Monday, July 17, 2006

New PAC Formed to Promote Taxpayer Bill of Rights

A new political action committee, Mainers for Tax Relief, has been formed to work on the passage of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights and other tax issues. The plan of the group is to provide direct financial support to supporter-funded candidates, and independent funding to government-funded candidates. The PAC will also reach out to the media via press release and advertisements placed in a variety of media, to correct what it says are inaccurate statements that the opposition makes about the Taxpayer Bill of Rights. The committee will establish an advisory board to assist with policy and message development.

Mainers for Tax Relief is headed by Portland tax activist Steven Scharf, who has been active in Maine politics since moving back to the state five years ago, working on issues from affordable housing to city budgeting. Scharf is the President of the Portland Taxpayers Association and active in municipal, county and state Republican politics. He has been active in the Taxpayer Bill of Rights initiative since its inception in Maine. He was a candidate for the state legislature in 2004, running on a platform that mirrored the Taxpayer Bill of Rights’ limited spending proposals. Scharf is the president of SCS Media Services, a resource development company that specializes in FileMaker Pro database development and mailing list marketing and management.

According to Scharf, passage of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights will not solve all of Maine’s problems, and there is much more that needs to be done to encourage economic development and create livable incomes for Maine’s families. Scharf said that Mainers for Tax Relief will be formulating a plan to bring the cost of government within the means of Maine residents. Some possible proposals include:

• Eliminating income taxes for incomes below a set amount ($28,000 is a figure that has been suggested.)
• Creating a fair school funding formula to funds schools based on enrollment.
• Increasing the eligibility requirements for Medicare.
• Reducing the number of school districts in the state.
• Creating competition for health insurance, which will lower the cost of insurance.
• Legalizing association health plans and allowing people to buy insurance across state borders.


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