Wednesday, January 16, 2013

House Minority Leader Brad Jones: Massachusetts’ Taxpayers Being Asked to Pay for Patrick/Murray Administration’s Lackluster Legacy

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading) joined Representative George Peterson (R-Grafton), Brad Hill (R-Ipswich), Betty Poirier (R-North Attleboro), and Vinny deMacedo (R-Plymouth) in issuing the following statement tonight in response to Governor Patrick’s announcement during the State of the Commonwealth address that he will seek to increase the state’s income tax from 5.25% to 6.25%:

“Tonight’s State of the Commonwealth address is a clear indicator that the Patrick/Murray Administration is asking Massachusetts’ taxpayers to pay for their lackluster legacy.

The fiscal deficit facing the Commonwealth did not happen overnight, nor is it the result of the previous year. While this is a problem that has festered throughout the six years that Governor Patrick has been in office, the Patrick/Murray Administration’s proposals perpetuate the same old tired tax and spend strategy that helped create this mess. This approach is both reckless and irresponsible.

The economically devastating tax increase announced in Governor Patrick’s address this evening is a complete reversal from his empty campaign promises of seven years ago. Having been swept into office on the promises of no new taxes and a decrease in property tax, the Governor and Lieutenant Governor have instead championed three massive tax increases and stood by as the average property tax bill has increased by nearly $1,000. The Patrick/Murray tax proposal, if passed, would represent one of the largest tax increases in the history of the Commonwealth, as well as the largest expansion of the state’s government we have seen. By masking a tax increase with a marginal reduction in the state’s sales tax, this administration has only further muddied the water for residents and businesses alike.

Governor Patrick’s grandiose plan to seek billions of dollars in additional revenue, ultimately increasing taxes for Massachusetts’ residents, makes clear that reform before revenue is not only dead, but for this administration was never more than a convenient catchphrase. As opposed to viewing the Bay State’s residents as a never-ending revenue stream, we must reprioritize how best to spend the taxpayer’s dollar. The fiscal restraint being practiced by the residents of the Commonwealth must also apply to those of us on Beacon Hill.

Neither the residents nor the economy of the Commonwealth can afford the Patrick/Murray legacy project that these massive tax increases represent - and quite frankly they should not be expected to either.