Governor John Bel Edwards said Thursday he was open to a flat rate corporate income tax in Louisiana but was wary of the same approach for individuals.
A flat-rate income tax system is one where all taxpayers pay the same percentage of their income, regardless of how much money they make. Louisiana currently has three income tax brackets for individuals and five for corporations.
How Center Square Reports, Edwards said that while he wants to lower income tax rates for Louisiana taxpayers, he would prefer not to have a single tax rate for everyone. Flat-rate tax advocates generally argue that this is the simplest and fairest approach.
“I don’t think the poorest person in our state should pay the same for the first taxable dollar as the richest person for the last taxable dollar,” Edwards said.
Democrat Edwards supports the revision of the state’s tax laws by removing tax breaks and lowering tax rates, a goal he shares with Republican lawmakers. The abolition of state withholding taxes on federal income taxes paid, which would require voter approval to amend the state constitution, would likely be a critical step in this process.
In the current session, the legislators in both chambers presented numerous competing bills that would fundamentally change the state’s tax system. Legislators are expected to start narrowing their options next week.
During his weekly press conference on Thursday, Edwards reiterated his position that any new tax structure should generate roughly the same revenue as the current one so as not to cause future budget constraints. He also said the federal US bailout plan, which is expected to send $ 5.2 billion to state and local governments in Louisiana, doesn’t allow states to use that money to shut down sources of income created by tax cuts. Read the full story.