(Clark County Republican Party) – Las Vegas, Nevada – March 20, 2012 – At its bimonthly meeting, the Clark County Republican Central Committee (CCRCC) adopted a resolution to encourage elected officials not to raise taxes by extending “sunset” taxes past expiration date.
On March 13, 2012, Governor Brian Sandoval issued a statement that he will be extending the so-called “sunset” taxes past their scheduled expiration. The “sunset” taxes were passed in the 2009 legislature as temporary taxes with a built-in expiration date of June, 2011, which was then extended to June 2013. In Governor Sandoval’s proposed budget, this expiration date will be extended back to June 2015. This action directly contradicts his 2010 campaign statement that, “raising taxes is the worst possible thing you can do” after a recession.
In his recent statement, the Governor is trying to posture himself as being against tax increases, asking taxpayers to not consider the re-extension of a tax that was scheduled to expire as a tax increase. The Clark County Republican Party (CCRP) considers the prevention of the scheduled expiration of a tax as being analogous to directly raising taxes. It is deeply disappointing to see Governor Sandoval once again renege on his “no-new tax” promise by preventing the “sunset” taxes from expiring as scheduled. Raising taxes on Nevadans in the midst of this terrible recession is not an appropriate solution to the state’s budgetary woes.
Moreover, the “sunset” taxes specifically reduce the prospects of an economic recovery by making Nevada less attractive to new businesses. The original temporary taxes included, amongst other things, a doubling of both the private-sector payroll tax as well as the cost of business licensing. To prevent their scheduled expiration will only further discourage new businesses (and the jobs that they create) from coming to Nevada.
The Republican Party must stand with the people and offer an alternative to big government ideology. In addition to offering resistance to the call for ever higher rates of government spending and taxation, it is imperative that Republican leaders honor their promises made to their constituents. This breach of trust by Governor Sandoval must not be replicated by fellow Nevada Republican policymakers.
The CCRP has also observed that Republican Senators Michael Roberson, Greg Brower, and Ben Kieckheifer expressed their support for this tax increase. Considering Senator Roberson campaigned on the promise of repealing these specific taxes, supporting their extension now is particularly disconcerting. The trust between citizens and elected officials is of paramount importance to the CCRP. Any actions that compromise that trust are detrimental to the integrity of the Republican Party as a whole, and must be avoided whenever possible.
The increased budgetary burden imposed by the President’s Health and Affordability Act is substantial and must be addressed by Nevada policymakers. The solution, however, is not to raise taxes again. The non-partisan, non-profit Nevada Policy Research Institute (NPRI) has just released their Solutions 2013 pamphlet which offers Nevada policymakers 88 pages of policy changes that can result in reduced expenditures, without resorting to tax hikes.
It is the responsibility of Republican leaders to promote fiscally responsible, conservative solutions that put the taxpayers first. As such, we encourage our Republican elected officials to reconsider their support for this tax increase. The CCRP asks all Nevada Republican voters to express their concerns directly to the Governor and any other Republican policymakers who support this misguided proposal.