In a letter to the editor of the Lewiston Sun Journal local newspaper, one individual expressed his particular feelings on the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. He stated that “TABOR’ stands for ‘takes away basic, ordinary rights.'” Many other individuals agree that the TABOR proposal would have taken away from society’s basic needs, such as healthcare and education, and that Maine made the right choice rejecting Question 1.

Governor John Baldacci did promise to lower taxes, though, 46% of the popular vote did think the Taxpayers Bill of Rights would be an effective way of restricting the state’s spending increases.

You see, the TABOR proposal would have worked by restricting the amount of spending increases equal to the rate of population growth, plus inflation. If a need to spend beyond the capped point is necessary, two thirds of the governing body must support the idea, and the citizens of Maine must vote on it. In an article from the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights is described as a “restricted version of Tax and Expenditure Limit, or TEL. . .” TEL is the current system used by Maine, along with 20 other states. Considering our current tax burden, we may need to consider a more effective formula.

If a Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights was put in place in the state of Maine, taxes would decrease. In addition to the lightened tax burden, one important principle of TABOR is to create a more fiscally responsible state budget. TABOR is meant to connect growth in the state government with growth in economy.

Our leaders may promise to lower tax burdens, but at what cost? The 54% at voters that rejected TABOR may have been swayed by the “failure” in Colorado. But what they didn’t know is TABOR was put in place for ten years before it was recently suspended. TABOR may not be the answer, at least that’s what 54% of the popular vote indicated. But that doesn’t put a stop to the issue of the fact that Maine is one of the most heavily taxed states in the nation. Just because the TABOR bill didn’t pass, doesn’t mean our tax problems are going to go away. We need a more effective system than the tax expenditure limit; not necessarily TABOR, but something needs to be done about Maine’s outrageous tax burden.

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