Election dates change, Amendment 2 scrutinized

By Bonnie Culverhouse

Following Hurricane Ida, Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin and Gov. John Bel Edwards agreed to reschedule the Oct. 9 election to Nov. 13. The election for Nov. 13 has been postponed until Dec. 11.

The Webster Parish Journal, with the aid of Public Affairs Research Council (PAR) of Louisiana and District 10 State Rep. Wayne McMahon, is taking a look at the Constitutional Amendments that will be on the Nov 13 ballot.
According to PAR, the first two amendments are weighty tax reform proposals.

“All of these amendments are worthy,” McMahon said. “Amendments 1 and 2 are the ones that can make a difference moving forward.”

Today’s story focuses on Amendment 2 (a story about Amendment 1 was published Tuesday, Sept. 7).
Amendment No. 2 proposes a major overhaul of the state income tax rates and deductions.

A vote FOR would lower the maximum rate of the income tax and allow removal of a major state tax deduction, triggering statutory reforms for individual and corporate income and franchise taxes.

A vote AGAINST would keep the Constitution’s current tax rates and the requirement to allow a deduction for federal taxes paid, which would stop all the statutory reforms.  Individual income tax rate changes include the following:

First $12,500 of net income for single filers ($25,000 for joint files) – current rate is 2 percent, proposed rate is 1.85 percent;

Next $37,500 of net income for singer filers ($75,000 for joint filers – current rate is 4 percent, proposed rate is 3.5 percent; and,

Net income in excess of $50,000 for single filers ($100,000-plus for joint filers) current rates 6 percent, proposed rate is 4.25 percent.

“The state controls the income tax, and most states are moving away from income taxes altogether,” McMahon said.

“Those states tend to have higher property taxes, but you know what you can afford before you buy a property. This puts the people in the position to where they can make the decision which tax they are willing to pay.”

Corporate income taxes will be affected, too.

First $25,000 of taxable income – current rate is 4 percent; proposed is first $50,000 of taxable income, 3.5 percent

Above $25,000 but not in excess of $50,000 – current rate is 5 percent, proposed above $50,000 but not in excess of $150,000 – 5.5 percent;

Above $50,000 but not in excess of $100,000 – current rate is 6 percent, proposed is income in excess of $150,000 – 7.5 percent;

Above $100,000 but not in excess of $200,000 – current rate is 7 percent and would not change; and,
Income in excess of $200,000 – current rate is 8 percent and would not change.