Ricketts, Linehan Pledge To Use Revenue Surplus For Cutting Taxes


       Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts and State Senator Lou Ann Linehan, chair of the Revenue Committee, have pledged to use the $412 million in excess revenue the state has collected over the last year to cut taxes.

      The two Republicans say they continue to view income and property tax reductions as one of their top priorities in the 2022 session. 

      Ricketts told a Capitol Rotunda news conference yesterday that “we need to give the money back to the people of Nebraska. This is not our money. It’s not my money, it’s not legislators’ money, it’s money that belongs to the people of Nebraska.

      Linehan expects a push this year to continue lowering Nebraska’s corporate income tax rate, as lawmakers did last year, along with cutting individual income tax rates and moving up the timetable for full exemption of Social Security benefits from 2030.

      Rebecca Firestone, new executive director of the OpenSky Policy Institute, is urging lawmakers to be extremely cautious on both spending and tax cut proposals because the state economy is currently bolstered by a massive influx of federal dollars.

       She warns that some of the proposals could force painful cuts to schools, roads, and other true economy builders when the federal dollars stop flowing.

       Firestone also says that blaming schools and other local governments for high property taxes “fails to get to the heart of the issue, which is low state support for local governments and the vital services they provide Nebraskans.