Rep. Tom Taylor (R-Farmington) & Senator Tim Keller (D-Albuquerque)

Air Dates: February 16-18, 2013

Senator TIM KELLER (D-Bernalillo) & Representative TOM TAYLOR(R-San Juan)

QUOTES:

“I think you have to consider how valuable this information is and that there might be institutional reasons why we don't want to sort of look under the rug about what is really going on with our tax code. It… could be an embarrassing exercise for the State of New Mexico…But this year I think at least we have got a new approach that gets around some of those challenges.” -- Senator TIM KELLER (D-Bernalillo)

“Gross receipts is kind of gross, because it means everything. Your gross is your total. ..All of the deductions, exemptions, and credits aren't in the tax code: they are scattered throughout the law. We can’t even find them all!”-- Representative TOM TAYLOR (R-San Juan)

In an exciting bipartisan episode of REPORT FROM SANTA FE, Lorene talks with Representative Tom Taylor (R-San Juan) and Senator Tim Keller (D-Bernalillo) about big fixes for serious problems in our state.

If you have felt pessimistic or overwhelmed by tax legislation in the past, make sure you watch this show! Practical, clearly-explained solutions to big issues are being proposed this session, from Gross Receipts Tax reform to PRC reform, and the lawmakers explain both the problems, the proposed solutions, and why you should care in this engaging economicepisode.

Among the topics discussed are Senator Keller's SB7 which would provide a tax expenditure audit of all the credits, deductions and exemptions the state allows. This bill provides a tracking mechanism and accountability for all these exemptions which add up to one billion dollars lost to state coffers!

Rep. Taylor explains his HB 369 which would provide a hard reboot of the tax system - and received a “world record” SIX committee referrals. These lawmakers are spearheading Public Regulation Commission reform bills, so issues of qualification for commissioners, their education and experience are discussed. The perennial problems of ethics and transparency at the PRC are also explored.

QUOTES:

Rep. Taylor: “It is going to take some fortitude for people to make the change…People embrace change as long as it is happening to somebody else!” 

Sen. Keller: “I appreciate your spotlighting this because it is something that is a little more dense of a topic, and it doesn't always receive the time. I have always said I think some incentives are great and are really helpful. And we should double down on those. And some are probably out of date or redundant you know or just no longer needed and those are the ones we should close and then we can lower overall taxes by broadening the tax base. And we can't do that unless we get the information and that is why this bill is so important.”