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Never Owned a Business – Part 3 December 31, 2007

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Rep Dianne Primivera wrote Improving the lives of middle class Coloradans.

It is quite apparent from her essay that Rep Dianne Primivera either doesn’t have the knowledge to be a state legislator or that she thinks voters lack the native intelligence to understand the depth of her deception.  Neither premise is appealing.

After having proposed an agenda that will raise taxes on Colorado citizens by at least 2 billion while claiming it won’t raise taxes at all, she wants full credit for cutting a single million dollars in business taxes.

If you’re a small business owner, you have enough to worry about without an overly complicated tax code. I will co-sponsor legislation that gives over 30,000 small businesses much-needed tax relief by raising the business personal property tax exemption from $2,500 to $7,000. We will also streamline the tax code so business owners pay taxes based on sales only, instead of navigating a complicated formula.

There are very few businesses which have start up costs for personal property of $7,000 or less.  Lawyers and accountants may benefit from this as they need only a computer, a desk and chair, and some office furnishings.  Anyone who has a real business with real requirements for store fixtures, point of sale software, or mechanized equipment will quickly exceed the $7,000.  We wonder if the Representative has ever owned a business, or known someone who has.

Because we are cynical, we would guess that the state has figured out that the cost of administering and collecting personal property taxes on really small businesses exceeds the revenue generated by those taxes.   Note that if a business has personal property of more than $7,000, it still pays taxes on the whole amount. 

The formula Rep. Primivera refers to is automated and allows for equipment depreciation.  The formula is applied by the taxing agency each year based on changes in equipment reported by the business.  A small businessman never sees or works with that formula, so this bill doesn’t cut down on paperwork.   

In short, this “tax cut” that she is trumpeting generates so little net revenue (and may result in negative net revenue) that it is a nuisance even to the tax collectors.  She has doubtless been told this, but wants credit for something she isn’t really willing to do – cut taxes.

Her essay is so misleading that we would call her a willing part of the Big Blue Lie Machine.   Integrity does not seem to be one of Rep Dianne Primivera’s strong points. 

Part 1 and part 2 of this essay are linked.


Better Living Through Higher Taxes – Part 2 December 30, 2007

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Rep Dianne Primivera wrote Improving the lives of middle class Coloradans. 

She has come up with a new trick.  She is going to spend a billion dollars without raising taxes.  Care to bet?

There is no more important time in a child’s education than the earliest years. Along with Governor Ritter, we plan to give our kids a smart start by making early childhood education available to every 4- and 5-year-old in the state.

If 12 years of education cost’s X dollars in each school district, is there any reason why 14 years of education won’t cost 17% more?  Of course, the legislature won’t raise taxes.  They will force local school districts to do so.

Now for the biggest magic act of all:

The Building Excellent Schools Today – or BEST -program will leverage $1 billion to repair and rebuild crumbling schools without raising taxes.

We guess that since Ref C there is a spare billion dollars laying around the Capitol.  Maybe we can get some of it spent on roads.  If this woman wants to claim that all of this can be accomplished without raising taxes, why did she vote for a tax increase in the guise of a property tax freeze?

She Wants to “Improve Our Lives” Part 1 December 29, 2007

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In what might be one of the boldest and most misleading essays ever written on tax and spending, Improving the lives of middle class Coloradans, Colorado State Rep Dianne Primivera (D-Broomfield) promises more intrusive government and pretends that no one will pay the costs.

 This legislative session I’m committed to expanding access to health care; limiting the financial burden placed on individuals, families and employers; and putting a premium on personal responsibility and prevention. I will work to hold insurance companies accountable for their rates and make sure that hospital charges are clear and transparent.

Yes, all of our health care costs can be blamed on the nasty old health insurance companies.  Last year, the Democrats in the legislature were unhappy that the the major malpractice insurer in the state was keeping costs down by fighting bogus lawsuits.  Their solution:  they wanted to make it more difficult for that insurer to fight lawsuits through regulation. 

Primivera can’t have it both ways, but tries.  Not once does this essay mention the massive tax increases on the middle class that will be required to pay for what has proven in other nations to be a broken health care system.  Socialized medicine simply doesn’t work, but the taxes needed to support it are oppressive. 

Dianne Primivera’s motto is more government, more expenditures, more lawsuits, and more taxes, but she will take no responsibility for her own actions.  Indeed, she wants to “improve our lives.”

We like short essays, so this is part one, with more parts to follow.

Referendum C revenue will be $10 billion. Insatiable spenders say “Not enough.” December 26, 2007

Posted by davekopel in Referendum C, TABOR.
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An editorial in today’s Pueblo Chieftan reminds us that when referendum C was first promoted, the advocates claimed that it would raise $3 billion. Later, they raised the estimate to $3.75 billion. As the Independence Institute pointed out at the time, the 3.75B was implausible, because revenues from the oil and gas severance tax were soaring. Now, it turns out that ref C will raise an extra 10 billion dollars in taxes. Although the ref C advocates dishonestly described ref C as as “temporary” “five-year” “time-out” from the Taxpayers Bill of Rights, the effect of ref C will be a permanent increase in state government taxing and spending levels allowed under the state Constitution. And yet, $10 billion extra dollars, over five years, plus billions and billions more in perpetuity, is not enough for the tax consumer lobby, which is gearing up to push another tax increase on the 2008 ballot.

Elect a Liberal, Pay the Piper December 22, 2007

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In what might be a prophetic headline, the Greeley Tribune informs its readers “Tax hike: It might be more about what to tax, not whether to tax.”

Gov. Bill Ritter has indicated he’d support one tax increase proposal on the 2008 ballot, wanting to avoid cluttering voters’ minds during a presidential election. It’s also possible that there won’t be any tax proposal at all, but given the ambitious ideas that Ritter, legislative Democrats and even some Republicans have for the state, such a referred measure looks pretty likely.

AMT Bait & Switch December 14, 2007

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In the Denver Post’s monthly pitch for higher taxes on someone, David Sirota twists the truth once again.

The subject is the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT).  He leaves out a few facts:  1)  The AMT was designed with an intentional inflation trap.  2) Congress tends to use inflation traps to increase taxes. 3)  The Democrats could have fixed the problem decades ago, but didn’t because they like inflation traps.  4)  This inflation trap is aimed at the middle class.  5)  By threatening the middle class each year, the Democrats can pull a bait and switch to tax someone else, ratcheting up taxes by $50 billion a year.

David Sirota cleverly claims that an ugly millionaire is holding the middle class hostage.  That is not what is really happening.  The real hostage is the middle class as he says, but the real hostage taker is the new Democrat Congressional majority.  He thinks taxpayers have a short memory and a low IQ.

New Information Source December 13, 2007

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CU Boulder alerts us to a new information site on federal spending that tracks spending by congressional district.  It does much more.  We didn’t have time to play with it.  They brought up 2CD as an example because CU Boulder is in the 2d CD.

A Tax Bill Ritter Doesn’t Like? December 11, 2007

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Colorado Confidential published a fluff piece on Rep. Kathleen Curry that contained the following:

“If I propose a severance tax hike and the measure gets on the ballot,” Curry said with a laugh. “I’ve been told the energy industry has set aside a $50 million advertising budget to fight it. I’ll admit the industry watches me pretty closely.”

Curry said Gov. Bill Ritter also has asked her to hold off on such a proposal, “but that’s about all I hear from my district,” she said. During one day, she counted two live interviews and four media calls, all about severance tax.

“I’m getting a lot of resistance on all levels to not forward a bill to increase the severance tax rate,” Curry said, shrugging, “but I have an obligation to my constituents.”

We would guess that he likes the tax increase but he wants to hold it off as an easy tax to pass compared to the inevitable taxes that his “blue ribbon” special interest panels will propose.  You know, a billion here, two there, and before long the state budget is doubled and businesses are leaving the state for a friendlier climate.

Quote of the Week December 11, 2007

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The Grand Junction Sentinel is reporting on the decision by the Mesa County Commissioners support the Independence Institute in its quest to enforce TABOR:

County commissioners, by a vote of 2 to 1, approved joining a lawsuit last week to stop the freeze. Acquafresca does not favor joining the suit, which is being spearheaded by the Libertarian Independence Institute, based in Golden.

“Frankly, this lawsuit, it doesn’t look like a great case,” he said. “The Independence Institute doesn’t care what a great case it is. Their job is just to rattle the Democrats.

And a mighty fine job they do!  If Democrats would simply follow the Constitution, there wouldn’t be a need for an Independence Institute.