Variable Rate Taxation.

 

It’s interesting that Speaker Norelli doesn’t believe the position of the General Court will change with the upcoming vote on expanded casino gaming in New Hampshire.

I wonder if the Speaker would bat an eye if she was asked if the state should study the impact and financial models behind adjustable rate room and meals taxes? Yet she doesn’t seem to have a problem killing the casino legislation that would bring millions into the state treasury. Actually if the casino legislation were passed the existing 9% room and meals tax would also generate more revenue than it does now and without the variability.

Strange.

As many of you already know Vermont has adjustable rate room and meals taxes and places like Killington add on an extra 2% on top of the state sales tax and I’ve noticed that not every Vermont tourism area does this. For example Stowe which is another popular resort area that caters to the higher socioeconomic strata doesn’t collect an additional 2% beyond what the state collects. My thought is that Killington collects this revenue because they can! This might actually be an advantage to Killington as it lowers the overall local property tax burden through the tourists that are willing to pay an extra 2% in this area which is commonly known as the Vail of the East. I’ve been to Vail numerous times, I don’t see the parallel but no matter the 2% local sales tax exists as policy. Killington is a nice place to live.

New Hampshire is facing a $300 million dollar budget deficit some of the more experienced legislators commonly say that New Hampshire has both a spending and revenue problem. This may be true but at this particular point I think that the revenue problems are greater than the spending. Is further local taxation going to solve this issue? No, of course it won’t, it will simply put further strain on the remaining revenue sources, namely tourism that is in the state now. Higher taxes and less revenue.

But then isn’t all politics local. Places like Rye, Pembroke, Sugar Hill and Hanover could enact nice expensive local sales taxes. These are nice places to live too. 

Aren’t these the places where the wealthy Democrats live anyway?