Tax cut group protests ballot languageBISMARCK — Sponsors of a state income tax cut measure are protesting the way Secretary of State Al Jaeger has worded the issue for the Nov. 4 ballot.
By: Janell Cole , N.D. Capitol Bureau
BISMARCK — Sponsors of a state income tax cut measure are protesting the way Secretary of State Al Jaeger has worded the issue for the Nov. 4 ballot.
The wording voters will see at the polling place mentions inconsistencies that were discovered in the sponsors’ proposed tax brackets after they began gathering signatures.
Jaeger said he consulted with Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem on the final ballot language.
The ballot will say that the measure lowers “the state corporate income tax rates by 15 percent and the adjusted state income tax rates by 50 percent, except for one taxpayer bracket where the reduction would be 45 percent and for two other brackets where some income would not be taxed.”
Americans for Prosperity said this morning that Jaeger should have used the same ballot language he approved for their petition last July, which does not mention the inconsistencies—language which Stenehjem also approved.
They said legislators have promised to fix the inconsistencies if the measure passes in November.
The Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce pointed out the inconsistencies or errors in June.
Jaeger said he and Stenehjem aren’t responsible for proofreading a sponsoring committee’s measure.
“They said that their measure provided for a 50 percent reduction. We did not do a calculation on each one of the approximate 21 tax brackets on the petition to see if they were correct. That was the responsibility of the sponsoring committee before they submitted it,” Jaeger said this morning.
He said it isn’t unusual for the wording of an initiated measure to be slightly different on the ballot compared to the wording on sponsors’ petitions, though “usually is not too significant.”