Spare taxpayers the rebate and fix the infrastructure

On Jan. 22, in his State of the State address, S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster proposed sending back to the people another rebate that is a portion of the windfall that the state is realizing this year. Last year, most households received a $50 check for a similar rebate.

I am encouraging our elected leaders to keep these funds and use them for much-needed projects and programs that are currently unfunded or under-funded. Economic growth in any state requires well-maintained roads, bridges, airports and state-of-the-art schools and other learning institutions. South Carolina has always struggled to adequately address these areas.

South Carolina must address these unmet infrastructure needs, as they would help provide immediate job opportunities as well as posture the state for greater economic investments for the future.

I dare say that most of our citizens do not mind paying taxes if they are assured that the funds are being used to meet these critical needs and not simply to grow our state or local governments. I would encourage you to retain these funds and allocate them appropriately during the budget process to address the important issues in infrastructure and school funding.

If properly used, these funds can be used to boost productivity, produce business growth, create jobs and provide a healthier environment for all South Carolinians.

I don’t feel that state leaders can look at this rebate as a means of reducing the income tax liability of the state’s citizens. If they truly want to address the income tax situation in the state, then the legislature needs to tackle this head-on and adopt many of the recommendations that were outlined in a comprehensive tax reform committee report several years ago.

In the meantime, the state should keep these funds and use them for these critical needs.