Big Tax-Hike Push Coming

by Chris Saxman

Earlier today I was asked by Virginia Business Magazine what the business community could expect in the 2021 General Assembly Regular Session. I talked about the construct of the short session with a gubernatorial election, House of Delegates staving off primary challenges, bills that were not passed last session, and the prospects of the changing political dynamic should Joe Biden win the presidency armed with a majority in the U.S House and Senate.

That interview will be out in January.

Not a half an hour after that call ended, a job was posted on line that will actually define the 2021 Session “and potentially beyond.”

Ohhh….what’s that you ask?

A tax increase campaign driven by The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis

Here is the job posting cut and pasted from the ad linked above:

Position Overview:

The Revenue Campaign Manager oversees the successful execution of TCI and partner’s multi-pronged campaign to secure expanded progressive revenue options over the 2021 and 2022 legislative sessions and potentially beyond.

Great timing for a well funded campaign to raise tax rates while the world is mired in massive recession.

This part of the ad also informs as to the likely themes to be associated with increasing revenue to the General Fund:

TCI further recognizes that we live and work in a society that is structured by racism and white privilege, both of which adversely impact communities of color. It is one of TCI’s core values that its organizational culture, staff, partners, strategies, and investments advance racial justice within and beyond the organization.

What are “progressive tax rates” you ask?

Here’s what The Tax Foundation says you can expect to be the focus of progressive tax policy

Did someone say something about swing suburban voters, redistricting, and how turnout from 2008 to 2009 went from 74% to 40%?

One of the primary reasons why turnout dropped so dramatically? Leading candidates being asked in press gaggles about raising taxes which led to brutal campaign ads.

Happy Monday, y’all!

We got a tax fight coming for the next two “legislative sessions and potentially beyond.”

Chris Saxman is executive director of Virginia FREE. This commentary is republished with permission from an email distribution by Virginia FREE.

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28 responses to “Big Tax-Hike Push Coming

  1. “…expanded progressive revenue options…”

    George Orwell would be proud.

  2. I think Virginia’s Democrats will be in for a rough ride in 2021 if (when?) Biden is elected. Slow Joe will be caught raising taxes on the middle class by the time of Virginia state elections in 2021. His war on the suburbs will be in full swing. I expect that China may have even invaded Taiwan by then. Suddenly, electing a 78 year old man with diminished mental capacity might not seem like such a good idea. Meanwhile, the cover of the latest issue of the Harvard Business Review has an article about the future of Work from Home. All those white collar people paying all those expanded progressive taxes might decide that getting a 5 – 10% raise by moving to Florida is a good idea after all.

    • We have to be accommodate China’s expansionism no matter what. We Americans now realize a single molecule of pollution kills millions of people. We need to rely on China to make all of our stuff, or else we have to move to caves in the Shenandoah. As a Country the USA has matured beyond the unethical need to make stuff.

      • Oh I think we could still make it. It just would cost a lot more and not be as reliable or long lasting……

        We used to make fun of Asian “stuff” …. and yes they made some cheap stuff but they also made “rice burners” – Toyotas…

        What we can’t do is “undo” the supply chain where various parts of assembled stuff come from all over the world…

  3. I think as long as the Feds are providing jobs for civilians and contractors in NoVa, there is no really worry to people “fleeing”. They’ll be instantly replaced!

    Besides how will a bureacrat or beltway bandit make a living in Florida! 🙂

    • The 1000+ people a day net moving down here can’t all be wrong. Do a little research and you’d be amazed at the economic opportunities there are with no state income tax. Pratt and Whitney and many other $billion+ companies have either a headquarters or major presence here.

      And we don’t own snow blowers…

      • Oh I think Florida has a lot going for it – but not necessarily for Fed govt workers and beltway bandits.

        • One of my sons works for a federal contractor. He hasn’t been in an office sine March. He could just as easily be in Florida as anywhere. The point of the HBR article is that many companies don’t want to reopen their offices. They are saving small fortunes by not having office expenses. If the General Assembly keeps hiking taxes why wouldn’t government contractors move to Florida? Ask New York City or Chicago how it works.

        • A couple weeks ago, I was talking online with a friend of mine who has been working for the FCC for the last couple of years. They’ve been told they need not go to the office, except for certain key jobs, until next May-June. And the Commission is looking at extending telecommuting options after that point.

          Our small law and consulting firm with an office in Tysons has multiple employees who live out of state and rarely come to town. I’ve seen one of the firm’s partners twice since the 2019 Christmas Party. And she lives in Chevy Chase.

          • This is a little longish but relates to the transportation planning that is being affected by “stay-at-home” especially in Urban areas.

            Most urban regions have what is known as an MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization). It is a Federally-mandated critter that requires regions to coordinate the use of Transportation money coming to their region from both the Federal and State.

            One of their primary products is known as the CLRP. Contrained Long Range Plan, no less than a 20 year horizon.

            That effort start with presumptions about employment in the region and how people and how people get to/from work.

            https://highways.dot.gov/federal-lands/programs-planning/lrtps

            The work product of this planning is transportation projects for the region.

            Long-story short – big discussions about whether we go back to the way it was before or see longer term changes.

            For instance, right now we are adding more toll lanes to roads like I-95 – almost all the way from NoVa to Fredericksburg including 2 new bridges of the Rappahannock River – about 300 million dollars worth.

            Additional lanes for I-95 have been under discussion for some time now.

            If the planners think work-from-home is going to “stick”, what projects are considered and approved will change dramatically.

          • TMT – these stories are popular with those who oppose taxes and Democratic states and cities but what counts is if NY actually shrinks substantially over time and most cities do not and it’s really pretty simple because cities are big dynamic economies that offer businesses both markets and high quality labor.

            The further out you go from cities, you lose the things the cities offer in exchange for the lower taxes.

            California is another good example. Conservatives like to bash California for it’s high taxes, fires, electric grid, regulations, etc, etc, etc, but at the end of the day, it remains a bigger economy that 9 in 10 other countries in the world. It ranks 7 or 8 in GDP compared to other countries, year after year.

            So yes, both California and NYC are the armpits for taxes and regulations, expensive electricity, etc, etc but they are also vibrant economic centers with lots of markets and lots of labor.

            We have to get past the cartoon ideas… of Conservatism and Liberalism… if we really want to understand.

            The bottom line is that if taxes were really that awful in the minds of the people who actually live there – they’d vote those responsible out of office and get some “conservative” leaders, no?

    • “Besides how will a bureacrat or beltway bandit make a living in Florida!”

      The same way they do from their basements in Reston during COVID-19 … by using the internet.

      • Larry can’t see beyond NOVA … the rest of the USA/world is not like that.

        Even flyover country has good jobs in most all occupations.

        • By all, you mean farm.

        • Oh I CAN but NoVa ain’t like the rest of America!

          And govt workers in NoVa are not exactly stone cold entrepreneurs either!

          No, for better or worse, Virginia is locked on to the Federal Teat and taxes on workers employed by the Feds.

          But here’s the two states that have neither sales nor income tax. How do they do it?

          Alaska: No income or sales tax. …
          New Hampshire: No income or sales tax. …

          My understanding is that New Hampshire taxes the bejesus out of property – both state and local

          ” New Hampshire is known as a low-tax state. But while the state has no personal income tax and no sales tax, it has the third highest property tax rates of any U.S. state, with an average effective rate of 2.20%. … The median property tax homeowners in New Hampshire pay is $5,388″

          Guess how that is affected by the SALT deduction?

      • They have internet in Florida?
        Maybe in Orlando near the parks.

  4. https://www.baconsrebellion.com/wp/taxaginia-reappears-as-special-session-looms/

    I suspect the Commonwealth Institute folks will have the same goals as they had in August, when I wrote that. I saw the job posting earlier this week and almost applied….love the job title. “Revenue Campaign Manager.”

    • ” saw the job posting earlier this week and almost applied….”

      I think you should. If by some weird circumstance you got hired you could have all kinds of fun.

  5. James Wyatt Whitehead V

    What if the red wave is real?

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