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House Speaker: Tax Restructuring Will Not Raise Taxes

According to today's Washington Post, "Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) said yesterday that his Republican legislative majority will not raise taxes as part of any state tax code restructuring, setting up a likely confrontation with Gov. Mark Warner and other Democrats seeking new sources of education funding." Sounding as if he had just got an earful from some overburdened Virginians, Howell was quoted as saying, "I don't think Virginians feel they're under-taxed." While Governor Warner may not get it, even Arlington's own Senator Mary Margaret Whipple (D) does. At the March 4 meeting of the Arlington County Civic Federation annual get-together with Arlington's General Assembly delegation, Senator Whipple responded to a question from ACTA's president that tax restructuring should indeed be "revenue neutral" because the "entire issue is too complex," adding that tax restructuring is a big issue, a very complicated issue." However, Senator Whipple added that he believes the Commonwealth needs additional revenue sources, but tax restructuring "should stand on its own." Whipple noted that given the reduction in the number of Senators and Delegates on the tax panel, she may not get reappointed but that she would attend on her own.

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