The General Assembly Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to override Governor Mike Pence’s veto of a tax bill, with Republican leaders saying the legislation is the best fix to a tax problem.
For the past few years, taxpayers in two counties – Jackson and Pulaski – have been paying an unauthorized local income tax used to pay for county jails. Legislation this past session retroactively approved the collection of the taxes.
But Governor Mike Pence vetoed the bill, saying he believed the money should be refunded. Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane says he agrees.
“If the costs have to be borne by somebody, it should be borne by the innocent parties. The taxpayers are the innocent parties here,” Lanane said.
The governor proposed an administrative remedy that would refund taxpayers and make changes to local income tax distributions in the future.
But Buck Creek Republican Senator Brandt Hershman says the legislation is the best solution.
“Sustaining this veto will simply add a penalty on an error that was at least partially the fault of state government,” Hershman said.
The House voted 68-23 and the Senate 34-12 to override the veto, with only a few Republicans voting with the governor.