By Barbara Richardson Crouch- from the Norwich Bulletin
With the exploration of a highway mileage tax, it has become increasingly clear that Governor Malloy and his Democratic allies in the Legislature have learned nothing from the fiscal train wreck that has followed from this administration’s pro-tax mentality. Having already passed the two largest tax increases in the state’s history, taking billions out of the pockets of hard-working taxpayers, the Malloy administration is now considering charging Connecticut’s taxpayers for driving to work in the morning.
When it came to stemming the opioid crisis and funding our mental health system, which was cut by $8.7 million, this governor pled poverty. When it came to education funding, which was cut by a total of $57 million, and juvenile justice reform, this governor’s pockets were empty. Yet when it comes to inventing new and ever more intrusive ways to tax people out of the state, this administration can find $300,000 just lying around to study a mileage tax.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, in 2011, the average Connecticut citizen drives 11,595 miles annually. For those of us who live in rural areas, our work commute may top 100 miles per day. Once again, we are presented with a tax that would hit the middle class the hardest. How can the governor ask people who already pay some of the highest taxes in the nation to shoulder yet another burden?
After six years of budget deficits, the governor and his tax-and-spend Democratic colleagues still don’t understand — you cannot tax your way out of this problem. We need real structural changes in Hartford and it is obvious that the Democratic Legislature will not make the necessary changes.
From 2011 to 2013, more than 27,000 residents left the state and took more than $3.8 billion in income, according to the Yankee Institute. In 2014, we suffered a net loss of 13,285 people. It’s easy to see why the governor is distancing himself from the grant.
Yes, the governor claims there is absolutely no plan to institute a mileage tax. If that were true, why would he waste federal tax dollars? Why would he squander vital resources that could help fund our crumbling infrastructure? His answer better not be, “because it isn’t a tax — it’s a fee.”
If you believe the governor when he says that there are no plans to institute a mileage tax, ask yourself: Where is the surplus from 2014?