House Democrats have revamped HB 6, legislation that would impose a variety of tax hikes. You can read a detailed analysis here and their article in support of the piece from the Albuquerque Journal here. Overall it is a $120 million annual tax increase although it would have the positive impact of reducing the State gross receipts tax rate by 0.5%.
Unfortunately, the bill would raise numerous taxes including but not limited to motor vehicle excise taxes, the gas tax, personal income taxes, and several others. The legislative analysis contains the full list.
The bill represents the worst of all worlds: it doesn’t tackle the basic problems with the gross receipts tax which make it so harmful to businesses and it raises overall taxes and government revenues in ways that will harm New Mexico’s economy.
New Mexico is already a high tax state:
The stated desire to “diversify New Mexico’s economy” is welcome. Unfortunately, tax hikes will do nothing to diversify the economy and the gross receipts tax changes are not real “reform.” Rep. Jason Harper has proposed revenue-neutral plans to really reform the GRT only to see them die at the hands of Democrats (albeit with some bi-partisan support).
It would be great if the Democrats were serious about diversifying New Mexico’s economy during this legislative session. Unfortunately, we’re just getting a lot more spending, tax hike proposals, large minimum wage hikes, and efforts to undermine the “lead dog” in New Mexico’s economy, oil and gas.
The best we can hope for is a more moderate New Mexico Senate that just says “no.”