By Alexandra F. Sirota
A state constitutional amendment proposed in the North Carolina Senate would seriously limit our state's ability to meet the needs of its people and respond to crises in the future. Senate Bill 75 would amend the constitution to prevent future lawmakers from ever increasing the state income tax rate. Of the 41 states that have an income tax, only Georgia has taken the drastic step of using its constitution to thwart any potential rate increase.
This proposal will have severe consequences for North Carolina's future prosperity and the democratic process.
Proposal Imposes Radical, Permanent Tax Cap
Senate Bill 75 would permanently freeze the state’s personal income tax rate at 5.5 percent at a high cost to North Carolina’s communities. With the rate already set at 5.499 percent as of January 1, 2017, the cap would cut off a vital source of revenue. A two-thirds majority vote of each house in the General Assembly would place the measure in front of North Carolina voters in a statewide referendum in November 2018. If voters approve the measure this year, the amendment would go into effect January 1, 2019.
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