginia, but I want to make clear that there is not a tax increase in this proposal. However, if this new bonding moves forward, assurances need to be made that this new spending will not lead to tax increases in the future. The Governor's proposal does not include a net tax increase and would not violate the Pledge.

Please join the families of Virginia who are working to find ways to make due with less. As they are finding ways to cut their budgets, I urge you to join them in doing the same. If you have any questions, please contact Nathan Pick, state affairs manager, at 202.785.0266.

Onward,

Grover Norquist

CC: Governor Bob McDonnell

By Anita Kumar  | January 18, 2011; 3:10 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar, General Assembly 2011, House of Delegates, State Senate  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: House GOP announces program against illegal immigration
Next: McDonnell names Caldwell as new press secretary

Comments

Is Mr. Norquist a resident of Virginia? His contact phone is in the District of Columbia.

Posted by: BookGuy | January 18, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Is Mr. Norquist a resident of Virginia? His contact phone is in the District of Columbia.

Posted by: BookGuy | January 18, 2011 3:40 PM | Report abuse

I'll bet old Grover didn't drive down 95 to hand-deliver his missive.

Posted by: jeffersonian1 | January 18, 2011 3:49 PM | Report abuse

So Norquist must be against the McDonnell/GOP plan to tax state employees 5%

Posted by: VirginiaDem | January 18, 2011 3:52 PM | Report abuse

So Norquist must be against the McDonnell/GOP plan to tax state employees 5%

Posted by: VirginiaDem | January 18, 2011 3:55 PM | Report abuse

The toll road just raised it's tax 5%.

Republicans are liars. They just find backhanded ways to tax people.

Oh and...

"He also encouraged lawmakers to pass Gov. Bob McDonnell's proposals to bond $2.9 billion for roads and to privatize the state's 333 liquor stores."

So, now McDonnell and Norquist want to spend money the state doesn't have and issue bonds? They are going billions into debt for something McDonnell should budget for.

Another backhanded way of balancing the budget and not owning up to reality.

Both Norquist and McDonnell need to get out of their farms in lala land, eieio.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | January 18, 2011 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, toll road tax not raised 5%. It was raised 25 cents. Much higher than 5%.

Still a backhanded way of taxing us. You would think Mr. Frank Wolf would have defended his constituents since the toll tax places a heavy burden on many of his constituents but nope.

He doesn't care as do any Republican's/tea partiers.

They are all talk and no action.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | January 18, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Virginia families would have to "make do" with a lot less if we dismantled the ABC store system as the governor proposes. Less money for essential services like mental health; less kids graduating (once they're sidelined by easy-access, ubiquitous liquor); less peace in our communities.... I thought Va. state senator Toddy Puller explained things exceptionally well in "Virginia's Current ABC System Doesn't Need to Be 'Fixed,'" yesterday in MountVernonPatch, online.

Posted by: anonymousid | January 18, 2011 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company