Senate considers tax increase to fund schools

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By Carol A. Clark

Education surtax bill 346 cleared the House and is headed to the Senate with a week left in the legislative session.

The bill proposes to raise taxes by nearly $400 million a year to finance public school improvements. It will increase the gross receipts tax by three-quarters of a cent.

For a $100 purchase, the tax would go up 75 cents if the bill is enacted.

Rep. Jeannette Wallace, R-Los Alamos, Santa Fe and Sandoval counties addressed the proposed measure this morning.

“This bill is what the funding formula needs in order to move forward, however, Los Alamos National Laboratory has to face that increased GRT without receiving any new money from the government to do so,” Wallace said. “And we know what happened to northern New Mexico the last time when the lab had to first start paying GRT, it had to cut jobs. This bill hurts WIPP in Carlsbad and it hurts LANL and it really hurts the whole valley because they are the ones who lose the jobs.”

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