Governor Baker, Dude, Cut Me a Check! [OPINION]
Massachusetts lawmakers and the Baker Administration are about to have a heated debate over what to do with an excessive amount of unanticipated tax revenue. I've got a great solution: GIVE IT BACK TO THE TAXPAYERS!
Massachusetts is expected to finish the fiscal year 2021 next week with more than $4 billion in unanticipated revenue. In other words, those we pay to count the beans and estimate how many we'll accumulate during the year miscalculated by some four billion beans. That's a lot of beans.
I suppose it's better to underestimate the bean haul than to overestimate. So the big question now is what to do with all of the extra beans?
Governor Charlie Baker is suggesting we can give some of the beans back by waiving the Commonwealth's 6.25 percent state sales tax for August and September. Sales tax-free weekend is already slated for August 14-15. It is estimated the state would lose some $900 million in revenue by doing so. Baker says his idea would benefit consumers and businesses alike, both of which suffered dramatically under his COVID lockdown rules and regulations.
Democrats in the legislature are resisting Baker's plan. They think they should spend the money on pet projects including student debt relief, the MBTA, higher education, and other such things. Ridiculous!
First off, never let liberal Democrats near surplus money, especially if it doesn't belong to them. Secondly, waiving the sales tax only benefits me if I spend money first. I have to spend to save. That makes no sense to me. Besides, the state gets nothing out of it.
I say, cut me a check! All taxpaying contributors should receive a piece of the action. Cut me a check and I will spend the money and put it back into the economy. Under my plan, I get stuff, businesses make money, and the state collects tax revenue. We all win. It doesn't have to be a big check; $500 would suffice. Then send the rest to communities like New Bedford to pay to keep the police station open.
Are these really the best and brightest minds we can send to Boston? Geez!
Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.