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He says he stood up for conservative principles, guiding the state out of a fiscal crisis by ramming cuts through a recalcitrant Democratic Legislature. All of that, he says, shows he can stop overspending. According to The Tax Foundation, a conservative tax research organization, in the year before Romney came to power , the state and local tax burden in Massachusetts was 9. Thus, under Romney, Bay Staters saw their taxes burden increase by 6.
His justification was that companies had been exploiting obscure loopholes that needed to be closed. Corporate software that was downloaded from the Internet, for example, would no longer be exempt from the sales tax that applied to identical software when purchased in disc format. The state raised the cost of elevator inspections, boat registrations, gun licenses and ice skating at public rinks.
Fines for speeding tickets went up. A new fee was imposed on law school graduates for taking the bar exam. A tax on gasoline, which the state called a fee, rose from half a cent to 2. All of the hikes were justified, Romney said, because many state fees had not gone up in decades, and they applied only to users of specific services. But what about new fees?
To many of the companies that had to pay more taxes, those loophole closings sure felt like tax increases. The Democrats who run the state Legislature went along with the first two rounds. Facts are stubborn things. We audited our fee increase, because, of course, we cared. Cities and towns now rely on property taxes to pay 53 percent of their budgets, a year high and up from 49 percent before Romney took office, said Geoffrey Beckwith, executive director of the Massachusetts Municipal Association.
Many communities cut services and raised fees as a result, he said. The assessment was previously free. The test was to determine their eligibility for state services. The ID currently costs nothing. The proposals are also soon expected to become law after the Legislature approved them last week. But Governor Mitt Romney never made any promises about fees. Romney suggested using the collected fees to fund development in underdeveloped areas.
But a Democratic source forwards to this rather lengthy list of fees Romney raised in Massachusetts. He was struggling to close a budget gap without raising taxes; but many of which citizens of the state saw them hidden tax increases nonetheless. American Bridge monitors what Republicans say and fights back when their rhetoric doesn't match their records. Help us hold the GOP accountable! Related Posts By level.