Editor’s note: We welcome op-ed’s from Democrat and Republican candidates for statewide office

As a candidate for Lt. Governor of Georgia, I say that ‘Abolish the GA State Income Tax’ should not be just a talking point without a plan. Georgians are tired of the broken promises and lip service! They are starving for REAL Leaders to serve in their best interest!

I started the dialogue in February of 2021 when I entered the campaign to be the next Lt. Governor of Georgia and said that we should pass legislation, called the Georgia FAIRTAX Act – (GA HB 543), to eliminate the income tax and also the current sales tax, both of which are laden with exceptions and exemptions that benefit the ‘special interests’, which shifts the tax burden primarily to the middle class working family! I want to make ALL Georgia tax payers equal to the ‘special interests’!

The Georgia FAIRTAX is the SOLUTION to TAKE BACK CONTROL. I have been advocating for the FairTax on the federal level for over 15 years, ask Jack Kingston and David Perdue if you doubt it! The political environment has been toxic for meaningful tax reform on the federal level, so let’s try it on the State level and implement the Georgia FairTax Act. This SOLUTION was proposed six years ago by State Rep. Emory Dunahoo, which was favored by the legislative rank and file, but was held in committee by leadership! HB543, which is a 6.7% consumption tax on retail goods and services only, with a prebate so that no one pays tax on necessary expenditures up to the poverty level! My opponents weren’t interested then as legislators but now as Candidates for Lt. Governor, they are picking up on OUR message. The Georgia FAIRTAX Act will be re-introduced with a new HB this next session, with updated language, so look for good things ahead!

Here are some facts to think over: Georgia at the end of the fiscal year 2021:

Georgia’s rainy-day fund grew from $2.7 billion on July 1, 2020, to nearly $4.3 billion by June 30, 2021! State law requires 15% of general revenue funds be placed in the reserve account. We still have $2.1 billion in surplus that our legislators will decide how to spend this upcoming session.

Now why do we have so much surplus? Some folks would say it’s because of the stimulus monies injected into Georgia from the federal level during COVID, and some of that is true. But don’t be fooled by some of those talking points. Reminder that in January 1, 2019 Georgia began collecting an internet sales tax (never before done) and that also contributed to the surplus! Common sense! This gives lawmakers a sizable cushion to enact and implement the Georgia FAIRTAX Act! The time is now!

Most of the top performing states economically have NO state income tax, and two of them abut Georgia, Tennessee and Florida. If we want to remain competitive, we must change to a taxing system that makes everyone pay a Fair Share, and returns power back to the people, and away from special interests. TAKE BACK CONTROL – insist on passage of the Georgia FAIRTAX Act!

As your next Lt Governor, who presides over the Senate. I will support this legislation and work hard to get it passed! The time is now! Georgians deserve to keep more in their pockets and again, all should be paying their fair share.

Jeanne Seaver is a Republican candidate running for Lt. Governor

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