To the Editor:
Governor Paul LePage released his budget proposal last Friday.
The state budget is a reflection of the choices we make together to strengthen our communities, support vulnerable residents and build a vibrant economy. LePage’s two-year state budget proposal released today reflects the wrong choices. Prioritizing tax cuts for the top one percent and corporations is a failed prescription for growing Maine’s economy.
The tax cuts contained in the governor’s budget proposal will benefit the wealthy and corporations while raising sales and property taxes for the rest of us. They also will trigger harmful cuts in health care for children, the elderly and the disabled, delay essential repairs to our crumbling roads and bridges, and undercut a good education for our kids.
The experience of other states that have followed a path that prioritizes tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations shows that this is an ineffective, fiscally irresponsible strategy for growing the economy. Those states have not realized significant economic benefits but have cut programs families and businesses value, increased property and sales taxes, and had their credit ratings downgraded.
Instead of trying to cut our way to prosperity by giving huge tax breaks to the wealthy and corporations, we should be investing in the sturdy foundation of a strong economy – a healthy and educated work force, good roads and other public services, and other needed investments in people and infrastructure that are proven effective at helping businesses and workers thrive. That is the right choice for Maine.
We look forward to working with legislators in the coming months to ensure that the final budget they approve reflects these priorities.
Maine Center for Economic Policy