State Sen. Clark Chapin proposes bills to provide tax relief for families, seniors [Register Citizen]

February 22, 2013

Article as it appeared in the Register Citizen on February 21, 2013

HARTFORD — State Sen. Clark Chapin, R-New Milford, has introduced several measures to provide tax relief for families and seniors in Connecticut, including those in the 30th district he represents.

The proposed bills are being considered during the current legislative session.

Chapin, in a news release, said he introduced the bills because, “Connecticut residents already pay too high a price for energy, groceries and other costs. This high cost of living was made even more difficult by the largest tax increase in state history that took place two years ago, and my proposals would be a first step toward lowering this burden.”

Chapin’s proposals would reverse several of the tax hikes passed two years ago and also provide tax relief to state residents, especially low-income families and seniors, he said.

The proposals include Senate Bill 574 (An Act Concerning an Exemption from the Sales Tax for Nonprescription Drugs), Senate Bill 575 (An Act Concerning a Sales Tax Exemption for Certain Clothing and Footwear) and Senate Bill 579 (An Act Increasing the Property Tax Credit).

Senate Bill 574 would exempt over-the-counter drugs, including vitamins, drugs intended for coughs, colds, asthma or allergies, antihistamines and antacids, from sales tax.

Senate Bill 575 would bring back the exemption for clothing and footwear that costs less than $50, which was removed by the legislature in 2011.

Senate Bill 579 would increase the property tax credit to $500 per person. it was reduced to $300 in 2011 by the legislature. Chapin said the bill would reduce the property tax burden on homeowners.

“I am urging members of the Finance Committee to consider and support these taxpayer-friendly proposals that stand to help Connecticut residents,” Chapin said in a statement. “We have a responsibility to reduce these and other burdens on families and seniors, and I applaud the Governor for recognizing the worth in exempting basic articles of clothing and footwear from the state sales tax.”

The bills will be considered by the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee.

This is Chapin’s first legislative session as a senator. He was elected to the 30th district seat in November, replacing fellow Republican Andrew Roraback, who unsuccessfully ran for U.S. Congress in the 5th district after holding the position for 12 years.