Politics

'We're Going After The Income Tax': Maine Governor Looks To Downsize Government Involvement

| by Kathryn Schroeder
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Maine’s Republican Governor Paul LePage has vowed to eliminate the state income tax and downsize the government.

"We're going after the income tax," LePage said during his inaugural address at the Augusta Civic Center.

LePage was sworn into his second term as Gov. of Maine at the ceremony.

Lowering the state income tax is seen by LePage as an essential element to give the people more money in their pocketbooks, reports WCSH.

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In the long term, LePage wants to see the income tax done away with for good.

"We can argue about how to get there," LePage said, "but states with fastest growth have lower taxes and lower energy costs."

LePage will look to other states for guidance on how to create a “smaller, smarter government.”

"We don't have to reinvent the wheel. We can follow examples and make Maine very prosperous and very competitive," LePage said.

Examples of such states given by LePage for job growth and efficiencies were Florida, Louisiana and Texas.

LePage also wants to change the way Maine’s government functions by combining services at the state, county, and local level, and for “the slashing of state revenue that must be shared with what he called increasingly bloated municipal budgets,” Reuters reports.

"Where is the money going? It's unacceptable at the state level, and it should be at the local level," LePage said.

Achieving his economic goals will not be easy, as Maine has some of the United States’ highest energy prices, its oldest population, and weak job growth forecasts.

"We want Mainers to know prosperity, not poverty. We are making some progress in reforming welfare, but I can't do it alone," LePage said.

Sources: Reuters, WCSH / Photo Source: WCSH, Politico