Lawmakers approve tax bill

Politics - Government

With minutes to spare in the session, the House and Senate approved a bill that would increase taxes for higher income earners. This comes after lawmakers reworked the bill which will now offer a larger family tax credit.

The bill would raise taxes on higher income earners only if state revenue levels remain the same.

With a massive billion-dollar budget surplus, lawmakers argued now is not the time to raise New Mexicans’ taxes. So, senators said they would wait, and will instead increase the working family tax credit to help you out. 

“It helps the families, this helps the individual families out. There’s nothing in here that will help corporations. In fact, they’re getting taxed under combined reporting,” Sen. Clemente Sanchez, D-Grants, said. 

The Senate Corporations and Transportation Committee reworked a majority of the House Bill 6, that would have raised taxes to help pay for spending increases on education for years to come. 

Some of the major changes include taking out a proposed personal income tax increase that Republicans were strongly against, as well as changing up the distribution for the tax rate on car purchases. 

Now, 1-percent of the car excise tax will go to the Department of Transportation specifically for District 2 in the southern part of the state. Sen. Sanchez says roads there need to be fixed because of increased traffic fueled from the oil boom. 

Representatives who worked in the original bill say they’re willing to work with some of these changes. 

“I appreciate the Senate keeping the focus on working families, those pieces are important to us. Obviously, we’d like them to see them a little bit higher so that working families can get a little more relief,” Sen. Javier Martinez, D-Albuquerque, said. 

These changes also include tobacco, hospital and internet sales taxes. The bill will now head to the governor’s desk.

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