Speaker Symington’s Statement on Economic Stimulus Plan

first_imgSpeaker Symington’s Statement on Economic Stimulus PlanMay 1, 2008Addressing the bipartisan Committee on Economic Recovery and Opportunity today, Speaker Gaye Symington delivered the followingstatement:”I would just like to begin by thanking you for your work. You’ve brought good thinking and good questions to this effort and have improved the material that has been put before us and I thank you for that.”Your work has built upon what we have accomplished throughout the session, focusing on what is putting pressure on Vermonters: their health care costs, their fuel costs, their food costs, housing prices.I am pleased that your recommendations fit into the work that is already in motion in the House.”The legislature has been fighting for more bonding for roads and bridges and making our transportation infrastructure more whole — and we got that.”Weve been fighting for more investment in workforce training, especially where there are job openings — and we got that.”We’ve been fighting for more investment in energy efficiency and weatherization — we got that.”We’ve fought for more attention to affordable housing, to a diversified housing base — we got that.”We are still fighting for more accountability in the proposal for the manufacturer’s tax credit — and I hope you get that.”And now, the remaining question is: where do we go with the sales tax holiday?”I want to repeat that our focus so far has been on what really impacts Vermonters and their budgets and their lives.”I don’t think the sales tax holiday does that.”I don’t think it is the best use of taxpayer resources. I do agree with our economist, who has stated that this would have very little stimulative effect on the economy. I don’t think that this is a long term solution. I don’t think it builds on the strengths of Vermont, as opposed to trying to play catch up and copy cat from other states. I don’t think it benefits the Vermonters who are struggling to make ends meet instead it focuses on Vermonters who have discretionary income and can choose when to make their purchases.”It is clear to me that Governor Douglas is looking to make this the focus of the end of the session, and to turn our good work into an argument over the sales tax holiday. And I won’t let that happen.”I will not stand in the way of a sales tax holiday. I would ask that, if we are going to move ahead with a sales tax holiday, that you give your attention to the details that weren’t thought out in the presentation as it came to us.”But it is time to move forward, to close out the session, to come to resolution, and this is important to Governor Douglas. I realize that, and I am willing to make that concession in order of the rest of our good work to stand firm and go forward.”Thank you.”last_img

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