To the Editor:
On Tuesday, NH voters will find at the bottom of our ballot a proposal to amend the NH state constitution to permanently ban any taxes on income. Voters would be wise to ask why the sudden "need" to change our state Constitution on this matter.
Many voters are unaware this is on our ballot. For those who missed the action, lawmakers in Concord this year decided it was not sufficient to simply uphold their campaign pledges to oppose this kind of tax during their own elected term. They decided to start tinkering with the state Constitution on this matter and are trying to extend their reach beyond their terms to dictate tax policy to all future legislatures -- and all voters -- from here forward.
Our state Constitution has worked well for more than 200 years. Why choose NOW to back NH further into a permanent fiscal corner, preventing a specific kind of revenue to fund unforeseen emergencies, or even basic priorities, like public education, highways or healthcare that keeps pace with the needs of a growing and economically developing populace?
Whether you're currently for or against the idea of an income tax in NH, a final reason to think twice about Question 1 is this: it leaves one fewer option down the road if voters in NH ever decide we'd like to take a real shot at halting the growth of property taxes. This affects not only homeowners, but renters through the rent they pay, and small business owners who also pay property taxes.
Changes to New Hampshire¹s core document should be rare and done only when absolutely necessary. Question 1 is unnecessary at best, and fiscally reckless at worst for generations to come. I will vote no on Question 1.