06/12/13 — Tax watch: Debate is critical to state's future

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Tax watch: Debate is critical to state's future

Nothing gets people's blood boiling more than paying taxes.

Well, that is until the Obama administration decided to use the Internal Revenue Service as its own political battering ram.

And we found out that the National Security Agency has been checking out cell phones.

But we digress.

The problem with taxes is that nobody likes to pay them. But the rub comes when it is time to figure out how to change them.

The truth is, change scares most Americans.

They worry what will happen if the procedures they are used to are replaced by new rules -- and they wonder how those changes will affect their daily lives.

And then, of course, there is the rhetoric. Opponents of altering the tax law have all kinds of dire predictions about how those shifts will affect everyday Americans and some of the most vulnerable. It is the "typical rich guys will win and poor guys will lose" argument.

So it is not surprising that the current debate in the Statehouse over taxes is getting more than a little heated.

But the trick over the next few days is to listen carefully to the proposals.

Will the corporate tax cut create more jobs and get more people off the jobless rolls?

Will a sales tax distribute the payments for services like schools fairly and mean that families will be able to afford the basics?

Will tax cuts be enough to offset the fees that might be needed?

And what exactly are the pros and cons of eliminating income tax in North Carolina?

The answers won't be easy to come by -- and there will be plenty of rhetoric to wade through -- but without the information, you cannot possibly make an informed decision about taxes.

It might seem boring and too much about politics, but the tax and budget debates are critical pieces to the state's future.

Don't miss your chance to have your say.

Published in Editorials on June 12, 2013 10:49 AM