Created: February 17, 2020 06:42 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—Republican lawmakers are trying to lobby the governor to repeal a tax that only senior citizens have to pay. New Mexico is one of thirteen states that tax senior citizens on the income they draw from social security.
“I have many constituents who have told me they are struggling to make ends meet and the tax on social security that the state of New Mexico imposes is taking money away from them that they really do need,” said Rep. Cathrynn Brown (R-District 55).
Bill sponsors Rep. Brown and Rep. Gail Armstrong (R-District 49) along with all House Republicans sent a letter to the governor asking her to support senior citizens by eliminating the tax. They point to what the governor said about seniors during her State of the State address this year.
“Every single senior wants to be independent and self-sufficient as long as possible,” said Gov. Lujan-Grisham during the State of the State address.
The letter comes after the Democrat-controlled House Taxation and revenue Committee recently killed the idea.
“The bill is an issue worth studying. The legislative branch has got to vet these proposals. They did. Their verdict was clear for now,” said a spokesperson for the governor.
The House panel killed the bill because they said it would have been a loss of millions of dollars in revenue to the state.
“There are three we should be protecting: children, veterans and seniors. I get a lot of cry out from seniors that we need this,” said Rep. Armstrong.
Rep. Armstrong said the state could afford this because of this year’s budget surplus.
The likelihood of the tax being repealed during this session is low, however sponsors hope that between now and next year they can convince more lawmakers to repeal the tax.
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