Last week, the Maryland House Ways and Means Committee held hearings on a number of bills that could either rectify or continue the Old Line State’s recent plunge in their tax climate.  On Thursday, the committee considered whether to establish a Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights (TABOR), which would tie state spending to population and inflation growth.  The measure was sponsored by House Taxpayer Protection Caucus Chair Warren Miller.  From ATR’s testimony in support of House Bill 421:

Maryland currently has the 4th highest state-local tax burden, where 10.8% of residents’ incomes are consumed by taxes. HB 421 provides necessary spending limits and voter approval of tax increases that will help to lower this excessive burden on Marylanders. … After increasing the size of the budget by 18% since 2006 alone and relying on future revenue from tax hikes that has not materialized, Maryland now predictably faces a $2 billion overspending problem. More than ever, Maryland is in need of spending restraint to prevent future overspending problems like this one.

For a PDF of ATR’s TABOR testimony, click here.

Also before the committee last week was a bill to make Maryland part of the Streamlined Sales Tax Project, a tax and spend cartel that aims to extend tax collection on consumers and businesses by sneakily eliminating current exemptions and expanding what items can be taxed.  From ATR’s testimony:

The streamlined sales tax is not revenue neutral and states that have adopted it have automatically raised taxes on consumers and businesses by hundreds of millions of dollars. By signing up for the SST, Maryland would adopt a tax code that mirrors other states, thereby expanding the list of taxable items to currently untaxed goods. For example, when Minnesota implemented the SST, the new definition of “sales tax” broadened Minnesota’s sales tax to include shipping, handling, and postage, which was previously untaxed by the state. Now, Minnesota consumers pay a new tax on goods purchased outside of the state and higher prices for goods purchased in the state due to the tax raising the cost of transportation.

For a PDF of ATR’s testimony opposing the streamlined sales tax, click here.