Kelsey, Casada File Constitutional Amendment To Ban State Income Tax

Thursday, November 08, 2012

State Senator Brian Kelsey (R-Germantown) filed a constitutional amendment Wednesday to permanently ban an income tax in Tennessee.  The “No State Income Tax Amendment,” or Senate Joint Resolution 1, would allow Tennesseans to vote in 2014 to clarify the state constitutional prohibition on a personal income tax. 

Tennessee voters overwhelmingly elected state legislators Tuesday who oppose an income tax,” said Senator Kelsey.

  “In these difficult economic times, the last thing Tennesseans need to be worrying about is having to pay a state income tax. This amendment will put the issue to rest once and for all.”

Senator Kelsey announced Wednesday that he has also filed a separate state constitutional amendment that would change the way state appellate judges are chosen to mirror the Founding Fathers plan in the U.S. Constitution.  Senate Joint Resolution 2, called the Founding Fathers Plan Plus, calls for appointment of state appellate judges in a manner similar to the federal model by allowing the Tennessee governor to appoint judges subject to confirmation by the General Assembly. That amendment passed the House and Senate by two-thirds majorities last year.   

The “No State Income Tax” Amendment also begins step two of a three-step process of amending the state constitution.  Step one occurred when the resolution passed the Senate and the House with bipartisan support of over two-thirds of the members during the 2011-2012 General Assembly.  Step two will require a two-thirds vote of the Senate and House during the 2013-2014 General Assembly, which will convene January 8.  Step three is a ratification vote by the people on the November 2014 ballot.

State Representative Glen Casada (R-Franklin) is the House sponsor of the amendment: “I am optimistic that we will be able to move forward this year with the two-thirds majority needed to put this matter into the people’s hands,” he said.

The resolution specifies that the legislature as well as Tennessee counties and cities shall be prohibited from passing either an income tax or a payroll tax, which is a tax on employers that is measured by the wages they pay their workers.  The Hall income tax on dividends and interest will remain unchanged by the amendment.

Although many legal scholars argue that the state constitution already forbids an income tax, the state attorney general opined in 1999 that an income tax would be legal.  The opinion prompted elected officials to propose an income tax that failed by only five votes in the House of Representatives in 2002.  In recent years lawmakers have continued to propose bills to enact both an income tax and a payroll tax.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report - And Mug Shots

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALLEN, KIMBERLY M 2744 6TH AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37407 26 Chattanooga ASSAULT ALVEREZ-CRUZ, LISANDRO 7102 SHEPHERD VIEW CIRCLE CHATTANOOGA, 37421 19 Chattanooga SPEEDING DRIVING ON SUSPENDED LICENSE ANGLAND, JOSHUA JAMES 1843 BAYHILL DRIVE HIXSON, 37343 29 Hamilton County VANDALISM/MALICIOUS ... (click for more)

Mother Gets 20 Years In Death Of 4-Year-Old Son, Severe Injury To 3-Year-Old

Patricia Brewer was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in prison for the abuse death of her four-year-old son and severe injury of her three-year-old son. She appeared before Judge Rebecca Stern and entered guilty pleas to two counts of aggravated child endangerment. Police said the injuries came after the mother left them alone in the care of her boyfriend, who has a history ... (click for more)

Thanks For Publishing The Stokes Photo Book

I pre-ordered the Stokes Photo Book and picked it up Wednesday . The covers and content are very high quality and contain photos you will not see anywhere else.  This book of photos is worth much more than $35.  I have seen many historic photos of my hometown Chattanooga, but this collection is amazing. My favorites are National Cemetery, Confederate Cemetery near ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Saban: ‘Ratings Don’t Matter’

When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released earlier this week, Alabama football coach Nick Saban got it right on the button when he shrugged, “I don't even care, to be honest with you." "To me, none of it matters, What does it matter?” he laughed at the Tide’s No. 6 ranking. “I mean, it only matters where you end up at the end. So what matters to us is how ... (click for more)

Owls Beat McMinn, 30-12, To Complete Unbeaten Regular Season

Undefeated. Sounds nice, huh. After a sluggish first half that produced only three points on a Laszlo Toser field goa., third-ranked Ooltewah came to life in the third quarter, riddled McMinn County’s defense with three Kelvin Leon touchdown passes in the third quarter and went on to beat the Cherokees, 30-12, at James N. Monroe Stadium to secure the school’s third unbeaten ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Clobbers Grundy Co. For 7-AA Title

Notre Dame coach Charles Fant is always hoping that his Fighting Irish football team can get off to a fast start. He never thought it would be as quick as what he saw Thursday night at Jim Eberle Field. With a District 7-AA championship on the line on an evening when they honored all of the fall senior athletes, a football game turned into a track meet and eventually a victory ... (click for more)