21 May 2004
And unto us it shall be stuck
Fritz Schranck picked up this explanation of New Jersey Governor James McGreevey's "FAIR" tax plan:
The McGreevey proposal would raise the top marginal income tax rate to 8.97% from 6.37%, and he defends it by claiming it would apply only to 28,000 people, or 1% of all Jersey taxpayers.
If you're in New Jersey and you're howling about this, please note that the top marginal rate in Oklahoma is 7.00 percent, and it applies to a whole lot more than one percent of us including, horrifying as it may seem, me. Governor Henry's tobacco-tax hike, passed by the Legislature, will cut this to a slightly-less-unpalatable 6.65 percent.
Of course, we don't go out of our way to slap asinine acronyms on things (Oklahoma City's Metropolitan Area Projects MAPS notwithstanding). Fritz doesn't think much of them either:
I really despise the increasing use of acronyms to push legislation. This time it stands for Fair And Immediate Relief. It could have just as easily been titled Seeking Higher Income Taxes, which would have had the distinguishing benefit of being true.
Death and taxes were always certain; bilious nomenclature is becoming so.
(Update, 5:10 pm: Someone asked about the state brackets, so here they are. If you don't want to burn your eyeballs on the Tax Commission's so-very-1995 Web page, the top marginal rate kicks in at a taxable income of $10,000 [single] or $21,000 [married filing jointly]. Under the law, you can optionally subtract the amount of Federal tax paid and refigure, but the top rate goes to ten percent if you do.)
(Update, 2:20 pm, 22 May: Jeff Jarvis says that all by itself, this action by a Democratic governor could push the state into the GOP column come election time.)Posted at 3:33 PM to Political Science Fiction