The Department of Revenue Administration has moved the location for Wednesday’s hearing on the job-killing LLC income tax. It will now be held at the Howard Recreation Center across the street from the DRA building. Those who wish to attend the hearing are encouraged to park in the DRA parking lot at 109 Pleasant Street in Concord. The hearing will still be held at 10:00 AM.
The secret tax: LLCs quietly clobbered
It is a widely accepted principle of good governance that significant changes in state tax law are aired at multiple public hearings. The point is to make sure that everyone affected by the change has the opportunity to tell public officials what the real-life impact will be, and to make sure everyone understands exactly what the change is.
This past summer, that principle was tossed aside. Just weeks before the state budget was passed, Democratic leaders in Concord inserted a provision to apply the state's interest and dividends tax to income derived from limited liability companies and partnerships. There was no public hearing. The change became law before many LLC and partnership owners even knew it was being considered...Tomorrow, the state holds a hearing on the proposed rules for implementing the tax. The hearing is not on the tax, just the rules. That's the only opportunity the public will have to discuss this issue with state officials.
That's not right, and it's not the New Hampshire way. The state should hold public hearings next year and have a thorough and open discussion of this and all other taxes thrown into the state budget at the last minute. We don't govern in secret in New Hampshire, no matter how desperate the state is to raise revenue.