Income Tax in NH

On November 6, NH voters will be asked to weigh in on a Constitutional Amendment against having a state income tax.  I have heard many arguments against a “ban”, and even more candidates saying that while they are against an income tax, they think that “we” should have the option.  This displays a fundamental lack of understanding about how the process works.  You have to bear in mind what the “option” is and who exactly “we” is.  Amendments neither ban, nor prohibit anyone from doing anything in the future.  The Amendment does change the process for accomplishing your goal.  It moves the issue from the Legislature  to the people of the state.  In order to do whatever the Amendment prohibits, we need another Amendment to repeal the first one.  In other words, we have to ask your permission.  The “option” in question is the ability of the Legislature to enact an income tax without first asking voters’ permission.  By now you’ve figured out that the “we” refers to the Legislature.  On November 6, remember that the real issue is whether the NH Legislature should have the ability to tax your income without asking your permission first.  As a fiscally conservative State Representative, I can’t imagine a scenario where I would ever support an income tax.  If I had to though, I think it only fair that I ask your permission first.  Vote your conscience on Question 1 on November 6, but please vote based on the real meaning of the question.  A “yes” vote on Question 1 means that if we ever do enact an income tax, it can only be done by the will of the people, not elected officials.


About Rep. Steven Smith

Steven Smith is a member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, serving his 7th term. Rep. Smith currently represents Charlestown, Newport, and Unity. Rep. Smith is the Deputy Speaker of the NH House.
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