Politics & Government

State treasurer: time for ‘grand bargain’ that includes income tax

State Treasurer Jim McIntire has a “grand bargain” in mind on tax reform and he wants to bend your ear.

McIntire on Monday released a plan to overhaul the state’s tax system that would also help fund a proposal released by state schools Superintendent Randy Dorn and meet the state’s court-mandated K-12 education funding obligations.

Among other things, the McIntire plan would institute a 5 percent personal income tax, but would eliminate the state property tax and reduce business taxes. The plan would raise billions of dollars, some of which would go toward funding education under the state Supreme Court’s mandate known as the McCleary decision.

McIntire called his plan a conversation starter to move the discussion toward finding a long-term plan and says he plans to travel around the state to talk about it.

“We need to have less of an ideological conversation about this,” McIntire said in a news conference.

The concept of a tax overhaul comes as lawmakers and state officials have been issuing budget proposals and local property tax levy reform plans to generate the billions of dollars necessary to fund education.