Sunday, September 14, 2003

Hobbs On The Job

Tennessee has been running revenue surpluses for a while now. Surprised? Well, if you depend on the major State newspapers you would be. They haven't reported it. I guess it's not as important as Shane Battier's wedding two months ago. But Bill Hobbs has been on the tax tip for quite a while now. Read the post, and the linked one.

My question is: Does this mean we can expect the Legislature to look at reducing the "highest in the nation" sales tax in the next session, taking the onerous burden off the poor and working poor of the State? I'm not betting on it.

Governor Bredesen's serious stewardship of the budget, the continued smooth functioning of goverment after the budget cuts, the resounding defeats for tax measures around the country (something else that Hobbs keeps watch on), and now the modest surpluses in a still-weak economy should all make crystal clear to Tennesseans that the Armageddon scenario that Naifeh, Sundquist and the daily papers tried to paint was just so much partisan lying. We as a State are pretty healthy and looking at a huge revenue rebound once the economy picks up steam, which is the economic forecast for next year.

Having gone through such a scare and survived, will legislators continue to exercise their newly gained fiscal discipline? Again, I'm not betting on it.

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