Chair Chun-Oakland, Vice-Chair Green, Members of the Committee:
The League of Women Voters of Hawaii supports the intent of SB 2207 which would address poverty in Hawai`i by eliminating state income tax liability for those at or below the Federal poverty level and creating an income tax credit of 50% for anyone with a federal adjusted gross income of less than 125 percent of Federal Poverty Guidelines.
While it is true that our income tax rates are already highly graduated for low-income filers, can’t we go further to ease the tax burdens on our low-income families? We point out that Hawaii is only one of 15 states to tax families of four with incomes at the poverty level.
Guidelines (100%FPL) are as follows:
|2014 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR HAWAII|
|Persons in family/household||Poverty|
I’m sure none of us here can imagine living in Hawaii on these incomes.
The population addressed by this bill is in dire need of relief. The extra money they would have if SB2207 is enacted would surely be spent immediately on basic necessities of life, thus adding economic activity to the State and its businesses.
We hope our State Tax Department and the Department of Business and Economic Development will provide some analysis on this bill for the benefit of this Committee and all Hawaii citizens. We want to move forward with confidence that the income tax changes proposed will still provide adequate resources for our State programs and services.
We urge you to pass this bill. Thank you for the opportunity to submit testimony.