Your taxes are going up – again.

August 1, 2011

Next month you will see more money come out of your pocket, thanks to the new Governor and the democratic majority. A retroactive income tax hike will take affect August 1st, – an ill-advised tax policy that I voted against.

Raising taxes during a recession just doesn’t make sense. Having those higher taxes reach back to January 1, 2011 is even worse.

Losing another $20 a week for some will be painful. And everyone just got squeezed on July 1st when sales taxes were raised. Everything from staying at a hotel to taking yoga in a studio is now taxed at a higher rate.

Your employer should have a new withholding table given to them by the state Department of Revenue Services that shows exactly how much will be taken to taken out of paychecks for the remainder of the year. Make sure to check with your tax preparer so you do not get surprised at tax time next April.

These tax hikes are really frustrating. People are working hard to keep their bills paid and government is spending money like it is water.

During the next five months, we all will be losing more disposable income – if there is still such a thing. That means less money to buy goods and services, putting a further strain on local stores who need people to buy products from them.

Increasing the income tax is a bad idea to begin with, but the majority is raising it at a time when our unemployment is at more than 9.0 %. Take a look at the most recent labor numbers.

  • In May the state lost 5,500 jobs and,
  • In June lost 4,100 jobs – together that’s nearly 10,000 jobs lost in Connecticut in just two months.

We need to reverse taxpayer and business unfriendly tax policies to have any chance of putting Connecticut’s unemployed back to work.

An added hit to Connecticut business owners is the bill to pay for our unemployment fund is also due. This surcharge can be called a “hidden tax” on Connecticut businesses. And it comes at the worst of times. The tax will affect more than 70,000 companies in our state. Interest is due on $810 million in federal money that the state borrowed to pay for extended unemployment insurance benefits.

According to the state Department of Labor, Employers are being charged $1.70 per $1,000 of taxable payroll — a maximum of $25.50 for each employee.

This hidden tax will need to be in place for the next several years to pay back a total of $130 million in interest costs. Which means the state still owes the federal government a huge amount of money for the principle on the loan.

If we can all make changes to our household budgets so our bills are paid, so should the state of Connecticut. The Governor has said he wants to hold a special session in the fall to deal with making Connecticut more business friendly. I suggest we start by reversing some of these tax policies so people and business can breathe a bit easier.