Rep. Mike Yin, D-Jackson, files a bill calling for a flat 4% Wyoming income tax.
The equality state is one of nine states that do not tax residents’ work-related income.
Wyoming has been backed by mineral extraction revenue for decades and is known to be tax averse. A number of newly elected Wyoming lawmakers campaigned for a pledge not to pay new taxes, and there are only nine other tax-friendly Democrats in the 60-member Wyoming legislature. But Yin told the Jackson Hole Daily Tax Opposition, “That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t move this conversation forward.
“We have a budget crisis and we have to deal with it,” he said.
Oil and gas revenues have risen sharply in recent years and have decimated the state budget. Legislators are expected to face tough questions about funding K-12 education during this legislative term, which resumed Monday.
Income tax would generate about $ 337 million for the state, and there is about $ 300 million in education funding for the current biennium, Yin said.
“So when it comes to K-12 funding, that one income tax alone would fill that void,” the Jackson Democrat continued. “I think it’s important to help people see that.”
Yin’s bill is said to be jointly sponsored by Senator Chris Rothfuss and Rep. Cathy Connolly, both Democrats of Albany County.